How do you think about your rivals?

Originally appeared online in the teen series: Your Healings - June 30, 2020

We were a week out from a soccer tournament against our biggest rivals when the trash-talking started. My teammates kept going on about how much we hated our rival team and the awful things they’d done. We’d definitely had some negative encounters with this team during past games, but to be honest, it seemed like my teammates were mostly using the trash talk to hype all of us up before the big match.

In the Christian Science Sunday School, I’d learned the value of filtering out negative thoughts so you can hear the good, healing thoughts from God more clearly. And at first, I was able to keep the impression that the other players were aggressive and mean out of my head. However, as I got closer to the game, I had a harder time blocking out these thoughts. This is when everything started to go downhill. 

The game against our rival was very messy. While I was playing, I found myself looking for the negative qualities in the other players, and it ended up being a dirty game in which both sides were more focused on irritating the other team than on playing the beautiful sport we loved. Not only did my teammates and I forget our reason for being there, but we also lost the game. 

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