On waking in the morning it is my custom to pray for myself...

On waking in the morning it is my custom to pray for myself, for church, and for the world. One day I suddenly realized I had accepted an uninvited guest into my consciousness. Before praying, imperceptibly and silently I had been indulging in a long outpouring of gripes and feeling very self-righteous about it. Fortunately, in the light of Truth, I saw that these were not godly thoughts, and certainly not in accord with the teaching of Christian Science. Therefore I proceeded to treat each gripe by replacing it with expressions of justice, gratitude, and love, until there were no further complaints to confront. My motto became "not gripe but gratitude."

Furthermore, it occurred to me to look up the word "gripe" in an unabridged dictionary. To my astonishment, among other meanings I found a definition that pointed to a form of pain. I had been having such pains, but had dismissed them with a few superficial words of truth, instead of thoroughly praying to uproot the real cause of the problem.

When I saw the tendency to complain for what it was—a negative mortal belief imposing itself on me—and replaced it with love and gratitude coupled with righteous judgment, the spasmodic pains disappeared completely. God's law of prevention was seen to be operating in my behalf, and as I abided by it, I was free.

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July 9, 1979

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