Introduction to The Ten Commandments – Part 2

Most likely, you would not be reading this book if you were not already interested
in either a child’s spiritual education, or learning more about the Ten Commandments.
You may be in a situation where you are your child’s only source for this instruction:
perhaps you do not have a Christian Science Sunday School nearby, or maybe you are an
“independent” student of Christian Science, not affiliated with any organized church. It
might be that your child does attend a regular Sunday School, but you are looking for
ways to supplement their education at home. Perhaps you are new to Christian Science
and looking for some basic teachings. In any case, the purpose of this book is to provide
substantial lessons for “home Sunday School” that focus on the all-important First Lessons.
You may use it for yourself or with your children.

In no way do I consider myself either an authority on the Ten Commandments
and the other First Lessons, or a role model. I’m not in the public practice of Christian
Science. I’m simply a mother, a writer, and a former Sunday School teacher and superintendent.
My goal was to put together a series of brief, but in-depth, lessons to use with my own children, and then to share my research with other parents who might appreciate these ready-made lesson ideas.

When my twins were little, even though I was a stay-at-home mom, I was simply
too tired and busy to create what I had dreamed of for my own children: a systematic
plan for studying the First Lessons. It was just hard to find time for the necessary
research. I often wondered what “working” moms, or those with extremely active
families, do, to prepare and teach religious instruction at home. And what about families
who have just found Christian Science, but do not have a Sunday School nearby, and little
experience teaching children? With my deep feeling that a thorough understanding of the
First Lessons is the best foundation for a beginning student of Christian Science, I vowed
to get organized as soon as I could, and prepare a collection of mini-lessons for interested
parents. It took me a few years, but I finally got it all together.

So here is Volume One: The Ten Commandments. I plan two more volumes in
the future: one on the Beatitudes and the other on the Lord’s Prayer. These lessons are
intended to provide a prompt, or springboard, for parent/child discussions of the First
Lessons. Each lesson (except the ones for the youngest children) is in question-and-answer
format, with supporting citations from either the Bible or the writings of Mary
Baker Eddy, and includes suggestions for further study, or putting the new ideas into
practice. You decide, after reading the lessons, which ones are appropriate for your
family.

For those parents who are taking the time to teach the Ten Commandments to
their children, Mary Baker Eddy has some encouraging words: “It is a joy to know that
they who are faithful over foundational trusts, such as the Christian education of the dear
children, will reap the reward of rightness, rise in the scale of being, and realize at last
their Master’s promise, ‘And they shall be all taught of God.’” (My. 230)

We shall all be taught of God. Just because you may no longer be a child, doesn’t
mean the lessons inside will be of no use to you personally. I learned a lot of new facets
to the Ten Commandments as I did my research. Many mornings I have read the early
drafts of the individual lessons with my pre-teen girls at breakfast, and then tried to put
them into practice during the day. After all, it is the example we set for our children that
is most important. It is also an example that our Leader, Mary Baker Eddy, set. She once
wrote: “If I ever wear out from serving students, it shall be in the effort to help them to
obey the Ten Commandments and imbibe the spirit of Christ’s Beatitudes.” (Mis. 303)

(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume One: The Ten Commandments”)

 

 

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