This article appeared in the September 30, 2020 edition of the Monitor Daily A Christian Science Perspective Listen: audio edition.
As this worldwide pandemic rolls on, it can be hard to keep one’s spirits up day after day. Isolation has blurred time, merging one day into another and dampening spirits. Here in Australia, health officials have expressed concern about the mental well-being of citizens – especially those of us under curfew in my home city of Melbourne. With work, schooling, social, and travel restrictions being imposed for another long period of time, “lockdown fatigue” can seem overwhelming.
One powerful way I’ve found to maintain a mental balance and fight off lockdown lethargy and general unhappiness is to spiritually prepare myself each day. I make a special point of undertaking specific daily prayer about my mental well-being.
This includes regular study of the heartening, uplifting ideas presented in the weekly Bible Lesson from the Christian Science Quarterly. The passages, which come from the King James Bible and “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” by Mary Baker Eddy, help me negate despondency and stay on an even keel mentally.
For instance, this Bible verse from Second Timothy has encouraged me and energized my prayers: “God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind” (1:7). This enlivening, timeless message of wisdom and healing speaks of God’s love and care for everyone. God has given each of us soundness of mind – the spiritual dominion we can exercise over dispiriting thoughts and actions.
This ability to conquer mental darkness of any type is ours – not because God knows about our problems and gives us strength to face them, but because of what we are as God’s spiritual sons and daughters, the very expression of the divine Mind, which includes no darkened or despondent thinking.
We don’t have to feel emotionally drained by what’s taking place right now in our lives or in the world. As God’s dearly loved children, made in the image and likeness of the Divine, we have the ability to be resilient and remain resilient – to experience and express strength of mind and spirit, buoyancy, uplift, and balance. This innate ability permanently resides in, and reigns over, our consciousness. As Jesus said, “The kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:21).
In praying with these ideas, I’ve likened the spiritual truth of God’s sustaining and fortifying forever-love to a personal flotation device. This mental “life jacket” has helped me stay mentally uplifted during this difficult time. God’s lifesaving, thought-sustaining love has lifted me out of pessimism. Rather than sinking down into despondency, I’ve been raised up to a more tangible joy and buoyancy of spirit.
As the days tick by, it’s strengthening to know that we don’t have to wait for restrictions to be rescinded before we can be happy and contented again. Our mental health is sustained by divine Spirit, God, day in and day out. Our divine Parent gives us strength of purpose and stability, which empowers us to overcome mental fatigue with spiritual get-up-and-go.
Even in unstable times, we can make this our prayer and strive to practice what Science and Health urges in this powerful message: “Let us feel the divine energy of Spirit, bringing us into newness of life and recognizing no mortal nor material power as able to destroy. Let us rejoice that we are subject to the divine ‘powers that be’” (p. 249).
The Christian Science Monitor newspaper, was established by Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science who was concerned with both the state of the world and the quality of available news.