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Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Tuesday Lectionary Leanings: Fish Gotta Swim, Birds Gotta Fly Edition

See there, I already gave you a clue as to what I'm preaching! We have some rich and diverse choices this week.

We have the wedding at Cana, and the passage from 1 Corinthians describing the varieties of spiritual gifts. And don't forget Isaiah's promise of vindication, or the Psalm of steadfast love.

I have preached the 1 Corinthians before, and my sermon title was "Fish Gotta Swim, Birds Gotta Fly". I'll be preaching a different sermon this week, but it is also the week of our annual meeting, when we elect our Elders and Deacons who will serve new three-year terms. I want to talk about the spiritual gifts for ministry, both the ministries of ordained office, and of ministers-at-large (commonly called "just a member").

So I'm going to be a little thematic this week, as opposed to strictly textual. (I sure am glad my Homiletics Professor doesn't read this blog!)

What about you?


  1. Blogger is having quite a day, isn't it? I'm getting the same verification word everywhere.
    This will be my first Sunday at Main Street Church, and I believe I'll be preaching 1 Corinthians 12:1-11. As we move into and through a transition together, we will be looking closely at our individual gifts, with a word of encouragement to those who may feel they have none, or that their areas of strength are not valued. (I'll go on to talk about the church as a body next week.) They put off communion a week to wait for me, so I will be once again preaching a shortened sermon. I expect the anecdotal part will introduce my gifts and my weaknesses in what I hope will be a heartwarming fashion...and we will use the Time with the Children to introduce my family and talk about gifts my children and the children in the church have. Does this sound like a plan? I'd better make a note of it. ;-)

  2. Our day will include: communion, installing the new elders, the annual congregational meeting, and oh yeah, a sermon. I could use a ringmaster/mistress and perhaps one of those clown cars.

    I'm preaching on the wedding at Cana, but no real direction or good ideas as of yet. And it has to get written on Thursday at the latest. I should quit reading blogs and go get busy.

  3. IT's all about wine here (and no need to put an "h" in that word today at least). Such surprising abundance where there was thought to be none.

    See my opening thoughts for more.

    I did 1 Corinthians last time it came around and while the gifts stuff is important (makes for a good Children's time though) the abundance piece needs to be raised here as well.

  4. ANd should the test be graded on the bell curve? OR pass/fail? OR some other equally random method?

    BTW same verification word as earlier--and I am now on a different computer---smenita

  5. I am interested in the intimacy suggested in the Gospel reading...this whole show of turning water into wine was missed by all but the servants, the disciples and Mary. It was intended for the least I wonder if it was. Everyone else just wants to know where all that wine came from! And why is it so good?

  6. I have the same verification word as well...and on other blogs. Joy.


  7. I see a different one now, so maybe things are returning to Blogger-normal?

  8. Ah - I finally made it in! Joy! I've also switched to the new blogger and managed to post something today. Nothing to do with sermons, just thoughts on being back from vacation

    I'm probably going with Cana - an unexpected miracle when Jesus wasn't quite ready for it, just as MLK was no way ready for his call that late night at the kitchen table. Both did as they were asked. . . and we should do likewise whether we're ready or not when the opportunity comes to us. (or something like that - it's early yet)

    Yes - it is MLK Sunday, a really important day in the life of my congregation!

  9. Blogger is reallly upset with me. Having issues all day long. Can't pull stuff up, no post, could not comment, etc.
    Anyhow, I am excited about the wedding at Cana! I foudn soemthign intersting in Preaching the Lectioanry...Apparently, the disciples are the only ones who know a miracle has occured. The steward only knows he has some great wine to serve, the servants only know they brough water, and the guests are just happy to have more wine (and the best to boot!)
    Almost starts to feel like the tree falling in the forest scenario.
    Also,the miracle story "warns us that this Gospel does not play by rules of our expectations."
    Finally, I am thinking along lines of how Jesus took somethign ordianry (stone pots used for rituals) and did something extraoridanry. We ordained/ installed elders last week. I also here the talk of "just a memeber" from others in my congrgation.
    By combining the two text, I hope to move towards explaining that althoguh we might think of ourselves as ordinary, God can/ does do quite extraordinary things with us and the gifts we bring, those given to us by God. Our job is to be open and accepting of this to occur. It is a lot of a feel good sermon, but i want to drive point home, by challenging them to use their gifts, because there is no such thing as just a member. Any thoughts on this and where to go?

  10. Songbird. it does indeed sound like a plan and a great way to start. They are gonna lvoe you!
    So cool!!!!!

  11. I can't get the connection between baptisms and weddings out of my head. Perhaps a good direction to follow since the lectionary gives us the close order of the texts

    Here are some musings

  12. This is my feminist formation and the whole theology-of-suspicion thing coming out, thinking about the Cana story, I can't help but think of the raucous wedding customs of that time and place, and the poor little pubescent, nonconsensual bride cowering in the bridal chamber. (Do I hand in my union card now or later?) Anyway...this got me to thinking about the colorful rituals of my own ancient European heritage -- stuff like strangling sacrificial victims and throwing them into the sacred lake to make sure the crops came up, etc. -- and the general messiness, idiocy and irrationality of humanity. But God, nonetheless, shows Cana and everywhere else. I have no idea how to finesse this into a coherent point, and I don't have to this week;-), but -- I'm just throwing it out there.

  13. Here we are going with the theme "even a miracle needs a hand" (from some old show or something involving singing, dancing mice)--that without the servants obeying and going to get water (a LOT of water, probably from a distance), there wouldn't be a miracle here. Along the lines of BBTs sermon about the call of the disciples: the real miracle is that the people did what Jesus asked even though they had no idea what would happen, who he was, etc etc etc.

  14. I'm going with the unity of the Spirit - though since I'm reading blogs - I'm actually going with major procrastination - oh well.


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