The seven-night Oprah Winfrey television series, “Belief,” airing Oct. 18 - 24, explores our “ongoing search to connect with something greater than ourselves.”
The second in the series, “Belief: Love’s Story,” explores loving unconditionally, love that unites, and loving your enemies. As critical as these are to those yearning to put their faith into practice, I believe that “Love’s Story” is even richer if you also take a look at love’s power to heal the body.
If we were made, assembled, like a car or truck, there would be no need for compassion and care when it came to our mental and physical health care needs. Switch out a part or two, bang out a dent, and we would be good to go.
However, we know there is more to us than body parts, and health care means more than just cleaning out a filter and changing spark plugs, so to speak.
Pamela Wible, MD, recently wrote, “Just three simple words can heal more wounds than all the doctors in the world.” The three words are “I love you.”
Other health care professionals have discovered love’s potential. Studies show that love heals physical wounds and reduces stress. Researchers are also looking into whether love improves the immune system. I believe they will eventually find love to be a medicine for every ill.
The special words, “I love you,” often regarded as mere human emotion, can represent a magnificent, spiritual creator’s relationship to His children. The Bible states God is love, and our understanding of the divine allness and care can heal.
Several years ago, I attended a talk by a Christian Science practitioner from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In the lecture, the practitioner explained how a woman had come to his office looking like the “perfect presentation of a Walt Disney witch.” He said she was disheveled, dark in her expression and disposition. The woman came to him for relief from a physical ailment.
The practitioner took the case, and shared with the woman what he felt were meaningful, spiritual truths. Previously in his practice, he had seen that when the facts about a patient’s spiritual nature were understood and affirmed, mental and physical relief came.
That’s because while belief in God is generally helpful to well-being, it’s more powerful to have faith that has, through spiritual growth, developed into a true understanding of God’s infinite power and unconditional love for each of us. That assurance overcomes fear and its negative effects on the body. This unshakable understanding, which is based on divine laws of health and harmony, allows us to experience the healing that Love, God, can bring.
So that’s how the practitioner prayed for the woman. He felt he was feeding her with spiritual inspiration. After several visits and discussions, the woman simply turned to him with teary eyes and said, “If you would only love me, I know I would be healed.”
Her statement shocked him. Hadn’t he been loving her, caring for her in his prayerful treatment for her all along? Or, on the contrary, had he been merely seeing a poor soul that needed what he had to offer?
He was humbled. Then he felt love pouring into him and out from him to this woman. She, like so many of us, was in need, not only of physical healing, but of the most vital comforting antidote: loving care.
He loved her not with pity, but with compassion and tender respect. He endeavored to love her, to some degree, as he knew God loved her — perfect and free.
The next time the woman returned to his office, not only was she physically healed, he said that her whole face had changed. She no longer looked like a Disney witch. She was open, and bright, and lovely. Love’s work was complete.
I’ve heard that a wise physician once said to his patient, “I’ve been practicing medicine for 30 years, and have prescribed many things. But in the long run I’ve learned that, for most of what ails the human creature the best medicine is love.” When asked, “What if it doesn’t work?” He answered, “Double the dose.”
Keith Wommack is a Syndicated Columnist, Christian Science practitioner and teacher, husband, and step-dad. He has been described as a spiritual spur (since every horse needs a little nudge now and then). Keith’s columns originate at: KeithWommack.com