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(Editor’s Note: The following background information and application ideas for the Christian Science Bible Lesson for this week are offered primarily to help CedarS campers and staff see and demonstrate the great value of daily study of the C.S. Bible lessons year-round, not just at camp. If more information or the text of this Lesson is desired, please see the Director’s Note at the end. The citations referenced in the “met” (metaphysical application ideas) are taken from the King James Version of the Bible and the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy. These two books are the ordained pastor of Churches of Christ, Scientist. The Bible Lesson is the sermon read in Christian Science church services throughout the world. Other reference books are fully noted at the end.)


Give it all up to God!
Application Ideas for the lesson on Mind – February 14-20
Prepared by Kathy Fitzer, CS, of St. Louis, MO

Ever tempted to think you are the one responsible for solving a problem, making something turn out right, coming up with an idea, or for healing?  Think again – God does the work.  Our job????  Praise Him – a non-stop “yea, God” will do!  Acknowledge God as the only Mind, respond to Mind’s direction, and bear witness to Mind’s perfection and perfect work.  By doing that, you’ll more naturally yield to God’s harmony and find yourself acting out the design of Mind!

Golden Text:  Put in modern language, “You’re the God who make things happen:” (The Message)  And that’s what we need to remember when we think we’re being asked to do something ourselves.  Giving God the credit avoids the trap of either pride or insecurity.

Responsive Reading:  The first part is a song sung to praise God!  Sing your own version – every time you see anything good!  And if you don’t think there’s any good to see, look harder.  You can always find something good – some blessing – something to be grateful for.  And, if you really don’t think you can find anything good at the moment, then simply acknowledge the greatness of God – His strength and faithfulness which is beyond anything that can be compared to it – and seal your praise with an “amen,” which is simply an affirmation of what is known, whether physically apparent or not.  Psalm 89 is believed to have been written by Daniel during a period of exile when everything appeared to be falling apart around the children of Israel.  But rather than despairing, or getting mad, or giving up, Daniel worshipped God.  Looking at Daniel’s track record, it’s hard to argue the effectiveness of his approach.  Try it!  No matter what … bless God’s faithfulness to you.  Offer a continual song and end it with Amen – yea God!

Section I:  Daniel (because of his rapport with Mind) is sought for help – Again!
This isn’t the first time Daniel has been asked to interpret a dream for king Nebuchadnezzar.  Go back to chapter 2 to recall the first time Daniel perceived not only what the king’s dream had been, but what it meant – after the traditional sages had failed.  But, despite this track record, the king didn’t give up his old ways easily.  Hmmm… are we ever guilty of trying to tough something out humanly, depending on a human brain, rather than going straight to Mind (looking for an answer in the Bible and Science and Health or asking for prayerful help)?  Maybe once or twice??  Well, the king was once again plagued by a dream that he couldn’t explain.  It was a very scary dream this time. He once again called in the magician and astrologer gang and asked them for an explanation.  Depending on human resources alone, however, they of course could not give him an answer.  So, Daniel was called for (B2)  The last citation of the Bible (B3) is worthy to be memorized.  The Word of God – that’s what discerns thought and discovers what the heart is really feeling.  And it acts without delay!  We get a good explanation of the contrasting approaches of Daniel and the other sages in S&H#4.  We may not be asked to interpret a lot of dreams, but aren’t we sometimes faced with tough issues where it would really be helpful if we could read someone else’s mind – know what they’re really thinking – or know what direction something is going to go, so we can be sure we’re making the right decision about something?  We can be confident that we will know what we need to know as we always start with the fact that God is All (S2) and that “God is His own infinite Mind, and expresses all.” (S1)  That leaves no room for any little mind (including one we mistakenly call ours) to be left in the dark about anything!

Section II:   King Nebuchadnezzar learns the hard way
Daniel had listened carefully to Mind and knew what the king’s nightmare meant.  He hesitated, though. How could he tell him that unless he gave up his sense of pride, he was going to lose his kingdom and be left to live like an animal in the fields.  Daniel tried to warn Nebuchadnezzar where his pride and self-indulgence would lead, but “King Nebbie” didn’t listen.  He continued in his old ways until he once again was taking credit for the riches and splendor of this kingdom. When we think we are responsible for creating something, it can just as easily be taken away.  The king spent the next seven years in a state of insanity, living in the wild (just as Daniel had foretold).  Finally, the light (Truth) dawned.  The humbled king was awakened by Mind.  He looked up, blessed God, and acknowledged the kingdom to be God’s – not his own.  And once the healing came, his rule was reinstated. (B5) King Nebuchadnezzar learned to always “give unto the Lord glory and strength.” (B6) Do we acknowledge all good as coming straight from Mind? As soon as we start taking credit for anything, we leave ourselves open to defeat. We need to be alert to lurking sins that we have, perhaps unconsciously, permitted to take up residence in our thinking.  But, by understanding that “God is the only Mind” we can “get rid of sin through Science” by taking away sin’s “supposed mind or reality” and never admitting “that sin can have intelligence or power, pain or pleasure.” (S8) We can give up a dependence on,  pride in, or lack of confidence in ourselves as the “mechanism of the human mind gives place to the divine Mind.” (S6)  Don’t let yourself be pushed around by character traits that you’ve just accepted as you.  Check it out with what Mind knows of you first. And if some things have slipped in, we are reassured that it is never too late for healing. A side note here, how often do you have the moral courage to tell the truth, as Daniel did, even when it means telling someone something that they probably don’t want to hear?  We may recognize that a friend is heading in the wrong direction – they are doing things that you know aren’t good for them or they are doing something that is hurting someone else.  Maybe you, like Daniel, have prayed and then tried to talk to your friend. But, if that doesn’t change anything, trust your friend to Mind, as Daniel did.  “Working and praying with true motives, your Father will open the way.”  (S9)  That means the way for you to live as Godlike a life as you’d like, and also that God will lead your friend (as He led Nebuchadnezzar).

Section III:  Elijah listens – proceeds fearlessly – saves himself and another
The prophet, Elijah, has the opportunity to demonstrate his faith in God when he is directed to go into an area not only heavily affected by drought, but one known to be a center for the worship of Baal.  (Baal was a popular god, believed to control life and death – and Elijah was vocal about his disapproval)  It was probably not a place Elijah would  expect to receive a warm welcome.  But Elijah didn’t stop to think about that.  Mind had directed, and he went. (Are we as obedient?)  God told Elijah to go in order to save his own life.  When he got there he discovered the widow desperate herself.  She was destitute and preparing to give up and die with her son.  Rather than being discouraged, Elijah drew on the resources of Mind and instructed the woman to serve him and herself and her son.  He shared with her God’s promise of abundant supply.  She was willing to trust him and there was no shortage for any of them.  (B8)  Perhaps Elijah’s faith was stronger as he drew on the example of the manna provided in the wilderness.  The Bible (and modern accounts of healing) holds an abundance of rich testimony showing the provision of Mind.  We, too, can trust God to sustain us – no matter what the need.  Perhaps the thought will come to ask to study with someone, thinking they will be able to help you.  Because of the mutual blessing of Mind, you will meet the other’s need as much as your need is met.  Perhaps someone will come to you with a genuine need or asking you for a favor that requires you to spend time that you don’t feel you have.  Don’t worry. You can do whatever Mind directs because “in Science, man is sustained by God, the divine Principle of being.” (S10) You will find mutual blessing in abundance as you realize that the source of all good is God – Mind.  Although the blessing may come in the form of people helping people, it will be reliable as you recognize that “all is under the control of the one Mind, even God.” (S14)  There are no exceptions to this rule.

Section IV:  Acknowledge the healing power of divine Mind
Jesus healed – he didn’t just talk a good line. In this case, a woman had been sick for 18 years and was now so burdened that she couldn’t even stand up straight.  Jesus knew the power of God to heal, and perhaps we get a glimpse into the woman’s state of thought by the fact that after she was healed, she “glorified God.” (B10) How important that we give all the glory (all the credit) to God.  Mrs. Eddy, through her discovery of Christian Science, illuminated this divine power to heal and shared it in a way that can be practiced by everyone.  The fact that the testimony in this section was shared with Mrs. Eddy by someone she had healed shows the gratitude felt by the individual, and the acknowledgment that the healing resulted from “the glorious Principle you teach, – supporting the power of Mind over the body and showing me the nothingness of the so-called pleasures and pains of sense.”  Notice that the pleasures of sense have to be given up along with the pains.  The person notes, “Mortal mind needed to be set right.”  (S17)  We must demand healing today.  It takes alert thought.  You can’t afford to think something that you don’t want to feel!   Notice what this section says about what it is that suffers and causes suffering and what it is – or how it is – that we are healed.  Then, be alert and obedient. 

Section V:  Man’s unlimited ability direct from Mind
Lately there have been citations that have shown up in consecutive lessons.  We have one again this week.  It is, “We are all capable of more than we do.” (S23)  This statement is not meant to put us on a guilt trip!  Rather, it is full of a promise of an unlimited ability available to be unleashed as soon as we give our consent.  And it is not restricted to academic ability or athletic ability.  What about our capability to heal, to be a better friend and family member, to be more graceful and thoughtful?  There is no limit to the application.  Jesus demonstrated his ability as he taught in the synagogue without formal training, provided food and healing for the multitudes, stilled storms, etc, etc….He also shared the key of how we could do this.  He said, “The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the father do:  for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise. (B13)  As you read the rest of that citation, think about what it is about the relationship of Father and Son that enables the Son to do as the Father does.  Where is the source – always?!? Give your permission to accept in your everyday experience that you do have the same Mind as Jesus had.  Thus, we can aim high and always demand more of ourselves!  No wavering! You must “be firm in your understanding that the divine Mind governs…”  But, remember, it’s not hard because “in Science man reflects God’s government.”  (S24)  Your reflection in the mirror doesn’t have to work hard to look and act just like you.  The mirror just has to be clean and smooth. Science provides the mirror in which the clear reflection can be seen.  Don’t be fooled by any false images!! 

Section VI: Our turn to follow – today!
We’ve had examples, now, of how Daniel, Elijah, and Jesus heard the Word of God and actively responded to Mind.  Now we’re told that the Word is established in heaven for ever – for all time and all people!(B15)  We’re given the imperative command to “search the scriptures.”  (B16) And we are told why things have been written – so that we (and those who come after us) can learn of God’s law, be comforted and encouraged by its promise, and act in accord with it – demonstrating the infinite power of Mind to bless! (B18&19)  Consider the description of the seamless nature of the unfoldment of God’s law to man given in the citations from Science and Health in this section.  Aren’t we grateful that those who have come before us have shown us the way to freedom?  With Mrs. Eddy’s discovery of the “Christ Science or divine laws of Life, Truth, and Love” (S26) we have the tools to unlock the Scriptures and to “recognize man’s spiritual being.” (S29).  Although surely not seeming easy or welcome while she was going through them, Mrs. Eddy acknowledged, after discovering Christian Science, that the extreme challenges she had faced in her life (and working through them) had prepared her to receive “this final revelation of the absolute divine Principle of scientific mental healing.” (S26)  So, what should our reaction be when difficulties arise.   Are we tempted to want to run and hide?  To give up?  To think we’re not good enough, strong enough, or advanced enough in our understanding of God to meet what comes our way?  We need to think again. Give it all up to God!  Run to meet the challenges!  Run to God! Turn to Him with the level of sincere searching and dedication that our predecessors demonstrated and we will “behold and understand God’s creation – all the glories of earth and heaven and man.” (S29)  There’s no running away from the allness of Mind, “for of him, and through him, and to him, are all things:” (B19)  Instead, embrace God, glorify Him, be obedient to Him,  – and then let the Word that is “settled in heaven” be settled in you!

Camp Director’s Note:
 The above sharing is the latest in a long series of CedarS Bible Lesson “mets” (metaphysical application ideas) contributed weekly by a rotation of CedarS Resident Practitioners and occasionally by other metaphysicians.  This document is intended to initiate further study as well as to encourage the application of ideas found in the Weekly Bible
Lessons
as printed in the Christian Science Quarterly and as available at Christian Science Reading Rooms.* Originally sent JUST to campers, staff and CedarS families who wanted to continue at home and in their home Sunday Schools the same type of focused Lesson study and inspiration they had felt at camp, CedarS lesson “mets” are in no way meant to be definitive or conclusive or in any way a substitute for daily study of the lesson in the books. The thoughts presented are the inspiration of the moment and are offered to give a bit more dimension, background and daily applicability to some of the ideas and passages being studied. The Lesson-Sermon speaks individually through the Christ to everyone, providing unique insights and tailor-made applications for each one. We are glad you requested this metaphysical sharing and hope that you find some of these ideas helpful in your daily spiritual journey, in your deeper digging in the books and in closer bonding with your Comforter and Pastor.)  

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