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[PYCL— Share ideas of how to be in one accord & one place. Hear Spirit speak in a way we understand. (2)]
CedarS PYCLs–Possible Younger Class Lessons for:

“Spirit”
The Christian Science Bible Lesson for February 9, 2014

by Kerry Jenkins, CS, House Springs, MO
kerry.helen.jenkins@gmail.com   (314) 406-0041
[with bracketed italics by Warren Huff, CedarS Director]

[PYCL 1— Get to know a good friend (verse) in a different setting (translation) & find something new!]
Since this lesson has so much in it about how God communicates, maybe you could talk with the kids about what they think “God's Word” means.  There are several ways “Word” is used in the Bible so don't think of this entirely as “right” or “wrong” or they will be loathe to participate.  Look together at the Golden Text (G.T.), which is quite fun, [“alive and full of power… active operative, energizing, and effective”].  What do they see that is different in this particular translation?  Are they even aware of different translations of the Bible?  As long as we are talking about the Word, if you are comfortable with this subject you may want to bring in a collection of translations to look at together.  Try to know a bit about the source for each translation.  Some are more literal than others; some rely on a bit of interpretation and inspiration along with careful translation.  Why do the kids think we have different translations?  This does not have to be an “intellectual” exercise!  Prepare ahead with some really inspiring different translations of a specific passage to show how a different translation can bring different inspiration to you as you read the Bible.  It's like getting to know a good friend in a different setting and finding something new!  If you don't have actual translations at hand, you can use a tablet to go to a website where these different translations are available, or print up some differing translations of a passage at home and bring this in.

[PYCL 2— Share ideas of how to be in one accord & one place. Hear Spirit speak in a way we understand.]
How is the “Word” “active, “energizing” and “effective”?  How is it “alive” and “full of power”?  (They might get a kick out of looking at the KJV of this passage; it might be familiar to them.)  Isn't this activity and power the basis of Christian Science healing?  Can they expect to find this power themselves in God's Word?  Do they have to be able to read?  Is there a passage in the Bible that has helped them to have a healing, if not, can you share some favorites for them to write down and memorize?  Consider sharing some of your own examples of the power of God's Word in your life!  I think too, that God's Word includes the way that Spirit speaks to us and there are many examples of this in the lesson.  Start with the Responsive Reading.  Do they understand what is going on here?  Can they imagine being in a room with other people that don't speak their language, and suddenly they can hear them and understand and they themselves can speak a language that they've never spoken before?  Try to break this down into a specific scenario.  Each child is assigned a language and a country, and they try to imagine that they suddenly speak whatever language someone next to or across from them speaks, even though they never have before.  What's the point of this story?  Why is it included?  Are we to understand that nothing stands in the way of Spirit's communication with Her child?  Can you think together about why this day of Pentecost happened?  “They were all with one accord in one place”.  Can you talk about what that means and what it symbolizes?  What kind of power are we given to love and share and communicate when we are “in one accord” and in “one place”?  [Like Olympians in Sochi…]  Does this mean that we have to agree on politics or whether we have a cooler toy than someone else?  Or are we talking about something much more essential to reality?  Can they come up with some thoughts about being in one accord and one place and what that means on a daily basis?  Why do we hear God… the Holy Spirit, when we are doing this?  What is getting in the way when we don't hear Her?  Is it maybe that we are thinking we have a separate mind from God and everyone else and that our thought, opinion, desire has to be uppermost?  This could really last the whole class if you are having fun with the details of this story.  There is a beautiful element here of being able to speak in someone else's language.  You are not trying to “make” someone see as you do… what a beautiful way that God's Word communicates, to us, as we are, in a way we understand (see citation S14, speaking to the 'human' consciousness)!

 

[PYCL 3— Help pupils discern spiritual good; it turns an obnoxious desert into a garden of joy, health…]
Each section deals in how we can discern this Spirit speaking to us. The first section introduces the idea of understanding coming through spiritual sense only. You can talk about this sense.  Citation S3 gives a definition of spiritual sense.  Do the pupils think that they can discern spiritual good?  If not, can you talk about what spiritual good is?  If they can see this, then they have spiritual sense!  Do the physical senses back up the spiritual truth?  Section 2 deals with the source of spiritual peace.  Look at citation B5 and talk about what this is describing.  What is it a metaphor for?  With the littler ones you could take a piece of plain paper and talk about how it is a “desert”.  Can they fill it with flowers and fruit and make it like a garden?  Each pretty flower or fruit or plant represents the joy, satisfaction, obedience, gratitude, healing and so on that comes with Spirit's messages to us.  These messages can turn around a sad situation and make it a joyful, grateful one!  Share an example!  (The littler kids can each decorate their own paper; it does not need to be something you recognize as “garden like”, just give them plenty of colors and talk about the qualities that make a desert turn into a garden).  With the slightly older kids it's cool to see how citation S7 relates to this passage.   Mrs. Eddy is telling us that as we “advance spiritually”, develop our spiritual senses, “evil becomes more apparent and obnoxious… until it disappears from our lives.”  Wow!  That's so cool.  Our spiritual senses give us this discernment that can make our path clear to us!  And at the same time, evil becomes “obnoxious” and obviously wrong, we'd never choose it, we'd never want to!

[PYCL 4— Discuss how do we “try” a thought or spirit so we are not at the whim of lying material sense.]
In this same section you could look at citation B8.  What does it mean to “try the spirits”? Why shouldn't we believe everything that comes to our thought? How do we “try” a thought or spirit? What sort of process can we set up, what clues are we given? I know that when I'm unsure of how to proceed, or feel confused and troubled about something, that's a good indication that the truth is not leading me.  If I go back to the Bible lesson and just listen for what God is telling me, it is almost always cleared up. That doesn't mean the problem is always gone, but I have a clear view of Truth and can proceed with that power and authority that is mentioned in the G.T and in Section 3. Then we are not at the whim of material sense, which lies!

[PYCL 5— Discuss why being born-again or “as a little child…” makes us receptive of “the advanced idea.”]
The Beatitude (not included in the lesson) “Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God” seems a salient one for this lesson, especially in sections 4 and 5.  Have fun with the thought that purity of heart, thought, desire brings understanding and love of God. Why does becoming “as a little child…” make us receptive to “…the advanced idea.”? What is the advanced idea?  They may have some ideas about why the little child part is important here.  Do we have to be the same age as they are?  What do they think?  What qualities do they think they possess that they should never lose?  Look at Nicodemus' story and talk about being “born again”.  What do they think that means?  Being willing to change and grow and not hold onto anything material too strongly… these are things that kids do easily and we can keep doing as adults.  Purity of heart and thought also lead to fearless trust in the power of God (His Word) to direct us!

[PYCL 6—Experience baptism like the eunuch by believing Jesus is the Son of God with all your heart.]
I love to share the story of Philip and the Eunuch too, as it is less familiar.  Ask what they think was happening in this story.  Help them interpret it, or retell it in your words.  Try to transmit the excitement that the Eunuch was feeling as he began to understand who Jesus was!  Why did he want to be baptized?  What did Philip say he needed to do to be baptized?  Is this what we need to do as well?  What does it mean to “believe with all our heart” that Jesus Christ is the Son of God?  Can you decide together how we prove this or how we get to the point where we actually feel some of that to be true?  Then, how to we experience baptism?

So much fun in this lesson to share with the kids! Have a great time!

 

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