IS one really subject to the chance that at some point he or she may fall in love and not be able to avoid having an affair? No! Immoral behavior is never inevitable. In my own life, I have found that we can always choose to obey God and trust Him to strengthen our desire and our ability to do right.
Even though I have been in a strong marriage for many years, there have occasionally been times when I've been tempted to think that my marriage was a mistake. As a Christian Scientist, however, I have found that prayer has always put me back on track. I've been especially grateful for the many Bible passages that have helped me and for ideas I've gleaned from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science.
Several years ago, I felt I was falling in love with a co-worker. He was a wonderful individual with whom I had a great deal in common. At times, some kind of immoral involvement seemed almost inevitable. At other times, when my prayer had made me more aware of God's love and I had made progress in overcoming the confusion, sensuality, and selfishness that were all but overwhelming, such destructive behavior seemed impossible.
One passage that helped me a great deal was from Science and Health. It reads: ``There is neither place nor opportunity in Science for error of any sort." This assured me that as I put God first and did my best to prove His love in my life, there would be no occasion for inappropriate or immoral thinking or actions. As I continued to pray, whenever a possibility for infidelity loomed, the circumstances would change--or I would be impelled, through prayer, to do something that changed them--and the tempta tion was eliminated.
In the end I was free from the whole situation. But the solution hadn't come from just avoiding the problem or trying to stop loving one personality and to do a better job of loving another. I had needed to understand better that God, divine Love, is a power we can trust to keep our lives on track.
More recently, just after a household move and a very hectic time, I started feeling distant from my husband. My work then required me to be away from home for many days. I met a very kind and intelligent man. I knew there was an attraction, but I wasn't concerned about it, because I was certain that I would not get involved. During this same time, however, a rash under my wedding ring ballooned into a major problem. I was told that I had a serious infection. As I prayed, I affirmed that I could not invo luntarily enter into a wrong situation, that my thought could not be wrongly influenced by a person, environment, or popular culture. I made progress in understanding this, and was freed of anger toward my husband and of any immoral attraction toward the other man. My hand was healed. But the next day I had a blister on my heel and could barely walk. I prayed deeply to understand spiritual purity more clearly. This situation was also healed, and I was walking normally.
Since that time, I have been even more alert to pray for my marriage and to be more careful about what I accept as normal or harmless. My family is stronger because of the closeness with God that has developed as the result of my stand for fidelity.
Knowing that we have a choice frees us to make a new choice and to break away from the fear of chance and fate by knowing that right now we can resist temptation through God's grace and power. Then we can be like the servant in Christ Jesus' parable in Matthew's Gospel and receive this commendation: ``Thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord."