On page 266 of "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" Mrs. Eddy has written: "Would existence without personal friends be to you a blank? Then the time will come when you will be solitary, left without sympathy; but this seeming vacuum is already filled with divine Love. When this hour of development comes, even if you cling to a sense of personal joys, spiritual Love will force you to accept what best promotes your growth." To the casual reader the above statement might seem to constitute condemnation of friendship, but to the thoughtful student it uncovers the deception that has caused so much human anguish—the personal sense of friendship. Christian Science does not ask that we give up our human friendships, but Christian Science reveals friendship as a divine idea. Hence man, including all right ideas, includes the glorious idea of friendship.

Let us look at what we are giving up, "when this hour of development comes." All we are surrendering is a false concept of friendship with its jealousies, its possessiveness, its demanding, human planning, fears, separations, and misunderstandings. Who would not welcome release from these destroyers of joy and peace? And what is included in the divine Love that is already filling the "seeming vacuum"? True friendship! There, safe in the sanctuary of Love, friendship has always been, untouched and untarnished by personal sense. No unsatisfied longings, no disappointed hopes, can enter that sanctuary to claim association or identification with friendship. Its expression is constant, for it is an evidence of the constancy of divine Love. The expression of friendship does not depend upon human circumstances or physical proximity, does not vacillate or fluctuate, has nothing to do with "more or less," but is unhampered, unlimited, and continuous in its expression. It is an evidence that man is beloved of God. In proportion as true friendship is seen as the basis of every human relationship, in that proportion is the relationship harmonious and enduring.

How to Progress
February 22, 1936

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