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Showing posts from May, 2020

Pentecost Sunday

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Pentecost Sunday

Opening Prayer
O for a thousand tongues to sing sweet praise!
O rushing wild spirit of God
pour out the fire of love upon us!
Unfurl your language upon our lips,
Unlock our minds to embrace all possibility
Unleash our hearts so Your justice flows freely.

O for a thousand tongues to sing sweet praise!
O rushing wild spirit of God
pour out the fire of love upon us!
May your breeze bring health and wholeness,
May your breath heat our resolve,
May your Spirit storm the earth with mercy and grace

O for a thousand tongues to sing sweet praise!
O rushing wild spirit of God
pour out the fire of love upon us!
Set us free from self-doubt,
Make us listeners as we seek awareness,
Shake us awake when we forget our privilege.

O for a thousand tongues to sing sweet praise!
O rushing wild spirit of God
pour out the fire of love upon us!
Amen. Amen. Amen.


Prayer of ConfessionMerciful and Loving God, the gift of Jesus’ life in us is visible in the way we witness to the fruitfulness of that gift.�…

Jesus' Reshaping of a Post-Pandemic Church

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Jesus' Reshaping of a Post Pandemic ChurchAdapted from an article by Jeff Christopherson
These are interesting days… and for many of us, the fruit of this pandemic has been troubling, confusing, and spiritually disorienting.Many, but not all.For some, this season isolation and of cultural chaos has birthed new clarity to their spiritual intuition. They’ve seen moorings of tradition exposed as facades that could not possibly survive this test. They’ve watched our sacred ecclesiastical authorities evaporate – vaporized by an imperceptible virus. Systems that have served as safe, synthesized surrogates for a more substantive participation in Christ’s mission have come to a sputtering and inglorious end.So, now what?Now is the time to speak with Courage. Ironically, we have frequently said that “all members are ministers” and that “we are all missionaries.” But we have struggled with how to put that reality into practice.Instead, we long for, yearning to return to our old ways, fill th…

Reflection for the Seventh Sunday of Easter

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Reflection for the Seventh Sunday of Easter



Prayer
Most High God, we are witnesses to the life of Jesus Christ: written in the Law,  promised by the prophets,  sung by the psalmists; given in love for the world,  risen from the dust of death,  lifted up in heavenly glory. Let our lives proclaim Christ’s life. Wrap us in your power and presence so that we may worship you always, continually blessing your name... God of everlasting life, we confess that we continue in the ways of death. While Jesus was with us on earth, we dismissed him as a heavenly dreamer. Now that he reigns in heaven, we forget that he is Lord of all the earth. Forgive us, God of grace. Be the sovereign of our lives and make us always ready to welcome your return in glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, and the Holy Spirit,   One God, forever and ever.  Amen.
Acts 1:6-14 So when they had come together, they asked him, "Lord, is this the time when you will restore the kingdom to Israel?&…

My WEIRD Perspective

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My WEIRD Perspective

Understanding Scripture can be a bit tricky...
I mean, it was written very long ago in a language most of us do not know, about a people we do not understand, in the midst of cultures and world views that totally baffle us.  Add to that our own penchant to make everything about us... and so miss the major part of the story.

It does not help that we treat Scripture as if it were God's private communique to us... and that we read it all from a WEIRD perspective....

Okay, before you get all offended at me... Yes, I called you WEIRD... but it's not what you think.  WEIRD is an acronym that stands for Western,  Educated,  Industrial,  Rich,  and Democratic.  These are some of the major descriptors that describe you and me...  (You may debate the label Rich, but when held next to the vast majority of the world... you and I are undeniably rich.  You and I are among the top 95 percentile of the world's wealth.)

The acronym comes from psychologist Joseph Hein…

Hope Beyond Coronavirus by Roger Carswell

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Hope Beyond Coronavirus
by Roger Carswell Who would have guessed that in the 2017 Asterix comic “Asterix and the Chariot Race” there would be a character called “Coronavirus”? Until recently very few of us had heard the word. Now, across the world, it is the most talked about virus. Even the UK’s Prime Minister, in sober tones, has warned that some of our loved ones will die because of Coronavirus. And it is easy to fear that it may be us rather than our loved ones who will be struck down. Coronavirus is no respecter of persons: it can strike rich or poor, famous or unknown, globe–trotters as well as stay–at–homers. Life has changed radically for the nations of the world and us as individuals.  Things we have taken for granted – freedom of travel and of meeting together, supply of basic necessities, and the hope of a long life – have been threatened. Wars, epidemics, plagues and disease have seemed so distant for most of us, but now this unseen virus is acting like a secret agent turning …

Reflection for the Sixth Sunday of Easter

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Reflection for the Sixth Sunday of Easter

Prayer
Holy and Almighty God, Creator and Lord, maker of the world and everything in it, you are never far from each one of us. We still ourselves in your presence desiring to know you, The One who gives us life and breath. Open our eyes, our hearts and minds to recognize your presence; dwell with us, and abide in us. We live because of you. We hope because of you. Maker and giver of all, forgive us when we are too preoccupied to notice your presence in our lives: when we walk through this world failing to see the wonder of you upholding our lives and all creation; when we walk through our lives failing to see you abiding with, within, and around us; when we walk through holy moments failing to savor your presence, instead feeling abandoned in the vast sweep of life as each day rushes at us with its demands. Open our eyes to your presence, Gracious and Loving God, that we may lean on you— for you uphold all of creation in tenderness and power. This we pray in the na…

A Good Measure

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A Good Measure
One of the greatest gifts that my Dad gave me was the desire to use my hands…It was by watching him work, and his invitation to join him in building things that I learned to love building and creating.Along with this desire, another great gift he gave me was the chance to learn from my mistakes.More than once I uttered that famous phrase, “Darn, I cut it twice and it’s still too short!”
Yes, sometimes I am a slow learner.

There is an essential rule in carpentry that takes a while to truly understand:Be sure of your ruler/measurements.Here is how I finally came to understand this…I was building a fence… Numerous boards that all had to be cut to the same size.It made sense to me that you simply took the previous board, used it to scribe my cutting line, and so on down the line.Logically it made sense.(Perhaps some of you might know where this is going?)

I measured my first board…78 inches.And I made my cut.Off to a great start.

But there were a couple of rookie mistakes that I…