MY sister and I had been very close. Our relationship meant a great deal to me, and so I felt hurt when she suddenly started treating me badly. What had I done to deserve such cold and unloving treatment? I didn't understand it at all, and I wanted to react angrily, but I didn't. I had learned to turn to the Bible in times of such need and to search for answers that would give me peace of mind and comfort. So, I decided to take my Bible and find out how God, in His infinite goodness, sees the man He created.
In Psalms I found these wonderful verses: ``When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; what is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour. Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet.''1
Many verses from the Bible made me feel determined not to accept a false concept of God's creation. I realized that my sister was, in truth, God's beloved child and that I was too. I saw that God was our real Father-Mother and that we were both cherished by Him. I wasn't going to allow the hurt I felt to obscure the real bonds of love that grew out of the fact that God made man in His image.
I spent a long time in deep study of the Bible and of Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science. I found this very helpful passage in her writings: ``Christian Science commands man to master the propensities, -- to hold hatred in abeyance with kindness, to conquer lust with chastity, revenge with charity, and to overcome deceit with honesty. Choke these errors in their early stages, if you would not cherish an army of conspirators against health, happiness, and success.''2
Whenever the temptation came to hate my sister, I would firmly declare, ``No, she is the image and likeness of God, loved by Him and by me.'' I was persistent. Purifying my own thinking, insisting on the true concept of God's creation, took a great deal of effort, but the victory came -- within my own consciousness.
The next time I spoke with her on the telephone she was in great need of comfort and love. Without hesitation I let her know how much she means to me and assured her that I am always available to help her. I felt an overwhelming sense of compassion and love for someone I do love very much. I now love my sister more, because I realize better that she is indeed the child of the one perfect God.
The New Testament says, ``God is love.''3 Echoing this passage, Science and Health states: ```God is Love.' More than this we cannot ask, higher we cannot look, farther we cannot go.''4
As each of us strives earnestly to forgive and to heal wrongs, in the spirit of Christ Jesus' teachings and example, we help bring peace to the world. When on the cross, our Master said, ``Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.''5
Each of us is spiritually capable of feeling such Christly affection. Jesus showed us the way. We do have the ability to follow him and to become more Christlike in our thoughts and actions.
Each one of us has the God-sent spiritual sense to think rightly and to bless members of our family, our community, and our world.
1Psalms 8:3-6. 2Science and Health, p. 405. 3I John 4:16. 4Science and Health, p. 6. 5Luke 23:34.