New Views

“Each success stage of experience unfolds new views of divine goodness and love.”
– Mary Baker Eddy

new vews of divine Love

I pointed my camera towards the sunset as I drove home – my eyes on the road – and clicked. I had no idea if this one was going to turn out or not… šŸ™‚

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“…bathes all in beauty and light.”

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

Love, redolent with unselfishness...

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

I Am Bow Eyes and Rudder Pivots

“The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”
– Aristotle

So a couple summers ago I bought an outdoor patio set – four deck chairs and a glass-topped table. All of these pieces of furniture needed assembly to actually become chairs and a table. But how hard could it be to put these things together, right? I was not ascared. I got out my trusty screwdriver and set to work. When I was finished I am proud to say that I had four dandy deck chairs and a glass-topped table that actually looked like four dandy deck chairs and a glass-topped table.Ā  You could actually sit in the chairs. The legs actually pointed down instead of up. You could actually put stuff on top of the table without it collapsing.

The fact that I had a couple screws left over when I was all done did not concern me at all. Or only a little. šŸ™‚

I saved the left-over screws. By themselves, of course, those left-over screws aren’t worth much – but maybe someday I’ll need them in another project – maybe someday they’ll be a part of something really cool.

I am, metaphorically-speaking, assembled patio furniture. Or… maybe a sailboat. Yeah, sailboats are awesome. I am a jaunty littleĀ Ā PocketShip.Ā  I’ve got bow eyes, and rudder eyes, rudder pivots, and rudder rod keepers, anchor chocks, and CB sheaves, sails and an anchor, and a bunch of other stuff. By itself a rudder pivot or a bow eye or an anchor chock doesn’t do much – but put all the PocketShip parts together and you’ve got a vessel you can use to take you on all kinds of wonderful adventures.

I am a Christian Scientist. I am also a mom, a wife, a daughter, a friend, a political progressive, an animal-lover, an outdoors aficionado, a photography buff, a wedding singer, and an author. Among other things. And all of those parts that make up the whole will sometimes find their way into my blog.

I’ve had Christian Scientists ask me why I post political posts on a blog titled “Adventures of the Madcap Christian Scientist” – and I think I can understand why other Christian Scientists might be concerned about this. There might, I suppose, be the concern that I’m trying to represent the beliefs and opinions of other Christian Scientists when I write my posts. But let me assure you, I’m not. I know there are other Christian Scientists who hold VASTLY different political views than myself. I like that about Christian Scientists. We’re not rigid monolithic automatons. The founder of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy, writes, “The time for thinkers has come.” And that’s what those who are living Christian Science try to do: Think. And not “think” in the way of the Borg of the Star Trek shows, but as individual expressions of Love, with their own individual conscience.

Christian Science informs the lives of all who try to live it. Christian Science has given me a way of looking at the world that’s influenced and informed my writing and photography, politics, and relationships with others. If all I posted on my blog were Bible quotes and Mary Baker Eddy quotes and discussions about religion I would not be sharing all that Christian Science has given me. And so I post my posts about animals, and adventures in the outdoors, and politics, and relationships with others on my blog. Because all of those parts are a part of my life as a Christian Scientist.

The loss of man’s identity through theĀ understanding which Science confers is impossible; and the notion of such a possibility is more absurd than to conclude that individual musical tones are lost in the origin of harmony.

This scientific sense of being, forsaking matter for Spirit, by no means suggests man’s absorption into Deity and the loss of his identity,Ā but confers upon man enlarged individuality, a wider sphere of thought and action, a more expansive love, a higher and more permanent peace.

A knowledge of the Science of being develops the latent abilities and possibilities of man. It extends the atmosphere of thought, giving mortals access to broader and higher realms. It raises the thinker into his native air of insight and perspicacity.
– Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures

Sacred Hour

I awaken at one in the morning,
eyes wide open, thoughts churning,
and pad downstairs to commune
with Love in quiet and stillness.

Calico cat comes to me then,
rubs against me, curls up next
to me and watches me open
my Christian Science Quarterly
Bible Lesson. Ahem. I am a week
behind, and travel back to last
week, and even the week before,
before starting this week’s lesson.

I underline and star verses and
thoughts of men who lived
more than 2,000 years ago,
and the words a woman wrote
and published in 1875. I am
connected to the aspirations,
hopes, and wisdom of people
no longer walking this planet.

Truth destroys death
“with the spiritual evidences of Life”
writes Mary Baker Eddy, and I think
of my mother – no longer with me
in body – but still with me in her love
for me and in “the spiritual evidences”
of her life. Death has no power
to separate me from her love.

“Fear thou not; for I am with thee…
I will strengthen thee… I will help thee…”
I read in IsaiahĀ and I remember
all the times in my life when Love
has brought me through, healed me,
cared for me. When has Love ever
failed me? And I feel Love spreading
strong wings over me, and gathering
me up close under soft feathers.

“‘God is Love.’ More than this we cannot
ask, higher we cannot look, farther we
cannot go…” writes Eddy, and I feel
enveloped in warmth and light.
Safe. Protected. Secure.

“For all the law is fulfilled in one word,
even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour
as thyself…” says Paul to the Galatians.
And I recognize the abiding truth
in those words, more than 2,000 years later.

“Firmness in error will never save
from sin, disease, and death…” writes Eddy,
and I take comfort in knowing that lies,
dishonesty, and ignorance have no reality
or power – and am reminded why it’s
useless to waste time and energy
investing in lies, dishonesty, and ignorance.

The cat stretches her paw towards me.
I pet her behind the ears and she smiles
a contented cat smile. She watches my pen
as I underline and star my Quarterly.
She is my partner in this morning’s
sacred hour.
– Karen Molenaar Terrell

Clara Kitty face

 

 

Heroes

Every single one of you who ventures forth into a new day in America is a hero. It takes courage just to walk out the front door these days – and you’ve got it. Go out there and shine like the sun shines. Love like that’s all you’re made of. You’ve got this.

“To those leaning on the sustaining infinite, today is big with blessings.”
– Mary Baker Eddy

Sunrise Over Skagit County, WA

The sun rises over a field in LaConner, WA. Photo by Karen Molenaar Terrell.

 

“Let us serve instead of rule…”

“Let us serve instead of rule, knock instead of push at the door of human hearts, and allow to each and every one the same rights andĀ  privileges that we claim for ourselves.”
– Mary Baker Eddy, Miscellaneous Writings, p. 303.

From a Facebook dialogue –
Ray – I have great respect for all you sacrificed for our country and for that I will ‘like’ your comment regarding your sacrifice. Thank you for sharing your feelings about our flag and anthem. I understand your feelings, and believe you shouldĀ have the right to stand for the anthem – just as I understand the feelings of those who choose not to stand for the anthem, and believe they should be allowed to practice their rights, also. God bless America. God bless our Constitution. God bless those who stand, and those who kneel. God bless the whole world – no exceptions.

Here’s where I am with it: How does it help anyone – how does it help our country – if we force other people to stand against their own conscience and pretend to feel and believe what we want them to feel and believe? If all these players who were kneeling now stand for the anthem because we force them to stand – how does this fix anything or make anything better? Would that really make you happy – knowing people were doing something against their own will and integrity? Are we really honoring veterans like my dad – who served in the South Pacific in WWII – by denying our citizens the freedoms they’re given in the Constitution of our country? No, I think we honor our veterans by using the freedoms they risked their lives to protect. And that includes using our First Amendment rights.
– Karen

“…you have the rights of conscience, as we all have, and must follow God in all your ways.”
– Mary Baker Eddy, Miscellaneous Writings, p 236.

God bless

“Unconstitutional and unjust coercive legislation and laws, infringing individual rights, must be ‘of few days, and full of trouble.'”
Mary Baker Eddy, Miscellaneous Writings, p. 80.