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Find Home even in a Black Hole through the reflected light of Soul!

Rick Stewart, C.S., Dresden, Germany
Posted Monday, May 17th, 2010

Find "Home" even in a "Black Hole" through the reflected light of Soul!
Metaphysical Application Ideas the Weekly Bible Lesson for May 17-23, 2010,
"Soul and Body" by Rick Stewart, C.S., of Dresden, Germany [italics by Warren]

[Editor's Note: The following application ideas for this week and the Possible Sunday School Topics that follow are offered primarily to help CEDARS campers and staff (as well as friends) see and demonstrate the great value of daily study and application of the Christian Science Bible lessons year-round, not just at camp! You can sign up to have them emailed to you free -- in English by Monday each week, or by each Wednesday you can get a FREE TRANSLATION in French thanks to Pascal, in Spanish thanks to Ana or in German thanks to Helga. YOU CAN SIGN UP at www.cedarscamps.org/newsletters]
 
[Don't forget this afternoon to check out and "share ... as widely as possible" some wonderful  ideas and "sound bites" for spiritual growth in today's live Chat: The Christian Science Sunday School is a "School for Healers"
With Susie Jostyn, Robin Hoagland, C.S.B, and guests from around the world
Monday, May 17th, 2010, 3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Eastern (Boston) Time ...
We'll ... be joined via Skype by representatives from an entire team of Sunday School teachers in Atlanta, Georgia, who have been thinking together about this topic.  The chat will be hosted, and questions can be sent in, live online in English at www.tmcyouth.com.   If you can't join the chat, you can post questions beforehand in the Sunday School Discussion Forum on the website http://tmcyouth.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=6and listen to the recorded chat afterwards. For more information, visit http://tmcyouth.com/sunday-school/roundtable/ ]

"A bite for you and a bite for me, a bite for you and bite for me....."
That is what my Uncle Keith said my mom would say as she doled out spoons of fudge or frosting. He explained that every Sunday after Sunday School all seven of the Lafferty kids had to join in house cleaning while my grandparents were at church. My mom was second oldest, Uncle Keith the youngest; there were about 12 or 13 years between them. According to Uncle Keith, my mom would organize the cleaning duties, and while the others cleaned, she would make a batch of fudge or a bowl of frosting. Then when everything was clean, she would line up the whole gang, and go down the line, "A bite for you and a bite for me, a bite for you and a bite for me...." And the process would go on until the bowl was clean as a whistle.
 
Since I studied Journalism I felt I had to check my sources on this story. My Aunt Betty Lou said, "Well Ricky, that is the story we jokingly told. But you know your mother always insisted that she didn't take a bite every time. And spooning out the fudge or frosting sure was a good way to get us all working together."
 
I was glad to hear my aunt's clarification because the generosity of spirit that I had witnessed in my mom's life, over 40 years in the Christian Science healing ministry, didn't quite fit with the "bite for you, bite for me" story. Even though it was lots of fun to hear it, Aunt Betty Lou added: "You know that is the story that was always told. And Keith is just repeating what he had heard."
 
You might even say that that story is a good way to describe the prevailing views regarding "soul."   Has God, Soul somehow divided Himself throughout a material creation in the form of lots and lots of "indwelling souls?" This week's Bible Lesson seeks to make clear the relation of God, Soul, to His creation.
 
How important is it to understand "Soul" and "Body"? Well, it has a lot to do with understanding who you are, so that is pretty important indeed.   Mary Baker Eddy knew the ongoing religious debates about Soul were often based on a mistaken view of what "Soul" really is. And she likens this mistake to a famous "mistake" in human history. She refers to this mistake in her book Science and Health and it is in this week's lesson, Section 1, Marker 2.
 
She refers to the "Ptolemaic blunder." [S&H 123:4]  This was the theory presented by Greek Philosopher, Ptolemy. He described a solar system where the sun and the planets orbited earth. And although this theory was always false, it was believed for over 1400 years as an accurate description of how the solar system functioned. But the science of astronomy eventually proved this theory inaccurate. http://www.astro.cornell.edu/academics/courses/astro2201/ptolemy.htm
 
How does that relate to our view of Soul and body? Is our relation to God by way of an indwelling spirit or soul, "Here's a little for you, and for you, and for you." 
 
Let's see what this lesson can teach us about how God, Soul, relates to you and me and all creation. How is God identified and how does God identify creation?
 
Look for answers to the questions: Where does God live? In temples, churches? Does God live in our physical bodies by way of an "indwelling spirit or soul"?
 
Do we have to live 1400 years in mistaken darkness or can we embrace the glories of the Science of Soul revealed and practiced by our Master 2,000 years ago and rediscovered in Christian Science?
 
The Golden Text, our key to unlock the Bible Lesson, beautifully describes the relation between God, Soul, and man as spiritual reflection.
 
Golden Text:   II Corinthians 3:18:
    From the New English Bible translation:  "And because for us there is no veil over the face, we all reflect as in a mirror the splendour of the Lord; thus we are transfigured into his likeness, from splendour to splendour; such is the influence of the Lord who is Spirit."
    J. B. Phillips' The New Testament in Modern English:  "all of us who are Christians have no veils on our faces, but reflect like mirrors the glory of the Lord.  We are transformed in ever-increasing splendour into his own image, and this is the work of the Lord who is the Spirit."  
 
Basking in this "splendour," letting the glory of Soul bathe us in light, will fulfill a request that Jesus shared with us in the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 5:16 (King James Version):  "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."
 
You could say that this reflected light shows us the way home in darkness.
 
My son, Noah, has just finished reading a book he got for his birthday, George's Secret Key to the Universe by Lucy & Stephen Hawking. It is a science fiction novel by the famous physicist and his daughter.
 
Noah had an interesting idea after he read the book. He talked and explained to me about "black holes."  And Noah concluded that although it appears there is nothing in a black hole because light does not come out, that God would be in a black hole!
 
Black Hole is the term coined by Physicist John Wheeler in 1967. Also in 1967 physicists Stephen Hawking and Roger Penrose showed that black holes were a direct result of general relativity. Put rather simply, a black hole is a region of space from which nothing, including light, can escape.
 
As Noah patiently explained to me his understanding after reading this book, I was reminded of an old Sunday School story.
 
A teacher thought he had a difficult question for his Sunday School students: "If you were on the planet Mars, would you find God there?"  A young boy immediately replied, "Yes." The teacher was puzzled why the boy was so quick and certain in his answer. So he inquired how the boy knew God would be there.
 
"Well, you said, 'If I were on the planet Mars,' and if I was on the planet Mars, God would be there because I am God's image and likeness, God's reflection."
 
As Noah explained to me his theory the other day, I found myself combining two elements from this week's Bible Lesson. If one found himself in a black hole, of course he would be "in the Light" and "home" because as we learn in this week's lesson, we find our home and God's home by dwelling in the reflected light of Soul.
 
And if the black hole we are in at the moment is extreme pain, a life-threatening disease, a deep depression, or any other of the myriad dark beliefs of materiality, we can find our way home and into the Light through the ideas in the this week's Bible Lesson.

Responsive Reading:  Psalms 84: This Psalmist wanted to be home in the Temple
Where does God live? Psalm 84 is a beautiful song written by someone that is a long way from the Temple, a long way from home, but who would love to be there. He affirms and rejoices in the Tabernacle, the house, the dwelling place of the Lord. And there is something very sweet about his affirmation that even the little birds, sparrows and swallows, are at home, or welcomed in this dwelling place. And the Psalmist ends with the assurance, "no good thing will he (the Lord) withhold from them that walk uprightly." Or as The New English Bible puts it: "The Lord will hold back no good thing from those whose life is blameless."  We should conclude that no good thing is ever withheld from us, including: home, family, health, belonging, security....  
 
Section 1: The nature of God as infinite, not contained in finite dwellings
The selected Bible passages reveal a God that creates and maintains creation. And there is an unfoldment reflected in Solomon's thought. Solomon yearned to fulfill his father's wishes to build a "dwelling place" for God, and eventually asked, "But will God indeed dwell on the earth?  Behold the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded?"--B-3
 
B-2: Ps104:24,30:  King James version: "...and thou renewest the face of the earth."
    The Living Bible:  "O Lord, what a variety you have made!"
    The New English Bible:  "...when thou breathest into them, they recover; thou givest new life to the earth." (This is a wonderful prayerful treatment in support of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico!)
 
The Science and Health citations show an unfoldment, the need to shift from a belief in God being housed in a material body to a reflection of the infinite.
 
Citation S-6 concludes on page 467: "Science reveals Spirit, Soul, as not in the body, and God as not in man but as reflected by man."
 
Section 2:  Where is our home and identity?
A true sense of home includes a sense of belonging, identity, security, comfort, familiarity. This section shows us what our home really is, spiritual not material.
 
Last Friday Noah said to me, "Papa, look!  A stork's nest!" It is not unusual to see stork nests in villages around Dresden. Sometimes on old barns, old trees, and often a village will actually build a tower for the nest. But this nest Noah saw was rather unusual. It was at least 100 meters high, on the top of a high tension electric transmission tower. What a place for home!
 
Well I guess Mama and Papa Stork figured it would be safe from predators. Nothing or nobody could climb up to them. And oh, what a view. And when it came time for the first flying lessons, I guess there was a little extra room for learning. Home is always with us wherever the light of Soul leads us.
 
B-5: Ps 90:1, 2: KJV: "Lord, thou hast been our dwelling place in all generations."
    The Living Bible:  "Lord, through all the generations you have been our home!" 
    Today's English Version:  "O Lord, you have always been our home."
 
We are very familiar with our mortal, material bodies. But this section opens up the possibility and need to become more familiar with our spiritual identity, to be at home with our identity as the reflection of Soul, Spirit.
 
As Paul writes in II Corinthians 5:6: "Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord:"
 
As we begin to identify our spiritual nature as our true identity, we are less willing to put up with habits and illnesses that have nothing to do with who we are. We find we are not "at home" with mortal limitations.
 
Section 3:  At home in the Light
The Bible citations point us to a path where we live in the light of Spirit. Our daily lives are spent walking in the Spirit and not following laws of the carnal mind, or fleshly mind.
 
B-12: Romans 8:6,9:
    J. B. Phillips' New Testament in Modern English:  "The carnal man sees no further than carnal things....  The former attitude means, bluntly, death:  the latter means life and inward peace.  7 And this is only to be expected, for the carnal attitude is inevitably opposed to the purpose of God, and neither can nor will follow his Law.  8 Men who hold this attitude cannot possibly please God.  9 But you are not carnal but spiritual if the Spirit of God finds a home within you."
 
S-11 - S-15 Science and Health explains how we choose the path of our thinking. What kind of thoughts are we at home with, mortal, material, carnal? Or spiritual thoughts that lead us to a harmonious life "governed by Soul, not by material sense." (S-15: 125:15)
 
Section 4:  Asa, King of Judah, chooses to rely on matter 
Where do we look for help? Do we look to the Lord for our salvation and health or to a man? We read about Asa who made the wrong choice.
 
B-16, Prov. 3:21-26:
    Living Bible:  "21 Have two goals:  wisdom---that is, knowing and doing right---and common sense.  Don't let them slip away,  22 for they fill you with living energy, and are a feather in your cap.  23 They keep you safe from defeat and disaster and from stumbling off the trail.  24, 25, 26 With them on guard you can sleep without fear; you need not be afraid of disaster or the plots of wicked men, for the Lord is with you; he protects you."   
    The Amplified Bible:  22 "And they will be life to your inner self, and a gracious ornament to your neck (your outer self)."
 
S-17: "Body is not first and Soul last, nor is evil mightier than good."
 
Do we consistently put God first in our choices? [in obedience to the 1st Commandment, Mrs. Eddy's "favorite text" S&H 340:16]  Do a thought check-up, and not just with the big problems. See if you are letting the light of Soul lead you even in the tiny things of your day.
 
Let's watch our thoughts, let's see where they lead us. Do we gain a firmer trust in God?  Are we assuring ourselves that we do not need to fear for our God, Spirit, Soul is with us? Remember the promise, "Immanuel, God with us." Life, Truth, Love, Mind, Spirit, Principle, and Soul are ever with us. We are not alone; we are "all one" with God. 
  
Section 5:  Don't be discouraged, healing is certain.
B-17, Ps42:11:
    Living Bible:  "O my soul, don't be discouraged.  Don't be upset.  Expect God to act!  For I know that I shall again have plenty of reason to praise him for all that he will do.  He is my help!  He is my God!"   
    New English Bible:  "How deep I am sunk in misery, groaning in my distress:  yet I will wait for God; I will praise him continually, my deliverer, my God."
 
B-18, Luke 13:11-17:  "And, behold, there was a woman which had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years,... when Jesus saw her, he called her to him, and said unto her, 'Woman, thou art loosed from thine infirmity.' "
 
And you know there were people from her church that would have allowed her to continue to suffer. They objected to Jesus supposedly breaking Church laws and healing on the Sabbath.
 
Oh well!!  Some things will never change, but don't you believe it. Just take a listen to Bruce Hornsby, the son of a Christian Science practitioner, and what he had to say in his song "That's Just the Way It Is": 
 
My mom often reminded me that we never give our consent to error. We do not give up. We do not choose anything but life, harmony and health. It does not matter how dark our path might seem at the moment, the eternal Light is present. And like Noah told me recently, God is even in a "black hole."
 
Perhaps you are aware of a famous speech given by Winston Churchill at the time of the Second World War. It is often just a tiny part that is quoted, but there was a whole speech at his old school.  And it was at a time when things were looking up just a little, but the challenges of war were still severe. And perhaps when we are in the midst of a battle for our health, home and happiness, we can be encouraged by God's faithfulness, (like the woman Jesus healed.)
 
"Never Give In"
October 29, 1941, Harrow School
Excerpted: "You cannot tell from appearances how things will go. Sometimes imagination makes things out far worse than they are; yet without imagination not much can be done. Those people who are imaginative see many more dangers than perhaps exist; certainly many more than will happen; but then they must also pray to be given that extra courage to carry this far-reaching imagination. But for everyone, surely, what we have gone through in this period - I am addressing myself to the School - surely from this period of ten months this is the lesson: never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never-in nothing, great or small, large or petty - never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy."   You can find the entire speech at the following web site: http://www.winstonchurchill.org/learn/speeches/speeches-of-winston-churchill/103-never-give-in
 
S-21: "Do you say the time has not yet come in which to recognize Soul as substantial and able to control the body?" 
 
Stop waiting, keep hoping, keep praying, and never give in.
 
Section 6:  Our eternal home, the consciousness of Love
B-20, B-21 These citations are two of the most beautiful and clear statements from the King James Bible about where our home and life is to be found.
 
What a joy to awake to the realization that our eternal home, the present living in the harmony of Soul, is a daily possibility and truly a divine adventure.  It is not postponed to some future time or place, but a present possibility, for now and eternity.
 
S-25 "Man is the reflection of Soul."   (Noah might add, even in a Black Hole!)
 
We live in Soul, God not in a mortal body. Are we worried about a mortal body?  We should rather worry about our ignorance of God.
 
S-27 "The only excuse for entertaining human opinions (Ptolemy's blunder and belief that there is a "hole" in the universe where Light does not exist) and rejecting the Science of being is our mortal ignorance of Spirit...."
 
Mary Baker Eddy writes in her textbook:
S&H 390:4:  "We cannot deny that Life is self-sustained, and we should never deny the everlasting harmony of Soul, simply because, to the mortal senses, there is seeming discord. It is our ignorance of God, the divine Principle, which produces apparent discord, and the right understanding of Him restores harmony. Truth will at length compel us all to exchange the pleasures and pains of sense for the joys of Soul." 
 
My mom used to say, "Oh, it is only ignorance causing the problem, I can get rid of that, I have my textbooks."
 

[This weekly Metaphysical Newsletter is provided at no charge to the 1,200 campers and staff who were blessed last summer at CEDARS--as well as to thousands of CEDARS alumni, families and friends who request it, or who find it weekly on our website or through CS Directory.  But, current and planned gifts are much-needed to cover the costs of running this "free" service and of providing camperships for ongoing inspirational opportunities.  Your support is always tax-deductible and welcomed--but during the economic downturn, your help has been and continues to be especially needed and appreciated!
 
Our top need
 is to put our efforts and money where our mission is--by raising--and spending--significant dollars to underwrite camperships for the hundreds of campers now applying for aid.
 
CedarS 1st Session, June 13-26 still has room, as do later sessions! Please help us tell any and all Christian Science Sunday School students who you know that there are plenty of funds available to help them to have their own CedarS Camps spiritual-growth-experience this summer!  
And then, make a charitable donation to our 501C-3 tax-exempt, charitable organization:
1)  Thank you for writing us a check payable to CedarS Camps and mailing it to: CedarS Office, 1314 Parkview Valley, Manchester, MO 63011;
or
2)  Thank you for calling Warren or Gay Huff at (636) 394-6162 to charge your gift using a Visa or Mastercard or to discuss short-term or long-term gift of securities or property that you are considering;
or
3) CLICK HERE RIGHT AWAY TO SUPPORT CEDARS WORK with an online gift using PayPal.com, which can be funded using a Visa or Mastercard account.]
 
[Camp Director's Note: This sharing is the latest in an ongoing, 10-year series of CedarS Bible Lesson "Mets" (Metaphysical application ideas) contributed weekly by a rotation of CedarS Resident Practitioners and occasionally by other metaphysicians. (To keep the flow of the practitioner's ideas intact and to allow for more selective printing "Possible Sunday School Topics" come in a subsequent email.) These weekly offerings are intended to encourage further study and application of ideas in the lesson and to invigorate Sunday School participation by students and by the budding teachers on our staff. Originally sent JUST to my Sunday School students and to campers, staff and CedarS families who wanted to continue at home and in their home Sunday Schools the same type of focused Lesson study, application and inspiration they had felt at camp, CedarS lesson "mets" are in no way meant to be definitive or conclusive or in any way a substitute for daily study of the lesson. The thoughts presented are the inspiration of the moment and are offered to give a bit more dimension and background as well as new angles (and angels) on the daily applicability of some of the ideas and passages being studied. The weekly Bible Lessons are copyrighted by the Christian Science Publishing Society and are printed in the Christian Science Quarterly as available at Christian Science Reading Rooms or online at eBibleLesson.com or myBibleLesson.com. The citations referenced (i.e. B-1 and S-28) from this week's Bible Lesson in the "Met" (Metaphysical application ideas) are taken from the Bible (B-1 thru B-24) and the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health With Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy (S-1 thru S-30). The Bible and Science and Health are the ordained pastor of the Churches of Christ, Scientist. The Bible Lesson is the sermon read in Christian Science church services throughout the world.  The Lesson-Sermon speaks individually through the Christ to everyone, providing unique insights and tailor-made applications for each one.  We are glad you requested this metaphysical sharing and hope that you find some of the ideas helpful in your daily spiritual journey, in your deeper digging in the books and in closer bonding with your Comforter and Pastor.]
Enjoy! 
Warren Huff, Executive Director  
 director@cedarscamps.org    (636) 394-6162

[PSST -Remove the leading and limiting lie of personality! Instead reflect infinity!]
Possible Sunday School Topics for May 23rd, 2010 for the Christian Science Bible Lesson on "Soul and Body" by Steve Henn, St. Louis, MO

Focus for this week; the expulsion of personality and establishment of the one Ego.
When in Sunday School myself one of the best lessons I ever learned was the importance of identifying and then removing the leading error of any difficult situation. Recently my prayer has inspired the removal of one particular error that appears to be at the heart of much strain and stress in the human experience. That error would be the lie of personality. Have you ever noticed how many "issues" in life would be easily resolved if a false sense of personality were removed? Mrs. Eddy discusses the importance and blessedness of this idea in her article "Taking Offense". (Miscellaneous Writings 223:24) I would recommend reading it this week in conjunction with our lesson on Soul and Body and then making your students aware of it if they are not already.

What a blessed state of mind it is to be in when identity is no longer tied to a limited sense of person, but rather founded upon a greater reliance on the one Person, God, good. I encourage you to explore this refreshing and solid foundation this week with your students. Many if not most of the difficulties facing our students can be handled with confidence when a true sense of Person is firmly established in thought.

Golden Text (GT):
How do your students feel about the way they look? How beautiful do they think God is? How beautiful can the source of all beauty possibly be? Can we even fathom it? And yet, here in this opening citation we see that we are changed into God's image, reflecting "as in a glass"..."from glory to glory" the beauty of God, good.
Get ready for your students to say "yeah right" or "I still feel ugly when I look in the mirror". The high school student who is truly satisfied with the way he looks is a very rare case. So challenge them on this point. What is true beauty, where does our image come from? Discuss with your students what the image of God is and how it impacts even the physical appearance of another person. Have they ever known someone to become more or less beautiful as a result of knowing that person's human personality?

Take your students one step further. The GT begins with focusing on God's glory (the one Person); ask your students how does focusing on God's glory causes us to "change into the same image"? What does it mean to share "the same image" with God?

Responsive Reading (RR):
The responsive reading is all about the tabernacles of God, his courts, and the house of God. I couldn't help but think of getting ready for Prom. Spring is a pretty important time in a high schooler's life, especially those who attend Prom. I began thinking about the pre-prom process I witnessed last spring. A fun group of students got together at a friend's house and all took pictures in their best outfits before taking off for the fun evening. They looked like they could all have spent time in the richest and noblest courts in the land; every one worthy of the title of prince or princess, lord or lady. Why do they get together at a house for these pictures before prom?

What would it be like to meet in God's house before the start of each day? How would it help our day to have God as "a sun and shield" throughout our day? Would we ever feel vulnerable to personal attacks?
The challenge, then, is how we establish our place in God's house at the beginning of our day. This week's RR can help with that. It may take digging deeper into the lesson to complete that inquiry.

Section 1

B4 - If we have our being in God, what aspect of our personality can be attacked? Can God be attacked? Transform this statement to use all of the synonyms. What does it mean to have our being in Love, in Principle, in Soul, and so on?
S1; S2; S5; S6 - Reverse what is coming as your thinking. Challenge your students to think differently about their self-hood. Is their selfhood limited? Is it resident in this body, this image, or this set of qualities - a human personality? What is the source of our personality and if we recognize it is truly God, how does that change our self-image? In citation S6 we see clearly that a perspective of man as containing anything in himself is false. Does this scare your students, or liberate them? Help them see these citations as liberating them from a false sense of responsibility, fear, worry or limitation.

Section 2
Do your students get how big they are? The problem with human personality is that it is so small; it cannot possibly contain or express the bigness of God's creation. Present to them the famous Marianne Williamson quote about living a big life. "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." (from "Our Deepest Fear" in A Return to Love that is available at Amazon.com or at www.marianne.com/.

Section 2 is all about living a big life. Look at citations B7 and B8; S9 and S10. Explore with your students what it means to "know even as also I am known"; or that "man reflects infinity". WHAT?!? That sounds pretty huge. I want some of that. Help your students to want some too.

Section 3
Can human personalities have a "single eye"? (B11) [like Cyclopes in Homer's Odyssey] Earlier (in the Golden Text) you may have discussed the benefits of good and bad personalities on someone's physical appearance. If human personality can go both ways, can it really have the single eye from B11? Look deeper with your students at the idea of personality then. Discuss what happens when the human side of things falters - look at the failures in B10. On the other hand, how ["full of light" (B11)] would the world look if we [--with "single eye"--] saw God's "infinite Person" everywhere? (S&H 116:29) Check out citation S11 for further points about this. Ultimately the conversation with your students turns back on themselves. How do they feel about their own bodies, their own person? Closely look at citations S13 and S14 for sound advice about how we should look at our bodies and person. [Paul reminds us all of the dead-end of thinking that is focused on the body and on body worship: "to be carnally mined is death."(B12, Romans 8:6)]

Section 4
How long have your students bowed down to certain gods; the god of beauty, popularity, grades, material possessions? Ask them what ‘gods' present themselves in the average high school life. And then look at the gods we bowed down to when we were teenagers, or the gods trying to take over our lives. Are they any different? Mrs. Eddy in citation S20 speaks of rejecting material methods, regardless of how "time-honored" they are. Help your students reject the inheritance of false gods that has been passed down over decades, if not longer. Section 4 can help with this. Particularly check out citations B16 and S16, S19 and S20.

Section 5
When thinking about the life of a high schooler, how many burdens do they appear to have to deal with? Pressures appear to abound; and vices, traps, and temptations seem to be around every corner. Think about how it must feel to be walking the halls themselves. Now, work with your students to see the parallels between the burdens that appear to be filling their lives and the burden of being a "woman of infirmity". (B18, Luke 13:11) What does Jesus say to her? Think of the word "loosed" and why Jesus uses that. What image comes to mind when thinking of being loosed? Mrs. Eddy talks about immediately and confidently using the power we have through God. Are your students confident in the present ability to affirm the power of good? Are you confident? Look closely at this section with them until your class's confidence begins to grow.

Section 6

"Henceforth know we no man after the flesh". (B20) How do we know our fellow man? What do we lean on to know him better? What makes up our own true identity? This section does not stop at knowing man, but also knowing his heritage and origin. How does each of your students define who or what they are? In addition to the answers given in this section, look at Miscellany 165:19 to see Mrs. Eddy's response to the question "What am I". How do the answers in this section as well as Mrs. Eddy's answer in Miscellany differ from the responses we're generally accustomed to giving?

How blessed it is to know where our true personality resides. When we are confident in the firmness and truth of our true personality (the image and reflection of God), we find ourselves less vulnerable to personal attacks, more able to respond well to challenges, and happier in our daily interactions with others. This week with your students help them see and feel the liberty of reflecting the one "infinite Person." (S&H 116:29)
 

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