Prayer can defeat antagonism

I had been teaching at a university for some time when a difficulty arose with one of my colleagues. Whenever we were in an academic meeting, if I said something, this colleague would make strident remarks that were pointedly in opposition to a position or idea I’d just voiced. He delivered his remarks with a sense of emphatic certainty, and I got the feeling his interest was in demonstrating his power in the situation. This didn’t occur in private conversations because he never spoke to me, but it seemed to happen consistently in public settings, especially in department meetings.

This became very difficult for me. As time wore on, I found myself not speaking up, and that didn’t seem right. I looked in the Bible and in the writings of Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered Christian Science, to find inspiration regarding this situation and how to handle it. I also hoped to feel comfortable again expressing my ideas, and to resume making a contribution to the department.

As I prayed about the situation, the idea that evil is not personal kept occurring to me, and I thought more deeply about what that might mean. I understood that it is spiritual truth that removes evil, which suggested to me that evil isn’t intelligently targeting anyone; evil is simply a false suggestion that something other than God’s intention could be manifested in man (a generic term that embraces both men and women).

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April 23, 2018

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