Christian Science Monitor: The reset button is now

Susan Booth Mack Snipes published an article on the Christian Science Monitor website today under A Christian Science Perspective. The article gives a perspective into the new year: The start of a new year is often seen as an opportunity to commit to new initiatives, fresh starts, and improvements in character. But we don’t need […]

The Reset Button Is NowSusan Booth Mack Snipes published an article on the Christian Science Monitor website today under A Christian Science Perspective. The article gives a perspective into the new year:

The start of a new year is often seen as an opportunity to commit to new initiatives, fresh starts, and improvements in character. But we don’t need to let the calendar define our potential for progress. At every moment we can welcome inspiration from God that brings reformation and healing…

To view this full article on https://www.csmonitor.com, please click here.

 

Christian Science Monitor – From ‘the liberal’ and ‘the conservative’ to friends

Ingrid Peschke published an article on the Christian Science Monitor website today under A Christian Science Perspective. The article looks at the controversy between friends with beliefs on different ends of the political spectrum: When opinions clash, it can be hard to see past what we perceive as another’s faults. When a woman found herself […]

From ‘the Liberal’ And ‘the Conservative’ To FriendsIngrid Peschke published an article on the Christian Science Monitor website today under A Christian Science Perspective. The article looks at the controversy between friends with beliefs on different ends of the political spectrum:

When opinions clash, it can be hard to see past what we perceive as another’s faults. When a woman found herself in that very situation with a colleague, the idea that God loves all His children totally changed the way she saw this person, opening the way for friendship…

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Christian Science Monitor – Healed during church

Maryann McKay published an article on the Christian Science Monitor website today about a healing during a Wednesday night church service. She writes: I was traveling for work and was scheduled to be on the road for nine weeks straight with almost no time off. The strenuous schedule left little time for rest. A month […]

Maryann McKay published an article on the Christian Science Monitor website today about a healing during a Wednesday night church service. She writes:

I was traveling for work and was scheduled to be on the road for nine weeks straight with almost no time off. The strenuous schedule left little time for rest. A month in, I was exhausted and coughing a great deal. Swallowing and speaking were very painful. I prayed earnestly about this as I had learned to do in Christian Science, but while there was improvement, the symptoms continued. I struggled to keep up with the work and travel. I felt alone, separated from God, and in need of spiritual inspiration, reassurance, and, most of all, healing…

To view this full article on https://www.csmonitor.com, please click here.

 

Christian Science Monitor – A powerful change of thought

If you missed it, Mark Swinney published an article on the Christian Science Monitor website yesterday addressing the value of yielding to God, divine Love, rather than frustration and complaint. The article says: A simple change of thought often makes all the difference. It can be a change of attitude, a change in the way […]

If you missed it, Mark Swinney published an article on the Christian Science Monitor website yesterday addressing the value of yielding to God, divine Love, rather than frustration and complaint. The article says:

A simple change of thought often makes all the difference. It can be a change of attitude, a change in the way we see the world, a change in the way we see ourselves, a change in how we behold others.

When we change our thoughts for the better, good things can happen. But there’s another way our thinking can change, and it’s even more powerful. When we invite God to change our thoughts, wonderful things – even healing – can occur. As a high school sophomore at my first job, I experienced one such powerful change of perspective.

I was working in a position that didn’t require much training and the pay was quite low. I was glad to be earning it, but I wasn’t always feeling so glad as I worked along through my shift. It was hot, sweaty work, and after a few months, I liked it even less.

But I’d been attending a Christian Science Sunday School and there I’d learned that if I was feeling upset about something, I could turn to God for inspiration. So that’s what I did, and as I was praying one day, I became inspired to do something very specific – and that was to more consistently let God’s love fill my thoughts and guide my actions.

What that meant to me was if I found my thoughts muddied with things like complaint, resentment, self-righteousness, and fear, I could turn to God for a clean, clear line of thinking. Mary Baker Eddy, the discoverer of Christian Science, metaphorically explains in her insightful book “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures”: “We cannot fill vessels already full. They must first be emptied” (p. 201). Later on the same page, Science and Health goes on to give specific instruction on how to do this: “pour in truth through flood-tides of Love.”

When I was at work, that’s exactly what I did. Rather than focusing on the unpleasantness of the job, I let appreciation for God, who is divine Love itself, fill my thoughts. As I did, I consistently felt the presence of God with me and was truly grateful for God’s love actively overflowing in me.

It wasn’t always easy to keep my thinking steadily clear in this way, but it ended up being quite a joy-filled activity. And after a time of conscientiously letting God’s love pour into the “vessel” of my consciousness and flush out those thoughts that weren’t loving, I realized I had started to really like my job. Each moment was an opportunity to fill my thoughts to overflowing with all that God is – acknowledging His goodness, tenderness, strength, intelligence.

When God is behind the inspiration that we bring into action, we are often happily surprised. Jesus explained: “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled” (Matthew 5:6). That describes how I felt. Instead of frustrated, I felt full of qualities such as joy and patience – qualities that are actually natural to all of us as God’s children.

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Christian Science Monitor – A humble and earnest response to the demand for church

Kim Crooks Korinek published an article on the Christian Science Monitor Website addressing how a rethink of church as founded on the basis of spiritual healing can meet the need of expressing and sharing spirituality in todays world. The article says: The demand for church is real. Some might agree with that statement. Others emphatically […]

Kim Crooks Korinek published an article on the Christian Science Monitor Website addressing how a rethink of church as founded on the basis of spiritual healing can meet the need of expressing and sharing spirituality in todays world. The article says:

The demand for church is real. Some might agree with that statement. Others emphatically won’t. And yet in spite of declining membership, concerns about youth leaving church, and tragic stories of abuse, there is something else going on. Traditional forms of religious authority are falling away, giving an opening to a radical reexamination and rebirth of church. An article in the Monitor Daily, for instance, speaks to a rise in unconventional outlets for faith and spirituality, such as music festivals.

Mary Baker Eddy, the discoverer of Christian Science, shared the following insight over 100 years ago in her book “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures”: “The time for thinkers has come. Truth, independent of doctrines and time-honored systems, knocks at the portal of humanity” (p. vii).

The desire for something new is being pushed by the demand for something higher and holier and is growing to be a driving force. It is a drive that is strong, soundly rejecting hollow traditions for a more practical spirituality. And this is bringing new forms to fulfill the ideals of meaning, healing, and community that are central to a thriving church.

Mary Baker Eddy recognized this deep yearning in humanity and wrote: “This age is reaching out towards the perfect Principle of things; is pushing towards perfection in art, invention, and manufacture. Why, then, should religion be stereotyped, and we not obtain a more perfect and practical Christianity?” (“Miscellaneous Writings 1883-1896,” p. 232).

Dropping all stereotypes of religion as exclusive, blindly dogmatic, or divisive, we find we have a keen opportunity to look with fresh receptivity at the church set out by Christ Jesus, rooted in primitive, practical Christianity – founded on the basis of spiritual healing. Jesus expected his followers to walk their talk. To forgive. To heal the sick. Jesus’ concise summary of all the commandments was simple: Love God and love one another. He knew that outward ritualized worship or simply going through the motions couldn’t unmake bad behavior or come anywhere near to saving humanity. And in my study and practice of Christian Science, I’ve experienced how it isn’t the outward things that transform us, but an inner desire to know God and a willingness to do the work that spiritual transformation requires. It is the daily deeds of goodness and unselfishness whose accumulated actions reveal church as a dynamic force that helps us demonstrate just how God’s love heals and triumphs over adversity.

There is a two-part definition of church in Science and Health that I have found helpful. The first part explains the spiritual substance of church: “The structure of Truth and Love; whatever rests upon and proceeds from divine Principle.” The definition is broad, yet grounded not in human personality, nor in the wisdom of others, but in a knowledge of God as divine Principle, Love – universal, solid, expansive, enduring.

The second part of this definition sets a standard for the actions of church: “The Church is that institution, which affords proof of its utility and is found elevating the race, rousing the dormant understanding from material beliefs to the apprehension of spiritual ideas and the demonstration of divine Science, thereby casting out devils, or error, and healing the sick” (p. 583).

This sense of church, like a spiritual fitness center, is not just about coming to church, but living church as universal, unifying, and all-inclusive: letting God, divine Love, impel what we think and do. It means demonstrating, in some degree, the power of God that triumphs over sin, disease, and death.

 

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Christian Science Monitor – There is none else

Jill Gooding published a poem today on the Christian Science Monitor website that highlights how we can never be outside of the powerful, universal presence of God.   God, the great I AM – the only presence. I AM. Here. I AM. There. I AM. Everywhere. Because I AM – ALL.   I am the […]

Jill Gooding published a poem today on the Christian Science Monitor website that highlights how we can never be outside of the powerful, universal presence of God.

 

God, the great I AM –
the only presence.
I AM. Here.
I AM. There.
I AM. Everywhere.
Because
I AM – ALL.

 

I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me.
– Isaiah 45:5

God is everywhere, and nothing apart from Him is present or has power.
– Mary Baker Eddy“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 473

Poem originally published in the Sept. 1, 2014, issue of the Christian Science Sentinel.

If you would like to view this full poem on https://www.csmonitor.com, please click here.

 

Christian Science Monitor – Morality that’s freeing

Allison J. Rose-Sonnesyn published an article on the Christian Science Monitor Website exploring the idea that living our inherent integrity as God’s children brings joy and healing to our lives. The article states: Morality. The word may conjure thoughts of kindness, honesty, justice, integrity, and safety. On the other hand, it could also bring to […]

Morality that’s freeingAllison J. Rose-Sonnesyn published an article on the Christian Science Monitor Website exploring the idea that living our inherent integrity as God’s children brings joy and healing to our lives. The article states:

Morality. The word may conjure thoughts of kindness, honesty, justice, integrity, and safety. On the other hand, it could also bring to mind a sense of judgment, relativity, and restriction. When approached positively, morality can help provide a framework for societal norms and relationships. When approached negatively, it can foster distrust and division.

Through my study of the Bible and the teachings of Christian Science, I have gained a fresh perspective on morality, one that has withstood life’s challenges and doesn’t assume a standard that’s impossible to live up to. It comes from a deeper understanding of our identity as the children of God and of how that understanding can be applied in our life.

My study began with the account of creation in the first chapter of Genesis in the Bible. It presents God, Spirit, creating the spiritual universe, where man – all of us as the sons and daughters of God – is made in God’s image and likeness and where God saw “every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good” (verse 31).

I’ve found that understanding the first account of creation unlocks the truth of my – and everyone’s – identity. We’re not sinners, powerless humans tossed to and fro by temptation, left alone to figure out what to do. Instead, we’re God’s children, expressing joy, freedom, and goodness. This spiritual reality gives us a strong foundation to resist and overcome the belief that evil can have dominion over us. We’re safe to be ourselves – to express our spiritual identity – and see how living our inherent integrity actually brings freedom.

I experienced this in my own life when I found myself in a tricky business situation. It became clear that I needed to disclose certain information, but I was afraid that doing so could end the deal. However, in the same instant that this temptation came to my thought, I recognized that omitting this information was the equivalent of lying. Lying didn’t represent the principled and loving child of God that I cherish as my, and others’, true identity.

With this realization my anxiety about what would happen lifted, and I immediately disclosed the information. I was so grateful I had not succumbed to the temptation to act contrary to my real, spiritual nature! Furthermore, the response to what I’d shared was one of reassurance and protection of the deal, which went through to all parties’ benefit.

If you would like to view this full article on https://www.csmonitor.com, please click here.

 

CSM Bootcamp Weekend for College Students

WHAT IS IT? College students – are you interested in politics, culture, or world affairs? Curious about how the media covers these issues? If yes, Monitor staffers want to meet you! You’re invited to apply for an all-expense paid weekend at The Christian Science Monitor (CSM) in Boston, April 5-8, 2019. This weekend will include […]

WHAT IS IT?

College students – are you interested in politics, culture, or world affairs? Curious about how the media covers these issues?

If yes, Monitor staffers want to meet you!

You’re invited to apply for an all-expense paid weekend at The Christian Science Monitor (CSM) in Boston, April 5-8, 2019. This weekend will include hands-on journalism workshops and talks with distinguished Monitor writers and editors. For those interested in majoring in or exploring a career in journalism there will be opportunities to be paired with a mentor.

HOW TO APPLY?

To apply, please email a cover letter, résumé, and a writing sample of no more than three pages to Kendra Nordin Beato with “CSM Bootcamp application” in the subject line to: nordink@csmonitor.com

In your cover letter please explain (1) your relationship to The Christian Science Monitor, (2) how Christian Science fits into your daily life, and (3) why a weekend with Monitor staffers would be valuable to you.

There are two steps to the application for the CSM Bootcamp Weekend:

     1. Apply with requested materials directly to Kendra Nordin Beato at The Christian Science Monitor.

     2. Once accepted, The Albert Baker Fund will send you a link to complete your grant application.

WHEN?

The deadline for applying is Jan. 31, 2019.  Selected students will be notified by March 1.

Click HERE to download a PDF flyer

 

The CSM Bootcamp weekend is a collaboration of The Albert Baker Fund (ABF) and The Christian Science Monitor. It has been made possible by generous ABF donors who are interested in supporting the next generation of outstanding Monitor journalists.

Christian Science Monitor – Bullying and the love that heals it

Susanne van Eyl published an article on the Christian Science Monitor recounting a time when she was bullied and didn’t know what to do. But when she remembered Jesus’ instruction that we love our enemies – and endeavored to put it into practice – the situation was beautifully resolved and the bullying stopped. The article […]

LoveSusanne van Eyl published an article on the Christian Science Monitor recounting a time when she was bullied and didn’t know what to do. But when she remembered Jesus’ instruction that we love our enemies – and endeavored to put it into practice – the situation was beautifully resolved and the bullying stopped. The article goes on to state:

In middle school I was bullied by a boy in my class. In the beginning he imitated everything I did, grinning insolently when he realized that I found it annoying.

Things went from there and culminated, perhaps a week later, in something more physical. As I entered the classroom, he put a bicycle lock around my neck in one quick motion and snapped it shut. Seconds later the teacher walked in, preventing me from doing anything. The boy went off to his seat gloating and laughing, and the other boys thought it was funny as well.

The teacher said nothing when he saw my mortified face, but made the boy take the lock off my neck before he dismissed the class. There were no further repercussions; the boy wasn’t punished, and I was expected to forget the whole thing. But I couldn’t.

That night I knew that something needed to be done to bring about change. I had learned in the Christian Science Sunday School that Jesus told his followers to love their enemies. He said, “Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you” (Luke 6:27, 28, New International Version). In the beginning this seemed impossible. How could I love someone who had humiliated me like this? But I didn’t want to retaliate in any way. I wouldn’t have known how, and I was sure that retaliation would just make things worse.

What I wanted was a permanent solution that would allow both of us to coexist – and thrive – in school. So I endeavored to love, which I felt was the only approach that could secure a permanent solution, and I promised myself that I would let nothing get in the way of my doing this. To help me accomplish that, I wrote on the last page of my notebook: “I need to love Peter F, too” (not his real name). A beautiful verse from a hymn expresses the spirit of my efforts. It reads:

Love with a heart of tenderness
Your enemies and friends; 
However hard this may appear, 
This quality just mends. 
For Love is God in action true, 
A presence that is felt;
A healing and a saving power 
That will all discord melt.
(Jill Gooding, “Christian Science Hymnal: Hymns 430-603,” No. 519, © CSBD)

Expressing God’s love towards those whom we might call our enemies doesn’t mean that we accept or even tolerate inappropriate or unkind behavior. On the contrary, such love is expressed from the basis of seeing and understanding our fellow man as spiritual and therefore innocent, pure, and harmless. This view naturally acts as a rebuke to any thought or action that isn’t in line with God’s goodness.

The next day, he went back to imitating me, but I knew what I had to do. Each time I felt anxious or upset, I told myself that my job was to love him and to pray to know that God loved both of us. This must mean that God wouldn’t let him harm me or anyone!

After recess a few days later, I saw that my notebook had been opened to the last page. Mortified, I realized he had seen what I had written there! But then I saw that, in his unkempt handwriting, he had replied: “Yes, and I need to love you, too.” To this day I don’t know how he had found my little statement, or why he had even opened my notebook. I had not shown the entry to anyone.

This was the end of the issue. We never talked about it, we never referred to it, and this boy never bothered me again. He had in the past teased other students and even some of the younger teachers, but that also stopped. I, in turn, was never again bullied by anyone.

If you would like to view this entire article on https://www.csmonitor.com, please click here.

 

Christian Science Monitor – What makes a veteran?

Sandy Sandburg published an article on the Christian Science Monitor website considering the spiritual power of qualities such as strength, honor, integrity, and brotherly love expressed by veterans from all walks of life. The following is a segment from this article: On Nov. 11 – a holiday in the United States, Britain, Canada, and other […]

Sandy Sandburg published an article on the Christian Science Monitor website considering the spiritual power of qualities such as strength, honor, integrity, and brotherly love expressed by veterans from all walks of life. The following is a segment from this article:

On Nov. 11 – a holiday in the United States, Britain, Canada, and other countries set aside to honor those who have served in the armed forces – it seems appropriate to ask, What comes to mind when you think of a veteran? A soldier receiving a medal? A white-haired guy wearing a baseball cap with the name of a Navy ship on it? Or some young man or woman in uniform at the airport on the way home from deployment overseas? Or maybe someone in a wheelchair who is disabled, or even someone who is homeless or unemployed?

These do indeed describe some folks who have served in the military, but there’s an entirely different way of thinking about veterans that’s especially meaningful to me.

It has to do with the expression of qualities such as courage, discipline, honor, integrity, thoughtfulness, brotherly love, and teamwork. This list could go on and on, but these qualities really speak for themselves when it comes to why we respect those who have served or are serving in uniform. Taking a moment to pause and be grateful for those who have expressed these qualities says something important – not only about them but about us, as well as about the culture that lifts up and values these qualities.

Why? Because when these qualities, which Christian Science explains are derived from God, are expressed consistently, especially when it seems difficult, they are the death knell to oppression, domination, and disease. Consider this: It was his love and understanding of God’s goodness and love that enabled a young man named David to express the courage and resourcefulness necessary to overcome the fierce warrior named Goliath (see I Samuel 17 in the Bible for the whole story).

Many generations later, it was spiritual insight, discipline, brotherly love, and above all absolute faith in the power of God to heal that prompted a veteran Roman officer and soldier to come to Jesus for help. This man was well-versed in giving orders, but he came humbly to Jesus, seeking the healing power of the Christ, Truth, for his servant, who was so ill he couldn’t leave his bed. The result? The disease was destroyed, and the servant was healed immediately (see Matthew 8:5-13).

As we recognize and acknowledge these spiritual qualities in those who have expressed them often under the most trying circumstances, our own expression of them inevitably grows…

If you would like to view this entire article on https://www.csmonitor.com, please click here.