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Be the remarkable man/woman you were divinely made to be!

Kerry Jenkins, C.S., House Springs, MO
Posted Monday, February 29th, 2016

[Be the remarkable man/woman you were divinely made to be!]
Metaphysical Application Ideas for the Christian Science Bible Lesson on

“Man”

March 6, 2016

by Kerry Jenkins, CS, House Springs, MO
kerry.helen.jenkins@gmail.com (314) 406-0041

[Click for PDF & larger-type options in CedarS online Met with these features on top.]

It comes as no surprise that in a study of the subject "Man", we go right to the beginning of creation, from Genesis 1 and also from the New Testament creation story in John 1. We are made in His image (Responsive Reading). This image is remarkable and wonderful (Golden Text). Maybe we have trouble sometimes thinking of ourselves as "remarkable" or "wonderful". That is only because we are starting from a basis of material creation, from the mythological invention of a belief that there is intelligence and life in matter. Unless we start from the divine Principle or source of all that is true, real, good, lasting, we will be led astray. We will end up defining ourselves within the confines of matter, which in one instance might seem to be wonderful indeed, but in another, will let us down with crushing disappointment. Who, above all others in history helped us to understand man's true nature as it springs from the divine? Christ Jesus! As divinely planned for us, we got to lay the groundwork for this week's lesson by studying Christ Jesus last week. His demonstrations of God's goodness and man's nature, rooted in spiritual creation, reveal to us the dominion and authority bestowed on each one of us by God. More than anyone, he illustrated to man our divine source of being. Principle is also defined as "source". Think a "principle" of a stream or river. For the duration of this lesson, it might be helpful to think of the source of a river as a symbol for God being the source of man. At its source, a river or stream often comes from the ground as a spring. This water is clear, cold, and pure. As the stream travels along, it may pick up sediment, it may grow larger as other streams pour into it (perhaps adding sediment or algae, or pollutants). It might even dry up and disappear, but you can always find the source if you walk or paddle far enough upstream (in the case of drought—up the stream bed). As our source, God only spills forth purity, goodness, spirituality, light, understanding ,,. We are His idea, in a sense we "flow" out of God as light, intelligence, life, and so on. Warren has included some amazing insights from Cobbey Crisler about the Responsive Reading and some other Bible citations. Cobbey's commentaries are included as Downloads in the upper right of CedarS online version of this Met. They really cast light on these verses and help us to understand the spiritual depth of creation. Let's see how this idea of divine source illumines the Bible lesson for us this week!

Section 1: Man is God's image and Christ Jesus best illustrated this.

If we are looking for a new sense of man, striving to really grasp the idea that man could possibly be spiritual while faced with so much evidence to the contrary, we need to look in Christ. (B5) God does let us know that we are spiritual (B4). And God truly made us in His image, no need for "perfecting" (B3)--see Warren's note from C.C. here on Ps. 138. Looking to our source and to the Exemplar who made that source clear to us, we cannot fail to find that new sense of man, new sense of self that is not based in matter. The farther downstream we drift or paddle--the farther we get from our source--the harder it might be for us to see through the water to the beautiful plants, animals, sand or stones on the bed. In the same way, if we are looking at matter and inquiring after causes in matter, things become "muddier and muddier", less and less clear. Matter always confuses us, always has one explanation that depends upon another to hold it up. For a time one explanation may satisfy us, but eventually, unless it is based in divine Truth, it will fail to fulfill.

Section 2: Mortal man is the counterfeit. (S9)

It is reasonable to think of man as the "true idea" (S6). In that case we "emanate" from God's dwelling, which Mrs. Eddy tells us is full of infinite light (intelligence and understanding), and harmony. What a source! Matter, while simulating life and intelligence, in and of itself has no light, no life. In the creation story, light is among the first of qualities created. Understanding, intelligence is vital to Life, and to Life's reflection, man. Matter tries to imitate this intelligence with brain and nerves, but there can be no uniting of matter with divine intelligence and Life. That would be dualism: Life in Spirit, and a separate life in matter. Every demonstration over matter is a testament to the lie of life in matter. When I had a serious injury from a dog-sledding accident, I was left with deep abrasions on one side of my face and one eye that I couldn't see out of. I was an ugly mess. In fewer than four days there was absolutely no evidence of this accident, no abrasions, no bruising and only clear vision. This came about by a firm refusal to admit to any intelligence in what nerves were telling me about pain, in what my eyes told me about how things looked. It came from firmly looking to the one, divine source as the only source of my safety and well-being. You might say I fiercely walked upstream until I could go no further. It stands for me today as an example of how anyone can keep their thought focused on God as our divine source, and find only the true, pure, beautiful nature of man pouring forth.

Section 3: Seize a new sense of self.

I love the woman in this story. [B10, *CC] I love her childlike and unapologetic honesty--her unmistakable thirst for the truth. She was not clinging to a sense of herself that she loved, unwilling to let go of her story. Would that we all so easily relinquished our personal sense of self! Even when disappointed by our sense of self, we sometimes find it hard to give it up and accept a new sense that is rooted in the Christ. This is not because we don't want it, but because we can't conceive of the joy and goodness it will bring. I was taken, in one of the Cobbey Crisler excerpts included*, by his mention of the "Logos" (from John 1—not included in this lesson). He explains that the Greek term, translated as "Word", means not only word but the thought behind the word. When I think about this in the context of divine creation and source, it reminds me of Moses being known as the giver of the "Law", while "...grace and truth came by Jesus Christ" (Responsive Reading John 1:17). The Law, if thought of only in a literal sense, leads ultimately to the attempted crucifixion of the Christ. If we delve into the thought behind the law, the grace of light, wisdom, tenderness—divine Principle, is revealed. To understand the source of man's harmonious being, we must understand completely, the letter as well as the thought behind it. Jesus exhibited this tender love within the law in this story of the Samaritan woman at the well. He spoke to her even though he was a religious teacher and she a woman. He spoke to her even though he was a Jew and she a Samaritan. The grace of his love revealed to her that there is only one source of being, not a Jewish one vs. a Samaritan one, not the Law vs. grace or the Logos vs. the thought behind it! Let's be like this woman and fearlessly seize a new sense of self that is always being presented to us from the Christ. [Today’s great “Daily Lift” makes a great connection of this Bible event to today as we’re willing to “Leave Your Waterpot” behind when we accept the presence of Christ.] This view is opposed only by trying to reach into matter's limited well for refreshment and insight. If we accept the cup offered by Jesus in this story, we will find that new self always springing up, cool and clear.

Section 4: If the source is divine, it comes with authority and dominion.

The Centurion in this section was given command over a hundred troops. He had broad authority. Having that authority apparently allowed him to recognize Jesus' authority over sickness. He was so confident that Jesus' authority came from above, that he didn't feel it necessary for Jesus to come to his house to heal his beloved servant. [B12, *CC] This speaks to our own ability to grasp this same divine authority today. What does it take? Do we have to be given some sort of responsibility, an important job, role, or education to feel that we have the right to claim authority over something? Once again this depends on what the source of our authority comes from. If we are basing our authority on our background, age, education, etc. we may find we make mistakes in judgment, step on toes, cause disaster. But if we look to God as the divine authority who has bestowed on us dominion over a false sense of man as material, well then, we are ready to take action in the best way! Our ability to heal is not a personal one. It comes from a divine source. We always head to the Principle, to the source of creation and to divine perfection for our starting point. This kind of source will never leave us high and dry; will never be subject to drought. We need only turn to God as our source, read and study our Textbooks, and we will find that spring flooding out of the ground, full of inspiration and healing.

Section 5: Start with Christly perfection.

In verse 6 of citation B13 [*CC] it says "I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me...". I'm reading that as saying that Jesus revealed God's identity (name), to man. He revealed God to us as the source of the true and only creation. God revealed His divine nature, the Christ, in Jesus (S24). It was not just a wonderful example of God's love for man that he brought Jesus to mankind. It was a living example that we are to follow continually to its source in Love. Jesus always started his healing work with the perfection that has its source in God, not matter (that's perfectionism and not desirable!). We need to go back to the source, the eternal spring of creation that remains pure, true, harmonious, and constant, in order to discern the truth about man. Matter will only confuse us, limit our potential, keep us stuck in the rut of the "old man". [“A rut is just a grave with the ends kicked out.”] Starting with perfection at its spiritual source is the only way we come to see that all things are possible to God (S26). Feeling beset by fear and uncertainty is a sure sign that we are being governed by matter, maybe we are wandering up a stream that has its source in a storm drain and not a spring (sorry if I'm taking this too far!).

Section 6: Keep that perfect source in thought--always.

Citations B16-B18 all direct our thought to our identity as spiritually perfect. Citation B17 mentions "I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine." As we have mentioned, name, here speaks to something deeper, more akin to identity. God has claimed us and given us our being, our individuality, our very identity. Our being is spiritual, unlimited, perfect, having its source in Love, the eternal spring of Life. This is a practical truth, a reality that is demonstrable. Jesus showed us how; Mrs. Eddy gave us the tools to further our progress. Keep on heading to the Source to find your remarkable and wonderful nature!



[CedarS featured need again this week: Completion of funding for the new CedarS Sports Center! In teh coming months, we are finishing the steel structure over the concrete pad of a new CedarS Sports Center in honor of Corde Hanzlik. (See pic(s) in the link below and at the end of last week's online Downloads.) Corde’s immediate family is generously funding the construction of the 21,600 square foot gym building, featuring a multi-sport covered court. To utilize the facility at full capacity, we are hoping to raise funds for the additional items (large and small) listed at this link. Thank you for contributing in Corde's honor to this needed legacy gift for this and coming summers of happy CedarS campers! You can see more details and progress UPDATES as well as GIVE ONLINE to help us finish it at: www.cedarscamps.org/sportscenter Thank you in advance for checking out this need and supplying it, seeing your own good in the good of many!]


[IT WOULD BE A HUGE, HUGE ANSWER TO PRAYER to have MORE MONTHLY GIFTS ONLINE which you can easily set up at https://www.cedarscamps.org/donate/?a=donate-recurring .

[To discuss privately how to transfer securities or other assets or planned gifts to support and perpetuate CedarS work, you can reach a member of the Founding family nearly anytime by calling the Huffs or their daughter Holly Huff Bruland 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 Office
1314 Parkview Valley Drive
Ballwin, MO 63011

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


[CedarS 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.

[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/ ]

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