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Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Tuesday Lectionary Leanings

It's good to be back from vacation and back in the swing of things. While I was away I got a new blog home, and some fine revgals filled in for me. Many thanks to Songbird and Reverend Mommy!

Now, on to the Lectionary for this week.

I have a treatment of Job that I might re-work. This seems especially appropriate in light of the events of this week. I don't often try to conciously link two passages, preferring to let each passage stand on its own; but the Hebrews line "What are human beings that God is mindful of them?" question seems to be one that might be worth tackling.

What are you wrestling with this week?

12 comments:

  1. Prior to this past week, I thought I knew what that good ole Spirit was trying to say.

    When I was in Ethiopia this summer I had a realization about the Mark text. While I'm still supportive of the outside inclusion interpretation, I think there's something more going on here. Children in developing countries - as I witnessed in Ethiopia - are not exactly our cute little kiddos in sailor outfits and pretty bows. These kids - like Palestinian children of eons past - are often very unpleasant to look upon because they are covered in some bodily ailment. I saw girls with infected sores on their faces, children with fungus instead of hair, even one child pick up a used condom from a mud puddle in a street and blow it like a ballon. I couldn't help the shudder.

    It's this shudder of mine that got me thinking the Mark text is a healing text. People are bringing the little children - many of whom thanks to these diseases will not make it to adulthood - not to listen to him but so that he might TOUCH them. And he does.

    I had been planning on connecting this passage with the Job passage, flesh out the idea that it wasn't until Job was covered in visible display of "nastyness" that his wife says "just die already." There's something about our fear and rejection of the visible imperfections that I think speak to our fear of the internal ones... We really don't appreciate that even though we're covered with sores and others shudder at us, Jesus just takes us in his arms and blesses us.

    Of course, what to do with the events of the world... we'll see how it all works together.

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  2. Wow, Amy. I sort of thought I knew what I was doing, but I want to reconsider now. Thanks for that amazing insight.

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  3. Hi all--I'm not preaching this Sunday because I'm on retreat (yay! read about it on my blog here.

    I'm looking at next Sunday, though, as I come back on Friday to craziness (Friday night potluck, Saturday wedding, Saturday evening concert). Ezra and the return to Jerusalem. Ugh. Not feeling inspired.

    Amy, another thought--AIDS patients OFten have the spots of Kaposi's sarcoma--purple raised blotches on their skin. Not the interesting wasting away you see in the made-for-TV movies. Possibly you could tie that in with AIDS in Africa, as well--although I am not as familiar (to my shame) with AIDS manifestation on that continent, so I don't know if Kaposi's is a feature of AIDS in Africa or not.

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  4. Well, Amy you just made my quandry worst. Don't know whether to say thankyou or what you just blew me away. I knew I shouldn't come back and look again. This is too heavy, I am going to go cry some more.

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  5. I'm a new kid here, and just starting a gig (part-time, temporary) at a sorta depressed church (30 in a sanctuary that holds 350) church in a sorta depressed part of town.

    I, too, was thinking of the Job passage, in terms of the trials that Job faced, and then relating that to the trials that a congregation can face. Not sure how that will work out by Sunday, but that's where my thoughts are today.

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  6. Wow, Amy, and if you add to that the fact that little children just didn't live until adulthood, that many of the times they didn't even name them until toddlerhood, that kids just were not valued -- it make the passage even more gripping.

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  7. I'm going with the Job texts for the whole month--just cause they say it can't be done. Many of us in October are working on stewardship stuff. It seems to me that much of stewardship preaching is over precious: "God has given us so much--we simply must respond with generosity and thanks." But Job says just the opposite: "Life Sucks, yet we hang in there with God. Praising God is not about a "grateful response" but about sheer tenacity and stubborn faith." Well--we'll see how it goes.

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  8. Kudos and props to purechristianithink for going with Job for the whole month - especially during stewardship time. Good job for raising the bar on stewardship preaching. I continue with Jesus' parables and "kingdom living." I'm thinking, though, about this stewardship thing. Is not stewardship caring deeply about creation, the "other," deeply enough to bend one's resources in the direction of the other? And isn't that where Job is - in the position of "caring" (whether in love or not) so much for God that all Job's resources are bent in the direction of God? Just a thought.

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  9. I'm not preaching this week either. It's our Jubilee Celebration(read about it on my blog?) and the Regional Minister is preaching. I only have to do the words of welcome. Yay!

    I really love the 1st century/modern 3rd world children and Job connection - Just a brief description of 1st century children's status had my congregation shuddering the other week. And to think we must be like those children - vulnerable, powerless, ailing, even so ugly only a Mother (or Savior) could love and touch us - if we would enter the kingdom of heaven.

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  10. It's Thanksgiving Weekend up her in Canada. My sermon is called Expectant Thanksgiving. See here for where I am headed.

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  11. I think our collective mental baggage is so loaded with sappy Victorian artwork (or those ubiquitious Bible story books beloved of medical waiting rooms) showing a lovely Jesus cavorting with equally lovely children) that it's hard for us to really understand the everyday reality of Jesus' time, and how precarious a time childhood was, for any number of reasons. Thanks to all the previous posts addressing this...much food for thought.

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