For years I nurtured resentment toward two particular nations. I blamed them for wars that had brought sadness to my home and family. Then one day I received two separate messages from individuals in each of these nations. And my outlook changed.
The information involved was not the reason; shining through both messages was a spirit of kindness and understanding that far exceeded my own sentiment. The effect was that I started to see both countries, these former "enemies," in a better way.
I decided to review my past conduct. The findings were not flattering. Self-righteousness and self-justification had been taking up space in my thinking. There had been too many instances of thoughtlessness. I'd missed too many opportunities to be kind to others. This was hardly a sound basis from which to assess other people or their shortcomings!
It was not that I had been deliberately evil or unkind. I simply hadn't been aware of the full implications of my thoughts. Then I wondered if those I'd been regarding as enemies had perhaps not known what they were doing either. With this came thoughts of Christ Jesus, and of his words of prayer for his enemies when they were crucifying him: "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do" (Luke 23:34). That was a comforting prayer for me; I needed to feel forgiveness. Harboring hatred had not been good.
I began to make a thorough study of Jesus' life. What impressed me most was the tremendous compassion he expressed, especially at the time of his crucifixion. He didn't condemn his persecutors. His rule was "Judge not, that ye be not judged" (Matt. 7:1). His outlook was different from that of the people who wanted to kill him. And his view of life had healing and resurrecting power. Jesus had healed people time after time through spiritual means alone.
Speaking of Jesus' outlook on life, the textbook of Christian Science says, "Jesus beheld in Science the perfect man, who appeared to him where sinning mortal man appears to mortals. In this perfect man the Saviour saw God's own likeness, and this correct view of man healed the sick. Thus Jesus taught that the kingdom of God is intact, universal, and that man is pure and holy" ("Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," Pgs. 476-477). The author of this book was Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered the Science underlying Jesus' healing.
Christian Science presents Jesus' view as helpful for you and me today. Jesus wasn't looking at a different world. He lived in the same world as those around him. But he was seeing it differently; he was seeing things spiritually. He was seeing people in the light of their true, spiritual being as God's perfect expression. When he comforted the sorrowing, fed the hungry, regenerated the sinful, cured those who were diseased, and raised the dead to life, Jesus was restoring to human view something of the spiritual truth of God and man that has existed throughout all the time - but that needs to be consciously recognized.
Jesus' example still turns our thought of life from the material to the spiritual today. From the ungodly to the godly. It shows that God is Spirit and Love, totally good. That God's creation is totally good. Jesus proved that by holding in thought the true nature of creation and conforming our lives to what is good, we gain a new, healing perspective. Instead of seeing people as fear-ridden or fear-inducing, we begin to see them as God sees them - as loved and loving expressions of God. The spiritual fact is that nowhere in God's universe is there a single individual with characteristics unlike God's nature.
Jesus proved this. He demonstrated the absolute goodness of God's creation by healing people. He revealed that good is open to us all when we view life spiritually. When any circumstance before us seems dark and gloomy - when we seem cut off from good in any way - we will gain a better and brighter future through prayer and Christian living. Experience has shown me that this isn't naivet or escapism. It's a practical standpoint that brings healing to all human ills.
Through prayer we can hear God, know the truth He constantly imparts, and see evidence of the good that is always present.