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[PYCL: Sample God’s preserves! (1) Bear witness that all things are possible to God! (4)]
Possible Younger Class Lessons for the Christian Science Bible Lesson on

“God the Preserver of Man”
for June 17, 2018

by Kerry Jenkins, CS, House Springs, MO
kerry.helen.jenkinmail.com (314) 406-0041

Pycl #1: I know I say this every time this lesson appears, but start by helping the children understand what "preserve" means and illustrate with some jam or fruit and crackers or bread to put it on. Snacks always help 🙂 Talk about the elements that go into preserving, the process of high heat (this might correspond to a period of time where we are feeling tested and needing to reach out to God. It will purify our thinking and lead us away from matter as a solution to a problem).

Cleaning and sterilizing the jar to receive the preserves might correspond to purifying our thought, removing all error, replacing it with only good—such as gratitude, joy, peace, and so on. We don't leave a lot of space at the top of the jar for air that might have contaminates—corresponding to completeness, wholeness, no room for anything but God and His goodness, no room for fear!

The seal of the lid where it gets "sucked" down and prevents anything else entering (show them a sealed jar and illustrate how it "pops" when you open it!)—this is like "standing porter at the door of thought". You get the idea here! Have some extra fun with ingredients in the jam for example. Sugar is the sweet peace and confidence that fills us with joy. The various flavors of fruit, or whatever, are different healing ideas…

Pycl #2: This lesson emphasizes our importance to God. Point out the idea in citation B4 that is shared in "My Bible Lesson", about the "apple of the eye" in Bible days. This expression stemmed from the belief that the pupil was a round object within the eye, necessary to sight. You can discuss how it is that we tend to shield and protect our eyes instinctively! Our eyelids blink very easily at any "threat" and we often will cover our eyes first when we sense something coming at them that we cannot stop. Can we think of how this relates to how God protects and cares for us? Just as that pupil is in the center of our eye, so we are shielded right in the center of the kingdom, at the heart of God's Love.

Today we think of this expression in terms of how precious we are to someone. We are the focus of someone's love and thoughts. It is wonderful to compare this to the "focus" in an eye. How does God think of each of us? Check out citation B3! In most cases, a mother's love is considered to be one of those things that cannot be removed, changed or in any way separated from her child. If this seems like a useful way to compare God's love to us, you can share that thought.

Pycl #3: Share the story of Joshua and the Children of Israel going across the river Jordan on dry ground. There are several other Bible stories where water is parted so that people could walk across. The most famous example (coming up in next week’s Lesson) is Moses parting the Red Sea. Discuss why this act was important in Joshua's case? Didn't the children of Israel need to be reminded that Joshua was acting as a divinely appointed leader, as Moses had been before him?

What is God's promise to Joshua in citation B10? "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest." Does this apply to each of us today? Are we being asked to "cross into the Promised Land"? What is the Promised Land today? Do they know that Joshua was one of two men who had the courage to enter into this land 40 years previous to this event, while all but Caleb thought it too risky? So Joshua was one who knew God's preserving power, knew it and accepted it early on. Would it be interesting to look at this parting of water in light of what we learned in a previous lesson about the firmament—being the line of understanding? What did Joshua understand about man's safety, guidance and care? Why wasn't the ground even muddy?

Pycl #4: Look at citation S7. This is a beautiful statement of fact. See if the children can understand what it is saying. Essentially it says: when we are governed by God, we know that all things are possible to God. That's quite a statement. Where is the room in our thought for fear? How can we find ourselves governed by God? What does it take to be "governed" by God?

See if together you can come up with some qualities that we can get clear in our thought in order to see that we are under God's government and not governed by fear, chemicals in our body/moods, muscles, germs, circumstances, weather, and so on. Here are a few ideas: Each one of us possesses by reflection, childlike faith and trust in God, intelligence and peace of mind, joy and every ability to counteract the erroneous suggestion that we are subject to moods or exhaustion. How exciting to think that we can bear witness today to the fact that all things are possible to God!

Pycl #5: Speaking of such possibilities, now we can look together at the story of the loaves and fish in Section 3! What two things must we do to live in the Promised land or the kingdom of heaven? See citation B13: 1. Trust in the Lord. 2. Do good. Can you think together about what these things mean on a daily basis? "Dwell in the land" reminds me of Jesus' Beatitude: "Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." And being "fed" in this passage reminds me of his Beatitude: "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled." You could take it in that direction if you are so moved.

Can we claim the authority of our right to dwell in the kingdom and be fed spiritually as we practice this trust and goodness? Did you notice that Jesus didn't send anyone anywhere to get this good when the disciples said to send them away for food. He recognized the presence right there of all that was needed. In the same way, our trust and goodness is always at hand. We don't have to be somewhere to find it. This can be helpful in dealing with suggestions of homesickness while away from family or friends.

Have great week in Sunday School!

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