A Christian Science perspective.
I faintly recall the time in second grade when our teacher put the class in pairs to share lockers for the year. The reason this is notable is that I mistakenly got the impression that I was being paired up with a girl. I didn’t like that idea at that age, and I began to cry. All was quickly better though, when the teacher straightened me out.
It’s possible that I would have forgotten this incident, except for something that happened many years later at the wedding of another classmate. That long-ago locker partner was there, and much to my surprise, he talked angrily about how in second grade I had thought he was a girl. He spoke as if the experience had marred his schoolboy days and perhaps even still affected him.
I felt bad for the guy. And while I don’t really blame my boyhood self, the fact that he still held those feelings made an impression on me. We’ve all heard people’s stories, or have some of our own, of misunderstandings or of cutting comments that have lasting negative effects. “You can’t sing, just move your lips,” or “You’re not athletic,” can ring in a person’s ears years later. Today, I feel a responsibility to help us all find the something that will prevent these incidents – or disarm them and save everybody from the torment.
It’s the grace of God that saves us. People speak of the eternal salvation that God reveals to us, usually in the context of life after death. But God’s saving grace is a presence in human consciousness and can be felt moment by moment right now. It can be ushered into any situation and held onto, helping redeem each moment of our lives.
For me, as the Bible says, the redeeming process involves an ongoing prayer. The second letter to the Thessalonians includes this prayer: “That the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and ye in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ” (II Thessalonians 1:12).