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Broadened respect, increased love

A Christian Science perspective on daily life.

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When Horton Foote passed on last week, he left vivid memories of the common man and woman he so respectfully depicted. This much-accomplished playwright loved his characters and enabled audiences to love them, too. Ordinary people can be seen through the eyes of respect, and that makes them extraordinary. This was true not only in his fiction but in his own life as well.

Several years ago a small group had the opportunity to have dinner with Mr. Foote in New York City. The atmosphere at that dinner table was remarkable. While some of the diners had jobs recognized as important, others did not. But during that evening, no one was seen as more important than another. It seemed that each was comfortable with himself or herself. A retired man who was having trouble getting used to his "insignificant" role usually clammed up when with a group. That evening, however, he was as active and contributing to the conversation as everyone else.

There's no doubt that the group was embraced in a love that was independent of human accomplishments and reputation. That love had a spiritual basis that recognized people as actually being the sons and daughters of God. This is inspiring, but at the same time it's challenging. It's difficult to see beyond what the merely human picture presents and to understand that because there is one Creator, there is one creation and it is altogether good.

The Bible makes that point in these passages: "Have we not all one father? hath not one God created us?" (Mal. 2:10), and "There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all" (Eph. 4:4, 6).

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