A Christian Science perspective: A deeper understanding of God as Truth supports a climate of openness and truthfulness.

Sometimes, sincere efforts to live and tell the truth are thwarted. We see this in cases in which governments block avenues for free expression, in biased reporting, or in workplaces with a culture of silence around misdeeds. In some instances, telling the truth can carry the risk of job loss, imprisonment, or worse. What can be done to support the healthy expression of truth?

Once when I was on a work assignment to speak with the European press, reporters ignored or refused all of my interview requests. I felt caught by having truth to tell but nowhere to tell it. So I did what I often do when feeling cornered: I prayed.

My prayer involved a desire to explore a bigger sense of God, who is divine Truth – the only power, the sovereign influence, truth-giver, and truth-teller. The Psalmist brought out this aspect of God when he sang, “Send out your light and your truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling!” (Psalms 43:3, English Standard Version). I love the idea of God’s “holy hill,” or the high-up perspective of divine Truth, from which we can discern the truth of all creation.

This truth includes the fact that we are all created by God, Truth, who is as irrepressible as sunlight. Divine Truth outlasts and outshines all that would attempt to avoid its influence or squelch its power. As we open our hearts to the Christ, Truth, we find that infinite Truth is always present and the only true power – lifting us up and impelling us to truthfulness.

My prayer helped me find the courage to persist in seeking interviews. It also led me to realize that suppression of dialogue sometimes occurs because of an underlying fear of loss of power. I decided to pray generally for the press – to eliminate misconceptions about my motives that would induce such fear. I saw us all as God’s spiritual creation, motivated only by Truth, living in conformity with Truth, even expressing Truth. We show our true nature when we act courageously and honestly. As I prayed in this way, I could no longer see any legitimate reason for truth to be hampered.

And this prayer brought results: interviews nearly every week for months. Shortly afterward, a magazine featured an article on the subject to extend the conversation.

In her primary work on Christian Science, Monitor founder Mary Baker Eddy wrote, “Prayer cannot change the unalterable Truth, nor can prayer alone give us an understanding of Truth; but prayer, coupled with a fervent habitual desire to know and do the will of God, will bring us into all Truth” (“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 11).

The irrepressible nature of Truth, God, is not an exception. It’s the rule. We all, as God’s children, live under the law of Truth. Understanding Truth to be the real motivator of man can give courage to our efforts to be truthful, can open doors to new opportunities, and can light and protect the way forward as we live by and tell the truth.

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Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.