No penalty for innocence

The Christian Science Monitor

I was feeling miserable when the telephone rang. I had been fretting over some unhappy and unexpected changes in one of my friendships that were also causing strain and complications in another. One of my closest girlfriends and I were surprised to find ourselves casually dating the same man. We talked openly about the situation, and at first we both felt fine. Soon we each had hurt feelings of varying degrees, however, and I wasn't happy at all with our male friend.

Someone had once told me that our interactions with other people are only valuable as they teach us more about God, but I wasn't quite sure what I was learning in this instance. Recent conversations with my girlfriend had revolved around this issue. Most of what we had to say was frustrating, because it didn't bring us any closer to a solution. But occasionally we would discuss resolving our problems through prayer. We are both Christian Scientists, and we know from experience that God heals all ills—and that includes difficult relationships. I have to admit, though, that I was spending more time talking about prayer than praying. It was easy to talk about the perfect, harmonious relationship that continuously exists between God and His spiritual creation, including man, who is made in His likeness. But I wasn't really devoting myself to understanding and living the ideas my lips were voicing.

They belong to God, not to a gang
September 7, 1992

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