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Saturday, November 24, 2007

11th Hour Preacher Party: In Between Edition

Good morning, Preacher Gals and Pals!

Thanksgiving is over, but it's not yet Advent! That's right, it's Reign of Christ/Christ the King Sunday!!!

But what's happening all over? I'll tell you what's happening all over. People who know very well it's a whole month until Christmas are wondering where the decorations are, that's what's happening all over. And as much as I am personally capable of resisting Christmas in favor of Advent, it is a greater challenge to hold back the cultural tide.

I've got a rather wistful sermon planned, using parts of Caroline Noel's "At the Name of Jesus" as a framework (check the volume before you click, it's a midi). To call him King is ironic and utterly true at the same time, or that's sort of where I am headed. We're about to push the "Reset" button and think of him as a mystical infant again. But for one week, for one hour of this one week, we can take the time to explore not just a triumphant kingship but the subtle complexities of our faith, that the anticipated Messiah did not arrive on a horse, brandishing a sword, and no amount of giving him crowns in stained glass windows will change it.

I hope it sounds like I have something there.

Let us know what you have and where you're headed today. Let's help each other through the long day's journey into night that is preaching on the Sunday after Thanksgiving when it's not yet Advent.


  1. I have some great coffee this morning and would be happy to pour anyone a cup. I'm using the Luke lectionary today and one passage that is not lectionary - Philippians 2:1-12. Where I'm going is that Jesus was exalted in God's eyes not because of any worldly power but because he emptied himself for the rest of us. Being exalted in God's eyes in not about what happens to us, but about what happens to OTHERS because of us. That's where I'm headed so far.

  2. Sounds like good stuff, chilly fingers.
    I got an email from a parishioner urging me to talk about how Jesus would respond to terrorism (hoping I would say Jesus would be on board with violence), and I'm looking at this as an opportunity to hold up how unexpected a Messiah Jesus was. The King stuff is tricky with Americans who have their own sort of Imperialist viewpoint.

  3. Happy writing all.

    I was wondering - do churches hold services at Thanksgiving - or is it a private thing.

    What about attendance on Sunday? Do fewer people come or more - or just the same

    Advent Sunday is a very well attended service here in Finland (in the Lutheran churches you are lucky to get a seat)

    and tomorrow I'm taking part in a Christ the King /Judgement Sunday service - which is followed by a thanksgiving potluck arranged by some American exchange students. I think that's lovely and I'm thankful for them :)

    we'll have some turkey and pumpkin pie ... I'm taking mandarines because to me they start the Advent season and I'm thankful for that.

    SB your thoughts on how Jesus would respond to terrorism/violence made me think. Our text is the sheep and goats and I'm wondering what the references to right and left might mean. Jesus sits at the right hand of the Father. ... mmm

  4. oh and leaving home baked rolls -with pumpkin seeds in - they are healthy and really tasty. Enjoy!

  5. Hmmm. I want to talk about the difference between the reign of 1st
    century kings and the reign of God. Kings ain't what they used to be! So it makes Christ the King look a bit insipid.
    Songbird, I thought the messiah was to come on a donkey. I love the picture of a horse, but I think we are mixing medifores or have I missed some prophecy? The messiah was to be a person of peace, not riding on a war horse.
    I believe that Jesus came to preach a non-imperialistic regime and it means that I am going to border on messin' rather than preachin' so let's see if I can come up with something that won't get me run out of town!

  6. Fair trade coffee and peanut butter toast (with local honey) are on the menu here. The sermon won't be started until this afternoon. We are welcoming new members and doing 3 baptisms (my first adult!) so I think the sermon will pretty much write itself, and will be short.

    lorna - -our community holds an interfaith Thanksgiving service on thanksgiving eve. Local churches host and share worship leadership responsibilities. It is a great service!

  7. I have hot water with lemon and honey to share. This cold is not going away. Blast.

    My sermon is on "complaining" and is in the "Andy Stanley" style of sermon prep. A "big idea" (aka thesis statement), supported by 3 points and three "next steps" (aka application)

    Rough outline:

    I. Avoid chronic complainers (they corrupt your faith)
    II. Learn contentment (Paul in Philippians)
    III. Pour out your heart aches to God (Numbers 13 and Gethsemane)

    I'm wondering how I will preach with a dripping nose and honky cough. bleah. (Actually, now that all of the snot is moving, I amd starting to feel much better.)


  8. Oh, BTW I have some cappachino and some wonderful classical music to share in the sermon makin'. Lorna, we have ecumenical services on Wed nites before T'givng. T'giving is a national holiday rather than a Church feast. I wish I could get our Finns to get as excited about Advent as yours are!

  9. I have to preach tonight and again in the morning. So far, nothing. We have one chocolate Entemann's donut left in the box. But you might have to arm wrestle my daughter for it.

    The Bug Man woke me up from a very intense dream so that I could call Best Buy and find out when they are delivering our new washing machine. (The old one is making very strange sounds and leaking a tiny bit of water on the floor.) The new washer is our present to each other for Christmas now. Sigh...

    I want to do a little thinking about what it meant to be a king in those days. Also, what does it mean to pay homage to some one.

    More later.

  10. muthah+, I found that picture by Googling "king jesus." The "milk-white horse" is an image in the spiritual, "Ride on, King Jesus," drawn from Revelation 19. It's just one of the images of Jesus at odds with the gospel Lesson in Luke 23, and I chose it for the contrast. There's a lot of conversation out there using Revelation and a sort of "Left Behind" hero Jesus, if what I hear about talk radio is true, and I'm trying to reference it without giving credence to it.

  11. revhrod, you may also want to consider what it means, or doesn't, to be a king NOW. I discovered how little my folks actually thought about kings when I asked the question of the children a few weeks ago. From whence do our assumptions spring?

  12. Hmmm...I have some Amish-baked dill-garlic bread here that makes delicious toast, or for hearty breakfast eaters some leftover sweet potato/pecan pie. Pick your pleasure!

    I'm not on deck this week, but in thinking about the Gospel lesson I kept hearing that great line from "Monty Python and the Holy Grail": "King? Well, I never voted for 'im!" I think that Jesus' kingship often disappoints us because he doesn't break through into our reality with guns a-blazing, wreaking vengeance on all the people we don't like and magickally fixing all our problems. I mean -- in our lesson we meet the King hanging on a cross -- weak, defeated, in pain; not exactly the cosmic Superhero we want our Messiah to be. It's an excellent Sunday to tackle the Theology of the Cross versus the Theology of Glory.

    P.S. Lorna, in our area most churches have ecumenical Thanksgiving services, usually the evening before Thanksgiving; some churches have their own services as well. The local RC church held a special Thanksgiving mass, in addition to participating in the community Thanksgiving service; I think that's something new for them.

  13. 'Morning y'all. I've been out of town for a large part of this month, and home but truly on holiday for the last three days, so I am finding it hard to shift gears. I just want to huddle inside and do home-related things, rather than try to jump-start my brain. My text is Colossians, title "The Visible Invisible," and that's about all I've got. I preached the Colossians text in a way I really really liked three years ago, so that is getting in my way as well.

    SB, what an interesting jumping-off point you've been given. Someone who parks in our parking lot has a bumper sticker which says, "WWJB - Who Would Jesus Bomb?"

    I have some really good coffee and not much else. But since this is virtual, let's say I have a big batch of Monkey Bread to pass around.

  14. Boy, everyone is up early. I slept in until all of 8:00. dog is still sick and got me up in the middle of the night to go outside.

    so... I have about half a sermon and I'm stuck. My "big idea" is from Luke and is that Jesus is a king or lord that even from the cross, gives out gifts: forgiveness and Paradise.

    Or, make that especially from the cross.

    challenges our ideas of kingship and also what are the best gifts.

    we went to the store on Friday and also i went to visit a woman who is dying. what a contrast.

    but I don't want this "good news" to be only for the "hour of our death"....

    ok, fair trade cofffee now, and blueberry pancakes in a little while.

    and I need a children's sermon idea too.

  15. Morning y'all. I'm offering coffee... and apple cranberry crunch for the preaching party.

    Lorna... we did a Thanksgiving Eve service. Simple... 1 reading from John 6 (I am the bread of life)... and I read "Stone Soup" as part of my homily. As the church (the whole church)... we have what it takes to feed the world (not just a meal... but eternal food too)... and no matter whether we are the soldiers (hungry but with hope)or the villagers (fed but afraid)in the story... there is always a place for us at God's table.

    For tomorrow... the texts are Jeremiah (typically mid-summer), Psalm 46 (Easter Vigil), Colossians 1 (Christ the King), Luke 23 (Easter). Add in on top of that Christ the King... the last Sunday of the church year... and the Thanksgiving lull headed into the Christmas frenzy where the world totally forgets Advent... and you have a STRANGE Sunday to address. This year... I'm preaching Christ the King as a sort of New Year's Eve... where we... because of Christ's Kingship... are set free to make resolutions to be more Christlike (discples).

    We are called... through water... word... bread and wine... to make "New Year's" resolutions to be worshipers, prayers, students of the Word, tithers, lovers, helpers/inviters.

    Hope that makes sense... cuz that's all I've got now. I'm going to have a house full of people in just a little while... so the actual thought process is going on time bake. :) Grace and Peace... PK

  16. pk, I like what you've got. also about the christmas frenzy... I'm trying to make a point that it's one of the times of year that the countercultural aspect of our message becomes clear.

  17. I can offer currant, cranberry walnut, and lemon poppy scones, along with pumpkin bread and yogurt. No kibble, though: dog had to eat rice and egg.

    We are watching a Nooma video called "Rich" instead of my preaching tomorrow. That will lead us well into our "Advent Conspiracy" theme and "Unplug the Christmas Machine" workshop next week.

    But I have a funeral in 6 hours. Am I ready? Maybe a scone would help...

  18. I am midway through a sermon that is coming around to dealing with terrorism, I think rather than Christ the king. Did anybody else catch James Cone interviewed by Bill Moyers last night? Some REALLY interesting ideas about the lynching tree and African American understanding of the Cross. It might make a new way of our looking at terrorism in our own age ---through the image of the Cross.

    Thanks, SB for the clarification on the Horse. I am with you on the apocolypticicism that is being bandied about these days.

  19. muthah+, I didn't see that special, but it sounds fascinating...could use a little bit more for my offering.

    also, with you on the apocalypticism...

  20. Best of luck everyone today, Hubby will be starting this evening. Not starting...well at least I hope not.

  21. I'm back from my usual Saturday destination (Weight Watchers), but this week it's to a house full of children and husband and dogs and cats, every one of which seems to need to make some kind of noise, right down to the dog whapping his tail against the floor.
    This worries me, as my sermon consists of a title and a concept, but no actual text just yet.

  22. Yeah ... that picture was interesting to say the least. My brain went straight to Revelation and the 4 Horsemen of the Apocalypse with that picture. ;-)

    I'm using the Luke reading, but my focus will be on how our salvation is bound up in the other. The congregation I serve has a "personal salvation" DNA which is ok, but insufficient. So you're saved ... goody for you ... but what about your relationship with your neighbor (be they Christian or not)? If you stop with your own salvation, you're probably not as "saved" as you think you are. Jesus' reaching out to the thief on the cross reminds us we are bound up in the lives of others and our salvation is not just personal - it's corporate!

  23. Oh yeah ... and that the reason we go to Golgotha at the end of the Christian Year is to close a long season of Jesus' earthly ministry (which could leave us with the idea that he was just a "good teacher" or "enlightened spiritual leader") with the reality that he is the Son of God who died and rose again. ... Amen.

  24. I became obsessed with finishing my sermon yesterday. So obsessed that I stayed up until 2--and then couldn't fall asleep! I did Psalm 46, which I will forever and ever think of as a 9/11 text. I'm pretty happy with it, except there's one weak transition that I hope will clear up sometime today. Get used to me at the preacher's party---I'm doing the next 5 Sundays in a row!

  25. Muthah+, I really appreciate your bringing in the lynching -- that is exactly what the cross was and keeping it in mind can help counteract pious, God wills crosses stuff, IMHO....Also I think as preachers we should be calling attention to the recent horrifying epidemic of nooses post Jena, and that is a perfect connection.

    Just a simple Christ the King reflection for house mass tomorrow morning, bringing in the Taize "Jesus, Remember Me" since it comes from the Luke passage and is a special song for our family as it opened Rachel's funeral. I think I do want to bring in the lynching-noose-crucifixion connection so will give some thought to how to do that appropriately for my rugrats.

    Not sure what I'm going to write today as there is no pressing deadline, but I can't waste a preacher party support opportunity. So I'll pick something from the pile of diss chapters/conference papers that need to get polished up and sent off for publication. Next week I'll be driving back from my Advent retreat and after that it will be verbatims, assuming my CPE interview this Monday goes well!

    Brown rice hot cereal with dried sour cherries and Craisins to share here, and some leftover pumpkin nut bread. Prayers and good luck, all.

  26. So for now I have one of those sermons that has taken a strange bend I didn't remotely foresee. Of course, how could I, since I haven't had a clue where I'm heading with this one (to paraphrase the Cheshire cat to Alice: If you don't know where you want to get to, it doesn't matter which way you go.)

    I love, love, love this Colossians text, but it has somehow launched me into strange realms this morning, and I fear they are realms that are not going to translate very well from the pulpit....

    Pass the goodies, please.

  27. Mmm, virtual monkey bread sounds great! I have rum balls - one goes a long way which is a good thing, given their calorie load. Virtually, they'll be even better!

    We celebrated Thanksgiving Eve at my church with Eucharist. Gospel was Matthew 6:25-33. As we learned from Elastigirl's great sermon, it is a feast of the church, so the paraments and vestments were changed from our Ordinary Time green to "our party clothes." We all brought lots and lots of baked goods and divided them into bushel baskets to take to 14 local fire, police, and EMT stations.

    I think this Sunday's attendance is likely to be down, due to so many folks travelling for the holiday. But I will surely be there, hoping to hear something as interesting as what you are all considering!

    Christ the King Judgment Sunday! Wow.

    Kingship, absolute rule, terrorism: We don't seem to like the idea of someone telling us what to do, and the absolute rule that we have seen in our history turns out real badly (i.e., Nazism, terrorism). Jesus presents us with the way it will be done right.

    But it's going to be tough to convince many of my countrypersons that the way to deal with it is the Jesus way. Doesn't the Jeremiah passage sound MUCH more satisfying!? "...he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land," sounds like the Messiah is coming to kick butt and take names. "Nuke them into the Stone Age."

    Maybe so, but I think Jesus will be turning that on its head, and in that light the Jeremiah prophecy means a completely different thing.

    Now I'm hungry! Off to get some more virtual monkey bread. Would anyone like a latte? I'm making....

  28. 'morning all!

    I'm looking at the whole "Christ the King" imagery and how uncomfortable my uber-liberal congregation is with this kind of image.

    We are not unfamiliar with monarchy language - most of us grew up singing "God Save the Queen" before school started every day (at least I did).

    Rather, the difficulty (I think) is with the complete reversal that Jesus' life represents vis a vis royalty. How do we re-frame our idea of monarchy and apply it to our understanding of Jesus?

    I'm going to talk about "low" and "high" Christology and how our understanding of JEsus is highly personal and subjective. I'm planning to illustrate that by inviting two people from one of our study groups to talk about their images of Jesus. I've set this up ahead of time, knowing that one has a very low Christology and the other is fairly middle of the road. Should be interesting.

  29. Songbird!

    Go to and look up "The Last Week" by Borg and Crossan, unless you own the book. (I left my copy at work! Sheesh!) It is possible to read large sections of the book online. If you search Christ the King, there are some passages towards the end of the list they give that might really help with your sermon.

  30. Sue- Crossan and Borg might also help you in the same section.

  31. It is interesting that the Feast of Christ the King was only intituted by Pius xi in 1923 as a way to combat the loss of monarchies all over Europe. If we didn't have monarchs anymore, then we had Christ who was the king. Isn't it interesting that the power of Christ is what turns the monarcy upside down>

  32. I think I may use some of this from "You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown."

    Linus, do you know what I intend. I intend to be a queen. (Musical fanfare.) When I grow up I'm going to be the biggest queen there ever was. And I'll live in a big palace with a big front lawn and have lots of beautiful dresses to wear. And, when I go out in my coach all the people...

    LINUS: (interrupting her)

    All the people will wave, and I will SHOUT at them. And...

    Lucy, I believe queen is an inherited title. Yes, I am quite sure a person can only be queen by being born into a royal family of the correct lineage so that she can assume the throne after the death of the reining monarch. I can't think of any possible way that you could ever become a queen. I'm sorry Lucy, but it's true.

    And in the summer time, I will go to my summer palace and I will wear my crown in swimming and everything. And all the people will cheer and I will SHOUT at them. (She pauses) WHAT DO YOU MEAN I CAN'T BE A QUEEN!!!!!!

    It's true.

    There must be a loop hole... this kind of thing always has a loop hole. Nobody should be kept from being a queen if she wants to be one. It's undemocratic.

    Good grief!

    It's usually just a matter of knowing the right people. I bet a few pieces of well placed correspondence and I get to be queen in no time.

    I think I'll watch television.

    I know what I'll do. If I can't be a queen, then I'll be very rich. I'll work and work until I'm very rich and then I will buy myself a queendom.

  33. muthah+, good point about the monarchies. I had also heard it had to do with the effects of the first WW. I'll have to re-read that.

    virtual vicar -- personal and corporate go together...right? so if we have received the good gifts of life and forgiveness (even for enemies) from God, we live by this as "subjects" in Jesus' kingdom or realm... at least that's what I want to say.

  34. Oh my dears - I feel thoroughly guilty as I'm barely contributing to our worship tomorrow. The Friends of the Church are producing a drama in place of the sermon and have also written the intercessions, one of our retireds is presiding and I'm not even on duty in the evening...WonderfulVicar is taking pity on me because today's Hugger Steward's birthday and he clearly expects me to be exhausted and insensible (which may of course be true)...
    BUT I can offer death by choc cake -and even a bacon sandwich or two from his birthday lunch...and lots of good wishes and sympathy for all of you preaching tomorrow.

  35. Bacon sandwich?!?!? OH MY, how I love a bacon sandwich. It's been ages since I've had one. Please, please pass one this way.

  36. revhrod, that is brilliant!!! Why, I once played Lucy, so I should have thought of that, too!!

  37. The intern is hitting Christ the King this Sunday (and I would like that painting in velvet, by the way). I am in the office working on Advent bulletins, especially #1 since I will be away on con.ed next week.

    Sounds like you folks are going in some really solid directions. Good work!

  38. Songbird- I'd have loved to have been in your audience! I have finished my sermon. It's a hodge podge but I think it will work. I'm going to take a nap and then in an hour it's off to preach at a parish that's over the river and across the state line. The nice thing about preaching Saturday night (to a very small crowd) is you can always do some tweaking before Sunday morning.

  39. Will Smama, if we find the painting for you at some gas station that sells velvet paintings.... where will you hang it?

  40. Wow! What wonderful thoughts you all have as you prepare for Reign of Christ Sunday.

    I did that last Sunday, because this Sunday I'm doing the Thanksgiving texts. Tomorrow is my last Sunday at one of my churches, and the Thanksgiving texts lend themselves to a "last Sunday" kind of sermon.

    I solicit your prayers, my friends, as leaving this church is proving to be more difficult than it need be. On the other hand, things that are happening as I leave are proving to me the "rightness" of my doing so.

  41. Oh my. It's nearly 1:00 here in the Midwest. I have sat at this computer for about 5 hours trying to piecemeal a sermon for tomorrow.

    Basically I am looking at the themes of remembering, forgiving, and gratitude as an antidote to possessions, power, and prestige...or what the Kingdom of God looks like instead of the kingdom of human beings...

    it needs a lot of work. And I have to head over to the church to do some things that didn't get done I'll be back later...

    And when I return I shall have tea, of all sorts, and dark chocolate...

  42. Prayers for you, rev dona.

    So I am well into my sermon now and still don't know where I'll be ending up (though I have a sneaking suspicion that it will have something to do with Christ as King).

  43. okay, so I decided that I hate Christ the King Sunday--possibly because I always get stuck wit it (as an intern, in Egypt, and now twice here). I'm sort of over it. Is that bad? Yes. Oh well.

    I am taking the opportunity to talk about the liturgical calendar and the idea of cyclical time. I think. I wish I could say that was related to the text (the Luke 1 song of Zechariah) but really it's more T. S. Eliot.

    On the other hand, I haven't started yet, so who knows how it will all turn out...

  44. Those of you working on kingship, terrorism and the like, do you know Walter Wink's work? It really applies here--the whole myth of redemptive violence, Jesus bringing in a new (non-violent) way.

  45. I've had so much coffee. Do you think Diet Coke will help move things along?
    Thanks for all the good ideas, pals.

  46. Howdy Y'all! I just returned home from a 3 day visit to the in-laws. Not terrible, although it will forever be known as the toilet thanksgiving, as every conversation seemed to revolve around toilet issues. Not very appetizing!
    Hubbie has the morning service with an amazing Christ the King sermon that brought tears to my eyes. (In a good way, challenging and strong with great imagry) I think I'm using Jerimiah, but Luke 1 is wonderful. Sounds like some good work going on, maybe it will rub off as all I want to do is sleep!

  47. Songbird, by all means.... diet coke. It is the nectar of the gods.

  48. I'm not preaching tomorrow--I have the day off, oh blessed be deacons who like to preach!--but I thought I drop by and see if anyone wanted me to make a run for late lunch/early dinner (or supper, depending on where you're from). Thai? Chinese? Subs? Something for the grill? I'm taking orders for you hard workers!

    Yes, I'm feeling a tad guilty for not having to preach two Sundays in a row...

    Prayers for you you do this difficult, right thing.

  49. SO far I have slightly more than bupkiss. BUt I did help build a float this morning and we ahve a parade tonight.

    SOmething about what makes a good leader is I think where I am headed. ANd may be short is good. Last week we went almost 15 hours so short tomorrow might be a balance. Right?

  50. gord, please tell me there was supposed to be a . in 15. You didn't actually go 15 hours, right? Like more than the hours of daylight? If so, wow. That's dedication to the work of worship! ;-)

  51. Well it's just hitting 9pm here and I'm about to type out what I've written longhand (for once!) and see if it's any good at all (I'm not sure whether to be hopeful at this point)!
    This is certainly one occassion when RevGal comments will be appreciated - when I get to the part where I have something finished and posted anyway!
    (Then I need to turn the bunch of thoughts on an envelope into an address for our annual bereavement service tomorrow afternoon).

  52. Hello all, Late to the party today. You all are seriously impressive! We had out first choir rehearsal for lessons and carols this morning and I think we will be quite splendid this year...we are bringing in the college kids, a few community singers and the presbyterians to spice it up as we are pretty small on our own. It's our big blow out and we pack the church. Got the sermon done yesterday. It just sort of happened in a two-hour chunk and it's here. Leaving some PB cookies for you all. WIll check in after I get my greens hung on the porch.

  53. Okay, so I sort of have a sermon. It's here for comments. It's sort of on Luke 1, sort of on T. S. Eliot, sort of about time, and sort of about Disneyland. How's that for a focus?

    I'm debating whether I need to say more about the liturgical calendar...if I should truly make it a teaching moment of if I should just let that go and hope for the best....

  54. yeah, my period key doesn't always work...

  55. RevDrKate, that sounds wonderful!
    I am still muddling along. Anyone want pizza?

  56. My Mom is bringing in pizza as she delivers my son. Who wants what toppings?

  57. Mmmmmpizzammmmmmm. I'll take tomatoes and garlic please. And a Coke. And a beer. And a chocolate-peanut butter milkshake. And an ending to my sermon.


  58. ok, in a few minutes I have to preach a sermon I don't like very much. please pray for me.

    and hope I can fix it by the big services tomorrow morning.

  59. Prayers for you, Diane.

    Somewhere along the way, I found an ending. I have posted a working (still very much in process!) draft here , if anyone is interested.

    Thing is, now I really want an actual pizza, not just a virtual one. I'm off to see what dh has planned for dinner....

  60. Y'all, I'm finished, I think. At least, I posted it, which is my way of saying "done for now." Pizza is on its way, and I'm going to enjoy an evening with all my children here at home.
    Blessings to all still writing!

  61. Well it's posted here now. I'm feeling pretty unsure of this one so comments would be greatly appreciated!

    I'm impressed by how many other sermons have appeared since I posted my last comment - going back to have a good read now!

  62. Hello everyone!

    I sort of let this week slide because I remembered preaching on this text three years ago and thought "oh, this'll be a piece of cake, I'll just rewrite that sermon!" Seemed like a good plan given being away for the holiday.

    Well, the Holy Spirit has different plans, and now I think I'm preaching about the movies. Specifically Enchanted and Beowulf and the different images of royalty (and how neither one is what we see in the Luke text for Christ the King). (I guess this is what happens when you only go to the movies once or twice a year!)

    Planning to whip up some beer-cheese soup in a bit if anybody would like some!

  63. Well, I preached my sermon to seven people and I think I need to rewrite before tomorrow's larger crowd. It just felt a little bland in the middle.

  64. well, people said they liked it tonight but I don't believe them...
    I feel like all the parts are there, but somehow it's in the wrong order.

    this doesn't happen to me so much any more....

  65. Chocolate layer cake... red velvet cake... fruitcake... and pound cake are on the table. I have sweet tea... diet pepsi... coffee... and Earl Grey tea. I've posted my sermon (???) here. I'm happy Christ is the King... and that I can be in his service!!!

  66. ok. I'm going to read all the posted sermons. Mine is in a state of 'written but needs to rest before being re-written' the mean time I've had real pizza (pepperoni, onion, black olive)...and, for better or worse, a glass red wine. sigh.

    You can find my sermon here...

  67. Signing off, folks, with thanks for the good company. I got some good revisions done, though there are some to go before I can send it off. And I also got some good brainstorming/focusing done on my two talks for the hoped for job interview, especially the M.Div. one. (Comparing Gertrud's and Julian's feminine images of God and relating this to modern issues with inclusive language and theology).

    We are off to Souplantation with Katie, as Nicholas is with a friend.Congrats to all who are done and prayers for all who continue to work on.

  68. Diane, my mother always said that if they tell you they like it- they're telling the truth. When they say nothing or tell you they like your haircut- that's when you need to worry!

    I've done my rewrite, re-order, and reprinting. Thanks to Songbird for a couple of stellar paragraphs of inspiration!

    Blessings to everyone still crafting something for the morning.

  69. I'm pooped...just returned from Minnesota. Sitting in the car for seven hours is tiring!

    I am preaching a series from Acts 2:42-47, the passage about what the early believers did together...from which I've extrapolated the purposes of the church. This is sermon four, and one is left for next week. It is about the purpose of the CHURCH and the church...meaning our little congregation too. Tomorrow I'm talking about "ministry" and what that means. I confess, I've been more direct with the church folk than probably ever before. The future of this congregation for a long time to come, and certainly my part in it, may well be decided during this month...and that is scary. Prayers appreciated.

    I need a late-night cup of herbal tea. Anyone care for one too?

  70. Have some of my hot water, Singing Owl...I'm drinking holiday chai and trying to forge ahead on this sermon. Dinner turned into a longer delay than it should have. Sigh.

  71. Stalled out at 978 words. Fell asleep with head on desk. Just need to get done...

  72. 1758 words and I'm done. I think. Off to...shower? bed? Something.

    Blessings on all preaching, proclamation, and pondering today.

  73. Praying for you and your people, SO. And for all who preach and learn this day.

    If Will Smama were here she'd say it, so I'll say it for her:

    The Holy Spirit has your back!


    If you've got a dog, walk it proud!

  74. Our sermon was about a possible
    meeting between Zechariah and the
    repentant thief on the cross. Our
    gal preacher is excellent.


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