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By Jennifer Ann Gordon
From the February 18, 2019 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel
Diane was a bully. Most of the kids were terrified of her. And she singled me out. During gym class one day, she made fun of me and kept tapping me on the head with a tennis racket. There was no escaping her; she followed me everywhere.
When I got home from school that day, I went into my bedroom and thought things through. Diane seemed like an enemy, but I had learned in my Christian Science Sunday School class that Jesus taught us to “love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you” (Luke 6:27, 28, New International Version). That meant loving someone who seemed a little scary, who was acting like an enemy. But how was I supposed to do that?
I’d also learned in my Sunday School class that since God is Love, God couldn’t create His children to be mean. Because we are created in God’s, Love’s, image, we are each loving, loved, intelligent, and good. I knew that seeing someone as God’s loved child—the way they truly are—could heal anything.
So I committed to doing that. I knew God would help me see something deeper than the bullying and meanness. I knew Love would help me love Diane the way Love loved her.
And you know what happened? The fear I was feeling went away, and I did start to feel love for Diane. Yes, I was still a little uneasy when I thought about seeing her the next day. But I knew I was going to school armed with love, and that God would be with me, no matter what.
The next morning at school, I saw Diane in the hall. I smiled a real smile and said, “Hello!” And … that was that! Diane decided we were friends. And we were. We had fun together for the rest of the year. She even stopped bullying the other kids, too.
This experience taught me about the spiritual courage that can help each of us see God’s child right where someone is acting unkind. Jesus showed us that with God’s help, this is possible. And the result is healing.