Enabling strong thinkers and helpers

How can we contribute to our communities and the world in meaningful ways? A Christ-inspired foundation is an empowering place to start.

Christian Science Perspective audio edition
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There’s plenty to navigate in our world today. Finding how to help move things forward requires the development of something significant within us, and some good mutual support.

To offer input or contribute to something in as meaningful a way as possible, I haven’t found it enough to have merely grown up in a particular community and maybe read or watched something on an issue, and then formed an opinion. Rather, it requires a deeper focus, thoughtfulness, and follow-through – with the goal of fostering a helpful, healing atmosphere rather than pushing a certain agenda.

I’ve found that this is really a matter of discovering more about the divine Spirit or Mind, God. The infinitely good nature of our creator, as well as our nature as His children, is what ultimately defines us and connects us in the most substantive, healing ways. As we look to see more of this in everyone, we feel God, good, moving our thoughts and actions. Then we find more of how to be strong thinkers and helpers, even masters, in what we’re facing.

Christ Jesus emphasized the basis for this: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matthew 22:37-39). This Christly foundation impels us to express more of the good, spiritual qualities and activity of God – the God-given intelligence, purpose, and love that are essential to our lives.

And this empowers us to be the thinkers and helpers needed in our families, communities, and world – to stay thoughtful about issues and possible solutions, as opposed to just pushing a side. Really, the solid place to land is not so much on a certain agenda but in an ongoing commitment to seeing the divine Mind at work in us, recognizing how God maintains us all as spiritual expressions of the Divine.

Jesus said to be like doves, bringing to the table a spirit that uplifts. And it’s important to consider that there was more: “Be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves” (Matthew 10:16). To maintain the thinking needed for healthy communities today, and maintain the best position from which to act for good in those communities, we must be wise to sinister motives and sneaky efforts that would undermine selflessness, patience, and compassion.

A powerful way to do this is to cultivate through prayer an awareness of God’s healing love. In this way we find how to more fully magnify this love and detect and overcome what would seem to oppose it in us.

I recall a time I got lassoed into doing something that, at the time, felt like the humorous ends would justify the mischievous means. But it was basically just stupid. A couple of days later, I woke up sick, unable to hold anything down. The interesting thing was that a few hours after that, my accomplices and I were confronted about what we had done.

This awakened me to those universal, spiritual considerations that I had ignored. I embraced the spiritual fact of everyone’s innate goodness, purity, and selflessness as God’s children. This immediately resulted in a complete physical healing, as well as a helpful resolution to what we had done.

Divine Love-inspired living gives us real, solid ideas for leading things forward for ourselves as well as those around us. The Monitor’s founder, Mary Baker Eddy, wrote: “The right thinker and worker does his best, and does the thinking for the ages. No hand that feels not his help, no heart his comfort” (“Message to The Mother Church for 1900,” p. 3).

When we’re led by the important question before us of how to feel and experience God’s blessings coming forward in everyone, rather than focusing on a particular position or personality that we’ve built up, we’re in the best position to strengthen lives. God is at work in all of us, and it’s right and possible to want to see this – and then to see the God-reflected good in us all that takes the whole world forward in a better way.

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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.”

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