Category: Sermon Topics

February 2023 Theme – Your Aladdin’s Lamp

 

 

February 11 – Mad at God?
Rev. Gina Milligan recounts a story from Your Aladdin’s Lamp in which Dr. Ernest Holmes imparts universal wisdom on a young man who is living his life mad at God.

 

February 18 – Lessons from a Buddhist
Rev. Gina Milligan articulates another story from Your Aladdin’s Lamp. Bill Hornaday’s lesson from a Buddhist which ultimately led him to study with Ernest Holmes. Rev. Gina then takes a spin on the story, tying it to our own church and the growth that is happening from within.

 

January 2024 Theme – The Source of Miracles

 

If you were here last year, you heard a series of talks centered around The Lord’s Prayer. The single most known prayer in the world, many would say that it is also the most powerfully transformative. In the quest for profound spiritual transformation, it is important to consider varying viewpoints from as many sources as possible. And so, it is with this in mind that we revisit our examination of The Lord’s Prayer, this time with inspiration from Kathleen McGowan, author of “The Source of Miracles: 7 Steps to Transforming Your Life Through The Lord’s Prayer” – a truly breathtaking examination of faith, miracles, and extraordinary examples of God in action – revealed in walks through the labyrinth in Chartres, France. With weekly exercises to help boost your experience, you won’t want to miss this invitation to your highest self!

 

January 7 – Surrendering to Faith
When we speak of faith, it is not specific to or even loosely alluding to religion (although, surely, religion has bolstered the faith of millions around the world with myriad religious practices throughout the centuries…but that’s a theological examination for a different month, hint-hint). In the words of Ernest Holmes (Science of Mind, p. 159): “Not only must we have complete faith in Spirit and Its ability of know and to do, but we must have complete confidence in our approach to it. We must not be lukewarm in our conviction. We must know that we know.” Surrender to faith – surrender to the knowledge that everything; EVERY LAST GOSH-DARN THING, ALWAYS, WITHOUT BEGINNING OR END, NOTHING WITHSTANDING is unequivocally, unerringly, IN THE HANDS OF GOD. When you know that you know this, all the way down to your innermost soul, miracles and magic enter your life in ways you could never have begun to imagine!

 

January 14 – Surrender to Abundance
What if we gave up all of judgment, expectation, fixation and “us vs. them” -ism filling our minds? It sure would leave a lot of room for something better to fill the space, wouldn’t it? And what would the abundance rushing to fill your life look like? Whatever you imagine it to be, God has a plan that surpasses it!

 

January 21 – Surrender to Love
Forgiveness. A tough thing to look at, and even tougher to do – especially when it comes to self-forgiveness. But what might we experience in our lives if we stopped keeping score? What might be our reality if we no longer keep track of checks and balances?

 

January 28 – The Obstacle is the Way
In the Science of Mind on p. 164, Ernest Holmes says, “Treatment opens up avenues of thought, expands the consciousness, and lets Reality through; it clarifies the mentality, removes the obstruction of thought and lets in the Light; it removes doubt and fear, in the realization of the Presence of Spirit, and is necessary while we are confronted by obstructions of obstacles. We already live in a Perfect Universe, but it needs to be seen mentally before it can become a part of our experience.” When you know that God IS, and you know that ALL is God, then you can know no obstacles. You are continually being propelled toward greater and greater good – when you no longer perceive barriers (obstacles), in the words of our own Dr. Margaret Stevens, you discover “Jubilation On The Journey”!

 

February 4 – Love Is All You Need
Early Gnostic Christians believed that love is present in 6 aspects of expression:

  • Agape – the purest, highest love; it is a spiritual love, the love God has for us.
  • Philia – also known as ‘brotherly love.’
  • Charis – love manifesting as grace, devotion and praise for/of God. This is the love which is expressed in the selfless care of others, acts and a life of service, and is the love most present when we practice true forgiveness.
  • Eunoia – “Beautiful thinking” in Greek, this is the love that inspires deep compassion and a commitment to the service of the world and all God’s people.
  • Storge – “Affection” in Greek, this is a pure love, filled with tenderness and empathy. It is innocent, playful and sweet – and rather magical in feeling, in this minister’s experience!
  • Eros – Romantic love.
The question is, when you know and routinely and regularly experience these types of love, how can there be room for any experience outside of happiness? Cliff notes version: happiness becomes the norm.

 

December 2023 Theme – Holiday Light

 

During this holiday time of year, we sometimes feel we have too many things to do and too little time to do them, winding up harried and hurried. Or, for some, this time of year intensifies past or current hurts and sorrows, and we spend the month in sadness. This month at the Santa Anita Church, we will gather each week to release all of that as we learn how to experience the L-I-G-H-T of the holidays – Living Inside God’s Highest Truth.

 

December 3 – Your Christ Light (Rev. Gina)
In the Science of Mind Textbook, Ernest Holmes wrote, “In studying the life and teaching of Jesus, the most unique character of history, we discover a few simple ideas underlying his philosophy, the embodiment of which enabled him to become the Christ.” This Sunday, we will look at two of those simple, yet transforming ideas, the embodiment of which will illuminate our Christ Light. [NOTE: The audio quality of this track may be degraded as it was recorded in the Fellowship Hall as part of our Annual Pancake with Butter & Sermon service.]

 

December 10 – Shining Your Light (Rev. Gina)
As expressions of God, the Great Giver of Life, we each express our Highest Truth and shine our lights most brilliantly when we choose to be givers to life — not in obligatory ways, but because it is our Divine Nature to give. This Sunday we look at gifts we can share that don’t cost a cent and what it is like to adopt the Buddhist attitude of being a “kingly” giver.

 

December 17 – The Light Inside (Rev. Gina)
We are all familiar with the elements of the Christmas story – Jesus was born in a stable because there was no room in the inn surrounded by shepherd and wise men who had followed a star to be with him. As colorful as this story may be, this is the outside story of Christmas. This Sunday, we will look at the INSIDE story of Christmas and how it can lead to our living in the Light.

 

December 24 – The Christmas Light (Christmas Eve morning)
Many come to our annual candlelight service at 7pm Christmas Eve, but because it lands on a Sunday this year, we have the unique opportunity to offer a break from the norm. Enter into quiet contemplation as we open our minds and hearts to the significance of the Holy night ahead in this meditative and powerfully moving service.

 

December 24 – The Other Wise Man (Christmas Eve evening)
Learn of the fourth wise man as the story of his journey to deliver his three precious gifts to the new born king weaves in and around the life of Jesus.
(full service audio)

 

December 31 – Be Ye the Light (Rev. Gina)
We bring our month and the year 2023 to a close by focusing on our Light. Not only will we focus on our Light, but we will build our body of light through a powerful meditative experience you won’t want to miss.