And we solemnly promise to watch, and pray for that Mind to be in us which was also in Christ Jesus; to do unto others as we would have them do unto us; and to be merciful, just, and pure.
(Science and Health 497:24)
Stay out of the swamp
A Christian Science perspective: What to do when the conversation in your ear drags you down.
By Patricia Hardee / June 6, 2012
Some TV commercials include a lot of trouble talk that warns of the inevitability of disease and the drugs prescribed to cure it, along with the drugs’ potential side effects. At home we can push the mute button on the TV. But one day while I was standing in a checkout line, two shoppers behind me were in a loud conversation – a verbal dissertation on disease that left nothing to the imagination. Too much information! It felt like an influx of contamination to an otherwise natural situation. To me, it was (even if unintentional) a mental assault on all that I hold dear about the reality of life as ever-present good.
Whether you’re the talker or the listener, seeking clearer ideas about God and His creation is an important first step. One magazine, Vibrant Life, had a helpful article, “21 Ways to Build a Stronger Spiritual Life,” by Victor M. Parachin. The No. 1 way? “Be a river, not a swamp.” Mr. Parachin was inspired by what Jesus said: “Rivers of living water will flow from the heart of those who believe in me” (John 7:38, New Living Translation).
The article contrasted two ways of thinking: being mentally stagnant and exuding ungodliness as if in a swamp, or being spiritually active and allowing goodness to flow through as from a clear river of freshness, in the way of Jesus. Mrs. Eddy would concur. She wrote, “Hold thought steadfastly to the enduring, the good, and the true, and you will bring these into your experience proportionably to their occupancy of your thoughts” (“Science and Health, p. 261).
For those who frequently trouble talk or who find themselves in situations where trouble talk is rampant, it’s helpful to know that Life-giving purity pours forth from God to each one of us at all times. The Christ, our link with God, comes to each of us right where we are, and by choice this determines our environment. To build a stronger spiritual life, we can choose the Christ clarity. It is better to stay out of the swamp!
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