When painful memories are faced and healed

When I was a high school student, our class took a field trip off campus. Students who had cars agreed to have others carpool with them. After driving for a few minutes, the student driver of the car I was in slammed on his brakes to avoid colliding with another vehicle. He simultaneously screamed a warning at the other driver, and then, to my surprise, out of his mouth came the “N-word,” uttered with what felt like brute force and contempt. 

At that point, the other classmates I was with, who were white, glanced at me, the only Black student in the car, in embarrassment. The rest of the car trip was filled with awkward silence. Once back at school, I tried as best I could to erase the dismay from my thoughts, and from then on I distanced myself from those particular students.

I hadn’t thought about that incident for decades—not until the protests against police brutality and racial inequality in the United States began to dominate news headlines this year. Now an adult who has been a practicing student of Christian Science for many years, I asked myself whether I was satisfied leaving that high school experience the way it ended. No, I thought. Instead, I saw that now was the perfect time and opportunity to apply the truths of Christian Science to this situation and to free myself from the picture of hatred that I had witnessed. 

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Christ—at the bridal altar and beyond
November 23, 2020

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