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Have a Heavenly Fathers Day-- See Miracles!

Kathy Fitzer, St. Louis, MO & Park City, UT
Posted Monday, June 14th, 2010

Have a Heavenly Father's Day-- See Miracles!
Metaphysical Application Ideas for the Christian Science Bible Lesson for June 20, 2010-"Is the Universe, Including Man, Evolved by Atomic Force?"
Prepared by Kathy Fitzer, C.S. of St. Louis, MO [with bracketed italics by Warren Huff]

[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]

We all know the answer to the question posed in this week's lesson! NO! Atomic force -- the forces of matter -- have no real power to create anything because ALL power belongs to God. This lesson is full of concrete examples of God's power, and shows us how we can experience similar "miracles" as we obediently put God's law first and only, and reject the testimony of the physical senses.
 
Golden Text:   Add verse 12, and check out other translations to expand the meaning of the Golden Text. God has spoken once; both power and steadfast love (twice or two things being heard) belong to God. Power (strength) and love (mercy) are also linked in Ex. 15: 13 as Moses praised God for leading the people out of captivity.
 
Responsive Reading: The praise continues. Psalm 150 is the last psalm in the book, and every verse speaks of praise. It is an invitation to give up all sense of self (all belief that WE can do anything without God) and just praise His amazing power! Psalm 33 and 66 give plenty of examples of what God has done -- how he created the earth, and enabled man to freely navigate through his environment. We are encouraged to "stand in awe" of His power.   That phrase "stand in awe" comes from a Hebrew word, goor, that means "to turn aside from the road, i.e. to sojourn as a guest." So ... are we being told to turn aside from the material picture and be the grateful guest of our heavenly Father, as He guides us through His kingdom? I think that's fun to think about.
 
Section 1: Nothing Besides God's Power! [as in Commandments 1 & 2, B-1, B-2,B-6, S-4]
God's law is established on the basis of His ONENESS -- the "only-ness" of one divine Principle that governs all. (B-1, 4 & 5) Throughout time, power has mistakenly been ascribed to other sources and then these false gods have been ignorantly worshipped. (B-2)  As ridiculous as it may seem to us to think that a carved statue could be responsible for our safety or our well-being, what about the subtle suggestions that the stock market, nutrition labels, health laws, social status or even another person has the power to determine our well-being?! We give power to all kinds of material substances and conditions -- including the weather -- and think that these "things" determine our health and happiness. Mrs. Eddy reiterates what we read in the Bible when she says, "God is everywhere, and nothing apart from Him is present of has power." (S-2) What is this God that is everywhere? Mind, Spirit, Truth. (S-4) God's universe must be filled with spiritual ideas that express only Truth -- and so cannot be reversed -- and that are obedient to the Mind that made them. (S-1)   Order is established in our experience when we start from the right basis -- start from divine Science, or the knowledge of God. Natural science says that "matter is its own lawgiver" and that these laws can "overrule the might of divine Mind." (S-3)  But, an idea does not take on a life of its own; it is controlled by its creator -- as a painting does not paint itself, but is designed (controlled) by the artist. If we are being obedient to the first commandment, we must acknowledge God as responsible for the evolution of the universe -- and in turn reject anything unlike Him. We'll naturally respond to our universe with love and care in honor of its Creator!
 
Section 2: The earth bears fruit as we obediently respond to God's law
God made a covenant with man. He promised an environment conducive to man's prosperity. (B-6)  But, man has to remain faithful to God in order to experience this environment. The generation of people who had been led out of Egypt had all died in the wilderness (except Joshua and Caleb.) Out of fear, they had disobeyed God's command to enter Canaan (the Promised Land). They trusted the report of the material senses more than God's report. The next generation was now ready to enter. They had survived the stark difficulties of the wilderness, but Moses knew they would now face a different kind of danger. Things were about to get too easy and comfortable. When we get too comfortable in matter, it's easy to forget about God. We are tempted to think that we're responsible for the good. Moses warned the people that if they were not obedient to God, they would perish. (B-7)  Was that a threat -- or just a statement of fact? When we turn our backs on the light, we find ourselves in the dark. That's just what happens. When we turn our backs on God, we lose sight of Life, and perish. If we're not careful, we allow thought to be polluted by such beliefs as envy, greed, and dissatisfaction.  We lose sight of God's pure creation, and images such as the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico or war-torn nations take over. (B-8 & B-9)  Mrs. Eddy says that "physical force and mortal mind are one." (S-8) To discover heavenly earth, we have to yield up unhealthy mortal thoughts in favor of the influence of Mind.  God is the source of all things, and made them good! God gave man dominion (complete authority) over the earth. We need to exercise this authority. It begins in (and remains in) thought.  And that thought then becomes outwardly expressed as our world. Our response to conflict in our world (expressed as environmental conditions or otherwise) needs to be prompt and persistent opposition to the suggestion.  Knowing the fullness and allness of God's law, and being obedient to it, preserves us from the pollution of all destructive elements. (B-9) We have to be alert to not be put to sleep by the ease of matter. The flip side of ease in matter is the claim of destruction in matter. Acknowledging the allness of God reveals God's will done "in earth as it is in heaven." (S-6)
 
Section 3: A demonstration of God's law
The generation of people now entering the Promised Land hadn't personally experienced the authority of God ‘s law parting of the Red Sea. Now it was their turn. No longer could they lean on Moses. Joshua was a great leader and instructed the priests to step right into the river with the Ark of the Covenant -- their most prized possession. The Ark was a chest containing the tablets on which were written the 10 Commandments (God's law.)  [Another email and posting near the end of the week will show the Ark of the Covenant built by CedarS OCB program for an Adventure Bible Drama Camp reenactment of letting God's laws precede and guide us.] The Ark represented the power and presence of God.  In response to this law (God's presence) being asserted, the fast flowing flooded river stopped flowing. As long as the Ark remained in the middle of the river, there was dry land for the people to walk on. (B-11)  The dry land didn't appear until after the first steps were taken! We can't be afraid to assert God's law and go forward even before the physical evidence has changed. This experience was clear evidence of God's controlling influence -- evidence of God's law in action. Matter can't resist the power of Spirit. (B-13) Spirit is infinite in nature and matter is finite -- no contest! We can expect to see more "miracles" in our own lives -- natural demonstrations of God's law countering the false evidence of the material senses. God's law is the ONLY law. This law holds our lives and our world together. We have to let it guide us as it guided the Hebrews and fully obey it! It may look like we're the victims of material forces. In reality, Mind creates the universe and governs it with its own "thought-force[s]."   Stick with reality and reject all other theories. Think about entering the Promised Land as mentally entering the kingdom of heaven. Jesus' Sermon on the Mount -- a practical, spiritual sense of God's law -- gives us a road map to enter that kingdom of harmony that is within us. Obediently follow.
 
Section 4: Turning to God reveals His power
Three kings had joined forces to fight a common enemy. But, traveling through the heat of the desert had left their armies so thirsty that they wouldn't have the strength to fight.   Although the inclination of others was to blame God for their situation, Jehoshaphat, king of Judah reached out to the prophet Elisha, asking him to appeal to the law of God for them. Simply acknowledging God's law puts us in line with it. This is what happens when we reach out to God in prayer or ask someone to pray with us (or for us.) Elisha told them to dig ditches to catch the water that would come to them. And they were obedient -- although there was no sign of rain. It's easy to trust if we can see evidence that something is happening. But, it's important to respond to God's direction even if the material senses say it doesn't make any sense at all. In the morning there was water in the ditches -- without rain. (B-15) Who are we to outline how God is going to solve a problem? Our job is simply to trust that God's law always solves problems. Mind isn't dependent on material conditions, and our earth is a compound (complex) idea of Mind. (S-15)  We need to stop depending on the material senses, and look to spiritual sense (what we just KNOW) to reveal what the earth truly is. Look at the world and see qualities. Look at mountains and see strength, at the ocean and see buoyancy and provision, at the trees and see strength, shade, and shelter. Then recognize that ideas are governed by Mind and matter has no power! In this way you'll witness the supremacy of Spirit. And the only way to come to a correct conclusion about something is to start and stay with the fact that God is the only power -- a power of good! (S-18) 
 
Section 5: God made man -- there is no material evolution!
Throughout the Bible we read about God having created man -- and having created him good and upright (holy, pure.) So, where does the opposite report of discord and disease come from? Ecclesiastes says that man has "sought out many inventions." (B-20) The word invention comes from a Hebrew word that can also mean contrivance (a physical device or a mental scheme.) Strong's Exhaustive Concordance talks about a warlike machine -- actual or mental. Humans have created their own problems as we have started with the material appearing of things and worked to explain them. Darwin's theory might work to explain how material man evolved from other material things. The problem is, it doesn't explain where the matter started. God is Mind and Spirit. Mind creates spiritual ideas. Unlimited Mind doesn't create its opposite, limited matter. (S-21 & 23)  Spiritual ideas forever remain in the realm of thought -- tangible, real thought -- and never need matter for their expression. Health (wholeness), endurance, strength, intelligence, grace, love, etc are all ideas. They can be communicated without material expression -- and they ARE expressed that way in dreams. We're not working to get rid of the outward appearance. We're working to bring that outward appearance in line with what God has created -- upright man. And we see God's creation by focusing on the original, God. The mistake that's been made is looking at (and worshipping) the "creature" -- a distorted, mortal sense of God's creation -- and working backwards to explain what we're seeing, instead of looking at the Creator and making the creation fit. (B-21) We have more doctors than ever before (doing their best to help people) and more "scientific" explanations of and names for diseases. But, we don't have any less disease. The more we think about our bodies (shape, muscles, condition) the less we're thinking about our identity (our strength, grace, health) that is an eternal gift from God. We gain health and dominion as we "lose the sense of sin and disease." (S-25) What God is -- Love, Truth, Life -- we express fully. We need to practice being what God has made us to be, rather than work so hard to re-make ourselves or explain a material creation that is truly just a distorted image of the real.
 
Section 6: Mind's control over the body.
Jesus demonstrated the control of Mind over Mind's idea, man.   He taught the people about His Father as they gathered in the synagogues. What separated him from the teaching and preaching of others was the authority with which he spoke and the power he demonstrated over all forms of evil. He healed! (B-23) Jesus' healing authority came from his recognition of God's power to overthrow everything unlike Him. Jesus' spiritual nature (his Christ nature) was revealed when he was baptized as God's Son. But, Jesus‘ mission was to show us how to live as God's children, how to demonstrate "Mind's control over the universe, including man" and how to exercise the divine authority to heal. (S-27) Looking at the material evidence, it's easy to be overwhelmed with hopelessness, but shifting our attention to, and accepting, God's government of the universe we are confident that ALL things are possible to God! (S-28) Discordant matter has no law supporting it (no Principle having created it.) That which does spring from Principle -- MIND -- governs the so-called physical body and the so-called physical universe in harmony. Mary Baker Eddy discovered that following the example of Moses, Joshua, Elisha, and finally Jesus, we, too, can exercise God's authority over the physical earth, and we must demand that conflict end and see "spiritual harmony reign" -- in our environment and in our bodies. 
 
Summary
We have to start from the right basis if we're going to reach the right conclusions. God is the source of all things. The universe is evolved from Mind. Matter has nothing to do with reality. And, Mind knows no limits. Exercise the authority of Mind and then expect to see miracles -- that which is divinely natural!  Power truly does belong to God! And is reflected in man -- in US!
[P.S.S.T. - "May THE Force Be with You" & our Undisturbed, Unfolding Universe!]
Possible Sunday School Topics by Merrill Boudreaux [bracketed italics by Warren Huff]
for the Christian Science Bible Lesson for Father's Day, June 20, 2010:
"Is the Universe, Including Man, Evolved by Atomic Force?"
 
P.S.S.T. - Golden Text
God has spoken about you? Ask students to write down five things God has said about them. They could post them on a 3 x 5 card and tape to their personal mirror so they could be reminded each time they look in the mirror.
 
P.S.S.T. - Responsive Reading
Ask students to make a list of all the acts performed by God in the Responsive Reading.
 
P.S.S.T. - Section 1
What is the 1st commandment? What does this command mean? See citation S4. Teachers help students define the following: idols, idolatry, graven image, [obsession]. What is the nature of the universe and all that is in it? S5
[Watch later in the week in CedarS Bible Lands Park (BLP) blog for a downloadable Moses and the 10 Commandments card being given to campers this week in CedarS new BLP to help bring this part of the lesson to life through better visualization and application.]
 
P.S.S.T. - Section 2
Make a list of all that God has and is providing to thee. See B6 and B7. What is your role in caring for that which is given thee? B8. What does the word pollute mean? Does it only refer to the environment? What about one's thought or one's mouth? What does the word dominion mean in S7? Since God's thoughts come to us as ideas, we will always have the right idea available for any untoward condition. 
[Our Sunday School class has enjoyed playing the "Undisturbed Universe" game of "promptly and persistently" applying a "Peace-Be-Still" (PBS) mindset and stream of affirmations and denials to a series of potentially disturbing scenarios. (S9) This nurturing an alert, anti-pollution attitude is great training for future environ-mentalists, practitioners, camp counselors, business managers, parents, . . . "Truth and Love antidote this mental miasma, and thus invigorate and sustain existence." (S9) Healing results when "Christian Science brings to the body the sunlight of Truth, which invigorates and purifies." (S&H 162:4 Read to the end of this paragraph to appreciate a string of specific metaphysical applications that really heal!) It doesn't matter whether the patient seems to be a flawed body or a Gulf region with a "poisonous, polluted atmosphere" (miasma as defined in myBibleLesson "Word Highlights").  Start by reading S&H 306:25 "Undisturbed amid the jarring testimony of the material senses, Science, still enthroned, is unfolding to mortals the immutable, harmonious, divine Principle, - is unfolding Life and the universe, ever present and eternal."]
 
P.S.S.T. - Section 3
Read aloud the Bible story of the Ark of the Covenant and the River Jordan. Ask, what do you make of this story? Is it just a river-stopping story or some kind of miracle? Is there another element to be considered: what else does the Lord stop? What is the significance of dry ground -- a place on which to stand firm? Share some elements of the article, "God's Law of Adjustment". Who owns all elements of the universe? Who controls them? Have the students read another Jordan story, the Bible account of the axe head that swam in II Kings 6: 1-7. Was this a miracle?  S13. Perhaps it appears a miracle to some and natural to others. 
 
P.S.S.T. - Section 4
Here's another great Bible story to read aloud. What can God do through men about the oil in the Gulf? Must it remain polluted? Must it destroy the animals within it? Do the beaches have to be polluted for a long time? See S16. What is there in that passage to inform our thought about what we must remember? See Mary Baker Eddy's statement about what we do as metaphysicians, S&H 269: 14. What is it that governs the universe? S18. Can you call on that Mind? Can you depend on that Mind? Is that Mind all powerful? Full of ideas?
 
P.S.S.T. - Section 5
What does invention mean? What does theorizing mean? Are there degrees or percentages of perfection, that is can one be 25% perfect and another 60% perfect? If so, then perfection would have to make room for, permit, or allow something other than itself. But this is impossible; to perfection there is nothing else. This would be a good opportunity to review the Scientific Statement of Being in S&H 468: 8.   What is the scientific fact?
 
P.S.S.T. - Section 6  
What is captivity or a captive? 
Who controls the universe? S 27
Who is governed by God? S 28
What is the result? S29
What happens to conflict, then? S30

[CedarS weekly Metaphysical Newsletter and the following PSST are provided at no charge to the 1,200 campers and staff who are blessed each 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; to provide camperships for ongoing inspirational opportunities; and to complete Stages 1 & 2 of Bible Lands Park (BLP)
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 hundreds of campers now applying for aid.
 
CedarS 2nd Session, June 27-July 10 has only a few bunks left,
but several of our 5 later sessions and programs still have room. (A first-time i-Songs Camp by Desireee Goyette for inspirational songwriting and singing will be amazing!)  Please help us tell any and all Christian Science Sunday School students and families who you know that there will be plenty of funds available to help them to have their own CedarS Camps spiritual-growth-experience this summer! (Adults are especially welcome at our Midwest Bible Conference, Sept. 16-19, 2010!)  

To support CedarS work you can make a charitable donation to our 501C-3 tax-exempt, charitable organization:
1)  Thank you for considering writing a monthly check payable to CedarS Camps and mailing it to: CedarS Camps, 19772 Sugar Drive, Lebanon, MO 65536;
or
2)  Thank you for calling Warren or Gay Huff at (636) 394-6162 to charge your gift or to authorize an automatic monthly charge using a Visa or Mastercard or to discuss short-term or long-term gifts of securities or property you are considering;
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[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

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