Mrs. Eddy’s Children, 100 Years On

February 7th, 2010

As a newer follower of Jesus, I struggled with seeing objectively into my own mental landscape and life experience as Christian Science had shaped them. I felt the need to do this for two reasons. Stepping away from long-familiar thought patterns toward freedom in Christ was going to take a conscious effort. And reaching out to Scientists with what I now knew of the gospel would require all the empathy I could muster about how things looked through their eyes.

So as a way of getting my own religious and cultural background “out there where I could take a look at it,” I got the idea of sketching an imaginary Christian Science family’s story across a number of years. This could be done in a few paragraphs, I thought. But the result ran to several thousand words. This was in 1998, five years after I was baptized, 18 years after I accepted Christ. Start to poke around in an attic, and there is often a lot more in there than we expect.

The piece is now posted here. Mrs. Eddy’s Children: A Five-Generation Portrait. I benefited a great deal from writing it, in just the ways I had hoped. I still get new insights — about who I am and have been, and about opportunities and obstacles for evangelizing the MBE followers today — each time I read through this story. As you will see, it is simply a narrative told from the outside. It does not argue doctrine, pass judgment, or draw conclusions. It aims for a fair and mild tone, granting these Scientists the respect they deserve. And to repeat, it is purely imaginary. No person or incident in my life, or known to me, is disguised there. I hope it is helpful to you. “The lines are fallen to me in pleasant places; I have a goodly heritage.” To God be the glory.

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