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P.S.S.T.: Live an abundant life of service to God!
P
ossible Sunday School Topics for the Christian Science Bible Lesson on

“Sacrament”
for January 10, 2020

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

PSST Golden Text: Encourage the cultivation of spiritual gifts!

What is a spiritual gift? What are some spiritual gifts you see around you in the people in your community? Are there spiritual gifts you have and/or would like to cultivate more?

PSST Responsive Reading: Do what it takes to encourage & “become poor” for others.

Paul talks here about encouraging one another (Romans 1:12).
Are there times when you have encouraged a friend or family member when they needed it?
Is there a time that you received some encouragement when you needed it?
How did this experience affect you?

“For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that by his poverty you might become rich.” (II Cor 8:9)
What does it mean that he was rich but became poor for our sakes?
Is there a way that you can “become poor” for the sake of others?
What does this mean to you and what would it take to do so?

PSST Section 1: Explore further what it means that “God is Love.”

In I John 4:16, we have one of the synonyms for God stated directly: “God is love.”
Consider exploring further in I John 4 to find out how we can live this love of God, what it means to do so, and how this helps us feel close to God. We have many excellent statements in I John such as:

  • Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. (I John 4:7 NLT)
  • God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. (I John 4:16 NLT)
  • Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. (I John 4:18 NLT)

Love gives – even to the smallest idea — might, immortality, and goodness. (paraphrase of citation S2, p. 518) So that means that every plant, animal, or pet in your experience is actually a spiritual idea of God. And each of these ideas is worthy of experiencing the health, harmony, and joy that come directly from God. “Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing.” (cit. B3, Psalms 145:16)

PSST Section 2: Don’t be envious – rejoice in the success of others.

This story of Moses, Eldad, and Medad (B5, Numbers 11:16, 17, 25–29) is a great one and really applicable to teens and kids. Read the story together and see if your students can paraphrase it (or read it from a modern translation).
What was the problem that Joshua was pointing out?
What did Moses discern was the real reason behind Joshua coming to him?
What does Moses’ response show us about the importance of being happy about the successes and achievements of others? Perhaps Joshua took this lesson to heart because he soon became the next successful leader after Moses! So, even though Joshua made this mistake at first, he clearly was worthy enough to become another very important Biblical figure.

Do you love God with all your heart, soul, and mind? What does this mean to you?
Why might this be hard or why not? What do we have to surrender in order to do this? (S3, p. 9) Is it hard to surrender these things? Why or why not?

See if your students can memorize this passage: “The rich in spirit help the poor in one grand brotherhood, all having the same Principle, or Father; and blessed is that man who seeth his brother's need and supplieth it, seeking his own in another's good.” (cit. S7, p. 518)
How do you think this relates to this week’s lesson topic?
How can we be blessed by supplying another’s need?
How does this also relate to the story with Moses and celebrating other people’s achievements and successes?

PSST Section 3: Give generously and live abundantly!

What are “tithes” (B10, Malachi 3:10)? What did the woman do whom Jesus was watching at the treasury? (B9, Mark 12:41–44) Why did she put in “more” than all the others? What are some practical applications of this idea?

Why do you think giving cannot “impoverish us” if we are working or giving in service to God? (S9, p. 79) Have you ever had an opportunity to give something away and weren’t sure how it would turn out? What did you learn in that situation? Similarly, have you ever withheld something and wished later that you had given instead? What are some suggestions we can be alert to that might keep us from giving in service to God?

How can we live this statement: “Whatever holds human thought in line with unselfed love, receives directly the divine power.” (cit. S13, p.192)
What are some ways you like to live unselfishly?
What are some ways you hope to live unselfishly as an adult – is there a job that has its basis in unselfishness that you aspire to have?
Can unselfish thoughts and deeds make you feel closer to God?

PSST Section 4: Look to Spirit as the source of supply. Act as possessing all power.

Take a look at the statements in citations S14 and S15.
How do these help us answer some of those questions in Section 3 about our capacity to give? How does an understanding of true supply help us live more generously and give fearlessly? (cit. S14, p. 206)
What about the fact that “…to all mankind and in every hour, divine Love supplies all good.” (cit. S15, p. 494)
How does knowing that divine Love supplies all good enable us to live unselfishly?
Think about our connection to our divine Source and what these tell us about our relationship to God.
Can we live more and more unselfishly as our understanding of divine Love grows more and more?
How do you think a greater understanding of God helps us live even more generously and unselfishly?

What does this statement from the Bible mean to you? “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God” (cit. S16, p. 410)
What does it mean to live by bread alone versus living by the Word of God?
How can this help us be more obedient to God’s will for us?

“We must look where we would walk, and we must act as possessing all power from Him in whom we have our being.” (cit. S20, p. 264)
Is there something that you would do if you knew you couldn’t fail?
How would someone carry themselves if they knew they possessed all power from God?
Do you think that person would be humble, boastful, arrogant, or confident?
Is there a way that you can walk with the knowledge of this power that resides in each of us?

PSST Section 5: Let go and let God. Discuss the value and benefits of forgiveness!

Explore the Jewish custom of Passover. What does this meal commemorate?
What does “unleavened bread” have to do with the Passover?
What are some traditional aspects of this meal in Jewish culture that Jesus was celebrating?

How did Jesus live a life of service to God?
How does his saying “not my will, but Thine be done” demonstrate his willingness to continually live in service to God?
How can we express more of that same willingness? What does willingness mean?
And how is it a helpful quality in our relationships and service to God?
What are some other Bible characters that expressed willingness?
Are there any examples that didn’t express willingness at first?

Do you think you could forgive a sibling or a friend for doing something totally awful to you? (cit. B17, Luke 23:34) What is the value and benefit of forgiveness?
How do you think Jesus was able to forgive from the cross, and why do you think it was necessary for him to do so?
Do you have any examples of forgiveness stories that you can share with the class?
We all have to forgive – sometimes even on a daily basis!
So, forgiveness is a great ability to have and something we can also cultivate.
How does forgiveness benefit our relationships?
Younger kids are generally great at forgiving. How can we forgive in a more childlike way?

“…our great Teacher said: “Not my will, but Thine, be done!” — that is, Let not the flesh, but the Spirit, be represented in me.” (cit. S22, p. 33) What are some ways that you would like Spirit to be more represented in you?
Are there ways you can give up your own will?
What does human will feel like?
How can being aware of this help us know if we are pushing our own agenda or yielding to the divine will?
What does it feel like when we are being governed by divine will?
Is there a time when you had to give up your own will – perhaps in a family relationship – but had it work out okay? What did this show you about letting go of your own will?
Sometimes we hold on to our own will because we don’t think it will work out rightly if we don’t. But when we let go, and let God govern, we find things turn out okay – often even better that we could have planned.

PSST Section 6: Cast your net on the right side.

Have you ever had friends doubt you when you were trying to tell them the truth?
That’s probably how Mary felt when her fellow disciples didn’t believe her when she told them she had seen Jesus again! (cit. B19, Mark 16:6, 9, 14) But, later, Jesus tells them they should have believed her. I bet it was nice to have Jesus stick up for her!
Have you ever had a friend stick up for you when you needed it?
How did it make you feel?

What did Jesus find his disciples doing when he came back? (cit. B20, John 21:1–6, 9, 12)
Why do you think they returned to their old jobs? What did this symbolize?
Why do you think the disciples didn’t recognize Jesus at first?
Do you think Jesus was surprised to find them fishing?
How did he respond when he saw them?
What spiritual qualities do you think he expressed?

What does “casting your net on the right side” mean to you?
Are there ways you can do the same?
Are there any goals you want to set for the New Year that will help you cast your net on the right side?

PSST Section 7: Give glory to God forever! Share examples of giving a cup of cold water

What are some ways we can give glory to God and Christ Jesus forever and ever? (cit. B22, Hebrews 13:20, 21)

What does it mean to “give a cup of cold water in Christ’s name”? (cit. S28, p. 570)
What does a cup of cold water symbolize or represent?
Have you ever shared Christian Science or a spiritual idea with a friend when they needed it? How did it go? Share inspiring examples as a class.

Mary Baker Eddy says it's our privilege to follow Christ Jesus. (cit. S29, p. 37)
What are some ways you are living this privilege?

Enjoy your classes!

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