Follow up for 10/1/2015
As we near the end of our study of each of the three chapters in The Sermon on the Mount, it is interesting how our path continues forward, with those important teachings from the sermon nestled within new resources (Sentinel articles and Monitor articles).
Today, given a choice of three interest areas--
1. To continue to discuss the Sermon on the Mount
2. To discuss how our church can serve the community with more humility, and
3. To discuss ways to spiritualize our thought with topics from The Christian Science Monitor,
--our group selected choice number 1, since they had prepared for that.
For our next meeting on Thursday, October 15, 2015, the group took home the “church related articles” from The Christian Science Sentinel from # 2 above. In two weeks, we will discuss how they tie in with the Sermon on the Mount and our Spiritual Goal.
Unfortunately, we ran out of time to openly discuss everyone’s contributions about what they had thought about in the Sermon on the Mount and why that was important to them. As I mentioned, PLEASE feel free to jot your thoughts down to the group (“reply to all” to this email or use the website blog) or to an individual (find the emails listed at the top of this one. Georgine’s phone number is 484 4636.).
My two cents: I noticed that because of this study, everyone is “seeking first the kingdom of God”. As Andy said, “we are consciously bringing our thoughts to the kingdom of heaven, where our need is already known.” We are hungering and thirsting to do what is right, and, as Georgine reminded us, we will see a result—we shall be filled. Actually, we are already filled with God’s goodness. As the Lord’s Prayer promises us, “Thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven.” Therefore there can be no misunderstandings, no self will, no miscommunication, no impatience, no veering from the straight and narrow way. As the Mother’s Evening Prayer by Mrs. Eddy says,
“Beneath the shadow of His mighty wing
In that sweet secret of the narrow way
Seeking and finding, with the angels sing
“Lo, I am with you alway,” watch and pray
Thanks for everyone’s ideas today!
Here is a summary of the thoughts that people shared today.
Linda: Matthew 6: 14, “For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.” Linda is working to let self righteousness be still, to replace her will with a trust that all will be well. She gave an example of how she was able to forgive and forget a glitch in wanting to work out at a time when the facility was closing. Also, her “narrow way” (see Doug’s verses) is to forgive more, whereas the “wide gate” is where she sees more room for self-justification and judgement.
Janine: It sounded like she was focusing on Matthew 7: 1, “Judge not that ye be not judged.” As with Linda, she is recognizing more often now when she needs to let God’s “will be done.”
Doug: Matthew 7: 13, 14, “Enter ye in at the strait gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” Doug is learning to watch every thought to make sure it has its source in the “kingdom of God.” He feels his “narrow way” is to have the discipline to dismiss any ungodly thought.
Wendy: Matthew 6: 9-13, The Lord’s Prayer, and the references to “the kingdom of heaven.” Wendy has been seeking to understand that those who may not acknowledge God are still included in God’s love and care—that God is OUR Father.
Rebecca: Matthew 7: 3, “And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but consisderest not the beam that is in thine own eye?” Rebecca is grateful to know we are all in “the kingdom of heaven, ” and that we have never fallen out of that kingdom nor been a sinner. All good is within our make-up. We are all the beloved of God. Her “straight and narrow way” is to take the plank out of her own eye before she can see to take the mote out of the eye of others. She shared a situation where she and her husband were moving a heavy neon statue to another home. In the process, the statue needed to have a part fixed and needed to be positioned on a wall, both of which happened harmoniously with a beautiful result. She also shared how she feels more comfortable talking and sharing Christian Science with her aunt.
Georgine: Matthew 5:6, “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.” She mentioned that there is a result from seeking to do right—that we will be filled. She has been able to be calm when driving amidst the road construction in town by realizing that we all want to do right and that we will be at the right place at the right time. She also mentioned that Mrs. Eddy usually mentions “the universe” before she mentions “man”—that man is included in the universe.
Sonia: Matthew 6: 33, 34, “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow; for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself.” She likened letting go of ungodlike thoughts to a feeling of buoyancy, with the image of us floating and free.
Andy: Matthew 6: 32, 33, 34, “for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow; for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself.” He mentioned that we should bring every thought to the kingdom of heaven since God provides for us. He shared an experience where he and Pam were heading out for a hike. They had heard that the parking was scarce and considered postponing the reading the lesson in order to get to their destination early in order to get a parking spot. Instead, they decided to “seek th kingdom of God” first, and finished their lesson study. As it turned out, they were provided for every step of the way, including getting special permission to park in a private lot, getting a ride with a policeman to a trailhead, meeting people along the way who guided them to a perfect hike!
Jennifer: Matthew 5: 37, 39, “But let your communication be Yea, Yea; Nay, Nay. . . But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil; but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.” She is being more conscious of what and how much she says to others. She said she has reached her “narrow way” when she prays this Psalm 19:14 “Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength and y redeemer.” This has been helpful when parenting. She concluded our sharing by tying this all into our Spiritual Goal of there being one God, good instead of adding more to the mix. She has been subduing the thought that there are two of anything—just “One infinite God, good” with his reflection, man.