Commentary A Christian Science Perspective

Peace at the gym

A Christian Science perspective: A victim of racist remarks found peace that was more than the absence of conflict, but a presence that turned things around.

  • Toni Turpen

I’d been happily attending a gym in my new neighborhood for a few months, when something happened that just wasn’t right. I heard a man speaking unkindly about my ethnicity and questioning why people of my “kind” were at “their” gym. He repeated these comments every time I was nearby. It felt mean and threatening.

Prayer was definitely my choice for handling this situation. One of the many truths I’ve learned from the Bible and my study of Christian Science is that God is everywhere, and that His quality of peace is not merely the absence of conflict. Rather, peace has a presence, everywhere at all times. It’s an actual something that fills all space! That meant it was natural for this gym to be a place of peace, not of conflict. And all of us there had the ability to live that, because we are truly God’s spiritual children.

For a few minutes I calmly reflected on these ideas and all the good I had experienced since the move to this neighborhood. Then I had the chance to speak to this person. He listened carefully as I explained why I was at this gym and how much I loved being there. I also said how much I loved this part of town and all the people in it. Without any fear, I introduced myself and we shook hands. The man even introduced me to his mother, who had come over to listen.

Since that time, there have been no further comments, and we’ve had normal, courteous greetings and exchanges. I’m so grateful for the permanence of this healing.

This article was adapted from an article in the June 2017 issue of The Christian Science Journal.