Do you drink wine?

Question to a Christian Scientist: Do you drink wine?

bunch of grapes

Answer that one individual gave: 
Oh yes, but it's not the usual kind that comes in a bottle! I like to think of the "wine" I drink as "Inspiration; understanding", the way it is defined in Mary Baker Eddy's book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.

Every day, for one to two hours, I imbibe divine inspiration and understanding! It is what I take in each morning in the weekly Christian Science Bible Lesson. With this Holy Spirit, God uses me to magnify His nature. This "wine" strengthens, revitalizes and firms up anything weak, fearful, feeble or shrinking. It sustains me each day, even if I should wander into sadness, doubt or darkness. Through it, spontaneous good ideas spring up. The material sense of things disappears. Spiritual "wine" imparts to me what life is really all about and how it has deeper meaning than what appears on the surface.

The "wine" of Spirit illuminates my day, showing me the nothingness of problems that crop up. It is my morning workout, fitting me to be strong and admit into my thought only the good that God is abundantly giving me.

Thoughts after recent Mind, Body, Spirit Expo

Barbara Ohannes, C.S.

Barbara Ohannes, C.S.

Listen to Barbara Ohannes, a Christian Science Practitioner, who helped staff a recent Christian Science booth at the Mind, Body, Spirit Expo in Skokie, IL. There, she talked to many people searching for fulfillment and answers to problems. In this audio she remembers how she, working as a medical nurse, was introduced to and became a Christian Scientist.

Just click on arrow below to listen.

Setting the Table of Your Life with Gratitude

From Tim Mitchinson's blog post of Nov. 21, 2015. Tim is the media spokesman for Christian Science in Illinois and a Christian Science practitioner.

My mom took such joy in Thanksgiving.  She especially enjoyed setting the table – laying out the china, flatware, goblets and cloth napkins that were used only on special occasions.  And there was always a beautiful centerpiece.
I remember a political commentator using the phrase “set the table” to refer to political campaigns establishing their strategy as they get ready for the upcoming primaries.  It’s a good phrase for all of us to think about.  How do you prepare for special occasions, your workday, or just every day?  How do you “set the table” of your life?
Gratitude is a great way to “set the table”… click here to read the whole post.

Finding a Recipe for Beauty

Tim Mitchinson, the spokesperson for Christian Science in Illinois, wrote this blog on October 1, 2015.

The quest to look good can be a creative thing.  It may include discovery and exploration of different clothes, hairstyles, etc. that express your uniqueness. But unfortunately, it can also become a dangerous obsession – using extreme measures to feel beautiful.

These measures may range from cosmetic and plastic surgeries, to extreme dieting and the overuse of tanning facilities.  More and more physicians are advising individuals to think very seriously about the health risks of these measures.

A survey by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS,) notes that complications from inferior surgeons are so widespread that, of the more than 150,000 cosmetic nose jobs done each year, nearly 21% are corrective procedures.

Have you ever done anything extreme in order to improve your looks?  I have, and learned a lot in the process.

According to the Social Issues Research Center in Oxford, England, “We are all more obsessed with our appearance than we like to admit.  According to the SIRC, “We have become accustomed to extremely rigid and uniform standards of beauty…that have become harder and harder to attain…”

So how can we have a healthy image of ourselves?  Please click here to read the entire post.

Are moments of prayer beneficial to our health?

From Tim Mitchinson's blog of September 16, 2015. Tim is the spokesperson for Christian Science in Illinois.

"Have you ever watched an orchestra?  There are times when everyone is playing, but also times when various musicians are given the opportunity to rest.  A music director I knew used to say, “The rests are the hardest notes to play”.
Sometimes taking a rest from our normal, busy lives may seem the hardest thing to do..." Click to read more from this post.

Don't Stress – Express!

When olive oil is pressed out of the olives it involves the exertion of force. But the expression of Spirit in man comes by rest – the very opposite of force! It's a little more like letting Spirit rest on us than forcing it to come out.

"Identity is the reflection of Spirit, the reflection in multifarious forms of the living Principle, Love. Soul is the substance, Life and intelligence of man, which is individualized, but not in matter. Soul can never reflect anything inferior to Spirit.  Man is the expression of Soul." So writes Mary Baker Eddy in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures on page 477.

One week, not long ago, I was becoming stressed about all I had to get done. Things were beginning to weigh heavily on me during the work day. When I saw a friend at lunch she immediately said: "What's the matter, you're upset!" I had been oblivious to the state of my thought being outwardly projected, but she saw it instantly, painted in my body language. I had to wonder how I could have been so unaware of what was being painted, by thought, all over this canvas, so to speak, called the body.

Gratefully, this alert stopped me in my tracks and I reached out to God to learn more from this situation. I wanted to let Spirit, the great Animator, rest upon me. I also like thinking of Spirit as the divine painter or, as Mary Baker Eddy refers to Spirit as "the great architect". Spirit brings out everything that is needed in His spiritual ideas – including me! 

Sometime we shall learn how Spirit, the great architect, has created men and women in Science. We ought to weary of the fleeting and false and to cherish nothing which hinders our highest selfhood.

(page 67 of Science and Health)

Only good and harmonious thoughts, originating in the divine Mind, can really appear in our true identity. I needed to let that identity, the masterpiece of the divine Creator, be naturally expressed in me.

All infinite Soul's good ideas and capacities are imaginatively expressed in a way that delights! This other counterfeit painting – the image produced by material thinking – was not the genuine work of art. By accepting both good and bad as a natural occurance I was not recognizing my real God-made individuality.

I'm happy to say that my work day resolved into a very peaceful conclusion when I gave up the stress and let the Spirit rest on my thoughts.

The Movie "Two Days, One Night" as a Modern Parable

Unselfed actions can lead to truly satisfying conclusions. In our modern society, where competition can be fierce, it's easy to forget this Biblical precept and more common to look out for one's own interests. The Belgian movie "Two Days, One Night", which I saw last week, was a modern parable on loving your neighbor as yourself.

It's not an easy ride as we go along with Sandra (portrayed by French actress Marion Cotillard) from house to house asking her co-workers to vote for her to stay on the job, rather than receive their yearly bonus. She has been away on sick leave and her supervisor has discovered that they can get along very well without her if the others will just work a little overtime. The boss agrees to put it to a vote of the employees.

"Let no man seek his own, but each his neighbour's good." (I Corinthians 10:24 American Standard Version) The movie gets down to probing how hard it is to give up your own needs and benefits to help another. But being unafraid to practice this kindness points to a growing understanding of our spiritual substance – the most satisfying wealth we can possess. Each person in the movie struggles with this question and the outcome is surprising.

The Bible Lesson on "Substance", from the Christian Science Quarterly, helps us place our prosperity and security in God, rather than in material things or people. When we let our actions reflect God, divine Love, we are ready to recognize the blessings pouring out impartially from this infinite source.