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PYCLs:  PRESENTS VS. PRESENCE (1) BRING PRETTY “CHRIST PRESENCE” JOURNALS FOR EACH CHILD (2) WHERE DOES PEACE COME FROM? (3) SPEAKING OF PEACE… (4) HOW CAN THE CHRIST CHILD BE BORN “UNTO US” THROUGHOUT THE YEAR? (5)
P
ossible Younger Class Lesson ideas for the Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson on

“CHRISTIAN SCIENCE”
for Sunday, December 25, 2022

by Kerry Jenkins, CS, of House Springs, MO
kerry.helen.jenkins@gmail.com • 314-406-0041


PYCL #1: PRESENTS VS. PRESENCE

This is just a silly idea to use these words as a basis for sharing some thoughts about what the difference is. Christmas purports to be celebrating the coming of Christ in the form of Jesus. So, it really is a great way to look at this day—one of the presence of Christ now and always.

You can look at a couple of hymns together: “Blest Christmas Morn”(Hymn #23 + and #449 in the new hymnal) set to a poem of Mary Baker Eddy’s, and “Let Every Creature Hail the Morn” (Hymn #170) …These two hymns have words that really emphasize the timeless nature of Christ and Christmas. This potentially can help with the “let-down” feeling that sometimes can creep in after the excitement of gift exchanging is over.

How do we feel the presence of Christ? What does it feel like?
What can it bring to our experience?
Can you share an example of how you may have felt the presence of the Christ in your life?
Does healing result?

Often the concept of peace is one that is emphasized during the Christmas season. I have certainly felt that peace most when I have felt the presence of Christ. Maybe this is another path to pursue.
When do we feel riled up? What gets us excited in an unhappy way?
Is it interactions with siblings? [W. See Pledge #6 from the BONUS below to living the laws of Love]
How can we let Christ into that space?
Maybe in those moments we can stop and ask ourselves “what do I need right this moment?”
Just asking that question can open the door for Christ-thoughts to enter!
With little ones you can use hand gestures to imitate closing and opening our “thought doors” to Christ.


PYCL #2: BRING PRETTY “CHRIST PRESENCE” JOURNALS FOR EACH CHILD

It might be fun to help them think about times where they have felt this presence and encourage them to write these down in their journal. This can be a small spiral bound notebook, you can glue Christmas paper to the front if it’s fun for you to be crafty.
With the younger crowd, bring a variety of wrapping papers, a great way to use up the smaller pieces. Use scissors and glue stick and let them choose the covers they want.

I would keep the journals in the classroom and have them jot down their experiences with “Christ presence” at the beginning of each Sunday School class rather than send them home with the journal where it is likely to get misplaced—if it’s anything like my home….
[W. If you have a way to shrink & print out the “ON THE BALL PLEDGES TO LIVE THE LAWS OF LOVE,” they might be fun to review and attach on separate pages in their journals, with examples of how they have been applied… ]


PYCL #3: WHERE DOES PEACE COME FROM?

Our Golden Text this week comes from Psalm 119:165 (to :), 174. “Great peace have they which love thy law:…I have longed for thy salvation, O Lord; and thy law is my delight.”
Peace comes to those who “love [God’s] law”. Why?
What is God’s law? I like to think of Christian Science as “the law of Love”.
How might that fit into this week’s lesson? Why does loving this “law of Love” bring us peace?
[Warren: When I play Moses and talk with groups in CedarS Bible Lands Park, I often ask them to take Ten Pledges to live the laws of Love (Downloadable from BONUS, ROUND SUNDAY SCHOOLS TOOLS FROM ”MOSES”). The PLEDGES are ways to apply the freeing spirit of love in the Ten Commandments as guidelines for what to say, do and think about most in order to be THE BEST VERSIONS OF OURSELVES.]  

It is so helpful to note that in all our Bible lessons we have “problems”. Each problem is resolved through the law of Love. Christian Science doesn’t prevent the problems all the time, it gives us the understanding that even when facing problems, we can be certain that the law of Love is in operation and will reveal to us all the solutions that are necessary. Sometimes this is instant! Sometimes we get the opportunity to look a little bit deeper and love a bit more! But this is never an onerous thing to do, it is always a joy to know Love better, to discern the Christ more clearly.

If Christian Science is the law of Love then it is something reliable, something we can lean on without fear. It also means that the peace we may need, even in an emergency, can truly only be found in that law. Again, it would be great to have some examples to share. If you don’t have a ready one from your own experience, we have a lot of periodicals we can look to for a variety of these healing examples.


PYCL #4: SPEAKING OF PEACE…

What does it mean to “…sing together ye waste places of Jerusalem…” from our Responsive Reading (Isa 52:9)? Explain the metaphor of singing in the “waste places of Jerusalem”.
What are our modern day “waste places”?
What does Jerusalem have to do with it?
What does it mean to “sing together”?
Are we only at peace when everything is going well, or “as we want”?
Obviously, this is not the case, although I think we forget that sometimes. Just because things are not going well does not mean that we can’t experience that peace.

If peace comes from loving God’s law, then that love is there for us in any circumstance. Sometimes it is harder than at other times to feel peaceful, but the peace of Christ is there.
Consider looking together at some sections of the Sermon on the Mount, (perhaps a modern translation). There are so many examples of how to love that law in this Sermon!
Pick a few, or, if they are of reading age, have them choose some themselves.


PYCL #5: HOW CAN THE CHRIST CHILD BE BORN “UNTO US” THROUGHOUT THE YEAR?

This is a little like the first PYCL, but draws on the prophecy and story of Jesus’ birth in our first section this week. (Isa 9: 6,7 and Matt. 1:18-21).
What does a child or babe represent? Work through qualities like innocence, purity, joy, peace, trust, sweetness, love, and so on.
Are these qualities only present at the coming of a new child?
Are they spiritual qualities that are independent of time or matter?
A new child in a family is a pretty big deal. It changes everything in a family.
Well, the coming of Jesus changed everything for everybody!
How did his coming do this? Did it stop after Jesus left earth?
Do angels still “announce” the Christ when it comes to our consciousness?

With the littler children it might be fun to talk about how these angels have always announced the presence of the Christ. Think of some other examples in the Bible (one seasonal one from last week’s lesson is when an angel appeared to Zacharias, John the Baptist’s father (Luke 1:5, 7, 13).
List together all the ways that the Christ child is “born” each day in our consciousness. Every time we behold innocence and purity when we are facing sin, or the feeling of separation from Love. Any time we maintain peace in the sight of error.

Happy Christmas all, and have a fun week in Sunday School. 

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