Conscious worth

I REMEMBER coming home from the office in the middle of the day sick and discouraged. I had long been struggling with a moral problem. I was much attracted to someone with whom I worked -- and I was married and had a child. Furthermore, it was obvious the attraction was mutual, and although nothing overtly immoral had yet occurred, I felt I was fast drifting into dangerous waters and could not stop myself. I knew only unhappiness could come from an illicit relationship; yet the pull of physical attraction seemed great. Undoubtedly the turmoil in my heart had stirred up the physical inharmony I was feeling. I picked up a copy of writings by Mary Baker Eddy,1 opening it at random. My eyes fell on this passage: ``Happiness consists in being and in doing good; only what God gives, and what we give ourselves and others through His tenure, confers happiness: conscious worth satisfies the hungry heart, and nothing else can.''2

The last part of the sentence struck me especially. My heart seemed hungry for understanding and affection, but here I was being told that ``conscious worth satisfies the hungry heart, and nothing else can.'' I felt strengthened. Here was my answer. The ``conscious worth'' that I felt in obeying God's law of good would satisfy me as nothing else could. Almost immediately the symptoms of illness lessened and a feeling of peace came over me. Christ Jesus said, ``He that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, isnot worthy of me.''3 To be worthy of Christ was the true desire of my heart. The carnal desires that were clamoring for attention were false because they had no basis in God or in the man of His creating. I saw that I could take up the cross trustingly and prove myself worthy of the eternal Christ-love always at hand. In doing so I could lose nothing.

Before long things normalized. The attraction diminished. Once again I felt in control of myself and able to enjoy life. The relationship that seemed so enticing completely changed; it developed into a pleasant, platonic friendship.

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I was so grateful for this healing, for I felt I had been sinking into a situation from which I would not have been easily able to extricate myself and which would surely have been tragic.

We are warned in the Bible to beware of the carnal mind.4 It is opposed to God and therefore opposed to good. The Bible instructs us, ``Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.''5 The carnal mind is not really mind, because the one true Mind is God, and we, as God's children, actually reflect that Mind in all its purity and strength. This is the reality of man as God's spiritual image. But sometimes, unaware of our heritage, we fall under the hypnotic influence of the so-called carnal, or mortal, mind. We need not stay under that influence, however. It can be dispelled as we turn wholeheartedly in prayer to the divine Mind.

In Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures Mrs. Eddy comments, ``Matrimony, which was once a fixed fact among us, must lose its present slippery footing, and man must find permanence and peace in a more spiritual adherence.''6

I was saved from a tragic mistake by learning that only ``conscious worth'' satisfies. Obedience to the promptings of the Christ-love brings stability, strength, joy, and satisfaction.

1The Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science. 2Message to The Mother Church for 1902, p. 17. 3Matthew 10:38. 4See Romans 8:7. 5I Peter 5:8. 6Science and Health, p. 65. You can find more articles like this one in the Christian Science Sentinel, a weekly magazine. DAILY BIBLE VERSE: Teach me, O Lord, the way of thy statutes; and I shall keep it unto the end. Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart. Make me to go in the path of thy commandments; for therein do I delight. Psalms 119:33-35

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