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Keep God-centered with the Lord's Prayer and our Father-Mother as Creator and Cause!

Kerry Jenkins, C.S., House Springs, MO
Posted Monday, May 30th, 2016

[Keep God-centered with the Lord's Prayer and our Father-Mother as Creator and Cause!]
Metaphysical Application Ideas for the Christian Science Bible Lesson on

“God the Only Cause and Creator”

June 5, 2016

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

[Click here (or on the link below) and then on any or all of the individual links to the “eight part audio series in which Bible scholar Barry Huff offers spiritual insight into each line of the Lord's Prayer.” (Recommended for Sunday School teachers and Sunday School students ages 11-17) http://christianscience.com/youth/sunday-school/resources/the-lord-s-prayer ]

Why should we pray to God? What is the purpose of prayer? Does prayer change things? And why is the Lord's Prayer connected to the subject of this week's Bible lesson, God the Only Cause and Creator? These are a few of the questions that I find myself asking as I study this lesson. Section by section we deepen our understanding of the Lord's Prayer with its spiritual interpretation from Science and Health. We can catch a clearer glimpse of why Mrs. Eddy refers to this prayer as one "...which covers all human needs." (S4) As always, we are given the opportunity to demonstrate that this kind of prayer is actively meeting these needs in our lives today.

"Are we not all children of the same Father? Are we not all created by the same God?" New Living Translation (NLT). This is our opening question in the Golden Text. This is followed in the Responsive Reading by Matthew's version of the Lord's Prayer. We are to enter into the "closet", or the storeroom [or treasure room, tameion, Greek]. This room was the room that held all the household supplies, and the only one with a door. What a wonderful symbol for how we can go before God in the presence of His infinite supply of good, of health, harmony. We aren't going into an empty place and begging Him to fill it, to fill us with health, inspiration, joy. We start from within the Kingdom of Heaven, a place of abundance. Once we are in this "storehouse", we close the door on material sense and begin this prayer. We don't do this in public so that it's a big show for others. To perceive His abundant good our prayers must be filled with humility, with a "fervent desire for growth in grace..." (S16)—and even then it must be demonstrated by our willingness to carry out His will. Line by line we will see how the Lord's Prayer can center our thought not on ourselves, but on the infinite Creator, the only Cause, the source of all that is good and true.

Section 1: Our divine parent in the very best sense of the word.

Why do we pray? Often, probably most often, we pray because we are struggling with something and need answers, comfort, harmony. There's nothing wrong with this. Anything that turns us towards God provides a precious opportunity for healing. But Jesus teaches us how to pray, not by begging God to hear us and grant us what we want or need, but rather by first acknowledging Him as the Father or, as Jesus called Him, "Abba" (Aramaic for "daddy"). This informal term indicates how close and truly parent-like Jesus perceived God to be, for all mankind ("Our Father"). The motherhood of God is affirmed in citation B3: "As one whom his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you". So even though Mrs. Eddy was considered pretty revolutionary at the time by calling God "Father-Mother", as always, her thought was firmly grounded in the Bible. It is natural to adore and want to please, obey, love your parents. This is even more true for the one true man that God created. We want to understand, love and obey God because She is unfailing and unconditional Love. "Father-Mother is the name for Deity, which indicates His tender relationship to His spiritual creation." (S3)

Section 2: The harmony of heaven is visible, present, and within man.

Sometimes we find ourselves looking for happiness, satisfaction, goodness in matter rather than Spirit. It's easy to think that the Kingdom of Heaven is out there waiting for us somewhere. Maybe we think it’s where we are popular, smarter, more athletic. But God fills heaven and earth, as it says in B8. There is no "out there". That's why Jesus tells us to rethink or "repent" in citation B9. When we accept a material, alternate creation where talent and skills are developed by good genetics, luck and environment, we are on a constant roller coaster of highs and lows. The highs can feel pretty cool, but then we plunge to the depths and find ourselves slowly climbing back to the top, only to plunge once more. What about a sustainable joy, a reliable harmony, a deep and abiding peace? There's an amazing passage in citation S8 where Mrs. Eddy tells us: "...the grand necessity of existence is to gain the true idea of what constitutes the kingdom of heaven in man." "The grand necessity of existence"...That's a pretty awesome necessity, and yet our Father-Mother has never hidden it away, never kept us from it. The only thing that makes the kingdom of heaven seem remote is sin, which separates us, in thought, from feeling the love of God. Affirm that this kingdom "is come", and our Father-Mother is "ever-present"! These are the Biblical facts.

Section 3: "Hold your ground" concerning perfect creation with an unshaken understanding, not human will.

Christian Science prayer is not human will insisting on truth. Prayer serves God, not man, though it does bless man. "I am thy servant." it says in citation B11. If you look at citation S11 you see that Jesus "put aside" physical causation. It further states:"He knew that the divine Principle, Love, creates and governs all that is real." Think about that statement for a minute. Isn't this saying that when something like a physical disorder (in this section, a man with leprosy) presented itself to Jesus, he didn't "look into" this disease, where it came from, what caused it, what is the diagnosis. Nope, he looked straight to God, Principle, Love, knowing that the Creator governs all reality which only includes harmony. In other words the supposed origin of disease, accident, depression, bad behavior, is not relevant. Only the spiritual fact and truth that God is the source of all good and all that is real, has weight. 00This kind of prayer sets aside the human tendency to see ourselves as separate individuals from Spirit. It is a prayer that insists not on our desired outcome, but on a deeper understanding of our Father-Mother first and foremost. This is the "ground we hold" (S13). Rather than an insistence based on human firmness that God is good and true, it is an insistence based on a true understanding and demonstration, hopefully daily, of God's goodness. Why is there a healing of leprosy juxtaposed with the verse from the Lord's Prayer and its spiritual interpretation: "They will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Enable us to know,--as in heaven, so on earth,--God is omnipotent, supreme.”? What is God's will? Jesus shows us God's will over and over again. His will is harmony, intelligence, joy, love, expressed in man. We see this as we give up the human thought that contradicts God's established creation. This may sound like a "no brainer", but truly we are met at every turn by a material picture that contradicts this divine will. The key is to "Maintain the facts of Christian Science..." (S13)! And this "maintenance" is sustained by God, not by human persistence. God's will is done by a steady practice (listening and obeying) of our unity with our Father-Mother (S14).

Section 4: Our Creator supplies His creation abundantly, richly.

Today, worldwide, it is acknowledged that there is an alarmingly increasing gap between rich and poor. In Jesus' day this was possibly even truer. The very poor, which was most of the population, often had to borrow from the wealthy just to pay their taxes. We read several stories in the Bible (B20 is a parable but illustrative none the less) of those who were nearly imprisoned, often with their children, for the inability to pay back such debt. So the idea of getting daily bread had great significance. Also the listeners to this prayer would have been very familiar with the story of the manna that the Children of Israel received for forty years on a daily basis, from God. It is easy to proceed confidently through life if we are wealthy and never concerned about where the next meal comes from or from whence the next bill will be paid. We can be fooled into thinking that we are responsible for our own existence, that we are successful and even exemplary citizens because of our success. But when we are down to our last dime, when, perhaps, our children are in danger of going hungry, we tend to be less impressed with our own ability to provide. We might even be more humbly and fervently ready to rely on the divine Creator. When we are really hungering and thirsting for God's provision of harmony, for a real glimpse of His love and government, nothing will come between us and the answer. The prayer for daily bread is a prayer of petition—asking God for something. Citation S17 tells us that such a prayer does benefit us if it is hungering and thirsting after righteousness. Perhaps this is why Jesus didn't immediately grant the woman's petition for healing in this section (B16). Maybe he felt that her desire needed to be elevated from asking for health, to hungering after the righteousness that God supplies to all mankind. Her desire was deep enough so that insult, or the fact that Jesus was a man from an enemy nation, even the fact that she had been told to leave did not deter her. She hungered after wholeness for her daughter above all else; she knew Jesus had the ability to make that wholeness apparent (recognized the Christ). It is also important to notice that Mrs. Eddy makes it clear in citation S17 that "Prayer cannot change the Science of being, but it tends to bring us into harmony with it." So when we petition God, is it not better to ask for a clearer understanding of Him as the source of all abundance, rather than to pray that a lack that we are experiencing be eliminated? Entering that storehouse (from the Responsive Reading), we can feel the present divine abundance that our Father-Mother has given all mankind.

Section 5: God doesn't create or cause an idea that lacks love or forgiveness.

Love's rich supply of good in Her creation extends to bless even "those that curse us". Resentment, grudges and revenge, have nothing to do with God's creation. These qualities have no source. Forgiveness is infinite, bottomless, as Jesus indicates when he says we should forgive "seventy times seven" (B20). Maybe in practice this seems hard, but when we see that we, too, are forgiven as we forgive, we entertain, once again that humility, that we find throughout the Lord's Prayer. As in citation S17, Mrs. Eddy makes it clear that prayer for forgiveness (another petition), is not granted solely because we ask for it! Forgiveness comes through our humble relinquishment of human will, our deep desire to obey God, a love that recognizes God as the Father and Mother of all, therefore all are our brothers and sisters, worthy of forgiveness because they are of God. If we are struggling with this issue we can look to Mrs. Eddy's words in citation S23 and dig for a deeper understanding of God as Love so that we find ourselves wanting to "obey and adore", no longer "warring...over the corporeality", "rejoicing in the affluence of our God." Forgiveness and love are at the root of Christianity. If we want to call ourselves Christian we must forgive, and when we understand God fully, we see there can be nothing left to forgive because we will understand that we are all a part of God's harmonious creation.

Section 6: No tempter in the Kingdom.

You know, this verse about temptation reveals a God that doesn't just keep us from succumbing to temptation, but delivers us from evil, from sin, disease and death. He never tempts us, He is our good Creator, why would he put a serpent in there to trick us? Okay, I do realize this goes against how most of us feel on a daily basis. But think of the story of the serpent tempting Adam and Eve. The serpent (which is wholly a work of fiction), spoke to Eve and told her that actually, the storehouse (paradise, the kingdom of heaven) isn't complete. That neither she, nor her home were whole, but actually lacked an important element: evil. By recognizing this tale of fiction as symbolic of how the senses can be deluded by false suggestion, we find ourselves reversing symptoms, recognizing our present wholeness and divine abundance. Think of the leprous man in this lesson, where did the leprosy go? Think of the woman in the old testament that had only a handful of meal and a little oil, yet ate of it for days and days and never ran out, or the one who was told to borrow empty vessels and pour her tiny supply of oil into all the empty vessels, sell the oil and pay her debts. There are thousands of examples, Biblical and current, that uphold the truth about God, about our Father-Mother as having created a whole, harmonious universe. "When the illusion of sickness or sin tempts you, cling steadfastly to God and His idea. Allow nothing but His likeness to abide in your thought. Let neither fear nor doubt overshadow your clear sense and calm trust, that the recognition of life harmonious—as Life eternally is—can destroy any painful sense of, or belief in, that which Life is not. Let Christian Science, instead of corporeal sense, support your understanding of being, and this understanding will supplant error with Truth, replace mortality with immortality, and silence discord with harmony." (S29). How can all that good stuff happen? It happens because God is the only cause and Creator, and He is all good. Matter is merely a lousy imitation of God's perfect creation.

Section 7: There is nothing beyond God, and that's okay because infinite Good "covers a lot of ground".

The final statement of the Lord's Prayer is a rejoicing in the Creator's infinite power and goodness. We can rejoice in the power of Him who is all Good. Such a Being chooses only to bless, only to create that which expresses Him. So we have everything to rejoice about! Looking with new eyes at this great prayer, one that "covers all human needs" (S4), we can see how it supports the understanding of God as the only cause and creator. It begins by establishing God as the Father and Mother of man. This Creator embraces His creation in His kingdom of harmony. As God's children, enveloped in Her love, we do not see ourselves as on a path that is separate, having a separate will from our Father-Mother. We naturally love to serve God. We rejoice in the blessing of daily insight, inspiration, the meeting of every human need—our daily bread. We are God's children, one family. We have infinite Love to reflect and hence an infinite supply of tenderness and forgiveness. Never tempted by Him that made us, but delivered from all evil, by nature—and rejoicing in God's infinite power and glorious government over all. The whole prayer can be seen as tied together by a humble recognition that God is our Father-Mother, the cause and creator of all that is real.


[P.S. 1 Cobbey Crisler commentary on Matthew 4: 23 in the Responsive Reading:
“And healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.” Here are human problems that had defied solution, and Jesus solved them all based on his concept of theology, namely the kingdom. Remember a kingdom is not chaos. It’s an ordered government of heaven and harmony at hand.” B. Cobbey Crisler, Book of Matthew, Auditing the Master, p. 22]


[P.S.2 Cobbey Crisler commentary on Matthew 6:6 in the Responsive Reading:
[Step 1 of prayer: mentally go to where our supplies already are & leave problems behind.]

Matthew 6:6 “But when you pray,” first, now notice, here are the rules for praying. If we think we’re praying, wait till we get through with what his requirements are, and then ask again. “When you pray,” here’s what we do. There’s no way around these requirements, because this is Jesus’ specific answer to how we pray. When we pray, number one, we do what? “Closet.” Number two, “Shut the door.”

Often we do one or two of these things but not all of them. Number three, “Pray.” Don’t forget why you’re in that closet. Don’t go to sleep with the door closed. What’s good about studying the Greek that’s behind this? The Greek word for closet is tameion. It really is not translated as closet, I don’t believe any other time it’s used. Tameion has in the Greek this meaning: it’s a storehouse. It’s a place in which our supplies are kept. Now ask yourself if you’re really praying.

In prayer, in our first step, do we actually go mentally into the place where our supplies already are? That means in prayer we can’t take any problem with us. In prayer we’re in the presence of the solution, or it’s not prayer, as far as Jesus’ definition is concerned. Once we’re in there where the supplies are, shut the door so that the problem doesn’t nag.”

Book of Matthew, Auditing the Master: A Tax Collector’s Report , p. 32
by B. Cobbey Crisler


[P.S. 3 Go to CedarS latest online version of this Met later to see additional Cobbey Crisler commentaries on Bible citations in the Responsive Reading and the rest of the Bible Lesson.]


[S.O.S., Please Save Our Summer with a sweet $6k more! (~$10k given or pledged in recent weeks to our unforeseen $16k need) Please help CedarS continue to be a camp founded on results that proves the theory that every right need is always met! In opening CedarS kitchen for this season to serve over 4,000 meals, we discovered three significant needs.
1) Our fire suppression system (hood, tank, nozzles… ) needed to be totally replaced at a cost of ~$7,000; 2) our kitchen air-conditioner needs to be replaced at a cost of ~$7,000; 3) a large, gas, tilt-skillet needed to be bought at a cost of ~$2,000, with trade-ins). To help us cover these unexpected needs with an online donation click here. To mail in or call in such a needed donation, please follow the instructions below for campership donors and ask us to “Feed the Children!”


[TO ENABLE FULL ENROLLMENT, IT WOULD BE A HUGE, HUGE ANSWER TO PRAYER RIGHT NOW to have MORE CAMPERSHIP GIFTS AS WELL AS TO HAVE MORE MONTHLY GIFTS ONLINE! You can easily set up such regular and very-helpful online gifts at https://www.cedarscamps.org/donate/?a=donate-recurring .

[You can also CALL 636-394-6162 to reach a member of the Founding family nearly anytime. Either one of the Huffs or their daughter Holly Huff Bruland is likely to answer.

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) athttp://www.cedarscamps.org/metaphysical/ ]

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