Thursday, November 13, 2008

"...our meek and bold Defender..."

"...For God is all, and Christ the way;
Our meek and bold defender
Has cleft the night and lo, the day
Burst forth in might splendor..."

L.C.Nourse

I had always wanted to be an attorney.  A "civil liberties" attorney to be specific.  I wanted to argue cases in defense of human rights and social justice before a judge and a "jury of your peers".   Yes, teaching school, publishing books, practicing spiritual healing, and volunteering in my community were all wonderful enduring chapters in my life story, but someday...ah, someday I would graduate from law school, take the bar exam, and hang my shingle. I couldn't imagine anything more lovely than defending the innocent and defeating injustice. I would continue practicing spiritual healing part-time...weekends and evenings...I had always held more than one job, this would be no different.

My path seemed poised for entering this dream chapter some years ago when I was between careers and my part-time practice of spiritual healing would have nicely bookmarked law school classes.  Having passed the LSATs a few years earlier, I found a law school within a reasonable commute of our home, made application, and was ready to send in the enrollment deposit which would hold my place while I sought financial aid, loans, scholarships, grants...whatever was needed to support my law school chapter...however long it took.  But that's where God jumped in and stopped me in my tracks.

I had spent the morning studying Scripture, praying for clear direction, and listening for divine guidance.  It seemed as if the way was completely clear for taking the next logical step.  I pulled my checkbook from the desk drawer, wrote a check to the University for what seemed, at the time, to be a more than we could afford for a deposit amount, popped it in the pre-addressed envelope to the Admission office, and pulled on my jacket before heading down the stairs and out the door to the post office. It was just a first baby step, but I felt ready to take it.

But as I headed down the long flight of stairs from our loft to the street level entrance of our building,  an inner voice suggested, "Why don't you look up the word "Comforter" in the Bible lexicon before you leave?"  In my Bible study that morning had been a citation that included a reference to the promised "Comforter" and as I had read it, it occured to me that I had never really gotten a solid sense of that word's meaning in the original language, and in the context of Jesus' message.  At the time, I was too busy thinking about law school and whether we could afford for me to take this next step. Much too busy listening for guidance to stop in the middle of my prayers and grab Strong's Bible concordance off the shelf...I'd do it later.  And here it was...later...but now I needed to get to the post office or I might never have the chutzpah to think I deserved to live out this dream again. 

As I continued down the stairs and placed my hand on the doorknob, it was as if someone had wired that doorknob with an electrical shock.  And as I grabbed it, this time the voice was so forceful it seemed almost audible, "Go look up the word Comforter"....I may be headstrong, but I am not disobedient...so I did just that.

I sprinted up the stairs, in a hurry to do what I was being urged to do, so that I could still get to the post office before the end of the day, and pulled the heavy volume off the shelf quickly finding the related Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic definitions of the word "Comforter".  As my eyes fell on the last one, I almost gasped.  It read, "counsel for the defense".  I sat back into the chair I had pushed out of the way only moments earlier and folded my hands in my lap.  A stillness descended over my shoulders like a soft mantle of peace. 

"This is the kind of Law I really want to practice," I thought.  "This is the Law I believe in and love...I could work in this Law office forever."  I could see that God, Love was the Law, and that the Christ was "the Comforter", the "counsel for the defense" I would be working for from that day forward.  From then on, my spiritual practice was no longer modeled after a healthcare provider/clinic, but a law firm.  It was easy to set aside an eventual practice with the ACLU....this was like clerking with a the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.  I knew there would be moments when I would be the receptionist, then the stenographer, the bookkeeper, the public relations liaison, the office janitor, the law clerk with her head buried in the law library...but that the Christ would always be the Chief Counsel. 

As I looked at the books, lying open on the desk, in front of me that day...the
Bible and Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy...I realized that I had a full law library right in front of me.  The Bible gave me a complete and comprehensive resume of precedent setting cases to cite in the court of Spirit, and Science and Health told me how to write a brief, a treatment, in defense of man's inalienable spiritual right to freedom from sin, sickness and death.

Years earlier I had taken two weeks of class-instruction with an experienced and wise "law professor," a teacher of Christian Science, and this had fully prepared me for hanging my shingle....opening an office for the one and only original Public Defender.  

I never sent that check to the University, but committed my life to an unwavering career in law from that day forward.

In the ensuing decades, I have enjoyed a rich and satisfying career in the practice of spiritual Law.  Each client who has crossed the threshold of this office was lovingly cared for by our Chief Counsel.  As His receptionist I pray that I can say I have received each client warmly and, I hope, with grace.  As His paralegal, I have taken careful notes that I could go over with Him, in consultation, later.  As His law clerk, I have never found the
Bible wanting as I searched for a precendent-setting cases to refer to when defending our client's divine rights in the courtroom of Spirit.   As His billing clerk, I am often either "out to lunch" or "on holiday"...as this is the hardest job in the office for me...and the one I most need to strengthen my skillset for.

I love this office.  I have a great boss who cares for our clients' spiritual liberties with a Father-like devotion to justice, and  a Mother-like perseverence in defense of Her children's divine rights...a Chief Counsel who never leaves anyone languishing in prison because of an unjust sentence. And even when a harsh sentence might seems reasonable, He lovingly reminds us all that justice is always "the handmaid of mercy".

back to work...my lunch break is almost up...

with Love,


Kate Robertson, CS, Esq.

Kate

3 comments:

  1. once again, it's apparent we have the same Mind!!! when I considered going to law school, I listed all the qualities of a good lawyer (ethical, moral, defends their clients, etc.) and then realized it was all the same stuff as a CS practitioner. that's when I started taking that kind of work.

    you and me, kiddo, joined at the mental hip.

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  2. Great post.

    I wonder if you'd expand your analogy and figure out what the Christian Science nurse parallels in this court of Spirit. . I'm not familiar enough with all the positions.

    Essentially a CS nurse is a practitioner as well, but there is that aspect of 'health care' that distinguishes it.

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  3. HI Dean...good to meet you..

    hmmm....since I feel that my role is multi-functional in the Chief Counsel's office, I would include nurse as one more office within the law practice...I do believe that the office of "nurse" (like practitioner) is a provision that EVERY member is responsible for serving in...since both have their mandate as it appears in Article VIII "Guidance for Members" in The Manual of the Mother Church.

    Almost like serving in Mrs. Eddy's household...you didn't get to choose what tasks you would accept...what role you would play...you said "yes" and then you did whatever you were asked.

    Serving in the law office of the Chief Counsel is the same to me...you say "yes" and then you do whatever is needed...nurse, receptionist, practitioner, billing coordinator, law clerk...whatever is needed. There are many days that I am handing a tissue to a patient so that he or she can wipe a tear, bringing a glass of water, giving a hug...taking care of their very practical needs at the moment...nursing...

    just some thoughts

    analogies and metaphors only go so far...

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