The pull toward goodness

A woman taking a course was embarrassed and disturbed the first day of class when she felt a strong sensual attraction to her teacher. They were both married to other people. She didn’t want immoral thoughts to interfere with this special learning experience, so during a break, she confronted the issue right away and told the teacher what was happening. She trusted his integrity and expected that he would help her put a stop to the problem.

Her expectation was well founded. From his study of Christian Science, the teacher had gained a view of God’s creation that is deeply rooted in an inspired sense of Scripture. Genesis 1 explains the true nature of God’s children as wholly good and spiritual, reflecting and possessing dominion “over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth” (verse 26). He recognized an immoral sensual attraction as a “creeping thing” that is naturally overcome by a better understanding of what we are as God’s good children.

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The pull toward God’s goodness is pure and spiritual, not subversive and sensual.

When the student told him what was happening to her, the teacher explained the dominion she already possessed over creeping sensual thoughts. He kindly and gently assured her that as God’s child, she could really possess only an attraction to the good God created. And while it was natural to be drawn to someone’s expression of God’s goodness, this attraction evidenced her love of God, not of someone’s personality. The pull toward God’s goodness is pure and spiritual, not subversive and sensual.

The teacher’s explanations and the student’s recognition of her own natural goodness freed her immediately from sensual thoughts. Her eyes were opened to the idea that true satisfaction is found only in the good that God gives us, the spiritual good that doesn’t include any distracting or destructive element.

Mortal, sensual feelings aren’t a proper gauge of what is really going on. In reality, good is our only natural desire and the only real influence on us. Good that is sourced in Soul, the divine good that is God, is reflected throughout creation, and this includes pure desires. Mary Baker Eddy wrote in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures: “Good does not create a mind susceptible of causing evil, for evil is the opposing error and not the truth of creation.… Whatever contradicts the real nature of the divine Esse, though human faith may clothe it with angelic vestments, is without foundation” (p. 93).

Christ Jesus spoke of “the kingdom of God” that is already in us all (see Luke 17:21). As we better understand what it means that the kingdom of God is within us, we’ll find we are fully able to manifest qualities such as joy, peace, tenderness, love, compassion, affection, purity, holiness, and integrity. As God’s creation, we each possess the innate spiritual sense that recognizes divine good and loves it. 

In reality, good is our only natural desire and the only real influence on us.

Jesus didn’t ignore sin and sensuality, but he understood that evil impulses and behaviors stem from a misunderstanding of one’s true, Godlike nature. He recognized the pure and good child of God even in those who were struggling with a sensual, sinful, or sickly sense of themselves. This enabled him to speak firmly when needed to awaken those who were mentally asleep to their true nature as good. It also allowed him to deal compassionately with those caught up in wrong behavior even while desiring to do better. 

Sensualism inverts the natural attraction to good. It leaves us feeling helpless and weak. But we are not helpless to resist it; we can rise above it, because in truth we are actually pure and strong. When we understand divine good, God, to be the source of our true being, it’s natural to throw off creeping, distracting thoughts that would disrupt our harmony and hide from our experience the pure attraction of the good that God gives. Science and Health explains, “Passions, selfishness, false appetites, hatred, fear, all sensuality, yield to spirituality, and the superabundance of being is on the side of God, good” (p. 201).

Both God’s love for us and our reflection of that love are pure. God brings out the best in us, and the highest and purest pull that exists is the pull toward God, good.

Discover substance in Spirit
September 9, 2019

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