Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

On Race Day, Qualities over Quantities

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

On Race Day, Qualities over Quantities

Article excerpt

Today marks the 117th Boston Marathon, the oldest and one of the most prestigious foot races in the United States, stretching 26.2 miles from Hopkinton, Mass., into the heart of downtown Boston.

Before runners step foot over the starting line, many thoughts will already be racing through their heads. "Don't start out too fast," "I hope I don't get tired early in the race," and "Maybe I can set a personal record!" might be a few of them.

But before thinking about the quantities involved with the race - time, distance, pace, and finishing place - it's important to think about the qualities that get us to the starting line and over the finish line with a sense of satisfaction.

As I prepared to run the Boston Marathon a few years ago, I looked for spiritual inspiration for race day. I considered this prayer and study to be a large part of my overall training regimen.

As I sought to better understand God's qualities, I found this definition of God from the Christian Science textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," by Mary Baker Eddy, most helpful. Mrs. Eddy defines God as, "The great I AM; the all- knowing, all-seeing, all-acting, all-wise, all-loving, and eternal; Principle; Mind; Soul; Spirit; Life; Truth; Love; all substance; intelligence" (p. 587).

The seven synonyms included in this definition help us identify and relate to God's omnipotent care, power, and love for all He created. And this detailed definition of God helps us approach prayer with scientific certainty, just as Christ Jesus did. What better way to use the many miles of a marathon than to dwell on the qualities found in these synonyms, rather than limited, discouraging, or even painful thoughts that might want to take over!

There are seven towns along the Boston Marathon course leading to the finish line at Copley Square: Hopkinton, Ashland, Framingham, Natick, Wellesley, Newton, and Brookline. …

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