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PYCLs— SHARE HOW THE LORD’S PRAYER “WHICH COVERS ALL HUMAN NEED” (4)  HOW DO WE EXPERIENCE HEAVEN RIGHT NEW, RIGHT HERE? (5)
CedarS Possible Younger Class Lessons for the Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson:

 “Soul”
for August 14, 2022

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


PYCL #1: ADD TO OUR SYNONYM PROJECT.

We are now on our last two synonyms. This week is Soul and next week is Mind. If you haven’t already worked with Principle, you may want to introduce that this week or next. I like to think of Principle as I’ve seen it defined in the dictionary as “source”. It’s a great word to use in place of Principle to get a clearer sense of that word in Christian Science. With that in mind, you may want to have the “engine” of the train you have been creating be “Principle”. Or, if you are making a mobile, the biggest stick from which the others might hang, could be Principle. (See previous weeks’ pycls for complete descriptions of these ideas, found on the Cedarscamps.org website under “inspiration”. Other projects we have mentioned are ornaments that we decorate with synonym names and qualities. Or we have mentioned decorating a mug with these same ideas. This project could take the form of a wall mural in your classroom or cubicle. Maybe you create a large picture of a tree. The sun might be in the sky as “Principle”, the tree might have six roots each labeled with the other synonyms. The trunk and leaves could each take the form of qualities that each synonym expresses or reflects. The possibilities are certainly infinite!


PYCL #2: WHAT IS SOUL?

What makes Soul different from, say, Spirit? Find passages in the lesson that clarify this for the children. We often associate Soul with beauty, joy, creativity, identity, and so on. And we have Mary Baker Eddy telling us of the different uses of the word “soul” in citation S2/482:6. She tells us that Soul is often “God” when referring to Deity. If it is “my soul” it is “sense”, and depending on the context, it is either material, or spiritual sense that is meant. She defines spiritual sense in a couple of clear sentences in Science and Health. “Spiritual sense is the discernment of spiritual good.” p.505:20-21 and she states that “Spiritual sense is a conscious, constant capacity to understand God.” p.209:31-32 In Section 1, citation S3/298:13-15,22 “Spiritual sense, contradicting the material senses, involves intuition, hope, faith, understanding, fruition, reality. …..Spiritual ideas lead up to their divine origin, God, and to the spiritual sense of being.”

So, we see here that spiritual sense contradicts the material senses. What does contradict mean? Can you share some examples of this? (There are a lot!) Does everyone have spiritual sense, or just those who are very “spiritually minded”? What about those who don’t study Christian Science? (Yes, of course!). Which one tells the absolute truth, spiritual, or material sense? We have the qualities that are “involved” in spiritual sense in that passage above: intuition, hope, faith, understanding, fruition, reality. What do these qualities mean to you? Do they seem to be “rising” in order of higher and higher Soul ideas? (It says in the next sentence that they “…lead up to their divine origin, God, and to the spiritual sense of being.”)


PYCL #3: HOW TO PRAY.

One of the coolest themes in this week’s lesson on Soul is how we pray to bring our spiritual senses to the front of our experience by using the Lord’s Prayer. Introduce the Lord’s Prayer and how it is used in the lesson and then focus on one or two lines at a time deeply, as it is done in our lesson this week. If you are teaching very young children, this is an opportunity to memorize the Lord’s prayer, and maybe its spiritual interpretation.

In citation B6/Matthew 6:6, 9 we have Jesus encouraging his disciples to enter their “closet, and shut the door” when they pray. Most of us are familiar with this metaphor. Some of the ideas that have helped shed some light on this describe the “closet” of Jesus’ day as one that would have stored all the needed things for a household. This would mean then, that Jesus was telling us that we aren’t necessarily entering an empty space, but a space filled with all the inspiration and spiritual nourishment that we need! Of course, that closet has a door. Why? (Ask the students).

With the little ones you could talk in terms of animals or bugs and how we want to keep them out of our food and supplies, or from spoiling them. But the door can also keep out distraction, noise, interruptions. These are all things that make a prayer less alive, less inspired. Have the little ones mime going into a closet and shutting the door. Have them state what they are shutting out. You may have to go first to help them get the idea.


PYCL #4: EACH LINE OF THE LORD’S PRAYER “WHICH COVERS ALL HUMAN NEED”!!!

Discuss this statement that it covers all human need. That’s quite a claim. We can think about this when we are stuck in a situation that isn’t good because most of us know this prayer by heart, and many know the spiritual interpretation that Mary Baker Eddy gives on pages 16-17. Making this a memorization project is really helpful. I won’t be able to address each line of the Lord’s Prayer in these PYCLs, but each section points out things that we can connect with each line.

Mary Baker Eddy’s spiritual interpretation is inspired, can we also be inspired to come up with our own spiritual “translations” of the Lord’s Prayer, or other prayers in the Bible? (The answer is yes, we can always expand spontaneously on verses as God leads us, keeping it fresh each time we listen for new ideas). For example, the first couple lines say: “Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.” Mary Baker Eddy interprets this: “Our Father-Mother God, all harmonious”….and– “Adorable One.” Maybe we want to expand on the Father-Mother part and acknowledge that this is our only father and mother and we listen to and obey this Father-Mother because they are worth “adoring”. This being is only “One”. Their identity (name) is clear, spiritual, caring, intelligent, and so on.

And we could think about the idea that God is “in” “heaven”.
Where is heaven? What does Jesus have to say about heaven?


PYCL #5: HOW DO WE EXPERIENCE HEAVEN RIGHT NEW, RIGHT HERE?

There are lots of references to the kingdom in this lesson. That’s kind of “where”, if you will, we want to spend our time. Discuss Jesus’ statement that it is within us. (citation B26/Luke 17:21)
What does that mean to us?
Is it somewhere? No, it’s consciousness, awakeness, awareness of harmony.

Read Mary Baker Eddy’s definition of “kingdom of heaven” in citation S8/590:1. This is conscious awareness that only knows the government of Soul, or control of Soul. This is helpful when we are working with the lines about “Thy will be done”, or “Lead us not into temptation”. In Soul’s kingdom, Soul governs in perfect harmony.

With the littles, try pulling out some crowns and discussing what it means to be in a kingdom, or to be king or queen in a kingdom. (Obviously this human metaphor has limitations, but it’s fun for little ones to think of this idea). We can each wear a “crown” when we are letting that kingdom govern us, because we are then experiencing harmony, joy, peace, health, and so on. There is even a passage in the Bible in Section 7 that refers to who shall get the “crown of life”. citation B21/James 1:1-4,12,13.

We can experience the kingdom whenever we become aware of present health, harmony, beauty, joy, supply and so on even when it contradicts material sense. Have some examples ready. Perhaps you can even go outside, if the weather is nice, and notice the beauty around you and find such present evidence of the kingdom. We can also see evidence when we experience love, or helpfulness, or intelligence. You can compile quite a list.


Have fun in Sunday School this week!

 

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