We are just back from spending the last three days at our church’s Annual Meeting in Boston. Saturday evening there was a dinner outside under a tent followed by a hymn sing in The Mother Church (shown in this post with its incredible organ). Sunday was a church service, followed by an inspirational meeting in the afternoon. And Monday afternoon was the Annual Meeting itself.
In and around it all there was much conversation with friends and new acquaintances. My husband had the distinct delight of being approached by many people he didn’t know, who recognized him from his podcast, telling him effusively how much they love it. I photographed him with some of these lovely people below.
Here are some scraps of the content:
- The topic was Hearts on Fire, which comes from the Bible story from the walk to Emmaus, “Did not our hearts burn within us?” We thought about the metaphor of one log burning alone, compared to many logs on a fire burning together. Also about how the sparks from one burning log set others aflame.
- Revelations tells us to be cold or hot, not lukewarm. Thinking metaphors, we considered cold like digging a deep well of refreshingly cold water, where hot was being fervent and transformative. Lukewarm, which the Bible tells us to avoid, is equivalent to a “bland denial of Truth” which equates to mental malpractice, or the antipode of Christian Science. Really watch for and eliminate those pesky and pervasive bland denials of Truth!
- One man told the story of his three year old son coming in his room early in the morning and just wanting to spend time with him. It made him realize how often we go to God with an agenda or request instead of just asking to spend some time together. Our relationship would improve if we just sought out God to hang out together.
- Our church is built to relieve suffering in the world.
- Our church is filled with the loving hearts of those who yearn to be servants of mankind.
- Our church is a place where we can expect to be seen as God sees us, and where in return we see others that way too.
- Everyone should feel welcome in church regardless of race, past history, appearance, or who they love.
- God’s child could never be demonized or deified.
- From the story of the Prodigal Son, instead of asking “Father give me,” we can grow spiritually and ask instead, “Father make me.”
- “Cast your nets on the right side.” That’s where you’ll find what you are looking for.
- “What will you do about it? Will you be equally in earnest for the truth? Will you doff your lavender-kid zeal, and become real and consecrated warriors? Will you give yourselves wholly and irrevocably to the great work of establishing the truth, the gospel, and the Science which are necessary to the salvation of the world from error, sin, disease, and death? Answer at once and practically, and answer aright!” (Miscellaneous Writings, by Mary Baker Eddy, p. 177)
- To avoid decline either as an individual or as a church, thought must ascend.
- We see others first as complete, and then we share out of our joy.
I’m very grateful for this worldwide church of Love and to be unified with its Cause. We return home more convicted, more consecrated, and more energized to both contribute to its healing mission, as well as to spur on our own growth individually.