“I Believe in Obeying the Laws of the Land”

To answer any questions folks might be having about how Christian Science churches are responding to government restrictions during this time of sheltering-in-place, I thought it might be helpful to bring in the words of the founder of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy: “Whatever changes come to this century or to any epoch, we may safely submit to the providence of God, to common justice, to the maintenance of individual rights, and to governmental usages…When Jesus was questioned concerning obedience to human law, he replied: ‘Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s,’ even while you ‘render to God the things that are God’s.’

“I believe in obeying the laws of the land.”
– Mary Baker Eddy, Miscellany (p 220)

 

No One “Deserves” to be Sick

No one “deserves” to be sick.

When I took my first trip to Europe in 1980 I was fascinated by the old buildings. Some of them were, like, 700 years old! (Where I live the oldest buildings are maybe 150 years old.) I remember wanting to get up next to them and touch them – feel the vibes of all the people who touched them before me in history.

While he was giving me a tour of historic old buildings, my Dutch friend told me that during The Black Plague the entries to villages were actually designed to keep the sick people out – the sick were left to wander without food or shelter or succor in-between the towns. They were left on their own, alone and shunned.

I remember thinking how grateful I was that our world had become more civilized since then.

Right after I got back from Europe the AIDS epidemic hit, and I saw that we maybe hadn’t become all that more civilized. I saw people being shunned again. Some preachers told their congregations that these people deserved to be sick, and deserved to die.

It was a terrible time.

And now we have this. I’m seeing a lot that is giving me hope for our world – I’m seeing people coming together in a way I’ve never witnessed to help each other. And I’m seeing some things, too, that make me realize we still have a ways to go.

NObody “deserves” to be sick. NObody “deserves” to die. No matter your politics or religion, your age or medical history, or errors in judgment – no one “deserves” sickness and death.

In reality, we are all God’s innocent children. There is no guilt attached to us – to any of us. Every moment we are fresh and new and uncontaminated. There is no disease that is more powerful than God’s love and grace.

You are Love’s precious child.

Democratic Candidates

I posted this elsewhere – but I figured – buck up, Karen! Put it on your very own wordpress site! What’s the worst that can happen here, right?!  (Famous last words.)

Bloomberg: a gazillionaire who’s been linked to sexual harassment allegations and who thought the search and frisk policy was great. What he has going for him is that if he were in a debate with Trump he could talk about being more “successful” and more wealthy and a better businessmen, and etc.

Buttigieg – what I like about him is his energy, his way of speaking, his background in the military service. I really wish he wouldn’t show his ageism. I wish he had more experience at the national level.

Biden – he has the most experience working in the executive branch. He’s likable and has a back story that’s easy to sympathize with. But he’s too connected to the old guard. He is not a visionary. He doesn’t have the ability to inspire that others have.

Klobuchar – I like her a lot. I think she might be the best one of all of them at building consensus and working on compromise. But that scares me a little, too – I need to see that she can take a stand – that there are things she’s not willing to compromise.

Sanders – he inspires me. He knows how to rouse us and lead us. He’s smart. He has a quick sense of humor and knows how to use it to good effect. He stands his ground. He walks the walk. I love his wife. He’s idealistic. He doesn’t make compromises. This is the thing that also most concerns me – I’m not sure he’d be able to bring the two parties together and get things done. I don’t think the Republican legislators would work well with him.

Warren – she knows what it’s like to work hard to get where she is. I like that she was a special ed teacher. She’s experienced what it is to be a woman in our society – and – I apologize for the sexism of this, but that’s huge for me. She’s been patronized. She’s been condescended to. She was let go from her teaching job because she was pregnant – she knows what that feels like. She’s idealistic – but she’s also pragmatic. She stands up for the “little guy” and has done for all her life. I think she has ideas that would actually work – ideas that aren’t just pie in the sky.

Anyone care to share their thoughts?
– Karen

Loyalty to Good

Here’s a thought that’s been really helpful to me in the last several years: We don’t ever need to side with people – not with Trump or Pelosi or Obama or McCain, or whoever – we just need to side with Truth and Love. If I start there – with Truth and Love – everything else sort of falls into place after that. Is this path leading me towards Love – towards being kinder, more thoughtful, more selfless, more compassionate, more understanding of others? If not, then do not waste time with it. Does that road lead to Truth? Is it going to make me more honest? Will I still have my integrity intact at the end of that road? If not, then do not follow that road.

I’m thinking our only loyalty should be to what is good in this world – to what is kind and honest and selfless and decent and honorable.

Alrighty. That concludes today’s sermon. Carry on then…
– Karen

Valentine’s Gift

“Love, redolent with unselfishness, bathes all in beauty and light.”
– Mary Baker Eddy

It may not come in the form
of a Valentine’s card
a box of chocolates
a sparkly ring in a jewelry box
a dozen roses
But if you look for it today
you’ll see it –
that gift meant just for you –
the evidence of Love’s love.

See it in the smile you get
from a stranger,
in the sunrise and sunset,
the stars sparkling
in the night sky
and the rainbow
unique to you
– no one else sees it
just as you do.

You bring your own gift
within you wherever
you go.
Feel it. Hear it.
Embrace it. Know
Life’s love.
– Karen Molenaar Terrell

 “Three components are necessary for a rainbow. There must be sun, there must be raindrops, and there must be a conscious eye…your eyes must be located at that spot where the refracted light from the sunlit droplets converges to complete the required geometry. A person next to you will complete his or her own geometry… and will therefore see a separate rainbow… As real as the rainbow looks, it requires your presence just as much as it requires sun and rain.”
– Robert Lanza, Biocentricism

A rainbow arches over Padilla Bay in Skagit County, Washington. (photo by Karen Molenaar Terrell)

“Cheaters Edition”

We were shopping at Fred Meyer’s today and I came upon a new version of “Monopoly” (the board game). This version is called “Monopoly: Cheater’s Edition.” It came out in June, 2018. Here’s what the game is about: “Follow, bend or break the rules to win the Cheaters Edition of the Monopoly board game. Cheating is part of the game. Don’t get caught. This Monopoly game includes a plastic handcuff unit that ‘chains’ cheating players to Jail space. Cheat cards encourage players to cheat and which cheat to attempt. Complete a cheat to get a reward; fail a cheat and pay the consequences.”
 
And it struck me that this new version of Monopoly is pretty representative of where our nation is right now. Our current president has shown us it’s okay to lie, cheat, bribe a foreign nation, and brag about “grabbing pussy” – so long as you don’t get caught – and then even if you DO get caught it’s okay – so long as you can threaten and bully your way out of it. Here is a man who created a fake university to collect tuition money from students hoping to make better lives for themselves. Here is a man who has refused to pay his workers. Here is a man who threatened to withhold funds approved by congress to an ally nation in order to make a political rival look bad. Here is a man who’s called our Constitution – the document he’s pledged to protect – “phony” because it kept him from making money from his resort. Here is a man who, from day one, has been dismantling our environmental protections.
 
Some folks have suggested that we need to quickly stop the trial of this president so we can “unite” again as a nation. But I disagree with this sentiment. Ending this trial quickly is not going to help “unite” us. Ignoring this president’s misdeeds, trying to shuffle them under the carpet, and letting him continue to get away with lying, cheating, and bribery is NOT going to help our country move forward – and it is certainly not going to help our nation unite and heal.
– Karen Molenaar Terrell

“Though error hides behind a lie, and excuses guilt, error cannot forever be concealed. Truth, through her eternal laws, unveils error. Truth causes sin to betray itself, and sets upon error the mark of the beast. Even the disposition to excuse guilt or to conceal it is punished. The avoidance of justice and the denial of truth tend to perpetuate sin, invoke crime, jeopardize self-control, and mock divine mercy.”
– Mary Baker Eddy

Dear Senators…

Dear senators –

We, the people you serve, are depending on you to represent us with integrity, wisdom, and courage during the coming impeachment trial.

The evidence and testimony we have seen during the last months shouldn’t be ignored – evidence that shows threats to Ambassador Yovanovitch’s life and career; the assessment by the Government Accountability Office that our president violated the law by withholding nearly $400 million in military aid to the Ukraine; an interview with Lev Parnas that indicates our president (and many others in political service to our country) “knew exactly what was going on.”

If those who represent us do nothing in the face of all this evidence, they are setting a dangerous precedent and showing us that our president and those who surround him really ARE above the law. If what Lev Parnas says is shown to be true and our representatives don’t take action against THIS massive corruption in our government, when DO they take action?! If THIS is ignored/accepted then you’ll be giving license to every politician to ignore our Constitution and laws. Our democracy will be finished.

Please stand up and send the message that corruption in our government is not okay and will not be tolerated – now or in the future.

– Karen Molenaar Terrell