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Put on Spirit's smile! Shine your joyous conviction that facts always win over fables!

Rick Stewart, C.S., Dresden, Germany
Posted Monday, August 3rd, 2015

[Put on Spirit's smile! Shine your joyous conviction that facts always win over fables! (6)]
Metaphysical Application Ideas for the Christian Science Bible Lesson on

“Spirit”
for Sunday, August 9, 2015

by Rick Stewart, C.S., Dresden, Germany
(+49) 351 312 4736 rickstewartcs@aol.com

A cool breeze, breaking the sultry stillness of a hot, summer day is glorious. You cannot actually see the wind as it moves, but oh, how you feel its comforting touch.

Last week a young camper and I were talking about just such a breeze. We realized that is just a little like what it is to think of God as Spirit. You cannot see the wind. You cannot touch it. But you certainly feel and see its effects. You are cooled and comforted. The leaves on the trees dance about. If you are looking on the surface of a lake you see the ripples on the water’s surface. And the fact is just about everyone and everything feels better at the cool touch of the breeze.

Jesus once shared a clear statement about the nature of God as Spirit. He is quoted in John 4:24 “the time is coming, yes, and has already come, when true worshippers will worship in spirit and in reality. Indeed, the Father looks for men who will worship him like that. God is spirit, and those who worship him can only worship in spirit and in reality.” J.B. Phillips New Testament

Golden Text
Our Golden Text this week is from 2 Corinthians 1: 21, 22. The following translations might add some further insights into this keynote for our Lesson.
(PHIL) “Both you and we owe our position in Christ to this God of positive promise: it is he who has consecrated us to this special work, he who has given us the living guarantee of the Spirit in our hearts.”

MSG – “God affirms us, making us a sure thing in Christ, putting his Yes within us. By his Spirit he has stamped us with his eternal pledge—a sure beginning of what he is destined to complete.”

NLTIt is God who enables us, along with you, to stand firm for Christ. He has commissioned us, 22 and he has identified us as his own by placing the Holy Spirit in our hearts as the first installment that guarantees everything he has promised us”

Isn’t it great to know that each of us has the royal seal of approval? Signed, sealed, and delivered for God! No doubt about you and whose you are.

And the Responsive Reading continues that affirmation of who we are. We assured about our prospects for life. Yes, we are not condemned to suffer! God has claimed us, sealed us, and our future is bright. Or as the New Living Translation renders the Responsive Reading,

“So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. 6 So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace. You are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you. 14For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. 16 For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. 26 And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. 27 And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will. 28 And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” (Romans 8:1, 6, 9, 14, 16, 26–28, NLT, See Section 6 conclusion…)

Section 1: Spirit is Good.
I love to read the wonderful promises and revelations in the Bible as if they were the real, nature of God as Spirit shining through to all creation. It does not take anything away from the wonderful prophet, Moses, to accept the promises he received directly from God, as promises for us all. Assurances of God’s real nature coming through to human thought. For example, think of what it means to accept this statement as if it came directly to you –”The Lord would speak to Moses face to face. It was like a man speaking to his friend. The Lord replied, “I will go with you. And I will give you rest.” The Lord said, “I will make all of my goodness pass in front of you.” (B3, Ex. 33:11, 14, 19 NIRV)

As a teenager, my brother Gary worked at The Mother Church in Boston. He was working in the office of the Christian Science Board of Directors. He enthusiastically commented one day, “That is too good to be true.” A loving secretary in the office corrected, “Gary, around here we know, “It is good enough to be true.”

As citation S3 in Science and Health states, “Moses advanced a nation to the worship of God in Spirit instead of matter, and illustrated the grand human capacities of being bestowed by immortal Mind.”

One man glimpsing the infinite goodness of God echoes through the ages and reminds each of us the wondrous goodness that is ours right now and forever. Spirit, God is infinitely Good.

Section 2: A life lived without the limits of time.
What a promise of goodness to know that your life is not limited by time in any fashion. With God nothing is impossible. Abraham was 100 years old and Sarah was 90 years old when they were given a new assignment, parenthood. Wow. Talk about shattering limits of mortal existence. Spirit truly lifts us out of all ruts. Our dear friend Warren Huff, CedarS Executive Director, and Editor of these Bible Lesson Mets has shared this quote from Laurence J. Peter, “A rut is a grave with the ends knocked out.” No ruts for any of us, right? [So, getting into a rut may be a grave mistake. J]

Our Leader notes in citation S11, “Man, governed by immortal Mind, is always beautiful and grand. Each succeeding year unfolds wisdom, beauty, and holiness.”

Section 3: God speaks to us all, are you listening?
The story from Numbers in this lesson simply affirms there need be no competition, envy, possessiveness when it comes to God revealing Himself to humanity. As Moses firmly stated, “would God that all the Lord’s people were prophets, and that the Lord would put his spirit upon them!” (B10, Numbers 11:16, 24-29) As Paul wrote, “Brethren, let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God.” (B11, I Corinthians 7: 24)

Hearing and talking with God in our daily lives is a great hope to live with as citation S12 describes, “The soul-inspired patriarchs heard the voice of Truth, and talked with God as consciously as man talks with man.” (SH 308:14)

Years ago I was canoeing with friends on Juniper Run, a small river in the Ocala National Forest. When we stopped for lunch I noticed that my wallet was not in my pocket. I immediately told my friends that I was going to paddle back up stream to “find my wallet.” There was no doubt in my mind that it would be found. My friends rolled their eyes in disbelief. My cousin, Rick Nasby, jumped in the canoe with me and said, “I’ll go with you.” As we headed upstream I prayed to hear and follow God’s guidance and the thought came, “Rick, it does not have to be you! Everyone can hear God’s voice.” We had paddled for 15 minutes or so when suddenly my cousin shouted out, “There it is.” It seemed to me he was almost happier than me. Why? It is always important for each of us to discover that we can listen to and be guided by God. We all can be prophets; we all can see God’s goodness all around us. The terrorism of matter’s tyranny does not have the right to close our eyes to Spirit’s goodness all around us.

Section 4: Giving richly from the heart of Spirit, infinite Good.
This section includes that wonderful illustration of a poor widow who contributed all she had to the church treasury. Jesus said it was more than all the rich people who gave out of there riches. The Message version of citation B15 put it this way. Sitting across from the offering box, he was observing how the crowd tossed money in for the collection. Many of the rich were making large contributions. One poor widow came up and put in two small coins—a measly two cents. Jesus called his disciples over and said, “The truth is that this poor widow gave more to the collection than all the others put together. All the others gave what they’ll never miss; she gave extravagantly what she couldn’t afford—she gave her all.” (Mark 12:41–44, MSG)

In the 1930s much of the world faced a very difficult financial time. In America it was called the Great Depression. At that time my grandfather had been working on the railroad. But with the downtown in the economy he along with thousands and thousands of Americans were without work and therefore without income. Grandfather Lafferty did not have a job for two years. Like others he found lots of ways to feed, clothe, and house his family. To keep the electricity on he would volunteer at the local power plant. And he demonstrated a great ability to be able to fix almost anything.

One Sunday he was attending the small Christian Science church there in Perry, Iowa. It came time in the service for the collection to be taken up. He sat there not sure what to contribute. He knew he had a dime (ten cents) and a dollar in his pocket. He also knew he had seven kids at home and that he had been two years without a full-time job. So he was really wondering what to contribute, the dollar or the dime. Suddenly he knew he had to put the dollar in the collection and he did.

At that very moment the telephone rang at home. My mom answered and it was the City Power Plant calling. They needed Archie Lafferty. The plant had shut down and no one could figure out how to get it going. Someone said, “Call Archie Lafferty, he can fix anything!” Mom took the call, and ran all the way to church to her father. She met him just as he was coming out of church. Grandfather immediately went to the power plant and guess what? He solved the problem. And the most wonderful thing, just after that Grandfather got a call to come back to work on the railroad. And the rest of his life he was never without full-time employment. The dollar? or the dime? We can give out of a grateful heart and we never need fear being too generous if we follow God’s guidance.

Section 5: In His presence, Stephen, “shined bright like a diamond.”
The New Living Translation plainly states citation B19 this way: Stephen, a man full of God’s grace and power, performed amazing miracles and signs among the people. But one day some men from the Synagogue of Freed Slaves, as it was called, started to debate with him. They were Jews from Cyrene, Alexandria, Cilicia, and the province of Asia. None of them could stand against the wisdom and the Spirit with which Stephen spoke. So they persuaded some men to lie about Stephen, saying, “We heard him blaspheme Moses, and even God.” 12 This roused the people, the elders, and the teachers of religious law. So they arrested Stephen and brought him before the high council. The lying witnesses said, “This man is always speaking against the holy Temple and against the law of Moses. We have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth[c] will destroy the Temple and change the customs Moses handed down to us.” At this point everyone in the high council stared at Stephen, because his face became as bright as an angel’s.” (Acts 6:8–15, NLT )

In Science and Health Mrs. Eddy writes, “Man is the idea of Spirit, he reflects the beatific presence, illuming the universe with light.” (S28, 266)

Maybe we all have experienced the following. A situation seems hopeless, dark, and scary. God, Good even seemed very distant, and then someone had an idea, an insight, a little light that just broke through that darkness. Their reflection just brought the light of Goodness right back to the human scene.

Last summer my family and I drove out of CedarS Camps on the way to my Christian Science Association. We had a 9-hour drive ahead of us, through the night, scheduled for an early morning arrival in Chattanooga. As we entered the Interstate there was a problem. The car would not go over 30 miles per hour. Now the situation seemed very dark. After prayer, trying every that came to us, I decided we had to return to camp. So back we drove the 10 miles at a top speed of 30 miles per hour.

As we arrived back at camp there were two urgent situations calling for immediate prayer, a challenging physical problem with one counselor, and another counselor who had an issue when returning from his time-off.

It was clear that God had needed me right back at camp. Each situation was resolved with prayer and my kids got a good night’s sleep. In the morning a volunteer maintenance worker at camp solved the problem with our car in 10 minutes. I was so happy and grateful. And then I remembered the possibility existed to listen to my Association Address remotely on the telephone. We registered for that conference call and headed out once again at full speed and I listened to the Association Address.

But I will never forget the following moment. When all had seemed darkest the night before, when I was so filled with self-condemnation for not listening, for pushing, for leading us into a problem that seemed to have no solution, my fifteen-year-old son, Noah, had simply said, “Papa, you know everything is going to work out just fine.” I did not know that at the time, I was having great difficult seeing that fact, and then Noah just was shining with the Spirit of the truth.

A little light reflected can always brighten the path of those walking in seeming darkness.

And what fun it was this summer to hear the news that Noah had been selected as a candidate for the wonderful CedarS honor of being a Torchbearer candidate. And I was not surprised when he and the other candidates successfully completed the requirements to take the Torchbearer pledge before all the CedarS family in Dawn Lodge.

[Section 6: Each of us can be a Torchbearer or “a light of the Gentiles” (B20)
Just as shadowy images and imaginings are dispelled by the light, so the fables and “false fears” of “anything unlike good” flee before the “infinite light” that reveals the forever facts of “ability and power divinely bestowed upon man.” (S31, 393:12)

Citation S32 concludes our Lesson with an invocation to “”Let us rejoice that we are subject to the divine “powers that be”. (249:8) Our radiant and joyous confidence in the fact of the allness of God and our certainty of the nothingness of the fables of material life are bright lights shining on all we meet. In the last “section” of his final lesson to his disciples Jesus issued to them and to us as his obedient, present-day disciples this similar invocation “… In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33) Since our Master has already overcome the world, we are fighting a defeated foe! We know how the game or seeming tribulation ends and we are already the winners! SO, put on Spirit's smile and shine out to all your joyous conviction that facts always win over fables, that “ALL things work together for good to them that love God”! (RR, Romans 8:28)]


[Bracketed italics in each CedarS Met are added by CedarS Director and Met "Founder"/Editor, Warren Huff, who’s forever grateful for all the good already received and LETTING 2 ONGOING NEEDS BE KNOWN –

Significant funding is still needed for these special opportunities:
1. “Adopt the Herd” Matching Opportunity! Generous donors, aware of the ongoing need to care for CedarS herd, will match donations for our horse program! (~$12.5k needed to reach $50k goal)]

2. Over 100 needed items are featured on CedarS Giving Tree that could fit the budget of every grateful Met-recipient and camper. You can choose for yourself $1-and-up ways to give to support CedarS needs. Click here to see 2 young alumni tell their reasons to give.

[The weekly Metaphysical Newsletter is provided at no charge to the 1,200 campers and staff blessed each summer at CedarS, as well as to CedarS alumni, families and friends who have requested it. However, current and planned gifts are a big help and are greatly appreciated in defraying the costs of running this service and of providing needed camperships, programs and operations support. Click http://www.cedarscamps.org/giving/ for more about how you can provide even monthly support online. Or you can always call the Huffs at 636-394-6162 to get information or discuss privately how to transfer securities or other assets to help support and perpetuate CedarS work.]

[You can also reach a member of the Founding family nearly anytime by
PHONE at 636-394-6162
or MAIL your tax-deductible support to our 501-C-3 organization
(Our not-for-profit, Federal Identification Number is #440-66-3883):

The CedarS Camps, Inc.
1314 Parkview Valley Drive
Ballwin, MO 63011

THANKS TO YOU PRECIOUS DONORS FOR YOUR ONGOING, GENEROUS and NEEDED SUPPORT OF CedarS IMPORTANT WORK!

[The Met application ideas above are provided primarily to help CedarS campers and staff (as well as friends) see and daily demonstrate the great value of studying and applying the Christian Science Bible lessons throughout the year, not just at camp! YOU CAN ALSO SIGN UP for weekly emails from past CedarS staff of possible ways to share Bible Lesson applications with older, as well as younger, Sunday School classes by clicking the "Subscribe Now" button (lower left) at http://www.cedarscamps.org/metaphysical/ ]

[For additional "Director's Notes" on the history, development & 4 translations of CedarS weekly Bible Lesson "Mets" go to Notes in our online version of it.]

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