Choosing ‘the good side’

It often seems as if we need to take sides, politically or otherwise. But even when there’s disagreement, taking a stand for divine goodness opens the door for harmony and progress.

Christian Science Perspective audio edition
Loading the player...

With divergent opinions flying every which way today, I’ve found this idea shared by Mary Baker Eddy, founder of this news organization, quite relevant: “This material world is even now becoming the arena for conflicting forces. On one side there will be discord and dismay; on the other side there will be Science and peace” (“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 96). “Science” here means Christian Science, or the law of God, who is entirely good.

This has reframed current events for me. It points to a deeper, more healing way to look at things than defining “sides” by labels – Republican or Democrat, conservative or liberal, or even anti-this or pro-that. This higher way is in realizing that there’s another “side” that’s most worthy of our consideration: the law of divine Love, God, which brings peace.

Could it be that simple? I think it can be (though it’s not always easy). But I’ve found that calling on divine law yields good results.

Years ago my husband and I had an altercation with a neighbor. Although we felt totally justified in taking our side of the issue, we realized that if all we did was focus on why we felt the neighbor was wrong, it would close the door on any possibility of progress and peace. We needed to cross the dividing line, however uncomfortable that might feel, and open that door.

So my husband and I took a prayerful stand for “Science and peace,” mentally affirming everyone’s true nature as spiritual and governed by the law of Love. As we prayed, our thought shifted from self-centered, to we-centered, to God-centered.

The idea came to write a note to this neighbor, honoring him and recognizing that we were united in wanting a good and safe neighborhood. Divine Love-inspired neighborliness won out, and the contentious issue was resolved peacefully. In fact, we became fast friends.

This was a small thing, perhaps, but it demonstrates the larger rule that the most potent “side” is the one that’s centered around God, good, and therefore fosters peace, harmony, and progress. These elements have spiritual roots and are self-sustaining, as they are born of divine Love. And because each of us is truly spiritual, the offspring of God, we have the capacity to grow spiritually and peacefully.

Choosing to love, to express our God-given nature, is where good things happen: trust develops, character is transformed, and solutions to everyday issues arise that bless in more ways than first seemed possible. We engage with our higher selfhood, our “better angels.” And it feels real, substantial, and empowering.

Mrs. Eddy wrote, “There is but one side to reality, and that is the good side” (“Christian Healing,” p. 10). The spiritual reality is that all of us, as children of God, are always governed by the law of God, good. As we perfect our love for God and interact with one another in ways that reflect God’s love, hatred and fear diminish.

To do this is to take the side of peace and of honoring one another. It is the only side that is sustainable, and brings out the greatest potential to build happier communities and a more productive and safer world.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
Real news can be honest, hopeful, credible, constructive.
What is the Monitor difference? Tackling the tough headlines – with humanity. Listening to sources – with respect. Seeing the story that others are missing by reporting what so often gets overlooked: the values that connect us. That’s Monitor reporting – news that changes how you see the world.

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

QR Code to Choosing ‘the good side’
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today