August 2023 Newsletter – Weeding Thorns and Removing Stickers: A Talk by Anna Lisa Kronman CS

Oriana HaleNewsletterLeave a Comment

Every month the house Christian Science practitioner for Fern Lodge gives an inspirational talk for the Christian Science nurses. It was such a blessing in June to hear from Anna Lisa Kronman, who, besides being a board member, is a consistent presence amongst our staff and patients. Here is a summary of this talk and a list of relevant citations:

The intriguing title for this talk was “Weeding Thorns and Removing Stickers” and it was a very interactive talk, inviting consistent audience participation, both verbally and in writing.

“We’re going to begin where we want to end,” she said, inviting each listener to consider the ideal qualities they would like to see in their environment. Some of the responses included harmony, peace, joy, as well as seeing and feeling tangibly Love’s presence; warmth, comfort, safety; and the Kingdom of Heaven.

Then came the consideration of thorns and stickers that seem to pop up in everyone’s experience. These are a common biblical metaphor, mentioned over fifty times in Scripture! She read some passages that included thorns or weeds and asked her listeners to analyze what these intruders symbolized and what “spiritual pesticides” might be used to remove them. Then it came time for us to apply this to our experience. What thorns and stickers are we encountering? How can we mentally weed those from our thought? What passages from our textbooks might we think of right this moment to help in this weeding? She said, “It doesn’t have to be verbatim, but something that you know that is a great eradicator of mental weeds, of thistles and thorns.”

She then pointed out that when you want to remove weeds, you want the ground to be soft from rain, because the root will come up more easily. Similarly, if we are staying tuned to God’s messages, that is akin to keeping that ground pliable, so what is undesirable or mortal mind is easier to identify and remove. She asked the audience to define what qualities of thought could be hard ground and what could be soft ground.

She then read Jesus’ parable of the wheat and tares. She discussed how the farmer was patient until the wheat and tares could be separately identified. He wasn’t afraid, and did not condemn himself or blame others. He did correctly identify the apparent source: “an enemy”, or belief in a power apart from God. She then shared Mary Baker Eddy’s insight on it: “The temporal and unreal never touch the eternal and real. The mutable and imperfect never touch the immutable and perfect.” (SH 300:13). She gave a testimony wherein this passage was instrumental in healing a belief of lice, removing them from experience.

We ended where we began, embracing harmony, peace, and joy. The Kingdom of Heaven, she pointed out, is where thorns, stickers, weeds, and hard ground do not enter. “If we do notice those stickers in thought,” she concluded, “we can be like that farmer, bind them in bundles to burn them, not hold them close and say, ‘Oh, why do I keep doing this.’ We can let go of them.”

Thank you again, Anna Lisa, for these wonderful ideas. We’re always so pleased to hear your words of wisdom at Fern Lodge.

Relevant Citations

SH 590:1
Prov. 22:5
Prov. 24:30-34
Matt. 7:15,16
Matt. 13:24-30
SH 300:13
Isa. 55:10-13

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