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[PYCL: Be armed by “looking to Zion”, perfect Mind, not to many minds…]
CedarS PYCLs–Possible Younger Class Lessons for:

Ancient and Modern Necromancy, Alias Mesmerism and Hypnotism, Denounced
The Christian Science Bible Lesson for June 2, 2013

by Kerry Jenkins, CS, House Springs, MO (314) 406-0041
[Bracketed inserts by Warren Huff]

[PYCL 1: Break down this lesson title and themes and discuss their relevance today.]  
As always when you hit a title or subject like this one, it can certainly be fun to break it down and talk about what the modern version of some of these words is. Why is this relevant today, perhaps even more so than in earlier eras, due to the subtler presentation of these influences in our experience? Can you come up with ways in which these things do attempt to influence us in our daily lives? (It wouldn't hurt for you to have thought of some ideas to start things off with here).

[PYCL 2: Discuss deep subjects as “beyond physics” & answer questions best with healing.]  
This week's subject heavily emphasizes the fact that God is all good, is all there can be, hence there can be no evil. We can say this to our little ones, but they will certainly wonder what the heck we are talking about. That's really okay; it's fine to introduce deep subjects that fly in the face of what we perceive humanly. But along with that we should talk every week, I think, about the idea of metaphysics. What is it? How is Christian Science metaphysical? The online dictionary reference site has a definition that would necessitate a lot more visits to the site for the kids, but with the older ones, it might be fun if you have the use of a smart phone. Otherwise, look it up and digest it first. Maybe the simplest way to look at metaphysics is to think of it as “beyond physics”. If physics is the study of how things work in our universe, then metaphysics might be thought of as how reality works, God's universe, if you will. We might think of our life goal as the study of what to accept as real, and what to reject as not of God's creating. [There is no really great answer for the question that every thinking person will ask, maybe more than once, about why it seems like matter is real. That must be dealt with ultimately on an individual prayerful basis. It is best answered through healing! But you can share the thought, if this comes up, that it is important to ask the right questions. This question is a bit like asking “Why is the grass purple?” More than likely this question won't arise in these early grades anyway, but it's worth being prepared.]

[PYCL 3: Share ways to feel & share the laws of Love that power the universe–universally.] 
Why do we (Christian Scientists) believe that God is the producer, creator of only good, that indeed, good is all there is? What Biblical basis is there for this? What evidence do we have that this is so? Talk about what Jesus did. How could he have done the things he did if the diseases and sins that he healed were the creation of God? Do you want to worship, praise and pray to a God that is so flawed, that like some kind of really powerful but evil superhero, He brings tornadoes, earthquakes, murder, accidents and all sorts of disease to our experience and then observes as we try to puzzle our way out of these things? Or even if He doesn't make these things, stands by passively and lets us sort out the mess, intervening only if He feels like it or if we ask just right? Get a feel for what kind of “God” this is. (Understand that this is the God most people believe in, so it wouldn't be right to laugh about it). But we certainly don't need to think of God as such a powerless or uncaring force in the universe! Then move on. How can we experience, really feel, the universe that God has truly put us in? How do we see this divine harmony? Can we liken God more to the law of Love in the universe. A law that applies to each and every one of us. A law that keeps us safe in its armor (a theme in G.T and R.R). You may want to compare God to the idea of gravity (a law of physics, limited, but for the purposes of this discussion, helpful). Does it matter if you believe in gravity for gravity to operate? Do you have to be “good at praying” for gravity to hold you to the planet? Does it work for some and not others?

[PYCL 4: Like Nehemiah, reject every “familiar” lies that error presents to us as legitimate.]  
One thing to think about is, are we willing to consider the idea that even when evil or error seems real… (for the little guys think bumps and scrapes), are we willing to consider that we are being fooled—that, as in last week's lesson, we have the right to reject the suggestion if it is not from God. I know this isn't what the Bible is referring to when it mentions “familiar spirits”, but this week I thought of that phrase as being the “familiar” ways that error presents its case to us as legitimate. The story of Nehemiah is a great one to work with here. With the littlest ones you can retell the story and speak to the challenges that Nehemiah faced. What do you think it was like for him to talk to the king about going back home to rebuild his city? What was it like for Nehemiah to try to convince his fellow Jews to help him on what may have seemed an impossible project?  Was the project smooth sailing? Why not? If this was a job that was supported by God, why did he keep getting harassed by neighbors? Were their threats powerful? Did they accomplish their goal? Why not? This is a good opportunity to emphasize that even when we are doing the right thing, error will try to discourage or frighten us. It is up to us to arm ourselves mentally so that we can recognize that these suggestions are not from God, and so are not powerful. Can you think of a modern version of working a great work such as the building up of the wall, while holding a sword in one hand?  How are we called upon to do this today? I was particularly struck this week by how persistent and constant the threats to Nehemiah were.  Just as we sometimes have to really struggle and consistently affirm the truth about God and ourselves when faced with something aggressive, so too Nehemiah never left his station (his elevated thought) to grapple with the enemy: “I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down: why should the work cease, whilst I leave it, and come down to you?”. (B10)  In fact he wouldn't even meet the enemy face to face.  He told them they were lying, perfect right?!

[PYCL 5: Help students be armed by “looking to Zion”, perfect Mind, not to many minds… ]  
Having covered a lot of this territory, you may want to talk about how healing springs directly from the calm understanding, or knowledge, that God is all good and governs all in Love. We start from God, from the perfection of God and man, not from healing matter, from “other minds”, which is the essential claim of hypnotism, etc.  From this standpoint we truly are arming ourselves against error's false claims. This is our real helmet, shield, breast-plate, and so on. It keeps us fearless!  I feel like citation B13 embraces this thought when it says: “Look upon Zion…thine eyes shall see Jerusalem a quiet habitation, a tabernacle that shall not be taken down; not one of the stakes thereof shall ever be removed, neither shall any of the cords thereof be broken.” What a perfect sense of church, of temple or even body, nothing at all to do with various church members, policies, Sunday School teachers, bylaws, bones, weight, muscles and so on.  If we “look upon Zion” and not at our false, human sense of institution or body, we will see the glory of God!  Have a fun Sunday!

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