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PSST: Feel the safety and assurance that comes from Father-Mother Love
P
ossible Sunday School Topics for the Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson on

“God the Preserver of Man”
for December 12, 2021

by Lindsey Biggs, C.S of Maryland Heights, MO
540 460 3515 biggs.lindsey@gmail.com


P.S.S.T. for Golden Text: Be unafraid to hear God’s messages & feel God’s love even more
Why do your students think the Bible tells us not to be afraid? What is the effect of being unafraid?
What are some qualities that we feel when we aren’t afraid?
How does this help us hear God’s messages and feel God’s love even more?

What a beautiful gift to be inscribed on the palm of God’s hand. Wow! This Golden Text may be a great one for students to memorize to help them feel their closeness and oneness with God.


P.S.S.T. for Responsive Reading: beautiful metaphors to feel God’s love, strength, & protection
This Lesson is filled with many beautiful metaphors for feeling God’s love, strength, and protection.

  • Dwelling between God’s shoulders. There are many beautiful images of goslings riding between the shoulders of mother geese as they glide peacefully along a lake. Consider sharing one of those photos from the internet with your class as a visual illustration of the tender care of our Father-Mother Love and the benefit of feeling close to God!
  • God is our fortress — what are the qualities of a fortress? Consider looking up definitions of a fortress and/or images of a fortress to get an expanded sense of what this means. What is the purpose of a fortress? How does this relate to our oneness with God?
  • God is our refuge — what is a refuge? Do your students have favorite places or friends that feel to them like a refuge? What do we feel like when we are in a refuge? Safe and free from harm. It’s a beautiful feeling.

The Responsive Reading also includes a couple verses from Psalm 91. See if your students are familiar with this one. It’s a wonderful one to turn to!


P.S.S.T. for Section 1: realize just how well God knows us.  
Psalm 139 (B4) does a wonderful job describing our intimate relationship with God. It can be very healing to realize just how well God knows us. The second part of this Psalm is included in the 2017 Hymnal.

Whither shall I go from Thy spirit? / Or whither shall I flee from Thy presence? / If I ascend up into heaven, Thou art there. / If I make my bed in hell, Thou art there. / If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the / uttermost parts of the sea, / Even there shall Thy hand lead me and Thy right / hand shall hold me. (Christian Science Hymnal, No.  599:1)


P.S.S.T. for Section 2: What “wilderness” experiences have your students had?  
Explore Mary Baker Eddy’s definition of “wilderness” together. What “wilderness” experiences have your students had?
Is there an experience they had that was once dark, but then spiritual light turned it around?
I think these experiences have happened to many of us as and many find it helpful to “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 NKJV.
What does this Bible story about Hagar and Sarah teach us about relationships?
What does it tell us about being welcoming toward others – especially those of a different class, background, or culture, like Hagar and Sarah were?
What negative characteristics got in the way of them having a harmonious relationship? Interesting to note that God still sustained both of them and made a great nation out of each of their sons.
The Bible says “And God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water;” (Genesis 21:19)
Do you think the well was always there?
Are there ways that God opens the eyes of your students to the good that was ever present, but that maybe they couldn’t see before? Prayer reveals what God is already seeing – our innate harmony and perfection in God that is eternally sustained by God.


P.S.S.T. for Section 3: Consider exploring the relationship between Saul, David & Jonathan.
Jonathan protected David and stood up for David against Saul, his father. There are some children’s Bibles, such as “Shine On,” that do a great job telling about this relationship between David and Jonathan.
Have your students ever had to stick up for a friend when they needed it? What was the result?

Saul and David initially had a pleasant relationship when David came to live with Saul and Jonathan.

What soured that relationship?
Mary Baker Eddy writes that “Jealousy is the grave of affection” (SH, p. 68) How did that impact Saul and David’s relationship?
Are there opportunities where your students have had to support a friend who got a leadership position when they didn’t?
Is it hard to support a friend when their light is shining and we have to play a lesser role?
What qualities does it take to do that?


P.S.S.T. for Section 4: the best way to “keep the Sabbath holy.”
The book, “Stories of Healing,” sold in Christian Science Reading Rooms does an excellent job of explaining the various Jewish customs, historical and cultural context, and other items of interest surrounding these New Testament healings.
It says, “‘Sabbath’ in Hebrew means ‘rest’…The Jewish people believed that the way to keep the Sabbath holy was not to work. Their laws listed many things that should not be done on the Sabbath, including healing. But Jesus understood God’s ‘Sabbath rest’ in a deeper way. He knew that everything God creates is good and that God keeps this creation pure and perfect. So, Jesus ‘rested’ as God did – by seeing the holiness of God’s perfect, spiritual creation. That kind of seeing heals – every day. Jesus knew that healing by seeing God’s all-good creation is the best way to “keep the Sabbath holy.” (p. 269)


P.S.S.T. for Section 5: [**Like sheep, know your Shepherd’s voice & immediately obey it.]
Explore the spiritual sense of the 23rd Psalm by Mary Baker Eddy in conjunction with the original 23rd Psalm in the Bible. What are some similarities?
What additional insights into the nature of God does the spiritual interpretation of this Psalm give us?
What other synonyms could also be used in this spiritual sense?
How does dwelling in the “consciousness of Love” help us?

** “The Song of the Syrian Guest”
by William Allen Knight is a well-loved book that gives us a clearer glimpse into the details of a shepherd’s life and how these metaphors in this Psalm help us to understand our relationship with God even more. This beautiful little book can be found online at used bookstores and can also be read online here.


P.S.S.T. for Section 6: Point out how God sustains & maintains all travels harmoniously.
Understanding the fact not only that God creates us, but also that God maintains and sustains us – preserves us – increases our trust in Him as we walk with God. How does thinking about God as a Shepherd or Father-Mother help us understand God better? How does knowing that God preserves us help us to rely on God in times of trouble and in times of peace?

These two Bible passages B19 (Psalm 121:5-8) and B20 (Isaiah 55:12) can be great ones to use for travel. Perhaps your students are traveling this week to go home or to a friend’s home for the holidays. These two passages can be great ones to tuck in a journal to help them know that God is sustaining and maintaining their travels harmoniously and peacefully.

Enjoy your classes!

 

 

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