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Let Soul Sing You through a Rocky Day!

Kerry Jenkins, C.S., House Springs, MO
Posted Monday, February 7th, 2011

Let Soul Sing You through a Rocky Day!
CedarS Metaphysical Application Ideas for the Christian Science Bible Lesson on SOUL  for the week of February 7-13, 2011
by Kerry Jenkins, C.S., House Springs, MO [with bracketed italics by Warren Huff]

 [Editor's Note: The following application ideas for this week, and the Possible Sunday School Topics that will 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 German thanks to Helga or in Spanish thanks to a team of Ana, Erick, Claudia and Patricio. YOU CAN SIGN UP at www.cedarscamps.org/newsletters]

I assume most of you have had those occasional days where you think probably the best thing that can happen is that the day come to a close. We had one of those this week, and while most of the good thinking that has resulted from this day is that of retrospective thinking, I thought it might be fun to share some of the ideas that sprang from looking at that day through the lens of Soul.  I will give you a thumbnail sketch of the day so that we don't spend too much time thinking about the events of the day and too little time on this wonderful lesson!  It started out a mite early with my three-year old, James, popping out of bed at 4:45 a.m.  I'm always grateful for extra study time, but not usually as grateful for study time accompanied by a wiggly three-year old.  Fortunately I got him back to bed.  He popped up at 6 and went into Charlie's room to play, and so the day began to get noisy!  On the way to school the fuel pump on my car gave out about halfway there.  An hour later we were on our way after my husband Doug rescued us in an employee's "beater" truck.  (You may have seen a couple of trucks similar to this one at CedarS; they are used for onsite errands and not driven off the property).  Off to school!  Twenty minutes later we were pulled over by two police officers, I think for "driving in a shabby vehicle in a nice town", more or less, no ticket issued and only a kind exchange at least!  Kids get to school a little late but no worse for wear.  It's an early dismissal day, so I have to turn around and head back to school just a short time after getting home where the tow truck couldn't get up our rather long, steep and snowy driveway so my husband had to drag the car back with about 1/8 mile of strap so he could be at the top of the hill before the car hit the bottom of the hill.  This gave him enough traction to pull the car the rest of the way up.  Forty-five minutes after the tow truck dropped my car, the car made it up to our house.  I got to school for pickup.  Every time you shut off the truck you have to jump start it with a battery pack, so I didn't shut it off much!  Got kids and headed to get much-needed groceries, hadn't left the house since Monday morning and it was Friday afternoon. Turned out I shouldn't have locked the truck in the lot. The key didn't work to unlock the doors of the borrowed truck.  After a few nearly tearful seconds (it has been a looong day), I called Doug (my resourceful husband) and he pointed out that there were sliding glass windows in the back of the truck bed. Fortunately, I had a skinny six-year-old with me and he could wiggle through and open the doors, yeah!  Home and finally getting kids to bed and the frosting on the cake (don't read this if you don't have kids, it's just one of those occasional things that comes with raising kids), Charlie (two years old), pooped in the tub with the other boys in there too.  Okay, at this point I could only laugh right?  So there's my rundown and now to this beautiful lesson that just sings to me of Soul's spiritual, beautiful creation!
 
Golden Text (GT) and Responsive Reading (RR)
God, Soul really has done amazing things!  I recently had another proof of God care when my car died while I was in the left lane of a six-lane highway.  Within five minutes a road-side assistance truck pulled up behind me.  I was at an intersection and when the left turn light went green, he pushed me; I rolled right across the other side of the highway into the gas station that was-get this-quite downhill of the highway.  I really felt like one of those boulders in the middle of a white water river, traffic streaming on either side of me.  But I literally only had to wait one cycle of the light before this man showed up and pushed me across the road!  Can you see how the beautiful creation of Soul is described in the RR as being tended and cared for by God?  I'm sure you noticed "the cedars of Lebanon" in the RR!  [As related in a book sold at the CedarS Camps store titled The CedarS Camps: Its Origin and Growth, by my mother, Ruth Huff, the Founder of CedarS, this Ps. 104:16-17 passage was the one she first saw when she opened the Bible at random 50 years ago after a delay in implementing her initial guidance to start "the cedars (camps) of Lebanon (Missouri) where the birds (exalted thoughts) make their nests" made her wonder if her the idea was still alive.]  The "cedars of Lebanon are full of sap" (or vitality) and "well watered" as another translation puts it.  As ideas created by God we are all full of vitality, well-tended and maintained, made to be useful, intelligent, talented, employed, and loved.  This creation is "manifold"; there are ideas to fill every need, my need for a safe place to wait for help, and the need for other commuters for an obstruction to be removed from the traffic flow.
 
Section 1: We have one spiritual Creator.
This section identifies God as Soul, never in matter.  This is a concept we are used to if we've been studying Christian Science for a while.  But most religions view man as a material being that houses a spiritual soul.  What does our different perspective do for us?  I think it sets us free to see our unity, our "oneness" with Soul.  We are not separated from our Creator, off doing our own things, experiencing our own challenges and relying on our wits to extricate us from this or that situation.  Rather we are moving in harmony with Soul, recognizing that Soul is expressing Herself as us!  So when we find ourselves in the awkward position of being pulled over by the town police, we can be aware that actually Soul is being expressed in their identities as well as in ours, uniquely and perfectly.  There is no distance between us and Soul and so there is no distance between us and the officer pulling us over.  We can all see with spiritual sense that we are naturally and properly expressing ourselves in right, orderly, kind ways.  There need be no fear or conflict, only a kind and cordial exchange between Soul's ideas.  Because we don't have individual "souls" out there, but actually just one divine Soul, there is no conflict.  Not to trivialize the events in Egypt by mentioning them in passing, but this concept is a vital one for bringing a peaceful and productive resolution to the conflict there.  
Citation S4 tells us that "Mind is the Soul of all" and we know that there is only one Mind, God. We are Mind's ideas and we are one, Mind cannot be in conflict with itself, no more can Mind's creation be in conflict with one another.  This seems counter intuitive but we must exercise our spiritual senses to see this and to demonstrate it in our experience.  Mrs. Eddy tells us on p.505:20-21 in Science and Health that "Spiritual sense is the discernment of spiritual good."  I love this because it makes it clear that spiritual sense is something that absolutely everyone has and can access!  Everyone can discern spiritual good.  Spiritual good is present in every expression of love, affection, unselfishness, grace, artistic expression and so on.  We see spiritual good all around us, and we have only to acknowledge it to begin to have this goodness be the more prevalent and tangible reality to us.  In point of fact, it is the only reality. Which brings us to the next section!
 
Section 2: Creation is only spiritual and is visible to spiritual sense.
We are again reassured that it is God that has created us and the earth with might and wonder. And that He continues to "plant" us and "do [us] good" (B7)  This is driven home in the following citations from Science and Health where it is pointed out (S7) that "Nothing but Spirit, Soul, can evolve Life...".  And in citation S8 she writes, "Creation is ever appearing, and must ever continue to appear from the nature of its inexhaustible source. Mortal sense inverts this appearing and calls ideas material."  Taken as a material activity this would sound as if this ever-appearing creation would lead to overpopulation, environmental degradation, war, resource shortages and so on.  But understanding the nature of spiritual creation we can see that this spiritual appearance is not crowded; it is the infinite revealing of spiritual ideas; it cannot be burdensome or overtaxing, instead, as with any good idea, it is blessing, purifying, balancing, renovating.  The mortal view subscribes to mortal creation which uses up a limited environment, exhausts a parent, finds itself useless, or lonely or in need-in other words a mortal creation is independent of God and must supply its own needs.  But God, Soul only made one universe and it is spiritual and we are included in this one and only infinitely good universe.  And here's the beautiful part of all this, "The myriad forms of mortal thought, made manifest as matter, are not more distinct nor real to the material senses than are the Soul-created forms to spiritual sense, which cognizes Life as permanent." (S9) This is what enables us to look at a difficult day, a prolonged illness, financial challenge, accident, etc. and really dig deep into spiritual sense and acknowledge that we know in fact that spiritual good is actually present and more tangible than the chaotic appearance of the physical senses.  Looking at this day I can see instances of Soul's creativity in Doug's work with towing the car up the big icy hill to our house, not to mention his persistence and determination.  I can see the gracious supply of another vehicle when we needed one, the wonderful presence of my little boy when I needed someone smaller to squeeze through the back window of the truck to unlock the doors.  And I could go on and on!
 
Section 3: Creation is governed by Soul-the laws of Soul are revealed.
Right away in this section we see the Psalmist asking for God's blessing to shine on us and he indicates that it is this blessing that will reveal to us His saving health (and, we might add, peace) among all nations (B10).  God does govern well, and we can practice seeing this more clearly. It is not a matter of just having harmonious days without vehicle break-downs or arguments, or illness, though the absence of these things is lovely, it is the deeper calm and peace that recognizes the powerlessness of these mortal suggestions to impress you with their false claims of reality.  The better we get at dismissing these claims, the less subject we feel to the lack of peace, or health or happiness that these suggestions bring.  Our experience becomes one of dominion and poise when facing challenges instead of fear or stress.  Yesterday afternoon Charlie woke from his nap very soon after going down.  He was crying very loudly and saying that his ear hurt.  He was screaming so loudly at first that I know he couldn't hear the words of Truth that I was sharing with him, but after a few minutes he began to be quiet and then suddenly drifted off to sleep in my arms.  A few minutes later he woke and said he was hungry and wanted noodles.  So much for the painful earache.  My prayers were of dominion since he had interrupted my work on this lesson, and I couldn't be fooled with the claim that physical sense was offering up.  In fact I was using Mrs. Eddy's poem "Satisfied" [Hymn 160] which begins: "It matters not what by thy lot, So Love doth guide; For storm or shine, pure peace is thine, What-e'er betide."  What a perfect statement encouraging the use of our spiritual/Soul senses!  I noticed an interesting detail too in the story shared in citation B13 of this section.  When Jesus goes to heal the blind man in Bethsaida he takes him by the hand and leads him out of the town.  Might this suggest that he needed to get away from the false beliefs of the crowds, the blind man's beliefs and those of his friends and family, their material view of creation?  It would seem that the resistance was strong enough so that it took an uncharacteristic second "treatment" to reveal to this man what Soul knew all along about his perfect nature.  And following his healing Jesus urged him not to go back to his village, not to return to old beliefs, you might say, blind beliefs.
 
Section 4: Soul blesses creation.
It is in blessing God that we become more aware, grateful and satisfied with the goodness that surrounds us.  Blessing God awakens our spiritual senses to the blessings that God is showering on us!  It makes us less forgetful of the many healings we have had.  In citation B16 Jesus feeds the multitudes with five loaves and two fishes.  Talk about using spiritual sense to see Soul's unlimited bounty!  The symbolism here of being satisfied and not just full in the belly, is deep.  Jesus was showing the greatness of Soul and how Soul cares for and provides for Her creation.  As we look to Soul for this satisfaction and peace, health and provision, we find those things to be founded on a more solid basis.  Our happiness is less fleeting (S18, 60:29).  Wrapping up this section is one of those statements from Science and Health that we so often use as grace before a meal: "To those leaning on the sustaining infinite, to-day is big with blessings."  (S23) This week I thought about one implication of this being that if we are truly leaning on the "sustaining infinite" then we aren't waiting for anything.  We aren't waiting for a check to magically appear in the mail, for the right friends, for school break or for a certain day to be done.  We are always tuning in to that sustaining Soul for freedom from the false sense of whatever appears in human experience.  I didn't have my usual time to sit and study that day that I mentioned.  I was only able to find the peace and dominion that I needed by drawing on my spiritual sense of Soul's presence.  We can always find that peace we need by praising God through gratitude or song or another form of prayer.
 
Section 5: Creation reflects Soul, but not in matter!
In citation B21 I see a new kind of creation that I hadn't seen in this light before. "...I will behold thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied, when I awake, with thy likeness."  I like the idea of "awakening", but not the way that Adam awakened in the second account of creation in Genesis, rather awakening to see ourselves as the likeness of God, never formed of clay or matter, but reflecting the beauty of Soul!  That's spiritual creation!!  In reality we are always reflecting the peace and order of Soul.  So when we have experiences that seem less than lovely, we turn away from material sense and look to Soul, beholding Soul's "face" in righteousness, and seeing our own day turn from tangled to smooth--in thought and eventually in action.  My day didn't really get any smoother, but my thought remained mostly calm and peaceful as the day progressed.  I had a few moments that were less than gracious, Huck can attest to my state in the parking lot when it looked as if I wouldn't be able to get back into the truck!  But Soul was always there, even when I wasn't seeing Her.  She came with the gentle suggestion to open that back window.  The answers always come from Soul.  Sometimes it looks like they come from people, but as we know by now, we are all ideas of the one Soul, so ultimately the solutions are Soul-derived.
 
Section 6: Creation is perfect, governed by Soul in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Hey!  We don't have to even look outside of ourselves to find the Kingdom of God, right?  Citation B22 tells us that it is within us!  And "as we go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand" (B23)  "As we go", as we go about our daily activities, in break-downs, disappointments, lack of any kind-what do we do?  We "preach", we spread through our actions our spiritual discernment of Soul's government and control over all reality.  Perfection is not too good for us, but it is not material perfection we are talking about.  That doesn't mean that we are sitting around waiting for a future spiritual perfection, I think that has been made clear throughout this lesson!  Rather, we are participating in the perfect reality of Soul, the perfect peace and beauty and health and abundance of Soul's one and only kingdom.  My difficult day really doesn't matter one way or another.  It just provides me with the opportunity to work a little harder to recognize Soul's government and presence.  That can only bring me higher, so I'm grateful, even when scrubbing out the tub and starting the baths all over again.  I can wait until later for my shower when the hot water heater has caught up!  I'm just grateful that eventually there will be hot water; it's nice to take a hot shower after a day like that! [and to let a duet of Soul and spiritual sense sing it right out of your head.]


 [CEDARS weekly "Mets" or Metaphysical Newsletters are provided at no charge to the 1,200 campers and staff blessed each summer at CEDARS--as well as to thousands of CEDARS alumni, families, Sunday School teachers and friends who request it, or who find it weekly on our website or through CS Directory. But, current and planned gifts are needed: to cover the costs of running this "free" service; to provide camperships to make inspirational opportunities possible for deserving youth; and to help our facilities keep pace with our mission.]
 
 [Thanks to a matching pledge, if CedarS can raise $50,000 by next summer for our "Adopt the Herd" Riding Fund, a donor will match those gifts to cover the needs of feeding, shoeing and caring for our large and cherished herd of horses!  OF COURSE, donations are always needed and welcome for camperships -especially for the "uncamped"--because without campers there would be no camp!  Funds are also being gratefully realized and spent to complete parts of CedarS Bible Lands Park (BLP) including our new Mediterranean Sea!  We're happy to share more details if you wish to help these divine ideas come to fruition!] 

[However it comes, your support is always very welcome and tax-deductible --but during the economic downturn, your generous, unrestricted gifts have been--and continue to be--more needed and appreciated than ever!  You can give charitable gifts to our 501C-3 tax-exempt, charitable organization in many ways.
1)     Thanks in advance for GIVING ONLINE! Just click here to use a credit or debit card (Visa, Mastercard, American Express, or Discover card) or a virtual check to make monthly and one-time donations to CedarS' Camperships, "Maintenance Musts", "Mets", Bible Lands Park, "Mediterranean Sea", Unrestricted or Endowment Funds.  Our international supporters can give to CedarS via PayPal using built-in currency exchange rates by filling in an amount under International Donors and clicking on the "Donate Online" button.
2)     Checks are also great and especially appreciated on a monthly basis! Please make them payable to "CedarS Camps" and mail them to: CedarS Camps Office, 1314 Parkview Valley, Ballwin, MO 63011;
3)     Please call Warren or Gay Huff at (636) 394-6162 to discuss gifts of IRAs, stocks, other securities or property you are considering giving in order to help underwrite CedarS spiritual growth and progress.
4)     CedarS can almost always use late-model mini-vans, Suburbans and trucks, with lower mileage, in good condition, either 4-wheel or 2-wheel drive. Please email office@cedarscamps.org or call 636-394-6162 to discuss your vehicle, its transfer and tax-deductible gift acknowledgement.  Letting this need be known recently brought about a donation of a wonderful, late-model Suburban from Minnesota!
5) Many friends and churches have already made a profound impact on CedarS past, present and future by choosing to fund ongoing legacies of love and support. Tax-saving strategies for planned gifts and enabling wording for bequests, life income gifts, and beneficiary designations can be set up by CedarS Trustee Emeritus Bill Merritt who is a planned giving professional.]
 
[You can also help CedarS keep a 50th season New Year's resolution to reach out to all the "un-camped" students enrolled in Christian Science Sunday Schools across the world.  In the United States they apparently outnumber Sunday School students who attend 1 of the 6 camps for Christian Scientists in North America by more than 2 to 1. Experience shows that "CS-camped" children who are given the laboratory experience of putting their training from their homes and Sunday Schools into joyous practice in a "24-7" Christian-Science-laboratory experience at camp want to continue to make Christian Science their own. Therefore, please tell all the "un-camped" families you know about our work; and if possible let us know about them and their email and/or other contact information. We will gladly send them--and you--a DVD, plus show host info for over 40 CedarS shows being scheduled and everything needed to help get "un-camped" students to camp -- from info on our programs for all ages; to session dates and rates; to online enrollment info; to transportation;  to financial aid forms; and more as needed.]
 
 
 [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]


PSST--Possible Sunday School Topics for Christian Science Bible Lesson on
Soul for February 7-13, 2001
By Amy (Robbins) Evans, St. Louis MO
 
 
PSST for Golden Text (GT) and Responsive Reading (RR)
The Golden Text generally sets the tone for the whole lesson.  What is the theme found in the Golden Text?  
List the great qualities of God that are described in the Responsive Reading.  What are some amazing things that God does and has done?  
What does the last citation of the Responsive Reading mean to you?  What does it mean to be "fearfully and wonderfully made"?
 How about "and that my soul knoweth right well"?  
Try looking in other translations for some clarity. Did you notice Psalm 89 is about faithfulness and light, while Psalm 104 is about the provisions of God manifested in nature and the Earth (source of water, growth, healthy trees, goods, glory of God, gratitude)?  
How does this relate to the GT where "You [God] have done amazing things?"
 
 
PSST for Section 1
How do you praise God for all the good that you experience in your life?  
What is the significance of the psalmist writing out all the different types of people that praise God (B2)?  
Later we see all the places where we recognize God's glory (B6).  What's the point?
 
Follow the directions Mrs. Eddy gives in citation S3.  Where can you replace soul with sense?  Where can you replace it with God?  How does this bring out the spiritual meaning?  How does it shed light on what you are reading?  
Continue this throughout the lesson.
 
 
PSST for Section 2
What's the point of looking back at where you have been and what you came out of (B7 moves from Egypt to Israel in verse 20)?  Can you benefit from looking back at previous healings and times that you prayed (challenges that you overcame)?  
Do you ever record your healings or other times that you felt God's presence?  
If God has "set signs and wonders in the land of Egypt, even unto this day..." Jeremiah is not only talking about the 10 plagues of Egypt and then the Exodus.  Discuss the current situation in Egypt.  
 
What does Soul have to do with the evolution of Life (S7)?  
Citation S10 talks about turning things into thoughts.  How do we do this?  What is the benefit?  
 
What is the "true conception of being" (S11)?
PSST for Section 3
What happened when Jesus healed the blind man?  
What does Soul have to do with this healing (see S12)?  
Define emanate (S15).  Explain how the first two sentences in citation S15 connect with the next sentences in the citation.  Notice how the simple truth is expanded upon.  It's important to understand that Christian Science builds on basic principles.  It's not complicated!
 
 
PSST for Section 4
How does Soul supply our needs?  When Jesus fed the multitude, what did he do before he handed out food (hint: something many people do before they eat)?  
Why is gratitude important?   What role does gratitude play in your own healings and experiences?  
Do we ever express gratitude when it doesn't seem like there's much to be grateful for?  Why?  What is the result?  
What does Soul have to do with gratitude?  
 
What are "infinite resources" (S18)?  What do they look like?  
What is "the true idea of being" (S20)?  Explain it in terms of any of Jesus' healings.  Start with citation B16.
 
 
PSST for Section 5
How are we created?  What is our identity?  How are we each individual?  
What makes us different?  What makes us the same?
 
What does citation B21 mean?  How would you apply this when seeing your classmates, peers, or just a stranger on the street?  
 
What does identity have to do with Soul (S27)?  
How are we naturally expressing Soul in our everyday activities?
 
 
PSST for Section 6
What does the kingdom of heaven look like?  Give an example.   
What does it mean for the kingdom of heaven to be within us (B22)?  
 
Look at the definition of kingdom of heaven (S30).  
In what ways do you witness the kingdom of heaven in your daily experience?   What is "the way"? (S28)

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