Cedar Camps

Metaphysical Ideas

Search Metaphysicals
 

Metaphysical Newsletters

The weekly Metaphysical Newsletter is provided to campers, staff, alumni, friends and the CedarS family at no charge however contributions help defray the costs of running this service.

Click here for more about how you can provide support!
 

Delivered to You FREE!

Available in five languages, get it delivered to your inbox weekly!

Subscribe Now!

Reason from Spirit, not matter! Let God turn all mourning into dancing!

Kerry Jenkins, C.S., House Springs, MO
Posted Monday, September 28th, 2020

Reason from Spirit, not matter! Let God turn all mourning into dancing!
Metaphysical application ideas for the Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson on

“Unreality”
for the week ending October 4, 2020

By Kerry Jenkins, CS, of House Springs, MO
Kerry.helen.jenkins@gmail.com 314-406-0041

AUDIO LINK!
Click to hear Kerry read “
Reason from Spirit, not matter! Let God turn all mourning into dancing!" (her metaphysical application ideas for this week’s Christian Science Bible Lesson. Or, paste in https://www.cedarscamps.org/metaphysical/audio/play/audio-met-on-unreality-by-kerry-jenkins-cs/

Our Golden Text lays out the solution to the problem of the unreality of all that is evil. If I had to sum up the message from this week's lesson I would say that it is to distinguish between what our mortal thoughts tell us, and what God is telling us, and doing in our lives. Our mortal mind does not easily relinquish its desire to grasp everything from a material standpoint. This is presented repeatedly in both this lesson and in last week's lesson on Reality.

It is undoubtedly true that things look like a mixture of good and evil, health and sickness, life and death. And, while we may be comfortable acknowledging on an intellectual level that matter is not the substance it appears to be, (if you are a fan of quantum physics, or of Eastern thought, or of Mary Baker Eddy), it is quite a different thing to actually feel this in our daily lives, that is to demonstrate this knowledge. But to start this challenging process of truly living, to some extent, our freedom from a false sense of reality, we must begin from this Golden Text point: "Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord:" (Isa 1:18 (to:). Start with what we know God to be, what we know God to do, and to create.

The Responsive Reading perfectly illustrates mortal mind's tendency to argue for its own "consciousness", its own identity. Like a bunch of "potsherds", or little shards of pottery, arguing with the potter about what they are making. I love that here they are the useless small pieces of broken pottery that do this arguing. It reminds me a bit of all the energy we humans spend arguing literally or metaphorically with our human parents or with our genetic makeup. Why should we keep our "reasoning" on this level? Why not turn to our divine Creator rather than our personal, human perceptions (our broken mortal shards!) of reality? When we accept God as the only source despite the human appearance, it is indeed possible to turn our "...mourning into dancing...". Let's find some examples of how this can be done!

Section 1: Shake off the dust of "material" creation, and "make life its own proof of harmony and God." [SH 340:2, citation S2]

Most of us are familiar with the Genesis 2 version of man created from dust. This is touched on in our Responsive Reading mention of the shards of clay pottery. Here in this section citation B3 mentions the need to wake up, to shake off the dust (Isa. 52:1 (to:), 2, 3, 7, 10). Consider the mention of dust as the creative medium in Genesis 2, as well as the reference to the deep sleep that God brought upon Adam in order to take from him a rib to form Eve. This week's Bible Lens from the Christian Science Sentinel offers a definition of "dust" that I have written into my Bible lesson so that I can keep it in mind: "degradation, suffering, false teaching, superstitious beliefs." Don't these ideas sum up the limitations of a human approach to reality and creation?

How can we daily, hourly, "minutely", shake off that "dust", the false picture of material creation which is rooted in sin, shame, and punishment? What are we "waking" from? Isn't it the dream of life in flawed matter? One helpful technique that I have employed is to set my phone for a quiet alarm each hour. I try to consider what I am conscious of in that moment. Is my consciousness clearly looking to God, "reasoning" out from Spirit? Or am I bumping along in a material haze of accomplishing this or that task? The alarm is my call to "shake off the dust", and to "wake up"! When I take this opportunity that is presented, I find I am more peaceful, more alert to the suggestions of mortal mind when they are calling for my attention and asking me to step down and "argue" with my Maker.

Evil is a "deception" and an "unreality of existence", says Mary Baker Eddy in citation S3, p.207:9 of Science and Health. I am not interested in the idea of a God who made evil as part of reality, of creation. If that were so, then what kind of God is He? The God that I see active in my daily experience (and especially in Christ Jesus' record in the Bible) reveals goodness, intelligence, beauty, love, as the realities of being. This goodness, shining like a sun of understanding and light, causes the evil that appears, to lose its dark ability to influence my thought and keep me for long in a state of being that is painful, sinful, or unhappy.

Section 2: Spiritual understanding is key to discerning the lie from the truth.

This Bible lesson is a collection of words from God to man. It promotes our spiritual understanding. "What is the chaff to the wheat? saith the Lord" to Jeremiah (B5). What is the lie to the truth? Why do we stand there contemplating the power and presence of the lie of material being? Why not as Job says in citation B6 (Job 13:3) "...speak to the Almighty, and... desire to reason with God…" rather than try to understand the confusion of life in matter?

God speaks to us. As Mary Baker Eddy writes "Christ is the true idea voicing good, the divine message from God to men speaking to the human consciousness." (S5, 332:9-11) This voice of God through Christ is speaking to our human consciousness. All we have to do is look at each situation in a day and ask for clarity. How often do we actually stop and do this? It does not have to be an important task, or a big decision, to engage in this process!

As Mary Baker Eddy writes on page 505 of Science and Health in her chapter on Genesis, it is our active spiritual understanding that "...unfolds Mind, – Life, Truth, and Love – and demonstrates the divine sense, giving the spiritual proof of the universe in Christian Science" (S6). And isn't this what we are looking for – the spiritual proof that God is good, exists, is active in our human experience? Many a time I have made the mistake of not pausing to ask for this clarity. Gratefully, I have had the opportunity to learn from most of these experiences, asking, after the fact, and gaining spiritual understanding of what could have governed in that moment of parenting, teaching, driving, shopping, etc. But my goal is to ask often, and to listen for the answer!

Next time you feel yourself slipping into a state of anxiety about something, consider asking for clarity. What am I concerned or worried about? Is it something that I feel I cannot control? Is it something that God governs? If not, it must not be part of spiritual reality and must be unnecessary! But if so, it can be governed harmoniously and requires only that we allow God to lead us forward and to obediently follow! This process can be as simple as feeling led, as I was the other day, to pull over at an unusual spot and go for a walk before picking up my son at school. I didn't even have proper footwear. But I felt compelled, and the peace that came as I prayed during that walk did not leave me, even throughout all the evening's activities. This is the process of discerning between what is real and unreal.

Section 3: What is spiritually caused, cannot be thwarted.

Sometimes we hear people say that they felt that what they were pursuing was wrong because they met with too many roadblocks. It is true that we must not be willful in our pursuits, but resistance to something that is spiritually rooted is pretty much the rule. Nehemiah's story in this section gives us a good example of how we might handle the material resistance to our progress in demonstrating spiritual reality. The leaders of other countries that opposed Nehemiah's work lived on each of the four sides of Jerusalem. How symbolic!

When we are working to "build" our spiritual understanding, there are a multitude of material suggestions that will oppose us. Material sense will argue that life in matter is "good enough", or, why work so hard to overcome what seems so apparent to our eyes, and is so widely accepted as true? Matter and material sense will argue that the tasks before us are impossible, or just too hard. I don't have room for all the arguments here!

Nehemiah overcame impossible odds in his building project, starting from the fact that as the king's cupbearer, he could actually have been executed for asking to fix that wall in Jerusalem! So, it took great courage even to tell the king why he was feeling down. He then faced down multiple temptations from the enemy to "come down" from his work and negotiate. I sometimes feel like mortal mind wants me to "negotiate", don't you? "You can just grab a handful of these chocolate chips, that will make you feel better about how frustrated you are with..." When, in fact, this act will do absolutely nothing to forward clarity about that very frustration!! Rather, it will have me look away from the clarity of spiritual understanding to matter as a false "solution"! I'm sure you have your own, less silly examples, but, in fact, mortal mind can seem to be a persuasive negotiator.

We can look at Nehemiah's response at every turn and finally say to mortal suggestions: "ye have no portion, nor right, nor memorial, in Jerusalem [in the kingdom of God within me]." This will cause us to see the truth of the subject line of this section, and we will see that, in fact, what God has caused, cannot be thwarted. The cool thing is that as we demonstrate our dominion over these "persuasive" attacks of mortal thought, we get to see that fact of spiritual dominion in our day to day lives.

Section 4: Sin is not the reality of God's creation.

While we certainly see sin around us, and sometimes feel like sinners ourselves, one of Christ Jesus' greatest gift to man was to help us start not from the standpoint of being a sinful mortal, but of being the true, sinless creation of God. This means that he was brilliant at pointing out the sin, but separating it from the person. You might say that he was good at blowing the dust (shame) off the "old" man and revealing the "new", or true man.

In chapter 8 of John we have a woman who was "caught in the act" of adultery. (B13, John 8:1-12) You might say that the proof was irrefutable! Jesus turns these facts on their head! Rather than concede that "yes, she is a sinner", he took that conscious space and "wrote on the ground". I assume he was listening to his Father for clarity on how to proceed! [and was arousing sufficient curiosity and self-reflection in the mob to break their mob mentality as Cobbey Crisler points out in a CedarS GEM.] When this was accomplished, Jesus agreed that yes, they could stone her according to the Mosaic law, but only those who had never sinned should throw the stones. And then he continued to draw in the dirt. I love this detail.

Jesus did not egotistically challenge these men by watching them to see how they would respond. He allowed them to seek their own clarity on this subject and leave one by one as they received their answer!! He was not there to punish anyone, but to help to transform people's concept of themselves. These men had the opportunity for redemption, as well as the woman. His message was a message of love and redemption, rather than righteousness and punishment.

Sin is unreal. One interesting proof that we have of that is that eventually all sin is self-destroyed. Sometimes it appears that it takes time, or that, as one sin is healed, another steps in to take its place. This is the material appearance that we get to eradicate as "The calm, strong currents of true spirituality,...deepen human experience, until the beliefs of material existence are seen to be a bald imposition, and sin, disease, and death give everlasting place to the scientific demonstration of divine Spirit and to God's spiritual, perfect man." (S22, 99:23). It is a worthwhile pursuit. When we find ourselves free from sin, from separation from God, only then will we find consistent satisfaction. But, this is not an "end" goal or destination. It is a daily happening in our journey that gives joy, peace, health!

Section 5: Ask God the right questions, don't look to matter for answers.

Consistently looking to matter for a solution, the man at the pool in chapter 5 of John (B15), never gained clarity for 38 years about what was needed. How often do we find ourselves in a similar position? Does it look as if surgery is the only solution for your particular problem? Or therapy? Or more time? You fill-in the blank. It can really be a game-changer to look to God's voice first, to the Christ, speaking to our human consciousness.

In this story, the man was certain that the only solution for his problem lay in having someone help him into the pool before others beat him to it. While this is not included in this week's rendition of the story, it nonetheless points to the need to look up to God first. There may be some other steps we need to take, we cannot know that for anyone but ourselves! But, try asking God for spiritual facts/clarity before moving in any direction and things will always go better!

There have been a few times in my family where our prayers led us in unexpected directions that required humility and obedience. But in every case, we were led higher spiritually and spiritual healing became apparent. Jesus' mission was a mission of compassion, love, redemption. As made clear by Mary Baker Eddy (who Warren now sometimes calls “The Noteworthy MBE”), "’The Word was made flesh.’ Divine truth must be known by its effects on the body as well as on the mind, before the Science of being can be demonstrated." (S23 350:24). Isn't that backwards? How can we have the "effects" of Divine truth on our body and mind before we demonstrate the Science of being? Aren't these effects the demonstration itself? Perhaps this is what Jesus was warning this man about when he told him "Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee."?

Perhaps we are to daily identify ourselves with God (no separation/sin), to ask the right questions, not of matter, but of God/Truth/Love, and this will bring about these "effects" that “The Noteworthy MBE” is talking about (on page 350 of Science and Health as just mentioned). Through this elevated condition of consciousness, we are less often fooled by the lies that we "need someone else" to do something in order for the healing to take place (a great way to look at this man's stumbling block!). God always has the answer, always gives us clarity. We need only to remember to ask.

Section 6: "The dream that matter and error are something must yield to reason and revelation." (S28, 347:26)

Consider yielding your mortal reasoning to spiritual reasoning and revelation. It is hard sometimes. Mortal mind does not want to be the "nothing" that it is. Like a toddler pitching a fit on the floor as a last resort when she doesn't get her way, mortal mind pitches a similar fit when challenged by spiritual reason and revelation. We can get good at recognizing the arguments of this "mind" for what they are, simply the suggestion that man is separate from God, from Good.

Mary Baker Eddy tells us that her favorite Bible text is the 1st Commandment. It really is a recipe for spiritual joy and health. We can, with childlike humility, "...accept Science, relinquish all theories based on sense-testimony, give up imperfect models and illusive ideals; and so...have one God, one Mind, and that one perfect, producing His own models of excellence." (S30, 249:1) What do we have to lose? Only a miserable dream of life in matter. We have everything good to gain!


CLICK LINKS below for more CedarS team APPLICATION IDEAS for this Bible lesson:

  • Ken Cooper’s YouTube monologue read by his wife, Sue, shines new light from the woman’s standpoint on "Go and Sin No More" (John 8:1-12, cit. B13)
  • View in-progress, ONLINE GEMs being sent soon with insights and application ideas from Cobbey Crisler and others that give us glimpses of "Unreality" and how to stop and reverse its seemingly nonstop curses.

CLICK MORE LINKS (below) to CedarS-related OPPORTUNITIES FOR SPIRITUAL ENRICHMENT!

1. ENROLL YOUTH TODAY IN FALL PROGRAMS STARTING-UP AGAIN THIS WEEK!
Our ongoing Fall “Take CedarS Home” Zoom sessions for grade grouping of campers continue each week till December to prove the healing power of childlike thought receptive to remote prayer. These Zoom session gifts to children and their families could be thought of as prayers to put love into action through practicing CedarS Five Fundamental concepts. [Great fruitage from summer Zoom sessions is available. For
FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE FOR TUITION
: US and Canada, please apply to The Campership Fund. They have funds available to support up to full tuition, as needed. International applicants, please apply directly to CedarS Camperships. CLICK FOR FULL DETAILS, A VIDEO AND ENROLLMENT OPTIONS.


2. CedarS weekly Online Hymn Sings: WE'VE EXPANDED OUR ZOOM CAPACITY SO ALL CAN ENJOY AN UPLIFTING, EVERY SUNDAY TRADITION TO START EACH WEEK! These global, all-generation gatherings are powerful, 30-minute “Prayer Sings,” since hymns are really healing prayers set to music. We’ve loved singing with friends from all 50 of the United States as well as from 16 more countries! They include Australia, Brazil, Canada, Democratic Republic of Congo, England, Ghana, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, Pakistan, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Scotland, Spain, South Africa, and Switzerland.


  • Click here to electronically GIVE your tax-deductible support that is especially needed during this reduced income year
  • or MAIL gifts to our camp address: The CedarS Camps Office.
    410 Sovereign Court #8, Ballwin, MO 63011
  • or call CedarS support team at 636-394-6162 (Gay, Kim or Jennifer) to share your credit card support over the phone.
  • CedarS is a not-for-profit, 501-C-3 organization with a Federal ID # 44-0663883.

With never-changed gratitude and full-strength love to each of you,

Warren, Holly, Gay, Kim, Jennifer, and CedarS Team


APOLOGIES if our team of CEDARS VOLUNTEER EDITORS, CONTRIBUTORS AND TRANSLATORS FOR THIS FREE SERVICE missed any needed edits. Thanks for your forgiveness and your needed, ongoing support!

Metaphysical

Walk in the Pathway of Life! - As many worthies in the Bible have, you might feel far from God...
Latest Lesson Application Idea

Newsletters

Get free weekly uplifting newsletters (available in English, Spanish, French, German and now in Portuguese!)
Subscribe or Update Subscription

Facebook

Find CedarS on Facebook for the latest news, heart-warming fruitage, facility upgrades and more!
Go to the CedarS' Facebook Page