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What is God causing? What has He created?

Julie Ward, C.S.B.
Posted Saturday, November 27th, 2004

What is God causing? What has He created?
Application Ideas for "God the Only Cause and Creator" (Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson for 11/29-12/5, 2004)
by Julie Ward, C.S. (Westwood, Massachusetts)

So often, we're barraged with matter's many claims that it can be a cause. Weather, genetics, chemical reactions, food, exercise are just a few of the factors in mortal thought that claim to be the causes of our experience - sometimes good and sometimes bad. But Christian Science teaches us that here is only one great Cause - God. So it's good for us to keep asking ourselves, What is God causing? What has He created?

GOLDEN TEXT - He has caused "righteousness and peace to spring forth before all the nations." Just as naturally as the plants spring forth in our gardens, right thinking and peace must inevitably spring up in our hearts - and this is true for ALL nations. There is no place where hatred, ignorance, or confusion is natural.

RESPONSIVE READING - In this story, Cornelius, a centurion, is told in a vision to go into Joppa and find Simon Peter. Peter is ready to give him a revolutionary message that speaks to us all today - "that God is no respecter of persons." Impersonal Good can only cause good - "in EVERY nation." There is no spot where God is not!

SECTION I - One God, one creation.
How natural it is that God's creation should be just like Him - indivisible, all good and ONLY good. "I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside me."(B2) Have you noticed how often this verse, or one very much like it, appears in our lesson? It's there almost every week. Why do you think that this is constantly repeated?

Because He is both Father and Mother, He cares for His creation completely. And because He is Spirit, what He creates can only be spiritual. It's only natural for God to cause His qualities to spring forth - peace, comfort, joy, abundance. "That which He creates is good, and He makes all that is made." (SH3) So there's no room for anything unlike Him. How can we see this beautiful creation? "...When we subordinate the false testimony of the corporeal senses to the facts of Science, we shall see this true likeness and reflection everywhere."(SH4) Let's practice this week believing the facts of Science more than we believe the testimony of the five material senses. Let's look for the many ways in which Love "bathes all in beauty and light."

SECTION II - God's creation must be all good and only good.
God's wonderful works, His "thoughts which are to usward" are "more than can be numbered." They're infinite! So we never stop learning, we never get bored, we never run short on inspiration. There is not a single element of evil embedded in His creation. "The desire of the righteous is only good:..."(B9) Let's be sure that good is OUR only desire - that we don't harbor even the slightest interest in evil.

(SH6) is a wonderful citation to commit to memory, as it's a perfect basis for Christian Science treatment. Since this "one primal cause" is completely good, its effect can never be less than completely good. What's more, Mrs. Eddy tells us (SH7) that we can achieve all good, but she warns us "distrust of one's ability to gain the goodness desired and to bring out better and higher results, often hampers the trial of one's wings and ensures failure at the outset." Let's be conscious this week of trusting our ability to gain the goodness desired. Be alert to dismiss thoughts of hopelessness and inadequacy. Expect those "better and higher results" when you pray. Remember, good is natural, and evil is not.

SECTION III - God causes health - not sickness.
God does hear our prayers! Hezekiah demonstrated this, and so can we. No prayer returns to us void. Not a single moment of prayer ever falls to the ground. "Prayer cannot change the Science of being, but it tends to bring us into harmony with it." (SH10) Isn't it wonderful that we don't have to ask God to change things? We just bring our thought more into line with what is already there, already true. And this is done through "watching, and working, combined with self-immolation." (SH11) It's done through pure desire.

There's a great rule in this section: "Spiritual causation is the one question to be considered, for more than all others spiritual causation relates to human progress."(SH12) Sometimes when we get stuck on a question about Divine Science, we need to go back to "the one question to be considered." What is it that God is causing? If this is the one question that relates to human progress, isn't it the question that should be in our hearts every day? And then there are two more vital questions that we should ask ourselves often: "Am I living the life that approaches the supreme good? Am I demonstrating the healing power of Truth and Love?" And here's the great news: "If so, then the way will grow brighter 'unto the perfect day.'"(SH14)

SECTION IV - God causes us to reach out to one another with unselfish love.
God guides us specifically to those who need what we have to share, and He causes them to be receptive. He led Jesus to Mary Magdalene, to Joanna and Susanna, and to many others. He led Paul to Lydia, "whose heart the Lord opened." When we're led to share spiritual truth with someone, we don't have to make a judgment about their receptivity. We just have to be obedient and let our light shine. The Love that impels us to teach and to heal will supply us with every right idea, and the right expression of those ideas. "Right motives give pinions to thought, and strength and freedom to speech and action." (SH16) The great need is for unselfishness. We're all under Jesus' command to, "Heal the sick," and we all can do it.

SECTION V - Church is created by God, not man.
Notice the precious qualities of church that Paul expresses in his letter to Philemon. Philemon, Apphia, and Archippus are BELOVED fellow-laborers and fellow-soldiers. There's no hierarchy here! Paul is grateful for them, recognizing their love and faith. Their communication becomes effectual " by the ACKNOWLEDGING of every good thing which is in you by Christ Jesus." (B18) Think how effectual our sharing would be if we began by acknowledging the good in our fellow-laborers and fellow-soldiers - if we acknowledged their individual expression of the Christ. In the letter to the Colossians, Paul expands this description of church unity and progress. He says that we continue to pray for one another's growing spiritual wisdom and understanding, "That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God." Going back to the Golden Text, God causes righteousness and peace to spring forth in and through His church. God is the only "head of the church," and God alone causes the church to grow. (B20)

"Jesus established his church and maintained his mission on a spiritual foundation of Christ-healing." (SH21) Are we building on this foundation? Is this our individual and collective mission? Just as church is not a building, it's not just a group of people trying to be nice. Mrs. Eddy's definition of church is active, healing, and always growing because it proceeds from an infinite source.

What church is - the structure of Truth and Love.

What causes church to be - it rests upon (stability) and proceeds from (activity) divine Principle (not person!).

What church does - affords proof of its utility, elevates the race, rouses the dormant (sleeping!) understanding "from material beliefs to the apprehension of spiritual ideas." It DEMONSTRATES divine Science, casts out devils, and heals the sick. If it isn't doing all this, it isn't really church.

SECTION VI - God causes unity, not conflict.
T
his section begins with a much-loved Psalm. The first verse is a promise to us all: "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble." It's good for us to remember that this help is VERY PRESENT. It isn't far away; it isn't post-poned; it isn't just theory. We can all avail ourselves of this very present help. The promise in the next verse, "He maketh wars to cease," is followed by the description of God destroying the various weapons of that time - the spear and the bow are broken, the chariot is burned. It's spiritual disarmament! Finally, there is a very simple instruction for our individual spiritual disarmament: "Be still, and know that I am God." Sometimes that part about being still is a lot tougher than it sounds. It takes practice. One way that we all can help to end wars - in our countries, in our families, amd even within our own thought - is to resolve to take many moments each day in which we still the clamor of the material senses and just drink in the power and the presence of God. We are not helpless before the claims of war! We can be peace-makers as we demonstrate peace within our own consciousness.

(B22) reiterates that perfect statement of God's allness that we noted in Section I - "I am the Lord; and there is none else." God - the ONLY cause and creator - has created the earth to be inhabited. He didn't create it for self-destruction. "...All the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God." (B23) No one is left out! As we "put on the new man; which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him," we find that there is only one kind of man - the Christ man, made in God's perfect likeness. There is neither male nor female, American nor Iraqi, Democrat nor Republican, Christian Scientist nor non-Christian Scientist. There are no divisions, for we are all "called in one body."(B24) God unifies all of His ideas. He never divides them. As we realize that we all have "one intelligent source," we know that this source can only cause unity. Going back to our Golden Text, "For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations." Let's actively claim this promise - for ALL the nations!


(Camp Director's Note: As the latest in a long series of CedarS weekly lesson "mets" (metaphysical application ideas) contributed by a rotation of CedarS Resident Practitioners and occasionally by other metaphysicians, this document is intended to initiate further study as well as to encourage the application of ideas found in the Weekly Bible Lessons. Sent originally JUST to campers, staff and CedarS families who wanted to continue in their homes and Sunday Schools the same inspiration felt at camp, CedarS lesson "mets" are in no way meant to be definitive or conclusive or in any way a substitute for daily lesson study in the books. The thoughts presented are the inspiration of the moment and are offered to give a bit of dimension, background and daily applicability to some of the ideas and passages being studied. The Lesson-Sermon speaks individually through the Christ to everyone providing unique insights and applications.  We are glad you requested this metaphysical sharing and hope that you find some of these ideas helpful in your daily spiritual journey, in your deeper digging in the books and in closer bonding with your Comforter and Pastor .) 

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