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“Know God, Trust God!”
Metaphysical application Ideas for the Christian Science Quarterly Bible lesson on:

“God the Preserver of Man”
for Sunday, December 10, 2023

Kerry Jenkins C.S. of House Springs, MO
kerry.helen.jenkins@gmail.com • 314-406-0041


Introduction: 

Trusting something that we don’t really know, or have any working proof of, is just blind trust. We don’t have to personally experience something to trust it. For example, most of us trust that man has landed on the moon even though none of us has personally walked there. But we do have to feel the truth of the divine in some way. And we also have to pursue that truth pretty continuously in order to feel the trustworthiness of Love that surrounds us at all times.

Through Old and New Testament healings and dozens of powerful Bible verses in this week’s Bible Lesson, we learn that, at the core of all peace and healing, is a deep trust in the power and presence of divine Truth, Love, and Life. We also learn that Love’s preservation does not mean that we are preserved from experiencing challenges. In fact, it is the human challenges that we experience that can lead us to lean on Truth more deeply, and potentially bring us first-hand experience of God’s preserving power.


Golden Text and Responsive Reading:

The Golden Text and Responsive Reading this week contain both the prayer of petition and the prayer of affirmation. “Preserve me, O God: for in thee do I put my trust.” (Ps.16:1)  This petition implies intimacy. Who do we ask for protection when we are in danger? We ask someone, or something that we know we can trust. A young child might naturally feel that a parent is trustworthy. This trust arises from the child’s experience of love–love they would have received from their parents, and reciprocated. It is also true that most parents would do almost anything to protect their child from harm–a lovely reflection of the kind of protective power and love that the Divine has for its creation.

Some questions that might be beneficial for us to ask are: “How childlike am I in my trust of Love?” “Do I mostly rely on my own abilities/wits/strength for success and even just for daily needs?” “Do I rely on another person for my joy, my supply, my guidance?” The Psalmist sings: “My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.” (Ps. 121:2 from the Responsive Reading) Our help doesn’t come from self, from another, from environment, or from circumstance.

Our help comes from infinite and impartial Love. All that we receive of good each day is a reflection of that infinite abundance. Try looking at each affirmation in our Responsive Reading as Truth speaking directly to each of us, affirming our strength, courage, persistence, and protection. It is a powerful prayer! (Josh. 1:9 Be; Ps. 121:1-8; 107:1)


Section 1: Creation is embraced by the Creator.

It is no coincidence that this lesson on God’s ‘preservational’ power follows the Bible Lesson on God’s creative and causative power. What would be the point of creating and causing that which is complete, perfect, beautiful, if you weren’t interested in preserving that creation? “There is but one creator and one creation. This creation consists of the unfolding of spiritual ideas and their identities, which are embraced in the infinite Mind and forever reflected.” (citation S2/502:27 italics added) This passage puts creation in the loving embrace of divine Mind and Love. We can feel this embrace, and in feeling it more and more deeply, we find we can trust that creation is divinely protected.

This well-known passage from Proverbs 3:5,6 is like a very brief instruction manual for how we can feel the safety and protective embrace of Love. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” (New Living Translation of the Bible).

As we lean on and trust Mind and Truth and Love to guide each decision and step that we take, we receive the guidance that leads to blessing.  As Mary Baker Eddy states in her first line in Science and Health “To those leaning on the sustaining infinite, today is big with blessings.” (cit. S4/vii:1-2) And, from the International Children’s Bible verse 6 of this passage from Proverbs states: “Remember the Lord in everything you do and he will give you success.”


Section 2: Avail yourself of God’s rule. (cit. S10/3:7)

It would be easy to read the story of the widow woman in citation B6/2Kings 4:1-7 and think “If I had an “Elisha” around to trust, I could be obedient to whatever they ask and find the kind of abundance that she found.” In the same way, we might think of how we would follow Jesus today, or maybe Paul. But it’s important to remember that these Bible stories are only useful if we are obedient to their message right now– not merely as stories of powerful spiritual thinkers from the past.

Mary Baker Eddy queries “Shall we ask the divine Principle of all goodness to do His own work? His work is done, and we have only to avail ourselves of God’s rule in order to receive His blessing, which enables us to work out our own salvation.” This woman worked out her own salvation. There is little scholarly evidence that many of these Bible stories, especially in the Old Testament, actually took place. This doesn’t mean they don’t contain messages of powerful healing effect that we can put into action.

Untold millions have experienced healing and salvation from reading and imbibing the messages from the Holy Bible. But their power is not in the factual nature of the story–not in the presence of Elisha, as a man, pointing out to the widow that she could pour oil from her one vessel into borrowed ones. The power is in the widow’s trust in the “rule of Love” to provide, even amidst her fears, for her and her sons.

The widow may have been fearful, but she did have “oil” in her house–her consciousness. Her consciousness was trusting and “consecrated”. She had “…charity; gentleness; prayer; heavenly inspiration.” (cit. S11/592:25 — a textbook spiritual definition of OIL.) The powerful healing message came to that thought or consciousness of hers. It took the form of Elisha giving her direction. And it can take any needed form in our own experience today! All that abundance came from Love. Is not that abundance of Love’s care, supply, and protection available today?

We are called upon, through these Scriptural stories, to “avail ourselves of God’s rule”, and “shut the door” on material, so called, law, so that we can experience, humanly, this same abundance.


Section 3: We can trust that there is no “chance” in Love’s embrace.

This is the first of several examples in this week’s Bible Lesson of what we might term “chance” or accidental happenings. In this account from Acts 20:7-12/cit. B10, Paul brings back to life, a young man who dies after falling from several stories above the crowd to which Paul was preaching.

Considering our earlier reference to God, or Love, embracing creation, I found it especially poignant that, in the King James Version at least, it describes Paul as “embracing” the young man as he heals him. I also love that in each Bible story included in this lesson the people in the accounts are not only preserved from experiencing the challenge at hand, but they are also preserved from lack or death.

Our family has had quite a number of powerful examples of preservation in the years of our practice of this Science. One such example occurred some years ago while building a large log house for our family while we were living in Alaska. The logs were way too large to move by any means other than heavy equipment. We had secured the use of a truck mounted crane designed to recover army tanks during the Korean war.

On one occasion Doug was reaching downhill to lift a large log to set on the walls, when the uphill wheels were lifted off the ground by the weight of the log. This was not an uncommon occurrence, but what was uncommon, was the mistake that a young man we hired had made in forgetting to chock both the uphill and downhill wheels. When the uphill wheels lifted off the ground, with no chock holding the downhill wheels in place, the cable attached to the log pulled the truck around to roll downhill. As it gained momentum the cable snagged a tree and sharply turned the truck, again on two wheels, towards our sled dog yard where all our dogs were chained to their dog houses. With this kind of crane, the operator, my husband in this case, sits in a separate cab from the truck cab, there is no control over the truck from the crane seat. I was quite a ways across the yard, no way to reach the truck in time, and Doug could not climb down the moving crane truck and get into the cab from where he was. It looked as if there was no hope for our dogs who were directly in the path of this truck, not to mention my husband who was careening helplessly down a hill towards our dogs.

You can bet I began to pray instantly to know that there is a divine Mind that is intelligently and lovingly governing every aspect of its creation. I firmly claimed that this creative Mind was safely embracing its every manifestation from Doug to the dogs. Doug said that his prayers took the form of Mary Baker Eddy’s poem “Mother’s evening prayer”, which he was singing aloud in the crane tower. (He admitted later that it was a couple of octaves higher than usual). This poem is based on the 91st Psalm in the Bible, a Psalm that specifically speaks to how God preserves creation!

The whole incident lasted less time than it is taking me to write it, but the crane truck came to a halt after crushing one dog house. The two dogs who were chained to the house were at the extreme ends of their respective chains, heads nearly pressed to the ground from the shortened chains on either side of the front tire of the truck, but unharmed. One of the interesting side notes to this precious experience was that the machine was improperly chocked. We could have wasted time condemning ourselves or others for this mistake. We could have indulged the feeling that we didn’t “deserve” Mind’s control. But that would deny the fact that Mind is always governing, even when we are not “paying attention” to this government.

Mind isn’t judging our worthiness to receive its blessing, it is just operating with impartial and universal Love. There is no room for “chance” happenings in a universe governed by benevolent Mind. Our experiences may seem otherwise, but they are only opportunities to open our eyes to the ever-presence of Mind’s control in any given moment.


Section 4: “Nature” is not equal to God’s government.

Paul’s prayers in this section reveal the safety of not only himself, but all who are with him during the storm that shipwrecked the ship that they were sailing. Every one of them reaches shore safely. Mary Baker Eddy refers to the “…protecting power bestowed on man…” by God, “…who gives man faith and understanding whereby to defend himself, not only from temptation, but from bodily suffering.” (cit. S16/387:27)  What a concept! We are given not only the power to protect ourselves, but the faith and understanding to defend ourselves from temptation and bodily harm! We get to experience this kind of power as we daily put into practice our trust in Love’s power and presence.

We can ask ourselves what we are trusting in any given moment. Who is guiding our actions right now? This might mean a quiet pause before starting our car on a typical errand, or a pause for gratitude before we get out of the car. There are countless forms this kind of practice can take–but they must be continuously practiced so that when we are faced with a challenge, and we will be, we can turn with trust to Mind and see what is actually true in that moment.

“The lightnings and thunderbolts of error may burst and flash till the cloud is cleared and the tumult dies away in the distance. Then the raindrops of divinity refresh the earth as St. Paul says: “There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God” (of Spirit)” (cit. S18/288:14.)  We may be experiencing ‘lightnings and thunderbolts of error’, but our daily, hourly recognition of Mind’s presence gives us the practice to feel trust and peace during those storms.


Section 5: Shake off fear with trust.

While we may not feel we are on a par with St. Paul in our practice of Christian Science, we can shift our view to recognize that Paul encouraged us to see that we each have that potential. He, after all, was a murderer of Christians before his conversion. What keeps us from his demonstration of Love’s power? Isn’t it, in part, how we identify ourselves as healers? What kind of identity do we claim for ourselves?

Paul claimed dominion when he shook the viper into the fire. (Acts 28:1-3,5/cit. B15) He did this with certainty because he had seen the effective government of God in his life repeatedly. We can see it too if we start today to recognize it in each small way. We can move away from a human sense of things and we will glimpse God’s saving power. “Breaking away from the mutations of time and sense, you will neither lose the solid objects and ends of your life nor your own identity.” (cit. S23/261:21) These “mutations of time and sense” are the challenging experiences of the dream of human existence.

When we “break away” from that dream we find a clearer sense of our identity and the dominion and power that comes from a true sense of self, rather than a limited mortal sense. “Then shall man be found, in His likeness, perfect as the Father, indestructible in Life, “hid with Christ in God,”– with Truth in divine Love, where human sense hath not seen man.” (cit. S24/325:10) This is a “place” where we can fearlessly shake off the human dream, even if only in a moment.


Section 6: God’s kingdom is trustworthy.

“Trust”, “commit”, and “delight” in Mind’s presence. These are words we see in the Bible in this section. We truly live in the safety and intelligence of Love’s government. The Master told us that the kingdom of God is within us. Our final citation of the Bible lesson (cit. S28/17:12-15) gives us the last line of the Lord’s Prayer with its spiritual interpretation. “For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. For God is infinite, all-power, all Life, Truth, Love, over all, and All.” Mind “owns” that kingdom within.

Trust in God’s preserving power doesn’t come from somewhere “out there”, but from within each of us. It comes from whenever we start to look there and claim that power and presence in our lives. This starts now. It is never too late to connect to that which is ours and is ever present and active, even when we are unaware of it. We can start to trust that government today and every day. There is no history to overcome, no future to fear, just the now present kingdom where Love reigns.


You are invited to our virtual hymn sing today– Sunday, December 3, at 7:00pm Central.

Musician: Matthew Hammond

Format: The prelude will begin at 6:45pm Central, followed by the hymn sing at 7:00pm Central. Matthew will share approximatelyseven prepared hymns that speak to the Christ light shining in the midst of darkness, bringing joy and healing to our world. After we close with the Doxology, those who want to stay on the call can hear some brief updates on happenings at camp.

Save the Date- December 17th Christmas Hymn sings at 2:00pm and 7:00pm Central: We’ll be playing our Christmas program twice to better accommodate our world-wide family. Come for one or both! CedarS staff will read the Christmas story from the Bible, and over a dozen musicians will share Christmas-themed hymns. The prelude will begin 15 minutes before the start time.

Zoom Link:

·     Join here with one click (password embedded).

·     Meeting ID: 276 331 031

·     Password: 736307

·     Please see details below to join by phone.

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Find international call-in numbers: https://zoom.us/u/aeJGz7aKei

Please share this invitation with anybody who could be blessed by this healing activity. All are welcome!

With love,

The CedarS Team


GOOD NEWS! Thru year end, gifts will still be MATCHED up to:

  • another $50,000 to complete needed facility RENOVATIONS for CedarS JR. LEADERSHIP’s upcoming 50th summer!
  • another $50,000 needed to support CedarS OPERATIONS excellence, horse program & needed GIVING TREE items

We hope you’ll enjoy a 3-minute video made to inspire donations from “Giving Tuesday” thru year-end with our vision for the JL 50th Project and for CedarS as a whole at these links:
Learn More about the JL 50th Project

Give to the Junior Leadership Renovation Fund

Donate to the Giving Tree


 GEMs of BIBLE-BASED application ideas (from Cobbey Crisler & others) will be emailed later this week.  You can always check for GEMs in progress before then at CedarS INSPIRATION website, whether or not you’ve  SUBSCRIBED here for this free, inspirational offering.


Also later in the week, look for Ken Cooper’s
”POETIC POSTLUDE”
contributions related to this Bible Lesson.

Join the Hymn Sing
Donate to CedarS
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