Personal attachment or spiritual attraction?

How do we recognize true attraction? How can we discern the difference between the pull of personal attachment and true, spiritual attraction? An honest examination of ourselves helps us see what is motivating us.

In this examination there's helpful guidance given in the Manual of The Mother Church by Mary Baker Eddy. It's called "A Rule for Motives and Acts" (Art. VIII, Sect. 1). The first sentence reads, "Neither animosity nor mere personal attachment should impel the motives or acts of the members of The Mother Church." We are usually aware of feelings of animosity, and because of the discomfort they bring, we do struggle to overcome them. But personal attachment is much more subtle. We may side with someone or something because it appeals to our personal interests, although we may have no insight into character or motivation or the basic issues at stake. This holds true for places and things, for we can be just as easily influenced by places and objects as people. The Bible admonishes, "Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment" (John 7:24). Righteous judgment is not based upon the material picture or human opinion. It is based upon the law of God and on the fact that man is naturally attracted to goodness, because goodness is the effect of God's law. We see hints of this attraction in the cleanliness, order, and harmony that a law-abiding society enjoys.

Bible literacy
February 13, 1995

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