Monday, November 30, 2020

Abigail - A Love Story

By Ken G. Cooper

NABAL:

I am rich.

I have three thousand sheep, a thousand goats.

That sets me well apart from other people.

My money lets me buy and get myself out of any problems.

What I think and do is all that matters,

- and that includes anything concerning my wife, the beautiful Abigail.

She loves me, as is her due, and I deserve no less.

 

ABIGAIL:

I love him for his good qualities.

And I love him because he is my husband.

Sometimes, nay, too often, he fulfils the attributes of his name.

But he needs my wisdom to counteract his foolishness.

I will be loyal to his goodness, the tenderness he occasionally shows.

But I shall have respect to my virtues

And seek to instil them in my man because I love him.

 

NABAL:

A band of ten young men have sought my presence.

As something to do, I deign see them, these servants of this David.

I have heard of him, but I shall nevertheless demean him in their eyes,

Make him out as nothing, a nobody, and them therefore as worthless knaves.

They seek to share my riches! Let them grovel with their empty request.

The custom of hospitality is for fools.

I shunt them away with my words.

One of my servants dares approach to speak on their behalf. I know his face but not his name. He is a slave, nothing more. I wave him away with a flick of my hand and snap my fingers for my wine cup to be filled.

 

The insult enrages DAVID.

Four hundred men get themselves armed

Gath’ring their pace towards Nabal

For he and all his will be harmed.

 

ABIGAIL:

One of our servants, Shammah, comes running to me, bows and begs my attention.

His words run through me like a sword. Oh Nabal! Nabal!

We are all in peril for our lives.

There is no time to lose.

I order a feast of supplies, done quickly, sent on before me.

There is no time or wisdom to tell Nabal. The servants leave. I follow.

 

An angry DAVID leads his men

Their swords are drawn and blood-ready

But laden asses cross his path:

Abigail’s resolve holds steady.

 

ABIGAIL:

Gifts from our best produce mellow his wrath.

I meet the proud David, falling at his feet, beseeching him.

I take upon me full responsibility for all that has made him angry,

Offering my life to spare the foolish life of Nabal.

I appeal to his reason, to his innate sense of justice and mercy.

I see in him what I would see in my own husband, despite my admission of his folly Nabal name.

An underlying strength of purpose born of love for both men flows out from my heart,

Gives me a power that seems divine and omnipresent.

It lends eloquence to my words, and a surety that he will respond truly.

 

[DAVID]

Like melting mist his anger gone

Replaced as warmth of rising sun 

He blesses me with generous word

And thanks me for a deed well done.

 

ABIGAIL:

I return back to Nabal, - quite oblivious of what has passed, and find him feasting to glut.

He is beyond reason, senses dulled to nothingness in the excess of self-gratification.

I will tell him when he is sober what has come to pass, for it is right that he knows and understands.

 

And in the morning, when the sun’s rays lifted the dark, I told him everything.

As I spoke the light of Truth shone steadfastly through my words and the error of his ways touched me no more.

His heart turned to stone in the cold realization of all he had done,

And for ten long days I nursed him as one would a newborn babe.

 

NABAL:

I love you Abigail.

 

ABIGAIL:

Ten days of utter dependence, enforced humility, his wealth irrelevant, my love all.

On the tenth day I wiped a tear from his eye, and he passed from my company.

I knelt once again before God and He comforted me.

 

[DAVID]

So Abigail was left alone.

Days followed, and the news soon spread:

It reached to David, now contrite,

That churlish Nabal, he was dead.

 

ABIGAIL:

I prayed for my departed husband, and I also prayed for myself.

God rewarded my prayer, for this David sought me as his wife, not in conquest but in love.

I found a richness in living that surpassed the empty richness of wealth,

In humility I was led to grandeur, and gave all I had.


SO IN LOVE WAS TENDER BLESSING,

NO MORE HELD BY WHAT WAS WRONG

BOTH WERE BLESSED BY LOVE’S NEW CARING

IN DEEP RESPECT, THEIR MARRIAGE STRONG.


SO THE EVIL THAT WAS DEADLY

OVERCOME BY ACTION FAST.

HUMBLE LOVE A LOVELY LESSON

GOD’S CREATION SEEN, ..SO VAST!

 

 

https://twitter.com/kengcooper     

Download a PDF of this poem

©Ken G Cooper 2020                        
kencooperpoetry.com                     
kengcooper@btinternet.com                                                       
Ken G Cooper Poetry You Tube

 

 

Saturday, November 28, 2020

Treatment Ideas for November 28, 2020

 By Julio C. Rivas, CS

All-Causative Harmony-Mind
 
“God saw everything he had made: it was supremely good.” — Gen. 1: 31. “I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it:” — Eccl. 3: 14, KJ
 
“All substance, intelligence, wisdom, being, immortality, cause, and effect belong to God.” — M B Eddy 
 
“I had just concluded giving a Christian Science association address in Australia when a gruesome, international, terrorist attack occurred. All nations went on high alert, while pain and mourning were widespread. Also, anger, vengeance, and hatred skyrocketed. I was far away from my young children, and I was very concerned for them. I sought refuge in the healing ideas and inspiration I had lived while presenting the association address. As I synchronized with Love’s All, and my internal Christly peace, I felt the power of the billions of people who were also communing with and acting on the impelling forces of Love-Harmony. I personally witnessed (and also read about) innumerable instances of Christly generosity and healing. While the carnal senses are enraged, inflamed and destructive, our actual beings abide in all-causative Mind-Love. It is from this Christly sanctum that we heal.” 
 
 Julio C. Rivas, CS, is a Christian Science practitioner in Los Angeles, California. Connect with Julio»
 
 

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Treatment Ideas for November 25, 2020

 By Julio C. Rivas, CS

Gratitude/Healings
 
“Give to the Lord the glory due His name; Bring an offering, and come before Him. Oh, worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness! 31Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; And let them say among the nations, “The Lord reigns.”” — 1 Chronicles 16: 29, 31
 
“If action proceeds from the divine Mind, action is harmonious.” — M B Eddy 
 
“Munificent Mind-Love, I thank You for the power and grace you’ve crowned us with to forgive, cherish, bless, heal, support, comfort, and honor each other. We are Your Love-acting. We are the unified living of You — the One-All, our Ego-Love. This heartfelt cognition is releasing Your harmonizing/healing potency throughout my life, in everyone, and into the world.” 
 
 Julio C. Rivas, CS, is a Christian Science practitioner in Los Angeles, California. Connect with Julio»

Monday, November 16, 2020

In the Atmosphere of Love

 By Ken G. Cooper

In the atmosphere of Love we move.

No mist is here*,

No fog to hide the way,

To smother the heart’s intent,

Leaving lost and confused the mortal soul.

 

Love beckons:

Clears the road before me,

A pure-lighted path that guides me home,

Home to the habitation of God;

No, not just nearby,

 nor yet long way off on far horizon,

But here and NOW,

An adventure already complete,

The fullness and presence of unfolding infinity.

 

The one Father-Mother God

Nestles Life’s children in eternal comfort,

Perfect health,

Resting in the action of Soul and freedom in Truth.

 

Infinite Love my only dwelling

And abiding.

My safe and happy home. 

 

*Gen.2:6

 

https://twitter.com/kengcooper     

YouTube version of this poem

©Ken G Cooper 2020                        
kencooperpoetry.com                     
kengcooper@btinternet.com                                                       
Ken G Cooper Poetry You Tube

 

 

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Peter's Faith

 By Ken G. Cooper

Heaving, rocking, no ordinary squall,

Forget the fishing, survival is all:

The wind is contrary, deep is the night,

When we see Jesus, - it gives us a fright!

 

We had left him alone upon the far shore:

This must be a spirit amidst the storm’s roar!

But he felt our fear as waves merged with sky,

Calmly said, “Be not afraid; it is I”

 

My thoughts were in turmoil, how could this be, -

Things impossible he’d do constantly.

The previous day five thousand were fed

And all he had were some fish and some bread.

 

Walking on water and standing on sea,-

It does make me question reality!

Dare I believe in my friend, in my Lord,

“If it really is you, give me the word”.

 

I feel the strength of his simple command

For he has said “Come” and I cannot be harmed.

I step out of the boat and onto the sea:

Each step toward Jesus has strange buoyancy.

 

But winds and waves continue to scream.

What am I doing? Surely I dream?

I look down at my feet, deep water there,

I feel all alone. I feel sudden fear.

 

It seems like slow motion, as I start to sink,

I’d glimpsed something true, I’d been on the brink,

But this is no dream, am I going to drown?

“Lord save me!” I cry as I drop down down down.

 

He answers my need without need of time.

In the instant I call his arm around mine.

My friends stand amazed, they all want to shout.

But Jesus asks quietly “Why didst thou doubt?”

 

Jesus’ calm presence dissipates fears.

We enter the ship, and the storm disappears.

The power of God and dominion of man

Becomes even clearer, for with God we can!

 

I now claim the faith that mountains can move,

The mere mustard seed that thy works I prove,

For I will remember, undoubtedly,

When I saw the Christ, I walked on the sea.

 

See Matthew 14: 15-33

 

 

https://twitter.com/kengcooper     

YouTube version of this poem

©Ken G Cooper 2020                        
kencooperpoetry.com                     
kengcooper@btinternet.com                                                       
Ken G Cooper Poetry You Tube

 

 

Thou Art the Christ

By Ken G. Cooper

(Matthew 16:13-18, Mark 8:27-29, John 6:68, 69)

It was another hot day. We were walking with Jesus, following wherever he went, never knowing where, but always following his instincts.  I glanced behind us, Lake Huleh was still visible, up ahead the magnificent Mount Horeb took the skyline.  We were all together, twelve disciples chosen to witness and share his mission, looking forward as ever to meeting people in the next village we would come to, telling them of the Kingdom of Heaven at hand. We were now seasoned travellers with this man Jesus. We had been across the whole of Galilee, visited Judea, Samaria, Phoenicia! - our physical horizons extended way beyond the expectations of our previous lives, but it was our spiritual horizons constantly changing and enlarging that really took hold.

We were spread out along the way. Jesus was talking with John, I was with Andrew, the others in little groups behind us.  I glanced at Andrew and suddenly thought back to when we were casting a net into the Galilean lake. A voice had called out “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men”.  I’m still so amazed that we did! Years of fishing insufficient to counter the sheer presence of this man, his authority, a love that reached forth, a calling to our inner consciousness. He knew we would follow.  And we did.

It’s been well over a year now. We seem to have been everywhere, witnessed so much, - from the first miracle of turning water in to wine in Cana, the healing of my wife’s mother, - yes, - still so fresh in memory, - no asking how she felt, what seemed to be wrong, but a deep compassion, the outstretched hand just lifting her up as though nothing was ever wrong, and she carried on as though nothing ever had been wrong! But all the healings were like that!! He never asked what was wrong, what the symptoms were like, what problems needed addressing. He never needed to. Never side-tracked by the lies or temptations of the devil. He was ever at one with God, and either by simple command or touch of hand the sick were healed, lame people suddenly found they could walk, deaf, blind or dumb, - it didn’t matter, they walked away hearing, seeing, speaking. Immediately! And this last week, he had fed yet another multitude.  He had a knowledge of a law of good overriding any other law. He knew deep within himself what we were trying hard to understand. He was knowing and proving the power of God continually and so naturally. So here we were following him, wanting so much to understand, to share what he was so effortlessly doing. 

And with that yearning to understand, I remembered being next to him as he gave his Sermon on the Mount, - all the blessings given, the surety of God’s love, - the need to pray daily to “Our Father”, and the recognition this was a mutual prayer, for we knew how hard and often he also prayed to God, and urged us to do the same, not just on the Sabbath, but all the time. His understanding of God was so special and alive.

He has stopped and turned around. As the others caught up, I looked at his face, realising just how much he meant to me. His love was unconditional, it embraced us all. He was unique, chosen by God, and I was humbled that he in turn had chosen me, - indeed all of us.  

He looked at each of us. I was wondering what parable or wisdom he would now share, but it was a simple question:

“Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?”

The answers came at random, no one insisting on their answer, but sharing what was being said and shared with us as we went along, - confusion with John the Baptist was common, but all the old prophets were mentioned, - Elias, Jeremias, - anyone one of several. But he wanted to dig deeper, and I waited for the next question. It came!

“But whom say ye that I am?”

Had he been reading my thoughts, - knowing it was just that question that I had been asking myself a moment or two ago? – searching that special standing he had with God? Was I prepared to state out loud what I had deep down come to conclude, and here he was drawing out from me the fundamental fact of his mission, the very reason that we knew why he was not just another prophet.  My words in response were as if by inspiration, - a fulfilment of what I had been thinking, the realisation of a wonderful truth:

“Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God”

His response was immediate, and I felt he had a joy in his answer, as if I had taken a step, nay a stride, forward, as one he knew I was able to take, and he had been waiting for the moment:

Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.”

I felt a unity with him, the recognition of God as our Father, a common purpose. As he listened to God, so too must I. The Christ is God’s message to man, and Jesus personified it, the Son of the Living God.

He carried on:

 “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”

Not Simon but Peter, a new calling, a confirmation that I had moved on and must move on further, not based on any personality but on the qualities that God had given me, the foundation of rock and steadfastness, the statement that upon that rock his church was to be built! I suddenly understood so much more of the full nature of the Christ, lifting us out of human ability into God’s purpose and provision, fully protected even against the very gates of hell! I didn’t feel alone but even more blessed. 

Jesus spake on, looking at me with all the power and authority of the Christ:

“And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

His words went through my very being. I felt the presence of the kingdom of heaven, its holy outreach and invincibility, my part in sharing heaven on earth. The immense role of Jesus, and my role in support and love of him now so clear. He told us not to tell anyone he was Christ and I felt the wisdom of protecting the truth until the time was right.

We continued our journey. My thoughts were alive, I felt again the presence of the kingdom of heaven at hand, the power of the Christ within me.

He has made my mission clear, and as we walked on I looked again at Hebron, saw that mighty mountain of rock, and rejoiced in my heart. The need to be a spiritual rock, my calling that Jesus had now inspired, was so much mightier than even Hebron, and unlike Hebron, this rock could never be eroded. I had glimpsed the omnipotence of God. I was walking at one with the Christ.

 

https://twitter.com/kengcooper     

YouTube version of this monologue

©Ken G Cooper 2019                         
kencooperpoetry.com                     
kengcooper@btinternet.com                                                       
Ken G Cooper Poetry You Tube

 


Tuesday, October 27, 2020

DISCOVERING WHAT OUR DISCOVERER’S WORDS WERE MEANT TO MEAN

 By Tom Taffel

By definition, a living language continually changes its words, usage and meaning.  As you will see, Mary Baker Eddy was an inspired wordsmith, prayerfully and patiently choosing her words with meticulous care and deliberation and reflection.  Today, unfortunately, so many of her words fail to communicate the ideas they once conveyed.  Many of her words have lost their meaning and relevance. 

I think of Mrs. Eddy’s poems as her prayers.  The seven poems in the Christian Science Hymnal were written over a period of thirty-two years - one of which she revised for twelve years.  If we study them in the context of her time, taking semantics into account, we can unlock the feeling, passion, significance, and affection hidden by today’s technologically driven use of the ever-changing English language.

But as articulate and unequivocal as Mrs. Eddy was, semantics … the change of meaning and use of words - has compromised her precision, intent, and clarity.  For example: “O make me glad for every scalding tear,” has no meaning to us, today, until we realize that in Mrs. Eddy’s day, the word “scalding” simply meant “cleansing.”  Clothes and medical equipment were scalded.  Consider the difference between “cleansing,” tears and “scalding” tears.

Her seven poems found in the Christian Science Hymnal are by far her best and most beloved … and rightly so!  But unfortunately, we have been robbed of their richness, vividness and healing dynamics because her words no longer convey the meaning she envisioned.  So, utilizing a dictionary of her time, (1870’s), I have attempted to restore the original meaning of her words - based on old and somewhat faded definitions.

Sources:

THE STUDENTS REFERENCE DICTIONARY by Dr. Noah Webster, 1847.

THE COMPACT EDITION OF THE OXFORD ENGLISH DICTIONARY, by Oxford University Press, 1971.

THE RANDOM HOUSE DICTIONARY of the ENGLISH LANGUAGE, The Unabridged Edition, Random House, 1966.

  

Christ My Refuge

O’er waiting harpstrings of the mind

STRAIN - Song, note or sound.

LOW - Not exalted in thought; in a humble state, grave.

SAD - Heavy, ponderous, weary or tired.  Settled; firmly established in purpose. Steadfast, firm, constant, fixed, strong.

SWEET - Soft or excellent music; pleasing to the ear: melodious, soft, gentle, mild.  In a sound or wholesome condition.

BREATHED - Uttered.

RAPTURED - Transport, ecstasy, extreme joy or pleasure.

KISS - Touch gently, caress, a token of reverence.

 

Communion Hymn

Saw ye my savior?  Heard ye the glad sound?

BOSOM – Tender affection, kindness, interior.

TEARS – Physical irritation.

GLOOM – Obscurity; partial or total darkness. Cloudiness or heaviness of mind.

FOUNTAIN – Source; first principle or cause.

FOUL - Impure, polluted, obscene, wicked, hateful.

EXALT – To magnify, purify, refine.  To elevate with joy or confidence.

CREED – Any system of principles which are believed or professed.

 

Feed My Sheep

Shepherd, show me how to go

STUBBORN - Stiff, inflexible, harsh, rough, rugged.

CALLOUS - Hardened in mind; insensible, unfeeling.

BREAST - Repository of consciousness/conscience. Seat of the affections and emotions.

STUPID - Insensible, sluggish.

BARREN - Unproductive; not containing useful ideas, dull.

TEAR - Physical irritation.

TRIUMPH - To be prosperous; to flourish.

LAMBKINS - Innocent or tender child; a little lamb.

TILL - Until - (Verb: to care strive for, take care of, to improve by labor or study).

BEAM - Splendor.

 

Mother’s Evening Prayer

O gentle presence, peace and joy and power

NESTLING - Young child or bird.

FALTERING - Hesitating, to fall short, fail, lose momentum.

SNARE - Entangling trap which impedes progress and is usually deceptively attractive.

PIT - Whatever ensnares or traps resulting in misery.

FALL - Departure from the faith. Death, to vanish, perish, decline in power, wealth, glory.

NIGH - Near in time and place.  Easy to obtain and learn.  Ready to forgive, aid and defend.

SCALDING – Cleansing.

HOPE - Desire and expectation of obtaining something good.

DISDAIN – Unworthy of notice, care, regard or esteem.

NARROW - Near, extremely precise or close.

FOWLER - Hunter of wild fowl.

PESTILENCE - Corruption or moral disease destructive to happiness.

BREAST - Seat of the affections and emotions.  The repository of consciousness and conscience.

  

Love

Brood o’er us with Thy sheltering wing

BROOD – To warm and protect.

DOVE -  Innocence.

REED – Person or thing too weak to rely on.  Easily swayed.

STRAIN – Power, authority, note or song.

ROD – Instrument of correction measurement, support.

KISS – Token of reference to touch gently, caress.

CHASTEN – To purify from error.

PRIDE – Inordinate self-esteem; unreasonable conceit of one’s own superiority, talent, beauty, wealth, accomplishments.

SWELLED – To become louder.

LAY – Song, unhallowed, unsatisfied, unspiritual worldly.

STRIFE – Opposition. Struggle for victory.

 

Christmas Morn

Blest Christmas morn through murky clouds

MURKY – Dark, obscure, gloomy.

REPLETE – Completely filled, full, abundantly provided.

SHADE – Shelter, protection.

GENTLE – Soft, soothing.

BEAM – Unreserved satisfaction pleasure, joy, splendor.

STRIFE – Struggle for victory, contention for superiority.

CRUEL – Causing pain or grief to others in body or mind.

CREED – Any system of principles which are believed or professed.

TAINT – Poison, corruption, infection.

STAY – Support, comfort strength.

 

Satisfied

It matters not what be thy lot

LOT – That which is given by fate, destiny or chance, hazard, divine determination.

BETIDE - The fate or end of, whatever happens.

STONES - Insensibility, unfeeling, hasty to judgement; to be first to condemn or blame.

SEED – Original first principle.

DARKLING – Obscure, in the dark.

TATTERS – To tear into shreds.

AYONT – Beyond.

THRALL – Slavery.

BREAK – First appearance of light in the morning, pause, interruption.

SATISFIED – To cause the mind to rest in confidence by ascertaining the truth.