Thought of the Week

Sunday, December 13 - Advent 3

December 13, 2015    
ADVENT 3
THOUGHT OF THE WEEK

We approach the half-way mark of this Advent season – at least in terms of days.  We light the third candle on the Advent wreath.

Advent 1 we reflected on God’s call to ‘take a stand’ by trusting God as we wait patiently, expectantly.

Advent 2 we reflected that our ‘standing’ before God is not by our doing but by God’s doing.

Sunday, December 6 - Advent 2

December 6, 2015
ADVENT 2
THOUGHT OF THE WEEK
 
Last week our reflections encouraged us to take a stand for some quiet, patient time in the midst of the hectic cultural run-up to Christmas.  That was faith perspective: that God is trustworthy and in charge, not me.
 
This week the image of taking some sort of stand is back, thanks to the prophet Malachi. 
 

Sunday, November 29 - Advent 1

 

November 29, 2015
ADVENT 1  (C)
THOUGHT OF THE WEEK
 
We begin  . . .  anew . . . again.    God gives us new beginning with the new liturgical year.

However, such a beginning to the church year can get a bit lost amid the left-overs in the aftermath of Thanksgiving.  How many ways can we repurpose that turkey?  Sandwiches, casseroles, soups . . . . .

The whole Advent season can get lost in the anxious frenzy of the Christmas buying season. I have to . . . . .  

Christ the King

November 22, 2015
CHRIST THE KING
Last Sunday after Pentecost
THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK

We come to the end – of the church year.

More appropriately though, we come symbolically to the fulfillment of God’s promise in that future, unknown time.

Just as political parties and as wings within such parties have different visions for their constituents and ‘kingdoms’, so Christians have different visions of God’s Kingdom and what that means for interactions with our daily lives and world.

Sunday, November 15 - Pentecost 25

November 15, 2015

PENTECOST 25—LECTIONARY 33

THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK
 
Attitude. Not altitude.

Sports preaches a positive attitude. Healers encourage positive imagining: ‘seeing’ wounds heal, envisioning walking again, imaging healthy cells embracing and getting rid of cancer cells.

What attitude are Christian people encouraged to have? 

All Saints Sunday

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2015
ALL SAINTS DAY 

THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK
 

All Saints is the church’s Memorial Day. We remember those brothers and sisters in Christ who have ‘ceased their labors on earth’ and have entered the Church Triumphant. They are not saints through the vote of some church council but through God’s grace extended to them in their baptisms.

This Sunday is St. Luke's Name Day!

October 18, the day commemorating St. Luke, the Evangelist, falls on a Sunday this year.  We observe it as part of our name day. 

Luke is held to have written both the third Gospel and the Book of Acts.  That accounts for about one-quarter of the New Testament.  He was a well-educated physician, a Gentile, and a companion of Paul.  His symbol is the winged-ox, an animal significant both because it’s strength can be harnessed for plowing and its bulk can be sacrificed to benefit others.

World Communion Sunday

We come to this World Communion Sunday. We remember our brothers and sisters throughout the world, who come to the same large table today to be fed, nourished, forgiven and renewed by the grace of God through the presence of Jesus.

We imagine the variety of forms that table takes, in so many different places. It may be formal or informal; wood, metal, stone, plastic, even a blanket tablecloth spread on the ground, on a rock, on the hood of a car; in a cathedral, in a home, in the open air. 

Jealousy

It can occur in romantic relationships, professional relationships, and in faith communities.

Perhaps the root of such various forms of jealous is very similar. It may begin with a sense of ‘me’ verses ‘you’, or of ‘us’ verses ‘them’. We like to see ourselves as more worthy, deserving of whatever: attention, promotion, awards. But when ‘they’ get such recognition – instead of ‘us’ -- we can get jealous. 

Lead, Follow, or Get out of the Way

The old line advised: “lead, follow, or get out of the way”. 

One of the implications, as I hear it, is that one cannot both lead and follow at the same time.  A decision has to be made: either follow or lead. 

My guess is that most followers are willing to follow as long as they think they are being led to what they want.  In other words, even in following, it can be about the follower getting what he or she wants: money, prestige, a championship ring, etc.

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