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Saturday, January 13, 2007

11th Hour Preacher Party

Jesus may have turned water into wine, but I suspect that we might not want to write our sermons while consuming mass quantities of wine. So, I've brought in what I hope will be a suitable substitute: the virtual barista. My friend spidey will be joining us today to keep those caffeinated beverages flowing (I guess she can probably do decaf too, if you insist). Let's see what she can do with a few big jars of water!

I have a baptism and communion tomorrow, so I'm trying to wrap the sacraments into my sermon, which is also pulling in the Isaiah text, while focusing on John. Sound like a lot to do in one sermon? Yeah...I'm not so sure if all of that will make the cut.

Where are your thoughts headed on this second Sunday of Epiphany?


  1. I have regular & decaf coffee & espresso, a dozen flavors of Torani, whole, nonfat and soy milk, and the best chai in town. Glad to be of service!

  2. OK spidey, bring on the high test!
    I'm off for a meeting that could stretch into the afternoon (Oh I hope not!)Also have a bulletin and a Sunday school lesson to nail down today.
    My sermon is brewing in my head which is where it will be until EARLY tomorrow morning...It's on John and that whole abundance thing...

  3. I'm anxious about doing well on my first Sunday in a new pulpit. I feel like barfing at the moment. I do have a self-care moment scheduled today (okay, it's an hour for a pedicure), but unless the nausea goes away I might not be able to keep it.
    At the moment, I'm contemplating oatmeal.
    And the church at Corinth. I know I knew a lot about it on Thursday, why can't I remember any of it now?
    (Slightly kidding.)

  4. Songbird you were called to this new place and you have much to share with them!! And it's NOT barfing:)
    Depp cleansing breaths and the knowledge that the HS and the RGBP's have your back--
    Hugs and prayers coming your way.
    peace out

  5. Songbird, you'll be great - sin boldly!

    I had hoped I wouldn't be preaching this week: my wife has been 4cm dilated for nearly two weeks now and we're READY, facryinoutloud! But no baby yet. Thus I'm thinking homiletically again this weekend.

    Brian Stoffregen posts exegetical notes every week at his website, and I often find valuable thoughts there. This week was no exception. His closing comment was, "May we all be signs that point to God's abundance." So my sermon title is "Signs of God's Abundance." I'm hoping to draw upon the I Cor passage AND the idea of "My Delight is in Her" from Isaiah.

    BTW, one of my systematics professors at Luther Seminary preached on Isaiah once, and the title of his sermon was "Call Me Beulah." If you need a catchy title, that might do.

  6. My grandmother's name was Beulah!
    Beulah Florence to be exact--her nickname was "Boots".
    Don't go there with this new life you're expecting Scott!
    Blessings and all that, too-

  7. I don't know, Quaker Pastor. My daughter has grown up with a handful of friends and classmates named Sadie, which I would have considered an old lady name par excellence! Beulah may be the coming thing!!

    Off to meeting be back later--cheers

  9. Spidey, I'll take some really hi-test. I too have to go to a meeting this morning that might last all day, and its an hour away. Had to make babysitter arrangements which I hate.

    Songbird, I think its pretty normal to be this anxious. God will be with you. Give it all to the Holy Spirit. If I could find my sermon on the Corinthians passage I would email it to you.

    Rev. Scott, it sounds like it is past time for that baby to come out. How is your wife holding out? How are you doing?

    And Stacey you are putting a lot in but you know I bet it all comes together.

    I am doing Baptism of the Lord today, I know its off lectionary, but we had communion last week and I didn't want to combine too much.

    And by the way I tried to comment on all the type pad blogs, and it was down last night. I'll try to get it done today or tomorrow.

  10. Ok, all you procrastinating preachers (a little alliteration there :)), procrastinate a few minutes more and play Trivia Challenge. Make us the most popular challenge there is!!

  11. songbird- MUCH love coming your way. God IS with you. All shall be well.

    i'm in an unusual situation, for me, I studied a passage (Corinthians) all week; I have LOTS of notes about it; and i don't have a clear focus- well, no- I think I have a focus- but i don't have a sermon that wants to come out. and i have to preach tonight. sigh...

    please God, speak to me that i may speak.

  12. Well, Blogger is acting up this morning. I will attempt to not post ten times this week...

    SB, you've got all our support, not to mention the HS! Go for that pedicure!

    I'm preaching twice this Sunday, once to our congregation and once to the congregation we rent from. I'm using John and Corinthians both, with the idea of abundance and how we use it.

    Spidey, glad you're here! Welcome! I could sure use a double espresso this morning. I have snack mix to share and blueberry yogurt (must be time for a grocery run).

    Rev. Scott, blessings on you and your wife!

  13. Good morning procrastinators! I am going to go with the church in Corinth this week. We have our Annual meeting tomorrow, and the election of officers. We have some big shoes to fill, and some slight re-configuring of how we do committees. (That last part is something I have to sell, sell, sell!)

    So I'm going with the way the gifts in the church that Paul describes are complimentary and work together. It's not a new, fresh idea, but one I think we need to explore together.

  14. Oh, my sermon title? "Like Fingers Need a Thumb".

    (Let's hope I can pull that off.)

  15. Some days I cannot believe what we do, put ourselves on the line with our thoughts about God, faith, and the scriptures. We are so vulnerable. The work is so personal.

    Songbird, I know the place your being is in, been there more than once. But I trust that when you climb into that pulpit, nervous and vulneable, God will be with you and the words you offer will be what they need to hear. I hope you feel well enough for that pedicure, you deserve to pamper yourself.

    Me, I am preaching twice tomorrow, on two different texts, so two sermons. One on the wedding in Cana for the Sunday morning cong. and one on 1Cor. 12:12-26, we are all one body - for our annual Evensong for the week of Prayer for Christian Unity. This is our fifth year doing this service, I have hosted it three of the five, this is my first time preaching it. The Roman Catholic church is hosting, pretty awesome to have the priviledge to be a woman preacher in an RC church...any way, I have lots to do, and just a muddle of thoughts. Back to you later. (Oh, and I have yogurt and coffee, you know still taking antbiotics, but I will gladly share some if you want.)

  16. More Cows - My internship supervisor used to say that the feeling you're having was the HOly Spirit offering an opportunity. Very occasionally, he would have a "question" sermon - he's speak 2-3 sentences to set up it, ask a question, and then have some time for silence, or for "turn to the person next to you and share...." Maybe it's time to let the wisdom of community speak.

  17. Also - prayers for Scott and Spouse and for Songbird.
    I'm preaching at the nursing home tomorrow, which I actually kind of love, so I'm keeping short and sweet (and LOUD).

  18. Spidey!

    I'll take something sweet, hot and caffinated.

    This is my first sermon in my new setting this week as well -- and the first time the new choir is going to sing (all 6 of us.) I covet your prayers....

  19. Reverend Mommy, I know about those small choirs. There are just five of us - when we are all there!

    Back in the days when I was a teacher, I used to have dreams about my class being out of control. Last night I dreamed I was preaching, and it was the congregation out of control. It was like I was talking to myself! If anyone can find any positive signs out of that, please share. It's left me feeling the early ministry (or new ministry, Songbird) kind of jumpy.

  20. I had anxiety dreams all night, myself.
    I drove all the way to hoity-toity Northern suburb for my pedicure, only to discover it was scheduled at their other location in Still Country-ish Southern Suburb, a good 35 minutes away. So much for the pedicure...
    I guess this means I need to get to work? Maybe a cup of coffee first.

  21. Oh, anxiety dreams....I once dreamt that following the actions of our general Convention I returned to church on Sunday to find that all of my congregation had left, but the pews were filled with gappers and gawkers who wanted to hear what I had to say now...

    SB, sorry you missed the pedicure. Oh my. My latest fav coffee is Starbucks Mocha Latte with skim milk and whipped cream...I know it makes no sense, skim milk and whipped cream, but it is yummy.

    My two sermons are posted on my blog if anyone wants to read and comment. I talk about finding humor in the conversation between Mary and Jesus and in the other I compare the united Christian body to a choir, called to harmonize not stand out.

    Now, off to clean my house. back later, may the spirit fill all of you with the words you need to say.

  22. preacher mom- I HAVE HAD THAT DREAM MORE THAN ONCE! it sucks... people walking out, talking to each other loudly, of course this is usually after i left the sermon at home or wrote the sermon in the choir room and started worship an hour late or... pick the variation. I'm queen of anxiety dreams.

    songbird- BUMMER- a pedicure would have been so grand. sigh...

    juniper- thanks, great idea. i got it after i drafted a sermon though. but my sermon is kind of to that very point. god is good- all the time. i just sent a draft to you by e-mail. would love your thoughts if your little boy isn't too sick at the moment. sending lots of love elijah's way.

    rev. scott-- blessings to you and your wife as you anxiously await your new arrival- come on baby, daddy would rather be holding you than preaching this weekend!

  23. Scott, do you want the baby to hold on now 'til after church?

  24. Just as long as it isn't DURING church!
    I taught a SS the day before daughter #2 was born. It was not comfortable. (Understatment)
    I'm sure your wife is ready, too!

  25. Pastor on vacation, so I'm preaching this Sunday. Internship church has historically celebrated MLK Day in worship, or acknowledged it in some manner over the past years. And it is important to the story of the church, which integrated in the 60s.

    However, it has left this intern praying desperately all week for inspiration. Scouring the Scriptures looking for passages that would lend themselves to MLK examples was frustrating and not the way I prefer to work. I think the text should come first.

    But in a moment of HS inspiration late one night this week when I couldn't get to sleep (at least there were no scary preaching dreams), I thought of a sermon I wrote for a class a year ago and never preached. The Habakkuk Scripture lends itself nicely to MLK examples without force. And who knows the last time the congregation has heard Habakkuk read in church. It all makes sense in my head. Now I just need to modify the sermon, add some stuff, and make if all flow.

    So perhaps I should stop typing so much here ...

    Dancing with God

  26. I've just finished up and am getting ready to walk my dog and enjoy some of this warm weather. I will be putting on a pot of coffee a little later for those of you who need an afternoon caffeine jolt!

    Here's the sermon.

  27. Scott, I was born on a Sunday morning and my dad preached before going to the hospital. Of course, those were the days when dads would have just paced the waiting room anyway. I've always wondered if that sermon made any sense!

    I've been pondering my anxiety dream all morning and am beginning to see all kinds of elements I probably need to explore. I think I'm gonna have to journal this one. Maybe I'll post it on my blog later.

  28. Oh, Songbird! Isn't there some place you could just walk in to get a pedicure? We have scads of them here, like in every strip mall.

    If you were here, I'd take you to my favorite walk-in place, just .5 mile from my house.

  29. Spidey, bring on the coffee! I'm going to be boring and have my usual regular coffee, strong and black.

    Songbird, it severely stinks that your self-care moment was thwarted! Praying that your mind and stomach will be calmed.

    I was having anxiety dreams last night too. I wonder what's up with that?

    I've got about a page of sermon, i.e., not even close to enough. I also need a children's sermon. Meh. How's everyone else coming? (and may I say, to those of you who have already posted sermons, wow! you are unbelievably on the ball.)

  30. cheese, they're all over the place here, too, but I like the spa chair with the rolling massage thing-y. Not that I'm getting it. Maybe I'll soak in the tub later.

  31. Emily, my congregation also lifts up MLK in a big way this Sunday - the church integrated in 1958, many early members were involved with NAACP, United Farm Workers and other social justice work (still are).

    I will be comparing the wedding at Cana - Jesus not being quite ready to begin with miracles but doing so anyway - with MLK wanting only to be the pastor of a church when the Spirit spoke to him while he was having a late night cup of coffee in his kitchen. These two private acts turned into very public world-changing ministries. Sometimes we are called to do things we hadn't planned to do or aren't quite ready to do and we get to say yes or no. I have LOTS of examples from the lives of my church members to lift up!

    After church we will all carpool to a big MLK worship at an inner-city church where I get to do the welcoming words - I have to write that today too.

    Songbird, so sorry you didn't get the pedicure. You will do wonderfully tomorrow - how can you not with the HS holding your hands and heart?

    I haven't preached since 1st Sunday Advent - hope I remember how!

  32. posted my draft here any feedback would be welcome. i'm off to read some of your sermons now.

    songbird-- a good long soak sounds wise!

  33. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  34. Well, I'll cook for everybody because we've cancelled our service tomorrow due to a nasty ice storm. So, I've got time on my hands this Saturday afternoon. Weird feeling!

  35. If you need a get-away from your sermon, I blogged about that blasted anxiety dream here. Any good dream analysts out there?

    Heading off to the farm to pick up children and play awhile. I'll check back in this evening.

  36. Fresh dark roast is ready. I've set out a bunch of double espressos. Here's a nonfat mocha with whip for mompriest. Revmommy, I made you a white chocolate raspberry mocha- with an extra shot of espresso. Oh, and I brought out the tea bags as well.

  37. wow spidey, that one you made for the reverend mommy makes even me think i could drink coffee today, but thanks for having the tea on hand.

  38. Thanks for the idea Scott! I need to work the signs pointing into my sermon. Plan to talk about the abundance we have to share with our gifts.
    Happy Baby Wishes to you and spouse! :)~ We will be looking for an update.
    SB!!! I really do wish you could get a pedicure today. Do enjoy your soak and know we are all praying for ya!
    I thought about holding out for an ice storm to brign on cancllation of service ,but it is a (bleeping) 76 degreees out, so I want hold my breath!

  39. I need sleep badly--or coffee! Four and a half hours last night is not enough to now write a sermon with. (Plus write a council report and an annual report.) The morning's been shot already with Angel Food (a great ministry but not so well timed today).

    So, spidey, I'd really love a double venti almond 2% mocha, if you had a minute! Thanks!

    I am still torn between preaching on John or on the I Corinthians passage, but I do have a beautiful painting of the John text that I may pull out for inspiration. At text study we talked about the difference between excessiveness and abundance...what would be excessive for humans is somehow framed positively for God as abundance. Might work that in somehow. Sigh. We'll see.

  40. That ice storm comment gave me a sudden surge of hope, but then I realized that it got warm and started raining last night and melted all the snow. So, maybe I shouldn't count on that.

  41. For us, the weather is supposed to arrive sometime tomorrow. I dearly hope the church will cancel the Sunday evening Council meeting, if so, because I am going to want to get home while it is still light!
    (By the way, I started writing.)

  42. Where's Will? When she shows up, would someone make sure she knows that I showed up?

    I am preaching this weekend- first time since Novemeber. Will I remember how? My Sermon Title, "Wine, Women, and Jesus." I'm going to talk about the many reasons I don't like this miracle.

    And then in the afternoon I go to preach an entirely different sermon on the Gifts.

    Thanks for inviting me! I'm glad to be here- Y'all are wonderful-

  43. I'm back from a long meeting of the District Committee on Ministry. I was the only woman there. It is a lonely thing. Came back to acting out kids. I'll have to focus on them before I focus on the sermon.

    Looks like everyone else is doing really well. Song bird go get that pedicure. Hey why don't we all go get one.

    reverend mommy, prayers the choir goes well, and the preaching. So proud and glad for you and the church.

  44. I can see snow on the mountains from the church door, butnNo ice, snow or other nasty weather due down here in the valley. I'll be missing some folks because of the cold in the morning though - supposed to get down to 27 overnight here in So Cal. I've even had to close the window next to the computer so my fingers would stay warm enough to type. Anyone seeking vacation from ice storms is welcome to come visit.

    I've finished my MLK event welcome speech and 2 pages on the sermon. I plan to be distracted by a football game and a member's 60th birthday party later today but think I can easily finish before that.

    Spidey, some of that chai would be a real treat!

  45. Hi LS! I'm glad you are here. We generally have a pretty good time...well, you know what I mean. We comiserate.

    I am down to the last paragraph, but it is just not coming, so I'm going to take a bubble bath. For those keeping score, that's two bubble baths in two days. That's so decadent!

  46. Here's the thing about not preaching every week. It's nice. I don't spend every Saturday evening on the sofa with a computer ignoring my family.

    But, it also means that every sermon I do preach needs to be (according to me) BRILLIANT. The best sermon ever preached. I can't say, well, there's always next week.

    Well, there's always next month just doesn't bring the same comfort...
    Cheesehead- I love your title, BTW..

  47. Blessings to Songbird, and Rev. Scott and the missus and the reluctant PK...

    My sermon is title "Sweet Excess" after the line and idea in this poem (written by Wilbur, former US Poet Laureate, on the occasion of his son's wedding):

    "A Wedding Toast" by Richard Wilbur

    St. John tells how, at Cana's wedding-feast,
    The water-pots poured wine in such amount
    That by his sober count
    there were a hundred gallons at the least.

    It made no earthly sense, unless to show
    How whatsoever love elects to bless
    Brims to a sweet excess
    That can without depletion overflow.

    Which is to say that what love sees is true;
    That the world's fullness is not made but found.
    Life hungers to abound
    And pour its plenty out for such as you.

    Now, if your loves will lend an ear to mine,
    I toast you both, good son and dear new daughter.
    May you not lack for water,
    And may that water smack of Cana's wine.

  48. Well, I have a direction, three pages and the children's story. Current distractions: landlord installing a new washing machine (yay!), dog wanting out (and in and out and in), person in crisis on one of my email lists, and a friend's mother going for surgery.

    And here I was hoping to be done by dinner time so I could take the evening off!

    Thanks for the espresso, spidey--keep 'em coming!

  49. Tea with lemon for me as I cannot seem to breathe without coughing.

    Rev Scott's situation reminds me of the arrival of the Boy, scheduled for a Monday but on the Friday before they did an ultrasound, realized that the fluids were low and decided to go ahead and bring him into the world that day instead. My first words?

    "Thank God, because my sermon sucks."

    Back to the couch. Not sure what we are going to do about tomorrow. Good to see you all - and Listing!

  50. will smama--Thank you for the much-needed laugh! I hope you feel better...

    Magdalene--Thank you for what may just be the key to open up this sermon through my fog of sleep-deprivedness. That is one fantastic poem.

    Here we go!

  51. WS: funny! Too bad I'll never use the birth-giving excuse to not preach.

    I put a snippet of my sermon here.

  52. The dark roast & espresso are still here for whoever wants them. Will smama, hot tea for you! Large double lowfat almond mocha for semfem. Did i mention the chocolate is Ghirardelli? No? Well, it is. :D Rev Maria, I would personally deliver your chai if I knew where you were, for I, too, am in the abnormally cold SoCal. We had snow yesterday morning. Weird.

  53. Okay, spidey, I'm ready for a mocha!
    will smama, you poor thing; why are the ice storms in other regions?

  54. Snow in SoCal???

    RevAbi, I give thanks for women like you. I hope there is someone just like you on my BOOM. It's a lonely thing, but so very valuable!

    I'm still writing -- in betwen HGTV and organizing fits. Maybe I'm starting spring cleaning early? Or is it task avoidance? Who knows?

  55. Yeh I had a "wanna make God laugh week too" starting with the emergency room visit of my 83 year old secy (who holds the church together-- no kidding) and it was downhill from there. Thanks to Rev Scott for the brilliant ending to my (sorta) sermon on abundance (l00 gallons of wine????) And thanks for the coffee, keep it coming (I'm Lutheran and it's the third sacrament)....shalom Gail

  56. I've posted my sermon, "Sweet Excess," over at Magdalene's Musings. Enjoy, critique, ignore...

    Blessings, Mags

  57. Well, I have a rough draft. Fog now wants dinner.

    Dinner break, then back to it!

    How are the rest of you doing? WS, how's the throat?

  58. Well, the fog may want its dinner, too, but the DOG here is going to get his. Can't help the fog, we have none, freezing rain instead.

  59. Mocha for Songbird. Help yourself to the whip cream if you'd like. There's plenty!

    Yes, rev mommy, snow.

  60. I've not got a proper sermon to do tomorrow, praise be...but, like Juniper, am leading worship at the Home for the Distinctly Confused...
    I thought I had my ideas neatly marshalled till the moment came to actually commit them to paper, whereupon they evaporated. Just. Like. That.
    Tomorrow is Hatti Gandhi's 20th birthday, and mostly I'm just preoccupied with where those years have gone, and overwhelmed with gratitude at the privilege of parenting such a splendid young lady.
    None of which is remotely relevant, - but I felt the need to share it anyway.
    Hugs and prayers for those ascending the pulpit in the morning. Bedtime here in the UK now.

  61. Sleep well, Kathryn!
    My sermon is complete, perhaps thinks to the cyber-mocha. Or at least I've got something, even if if needs help. I will brush it up a bit later, but for now, I'm fixing dinner.

  62. I am walking my dog tomorrow off the leash... no notes, just me yammering with a coughing fit read to pull out if it is an unmitigating disaster. Communion tomorrow so no matter what we will end well.

    Sounds like you all are moving in a good direction. Back to the couch...

  63. Checking to see how you all are doing. Since I posted last I've cleaned my house (sort of), done some laundry, gone to the grocery store, set up at church for tomorrow,(including dumping a poinsetta on the carpeting in front of the altar leaving a huge mud stain)...and now am about to make brownies and cook dinner (scallops and sweet italian sausage in a cream sauce over fettucine, salad and herb bread, maybe a glass of red wine.) then back to the sermon to touch up and finesse...

    Blessings to you all for this night.

  64. Your dinner sounds great! For us, baked frittata with good whole wheat bread and salsa on the side.

  65. Oooo.... I want to go to MomPriest's house for dinner. We must have recipies! (Please?)

    For us -- grab it yourself leftovers. yum.

  66. So, one pastor says to the other pastor, "Do you know your spiritual gifts?"
    And the other one says, "No, but hum a few bars and I'll fake it!"

  67. And over here it is New England style chicken and Rice with cream sauce (we call it gravy where I come from!).
    Now to figure out how to make a nice connection with God's grace (the symbolic water to wine movement)and our abundance of gifts given to us the gifts that shall not be wasted.
    I hope none of that good wine was wasted!
    Just like there proably will not be an ice storm, I proably won't go into labor tonight seeing as how i am not pregnant!
    I will take an after dinner carmel mocha latte (with all the fat, all the calories, all the caffine( to go

  68. I am finished. I want some hot chocolate, nice hot bath, candles and bed. Night all.

    But I may watch some TV first....

  69. So: no baby yet. We're actually two weeks ahead of due date, not overdue, but my wife was 3cm dilated just after Christmas and has kept progressing as time rolls on. We've learned that medicine can only guess at what God is creating in Mommy's womb and how long that creation will take. We're still in Advent in many ways.

    BUT the preacher I had arranged to cover in case of arrival just told me he'd go ahead and preach his sermon and I should just lead the liturgy. HOW FREAKING COOL IS THAT!!!!! I haven't had the luxury of sitting and listening to a sermon since August - now there's a good chance I'll get to hear three in a row while I'm on family leave (assuming that Little Miss arrives before NEXT Sunday).

  70. Rev Scott - that is awesome!

    Bland things here to eat and a member brought over homemade chicken noodle soup for healing. So sweet of her.

    Funny sb.

  71. Thanks, ws, but will it preach?

  72. 1-4 Grace, here's your loaded caramel mocha- Ghirardelli caramel SAUCE, Ghirardelli chocolate, whole milk, whipped cream. And some more caramel drizzled over that.

    Hot chocolate for rev mommy, too.


  73. Okay, now I really have a sermon. I tossed the first half-page and began it differently, and wove something through a little better, and I feel happy.
    How's it going for everyone else?

  74. I posted this week about anxiety dreams!! It's such a relief to find I'm not the only one having them! (OK, yes, I feel bad for you guys, too, but still...)

    And RevMom, I am so excited for you about being the preacher for a group including RCs. I'll be quiety cheering for you from my neck of the woods.

    I need to finish getting my sermon together-- and then piece together my first in an Adult Ed series (something which gives me a lot more stress than preaching...)

  75. Sermon is printing!

    Now to finish up the prayers and announcements and wrap the "gift" for the children's story.

    How's everyone else doing? WS? SB?

  76. blbWEll I have a couple wedding stories from family history to tell about refreshments that are absent and/or running out. SO I have an opening anyway. THe WIlbur poem is a must use (thanks magdalene) as we move from scarcity into abundance.

    BUt here is my wondering...why is it Jesus's (or his mother's) problem that the wine is running out???? Not that this wondering will be a big part of the sermon but still. ARe they hosting? Is it a family afair? OR are they just really concerned guests?

  77. Well, it is so good to hear everyone is doing so well with their sermons, even WS. I hope you feel better soon.

    I have finally got the kids calmed down, fed, bathed and almost asleep. And now I feel like doing the same. So break out the even heavy leaded stuff or some of the good wine for those of us who are the late nighters.

    Congrats to those who are done. Great work. I am so glad for you Scott. Good luck to all especially the ones who are the everynow and then preachers and for Songbird in her first Sunday. Godspeed to all.

  78. Glad to see that you're all carrying on as usual. I had to go to a graduation party, but now I'm back home and back to writing. I know where I'm going - linking God's abundance and care for even the little things, like joy at a wedding celebration, to the sacraments - and now I just need words to finish getting that point across. Oh, and a children's sermon. Wheee!

  79. I'm quitting for the night--one last look at it in the morning before the double walk!

    Prayers for Gord and SB and WS and the others still working!

    Congrats Scott--enjoy!

  80. Recipe: small scallops (bay?) in quantity for who you are feeding - I used about 3/4 pound for 2 of us. Sweet Italian sausage, I used about three skinned and chopped. A pint of whipping cream (or heavy cream) and fresh grated parmesan cheese. Salt and pepper to taste. Fettucine noodles.

    Remove the casing on the sausage, chop and sautee until cooked through. remove from the pan and use a new pan or clean and pour the whipping cream into saute pan. Cook over a medium flame until boiling, stir frequently. Grate parmesan cheese (about 1/4 lb) or use grated cheese. Use enough to help thicken cream and make a sauce. The sauce can be as thick as you like. Add the scallops. they will cook in the hot sauce in a few minutes. Add the already cooked sausage and warm. Cook the pasta in boiling water until tender. Drain and rinse, add olive oil. Pour cream sauce with sausage and scallops over pasta. Serve with a salad and french bread. Add salt and pepper to taste. You can also add fresh basil or parsley. This is a very mild sauce, so flavor as you like. I learned this sauce a long time ago when I was travelling to NYC to do dance shows (I lit them). So, I have fond memoris of this meal. Enjoy!

    Oh, and a glass of wine is nice as well, can handle a hardy wine, even a cabernet savignon...

  81. Wow, so many people are finishing up, how cool!

    I corralled a pretty decent outline together a while back, and then promptly got distracted for several hours with laundry, a nap, dinner (Lean Cuisine chicken fried rice), and a little bit of brain-resting TV (football and hockey on adjacent channels). Now it's back to do the actual writing.

    I'm definitely using the Wilbur poem, the painting I have of droplets changing from water into wine, and a real-life story from a neighboring church. They were given $700K to build a new education building. And they are also letting a woman who has left her abusive husband live in their parsonage while she gets on her feet. Their pastor is firmly convinced that the LATTER is the true sign of abundance.

    Now to write it. Might require another mocha--I'm loving this eleventh hour barista thing. :) Yay spidey! And yay Stacey!

  82. Speaking of wine, is it time for that yet? Surely this week a little wine would be appropriate...

    I think I'm done with the main sermon. I've decided to weave the sacraments right into the sermon, because everything seemed so closely tied together. We'll see how that goes. I'm thinking of using the poem Mags shared as the benediction.

    Now I have to alter the sermon for the early service, where there will be no baptism, and work on that pesky children's sermon.

  83. 8:35 pm. my time.

    Really kinda finished except for the parts that don't seem to fit or work very well. Huge chunks of homiletics fixin to fall, I think.
    Maybe I should go clean the kitchen for inspiration. Maybe not.

    Thanks for being here, y'all

  84. mompriest, can I come over for dinner next week? That sounds delicious!
    St. C, hey! Where you been today?

  85. It's been awhile since I stopped by, but I'm here tonight, with three ideas down about the good stuff in abundance, gifts, and our calling to recognize and live out those gifts in community. I don't know if it will preach, but I'm calling it a sermon!
    An overnight confirmation retreat will do that to a girl like me.

  86. Glory be, I think I'm done. My sermon is posted at my church blog if anyone is curious. How are the rest of you coming along?

  87. Well I may not be totally done, but my eyes are starting close, so I am following suit and going to bed. I am in the same situation as St. C.

  88. I'm heading off to bed too. Blessings to those of you who are still working. Last one out, get the lights!

  89. Whew, I'm done too. Not done enough to head to bed, but done enough to take a shower, do a final readthrough, and perhaps put together a quick council report for tomorrow (ack).

    Am I the last one here? I'll get the lights if I am...thanks for hosting a great party Stacey...

  90. OK, so here I am at the Sunday edition of the saturday preacher's party (it's 4:30 a.m.)...My coffee is just done, so I'm ready to get to work. Everything is done--except for the message, so here I go...
    Is anyone else turning whipping cream into butter for their shildren's time?

  91. OK so now they're salting the roads here. Does that mean worship might need to be cancelled?!
    I don't think we were getting much of anything until tonight here--could be an interesting morning...

  92. Hey all. I hope this morning has found your roads still safe to travel (or if you would prefer that they are covered and you are able to cancel everything).

    Remember to relax, the Holy Spirit has got your back. And IF you gotta dog; walk it proud.


  93. Morning all, Will Smama. Thanks for your blessings.

    I am walking a three legged dog. But I know the Holy Spirit is at work even with the three legged dog, and the silly tire woman walking it.

    Am following it up with a remembrance of your baptism. I have clear stones ready for them in the water for them to pick up and keep. You know that may be where everything gels.

    I hope the miraculous happens once again for each one of you.

    And Songbird, just take those deep breaths, we love you, and God loves you, so these people are going to love you too.

  94. I'm off to preach my first sermon here -- as well as lead the choir for the first time. I wanted to do the butter thing -- I've seen it done before, but ran out of time.

    Besides, I have to let someone else do something, don't I?


    Walk that 3-legged dog, Abi and walk it proud!

  95. Walk your dog and choir proud too revernd mommy. Hope the 1st time goes well!

  96. I got a dog to walk despite my late hours last night/ early AM.
    My Celtic cross I wear for worship has been MIA. I have not lead in worship since Christmas and so have not missed it until yesterdya.
    Anyhow, I drove to church at 2AM t olook for it. I turned on all lights in apartment looking for it. I gave up at 10 til 4. Told God I needed some help.
    Oh, Waterford crystal given to me for graduation.
    Anyhow, this mornign as i was dressing i looked way udner my dresser and foudn the chain. I began to feel and my hand caught hodl of it and yes, still in one glorious piece.
    My guess is I left it on dresser, kitty knoced it off to play with and the chain came out from loop.
    So, now I am here, sermon done, ready for Sudnay School lesson on blindness and ready to go home and sleep afterwards as i watch NFL playoffs. I am so exausted....yawn!
    Oh, QP. cream to butter is the coolest. I did it in Sudnay School back in the fall (creation unit)and it was soooo much fun. I think the adutls were more excited than the kids were.
    Hope it goes well!

  97. I'm done. Not surprising, the sermon took a slightly different turn after conversation with folks at the birthday party yesterday. Time to shower and dress and get up to the church.

    Stay safe all you with snow and ice slick roads!

    May our words fall on receptive hearts this day - especially our own.

  98. I did the cream-to-butter gig and you are right--it rocked! We had a really small crowd this morning because of icy roads and so while we were shaking the cream, we each told about a miracle we see daily in our lives that is a sign of God's abundance.
    Quakers however ARE easily amused. ;)

  99. We SO should have cancelled church this morning, at least the early service. I arrived (and by arrived, I mean "slid uncontrollably") to find the parking lot like a skating rink. Small services, both, but they went fine nonetheless.

  100. All done. Went well. Real tired.

    Now for the next thing on my agenda -- a nap.

  101. We didn't go to church today (!!!) because it is so icy here. DH keeps saying it is no big deal, but he is still sick and planned to stay home anyway, and I prefer for HIM to drive when it is making soup and bread.

    Many, many churches had cancelled worship services all over the DFW Metroplex (as seen on TV), but not ours.

    I loved reading the sermon-writing thread late! Everyone stay safe!

  102. ok, i had light weight sermon today with several jokes. i figured we have so much intense stuff going on. point of sermon, dont be too serious, might stifle the creativity of the spirit and the playfulness of God. well, it worked. seemed to be what they needed to hear.

    now for sermon 2 tonight at our ecumenical evensong for week of prayer for christian unity. but first a nap...

  103. Thanks for prayers, all. It went very well, despite iffy weather. The turnout was surprisingly good, I think because the trucks got out to sand and salt after I drove through the town. The only casualty? My husband, who slipped on the ice in the church driveway. He is mending well this afternoon.

    Thanks be to God, the evening Council meeting was postponed for a week, and I got to come home.

    Again, I appreciate your support, both today and last week. I have certainly felt supported by prayer.

  104. Sermon went well, then lunch with some folks. Now off to the MLK celebration. Glad nearly everyone who was out in ice and snow came home safely. Songbird, a prayer is going out for your husband. Also for everyone with the winter icky sick stuff.

  105. Whew. I'm finally home...I left when it was dark this morning and came home as night was falling tonight. Not usual for a Sunday here!

    We had a three-hour council meeting as we got ready for our annual meeting coming up in two weeks. Everyone was exhausted and just about ready to walk out of there. I learned a lot about how to handle the January meeting next year (and how NOT to handle it). I also learned why they have taken six years to decrease the size of the council. Nobody wants to be on council again, but everyone will if they're absolutely needed!

    My massive headache is on the verge of coming back, and I'm heading out to dinner--over which I will plan tomorrow's Confirmation retreat, which I so smartly planned for my day off. *doh* Then, sweet sleep.

    [I just read all this over and it sounds like uncontrollable whining...let's see, something positive...a family told me today they'd like to join St. Larger and get married here next May! That's rather exciting. :)]

  106. Glad all went well for everyone--the cream to butter is the coolest!

    SB, sorry to hear about your husband--but he and I can commiserate. We had ice here, too--I thought the front steps were wet--well, you can guess the rest. I'm sitting, walking and climbing stairs very carefully tonight.

    What are the symptoms of a broken tailbone?

    On the bright side, we had three new people today, one of whom signed up for the membership class in a couple of weeks and the other two were interested!


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