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[PYCL: Give them the courage to face unreality, and to RUN to meet their Goliaths!] 
CedarS PYCLs–Possible Younger Class Lessons for:  
"UNREALITY"
The Christian Science Bible Lesson for April 7, 2013
by Kerry Jenkins, CS, House Springs, MO (314) 406-0041 [Bracketed inserts by Warren Huff]

[PYCL #1: To really know God and to not be fooled, understand how error tries to trick us!] 
I've probably said this before, but it's interesting to ask why Mrs. Eddy had a lesson on Reality and a lesson on Unreality.  In citation S5 she answers this question pretty directly: “A knowledge of error and of its operations must precede that understanding of Truth which destroys error,…”.  So we have to understand how error tries to trick us in order to not be fooled, and to really understand Truth/God.  Ask them first what they think, and then break down this statement.  You can use the whole paragraph of course.  That makes sense when you think about it.  Look at any story in this lesson with this in mind and you can prove this statement true.  For example, if Jesus didn't recognize the temptations that came to him in the wilderness for what they were (lies from the “devil”/error), then he might have thought they were ideas to be acted upon.  He was, after all the son of God, shouldn't he be able to jump from a tall building?  Why would he do that?  Wouldn't it be to prove something personal rather than to prove that he was God's servant, he would be kind of showing off his special nature.  Was that what God put him there to do?  Did he need that proof for himself that he was special?  Hadn't he already received that proof many times over?  How about the story of Jesus healing the blind man in section 4?  Jesus bypasses all the talk of “legitimate causes” for the blindness, and heals by stripping those so-called causes of their mask, the mask that says that God could cause disease or problems through matter. He knew that God only blesses, only creates perfection.

[PYCL #2:  Give them the courage to face, and to RUN to meet, their Goliaths !] 
David and Goliath is always a favorite and is fun to revisit in the context of this subject.  With all but the littlest you can pose a question about how the subject of unreality relates to this story.  See if they can give you some detailed responses. There are many paths you can follow in this story. You can head down any one of them and see if they lead to a lively interchange and then abandon them for another approach if not. Talk about the idea of false prophets and their false “testimonies”. What does all that mean? How do we know if something that someone announces, such as Goliath's pronouncement of power and prowess in battle, is true or false? Should we assess the visual picture and look at the dimensions, the speed, the armor…in other words the physical picture?  Or should we go straight to God and ask what He has to say?  Mrs. Eddy tells us that “…the physical senses must give up their false testimony.” (S11, 192:19)  And later in the same citation she says “Evil is not power. It is a mockery of strength, which erelong betrays its weakness and falls, never to rise.”  What was Goliath's weakness?  Was it the softness of his head (where he was hit by the stone)?  Or was it his utter faith and trust in his physical strength and superiority?  What good is that physical prowess against God?  This was what gave David the confidence and courage to face [and RUN to meet] Goliath, the knowledge that God was all-powerful and all good.  He knew that God was a trustworthy law of safety and strength that he could rely on for victory over a material view of the world.

[PYCL #3: Talk about David’s story from Saul’s (spiritual sense) point of view!  ] 
You could also think about this story from the point of view of Saul.  What made Saul trust David to be the one to challenge Goliath?  They had been listening to Goliath's challenge to their army for 40 days.  That's more than a month!  Do you think that their army was beginning to feel that the situation was hopeless?  Why should Saul trust his whole war and the outcome of it to a young shepherd boy?  Did he look at what the physical senses were telling him of this situation?  David must have been pretty convincing don't you think?  Did Saul discern something of the “true prophet” in David?

[PYCL #4: Use your present demonstrated understanding to defeat every daunting lie!] 
The long and short of it is that our own battles with “Goliath” can look equally daunting can't they?  How can we bring our understanding of reality and unreality into a demonstrated defeat of error's claims?  By taking our reality “demonstrations” (remember that last week we found that reality is proven by healing), and putting them into practice.  David's demonstrations were the killing of predators that were hunting his sheep.  He used those same skills, (slingshot) to defeat the giant lie that was claiming to enslave the Israelites in fear and possible loss of territory and freedom.  So we use our present demonstrated understanding to defeat the lies that confront us.

[PYCL #5: Retell the Goliath story in your own words!  What stone do you have ] 
With the littlest ones you can retell the story in your own words.  There is plenty of drama here.  Ask questions.  Why was Goliath so scary to the army?  Why was David so brave even when he wasn't yet old enough to be a soldier?  Was it because he knew that God was real and nothing opposed to God could be real?  What skills do each of them have that is like David's slingshot?  Do they know some powerful true things about God and themselves that can wipe out a lie as surely as that stone wiped out Goliath?  Think about some of the elements of the story.  Goliath's armor is described in detail.  He even has a special guy to carry his shield into battle!  How is it that a little stone made it to just the right spot to kill him?  When we have a problem that seems really big, really well-protected by all sorts of facts… things we know that seem “normal”, like getting sick or sad or angry… does it take a “really big truth” or a grown up’s understanding to heal the problem?  What about a small but powerful thought about Love/God?  Maybe we just remember that there is only one God!  Isn't that enough to heal?  Absolutely!  So you can certainly talk about the way that error pretends to be scary and powerful and how it can be defeated by even the smallest truth, because it is not real to begin with.  It's like a scary dream.  No matter how real and scary it is, it disappears the moment we wake up (to reality)!

[PYCL #6: Make, use, and remove masks in dramatic, memorable, & relatable ways!] 
We can also use the idea of masks from section 3.  You could use paper plate masks on a stick to hold up to illustrate how error is like a mask that can be removed to reveal what is true.  This is why we need to notice when error is making a claim.  If we don't know we are looking at a mask, then how do we know to remove it?  In other words, if we think that sickness is real, then it's impossible to find healing!  We have to “remove the mask” and “Expose and denounce the claims of evil and disease in all their forms, but realize no reality in them.” (S14)  You could use the masks in a dramatic way.  Make them silly or ugly if you want.  You can talk about how Goliath's “mask” looked like a really tall, scary, well-protected soldier.  You can also tell the story of Jesus' temptations when talking about masks.  Why did Jesus get tempted with these things?  Would you be tempted to try to turn stones into bread?  What would tempt you?  We are only tempted by things that seem possible or good to us.  Jesus was a very special person, so his temptations were pretty different from the things that tempt us.  Are our temptations any more “real” than his?  What masks do temptations wear?  Jesus' temptations wore the mask of feeding him when he was very hungry, of proving how special he was, and of showing people how great he was by his personal power.  Our temptations probably look more like “not listening to mom when she tells us that our computer time is up”, or “we have to get ready for bed”, etc.

[PYCL #7: Be free by being a servant to God, not to unreality!] 
You can also talk about how we can be God's servant.  This is brought up here and there throughout the lesson.  It is interesting to uncover how by being a good servant to God, we end up being free.  Whereas when we serve matter (by listening to it, by obeying its demands, by not removing its mask) we ultimately die.  This means that if we live in matter, thinking that it is real and we are made of matter, well then, we end up dying, because that's what matter does.  But if we take off that mask, and see our real spiritual selves, we truly live, we have real joy and we aren't tricked into believing that matter is more fun or more real than Spirit.  By the way, if we don't like the idea of “serving”, we can always remember that we are either serving God (and thus being and realizing our nature as His son/daughter, hence truly free), or we are serving matter.  It's one or the other!

[PYCL #8: Obey God’s Word by giving up the unreal BEFORE understanding its unreality!] 
As a small side note, I find it fascinating that Mrs. Eddy tells us in essence (S24) that we have to give up the unreal before we can fully understand the unreality of evil.  Think about that… it's pretty cool.  We don't get to completely understand that evil is unreal, and then say “oh yeah, I think I'll just stick to God”.  We have to take that step away from the lie first before that full understanding of evil's unreality becomes clear.  It takes obedience to God, to His laws and His Word, and then we get that understanding!

Hope this helps on Sunday, have fun!

 

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