Peter J. Henniker-Heaton
"Just before World War II, I was working for the British Home Civil Service when I began to lose the use of my legs. When my sick leave ended, I had a week-long medical exam and they said I had some form of paralysis for which there was no known cure. I was invalided out of the service, and my dear wife cared for me at home, but for almost 10 years I could not stand or walk. At times I ate little and slept poorly. Our home, an upper flat in central London, was under Nazi air attack for four of those years. And we were low on funds."
No medical remedy existed, but Mr. Henniker-Heaton prayed for healing. He read the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, by Mary Baker Eddy, from cover to cover. When he was too weak to turn the pages, his wife left the book open before him, and he memorized the page. Eventually he knew more than half the book by heart. Fellow Sunday School teachers called him "the walking concordance." Walking?
"As I studied, spiritual joy filled me," he remembered, "and with it a keener sense of spiritual innocence. In the tenth year, I began to walk again. My sleep and appetite returned to normal as I went forward in God's strength. All the good of those years remained with me; all the loss and evil are as though they had never been."
Mr. Henniker-Heaton was a part-time poet. When asked how he could trust God patiently for ten years until his health returned, he responded with this verse.
No mortal effort builds the road of patience.
God laid it well before the world began,
Himself, the God of love, the God patience,
For man, His perfect child, to walk upon.