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Saturday, December 22, 2007

11th Hour preacher party- Almost Christmas edition!

Christmas day is almost upon us, I don't know if I am feeling energised of flagging, I am really looking forward to one of my services tomorrow, but feeling a bit jaded about the other one. How about you, are you excited or weary? What are your texts for tomorrow- are you going with the lectionary, Isaiah, Romans or Matthew? Or are you doing something different?
I have a series of meditations prepared, looking at the story through the eyes of various different women who were there but mostly silent in the text. You can read them here.
If you are weary with preparations I pray that you will find some peace, and some inspiration! If you are full of joy and energy let us know.
The coffee is on, what type of seasonal treats are you bringing to the table? I have some home-made sweets and mince pies ( very British). Lets party...


  1. Greetings! I guessI'm one of the early birds...I am working on a funeral service that will be at 10:00 a.m. Then, A person is coming by to visit with a gift for our Christmas adopt-a-family. I'll then load up the car for our performance of the live nativity this afternoon which was cancelled last weekend due to bad weather. I need to review the monolouge I'll delver for worship tomorrow--my big question is wether to wear a costume or not. Insight anyone?
    Oh-and did I mention I'm on call at the hospital until tomorrow morning at 8:00 a.m.?! IMy energy is good right now, but I need to approaching break. I have cookies left over from our longest night service to share--I found blue stars at our local grocery! MMMMM, solid sugar.My best to everyone for this day and the approaching busy days....PEACE!

  2. Whew my spelling really sucketh--I guess you'll get the drift...

  3. I like the spelling - and want to know where I can get one of those monoloungers for use in worship tomorrow :)
    I'm preaching David and "the wife of Uriah" tomorrow - the last in our series of Matthew's women - and to my mind much more difficult than Tamar Rahab and Ruth.
    And it's the Saturday before Christmas!

  4. oooh mince pies? Don't mind if I do :)

    Not sure I'll even go to church tomorrow - we're having our English Christmas lunch at 12:30 ... DD leaves for Japan on Christmas Day from Hki and Christmas Eve is Finnish food (ham etc) with the in-laws

    But I will get to go to church (in English - hallelujah!) on Christmas Day in the church of the Rock

    it's amazing :) and I'm so happy about it!

  5. Merry Christmas preachers. I am actually on vacation at home for the holidays. One of the only benefits of being an associate pastor is that my presence is not required for Christmas services. However I have a specialized ministry in my church where my presence is required when Senior Pastor is on vacation (the week after xmas).

    It is a blessing to be with family for the holidays!!!! I will think of you all and send good preaching energy to you as you write your sermons.

    Would anyone like any fruit cake. Yes I know I am weird but I actually like fruit cake.

  6. Morning y'all! I'm up and on babygirl duty while hubbie is at downtown hospital visiting a member. I'm working on Christmas Eve and have some ideas, but Noggin has a weird way of zapping them out of my head. Darn that Little Bear!
    Fruit loops and Chocolate milk anyone?

  7. I'm preaching on Luke 2 for the early service Christmas eve... so far my sermon title is: "how far is it to Bethlehem?"

    and, oh yes, we have church tomorrow, too.

    too early for coffee here, everyone is still asleep and it's snowing, but later on I think there will be pancakes.

  8. LOL Froot Loops and chocolate milk might be what I need to get started today!

    I'm trying to recover from my week (four days on a new job--at a church, of course, right before that Big Event--plus two late nights), but there's so much to do! Various household stuff (bills, laundry, etc.), tomorrow's sermon, Christmas Eve story to prepare, packing for travel over Christmas Day-New Years, the house to clean and prepare for an in-coming roommate (while I'm gone)...and I really want to bake some Christmas cookies!

    Yep, strong coffee and sugar are called for.

    Joseph. Trying to get inside his mind--what must it have been like to be told to do something so at variance with what was expected of you? How was he able to go along with what the angel told him? And then live with it all those years? And whatever happened to him, I wonder...

    That's where I'm wandering this morning.

    Oh, and I didn't do the Friday Five this week, but I did blog a bit, trying to catch up...head over here.

  9. Morning early ones, ooh, fruit loops and chocolate milk...breakfast of champions! I have a cookie plate I'd love someone to eat...puleese. Been up since 5:15, have a pretty done sermon for tomorrow on Matthew at this point. Want to tweak it later between preps for dinner church dinner for twenty at my house tonight, then will post it at some point. Doing the service Christmas but NOT preaching, so after today...a break.

    QP...I think costumes can be fun and effective...what's it like?

  10. Not having any churchly responsibilities, and probably skipping tomorrow because it's the Children's Christmas Pageant and I don't know any of the children (and my own youngest is home, and has already seen one pageant this year), I was really happy to be able to read Sally's meditations and will be checking around to see who else posts a sermon for tomorrow. I'm fresh out of goodies, maybe later some apricot/coconut/condensed milk balls?

  11. My monologue involves the character of an older shepherdess recalling the birth of Jesus, so my costume possibility is as a shepherd...QP

  12. The sermon for Sunday is done. I am now working on the meditation for Monday night. That deserves a good deal of my time.

    I will put my wife on a plane tonight. I'll fly out east to join her on the 25th. I'm not looking forward to that at all. But that's how it has to be this year. Ah, churchwerk.

    Blessings to all today. And may God help us all keep Christmas (mp3)!

  13. Here is the sermon. I totally stole the poem from earlier in the week. Thank you for posting that. It really helped me out.


  14. I'm with Rainbow Pastor, heading down the same road and asking the same questions about Joseph. Also wondering if he cried out to God as he paced during Mary's labor in the stable, "God, when you said the anointed one was coming, I didn't expect THIS!" Also still tweaking the Christmas Eve service. I'm off for worship practice--I'm singing tomorrow too--and then when I get back I'll make some of our family's traditional orange nut bread to share.

  15. Presiding not preaching in the morning, and Nine Lessons and Carols tomorrow night...but I have still to put the Crib service together. It's proving a bolshy beast this year, refusing to come together as I wish. Have done any and everything else I can think of, - written my sermon for the Christmas Morning Family Eucharist (presiding at Midnight, so WonderfulVicar preaches), put the service together early last week, sorted out memorial candles and labels in time for the carol service...I'm just going to have to do it now. Heeeeelp!
    Oh...and it being lunch time here, I'll put a bowl of tangerines on the table...makign mince pies later, so will bring them along.

  16. thankfully I am in charge of the two early services for Christmas Eve. The first is the children's service, and the children's choirs are doing a musical (no sermon for me!). The second is "Christmas Unplugged" and this year has a lessons-and-carols feel, but between each lesson and carol is a meditation. I managed to find 2 Barrie Shepherd poems to complement the 2 we are using from the Iona Community at all the services, AND I found lay readers to do all of them, which means all I have to do is light the Christ candle and celebrate communion. Hallelujah!

    But for far, I have 0 words. I'm using Isaiah and Matthew and the general theme is "making room"--Ahaz uses false piety to crowd God out (unsuccessfully), Joseph's obedience makes room for God to work in both his own life and in the world. I may do something with the women in the genealogy too but haven't decided. oh for a plan!!

    I have Trader Joe's Spiced Cider to share, and a Christmas party to go to at 4. Oh, and my dad and brother are here, taking up my space and messing up my Saturday routine. I really hope they'll go somewhere soon!

    This is the longest comment ever. Maybe I should put this typing energy into my sermon....

  17. It's the children's program tomorrow, but I still have to preach, which means I need to do a particularly child-friendly sort of sermon. I haven't the foggiest idea what I'm going to say, but I think I may go with a storytelling approach. Fortunately, it can be short, since we're also doing four baptisms tomorrow. Pass the coffee, and then I'm off to either find or write some sort of Christmas story.

  18. I've posted some preliminary thoughts (see link in above comment) for my sermon.

    I was only somewhat distracted by a conversation with Music Man. We so rarely get a chance for a real-time conversation (17 hours time difference will do that to you) that I didn't want to miss the opportunity. Yet another blessing to add to this week--a conversation with Music Man!

    Oh and I have some orange/chocolate chip muffins to share.

  19. I just remembered that I have a book called, "Santa, Are You Real?" that I'd love to use, which talks about the real St. Nicholas. However, I'm guessing there would be some really displeased parents when I told their kids that Santa Claus is long dead. Back to the drawing board...

  20. I have a *ton* of gingerbread men here-- made yesterday while I should have been working on Sunday's sermon. Dig in!!

    I'm having a really hard time sitting down and working on the sermon, there's so much other stuff I need to get done. I'll be talking about Joseph, and, as we're formally welcoming some new members tomorrow (the decision to do it on Advent 4 wasn't mine, BTW, but I'm stuck with it) I want to focus on how he made room in his life and house for God. And how he responded faithfully to the circumstances God put in his way...

  21. My brother is still asleep on my couch.
    That's where I sit to write sermons.
    Maybe that's why my sermon mojo is missing?
    I hope he wakes up soon so I can test my theory....

  22. Teri, thanks for stopping by and commenting. Singing Owl, thank you as well.

    Well, friends, I have dropped off some of my mom's homemade Chex mix. If you have hypertension, steer clear! Hoowhee there's some salt there. But it is G-o-o-d!

  23. Morning preachers! The snacks sound good and there's Entenmann's Raspberry Coffee Cake to share here.

    Just a simple reflection for house mass here so my writing task for today is a paper proposal for a Hildegard of Bingen conference in Philly....I also have a few phone calls for Hospice and one visit to make (with a ten year old--bereaved family member, not the patient, thank goodness, but I'm still a little nervous).

    Good luck!

  24. Mmmm, homemade Chex Mix! Yummy!!!!

    I am stopping by with many treats - cookies, candies, homemade butterscotch pudding, pies - while taking a small break from preparing our big Christmas dinner, which we will have tonight (since Christmas Eve is taken up with church services and Christmas Day involves saying good-bye to our guests and packing to leave town the next day). I have my sermon in my pocket from last week. In a way that feels great - no prep for today! - but in way strange - how can I possibly feel ready if I am not focused all day today on the task for tomorrow?

    We'll see how it goes. In the meantime, I must get back to cooking, baking, Christmas cards, sewing, hosting, and gaining approximately 10 pounds.

    Cheers to all of you!

  25. Just returned from a couple of errands with tomorrow's sermon hot on the agenda. Somehow, my Christmas Eve meditation has already formed in my head - it is about the hope for power and light. I am guess a LOT of clergy out here and in other areas that lost electricity for a long time had that sermon pop into their heads.

    In the meantime, Joseph once again gets pushed to the back of my Christmas scene but today it is time to focus on the man once again.

    Sister and brother-in-law come in tonight and my SON who due to my schedule has spent more time with others than with me. So today's goal is to get the writing done so that the only thing left is the services themselves.

    Kathryn... I remember your schedule from last year putting us all to shame. Sounds like you are up for a repeat performance.

    Blessings to you!

  26. Presiding on Advent 4, but not preaching. Preaching and Presiding Christmas Eve. Working on a reflection on birth and incarnation and finding Christ anew in our lives...or something like that.

  27. I am off the hook for both Sunday and Christmas Eve! We have our cantata on Sunday and Lessons and Carols on Christmas Eve. I usually do Lessons and Carols on the Sunday after Christmas so I don't have to do yet another sermon (the cantata is usually earlier in Advent, too), but the tradition here is lessons and carols for Christmas Eve. And folks want a short service with lots of Christmas music. Next week, I'm doing the four women in Matthew 1. I am fascinated by them (and have been since seminary). The typical male commentary shorts those women so much. I love the wife of Uriah the Hittite. Was she a seductress? Or seduced? The one thing I do know is that she must have been politically astute because her son became king, despite the fact that there were many other sons ahead of him. I wonder what she did in the harem, how did she use her political skills? Was she David's partner in using her political acumen to further his power?

    I also love Tamar for her ability to get what she deserved in a patriarchial system. She certainly had chutzpah.

    I'm going on a bit more than I anticipated.

    Merry Christmas to all!

  28. I didn't have to drive an hour to church last Sunday due to snow, but the locals made it. I e-mailed my sermon on Mary to one of my elders who delivered it on my behalf.
    Like many of you, I am now working on Joseph. Haven't begun writing, but lots of ideas are going through my head.
    Christmas Eve service of Lessons and Carols is ready to go, bulletin printed. That's a relief.

  29. You know, every Saturday I think about y'all (see it's southern and inclusive instead of "you guys") while you are working so hard on your sermons. And some I even get to read the fruits of your labor.

    However, I interrupt the Preacher Party for a brief advertisement. On the sidebar is a link for getting Amazon gift certificates for the last minute shopper - and RGBP benefits BIG time when you do that - we get 6% of the amount. That means for a 25 dollar gift certificate, we get 1.50. So... if you haven't done your shopping and you are so inclined, use the link in the side bar.

    Now, back to the regularly scheduled preacher party. Blessings to you all.

  30. Quakerpastor, I think the costume sounds wonderful, IMHO. Tripp, awesome sermon! Everybody is hoppin' over here, and bringing out the goodies. I still have cookies! And a sermon posted here. Off to don the prof hat and post grades then do the dinner party.

  31. My notes are at my blog. Not preaching until Christmas eve but am thinking about going with Joseph - thanks to all the notes on RevGalBlogPals on Tuesday. BTW lest we get too O.D.ed on Christmas - here is a Brief History of Christmas - I especially like the Donkey Sunday.

  32. I have finished my sermon for tomorrow. I will post it later on my site, I have something working on the Incarnation for Christmas Eve, but it isn't worked through yet.

    Lorna, I checked out your post on the church. I could not read a lick of the Finnish, but the pictures of the the church are stunning!

    I have had a death in the parish so I am off to visit with the family and then to the grocery for Christmas dinner--what was I thinking when I invited a colleague and her husband! Seriously tho, we will have a good time.

    Merry Christmas to all of you and blessings upon all of you. May the Christmas that you celebrate hold for you that special message of Christ's presence that so often that we miss when we have to "do" the service.

  33. Hi, y'all! Sally, I'm grateful you jumped in, because our morning ended up containing an unexpected trip to the vet. Our big boy, Sam, seems to have eaten something he shouldn't have. He got a liter of subcutaneous fluids, which we hope will move things along. By the time he got home, he had his thirst and appetite back, so I'm hopeful.
    I have my Joseph ideas (see Tuesday's comments) to work with. My Christmas Eve homily could be preached as it is (worked on it while I was sick), although I plan to spend more time with it Monday morning.
    I have Swedish ginger snaps to share! (Please take some!)

  34. Along with those ginger snaps of Songbird's, I offer you some mango ginger I splurged on at Fresh Market the other day. Cheese and ginger snaps are the best together-- yum.

  35. Auntie Knickers, hop in your car and drive to Old Mill Town! 10:30 a.m.! :-)

  36. Songbird - I hope Sam is feeling better really soon!

    You are all far more creative than I am at the moment. I'm staring at a blinking cursor on a blank page.

    *blink blink blink*

    Y'all are an inspiration. Thanks Cathy for the reminder of how inclusive "y'all" is!

    Whine Alert: I thought perhaps I wouldn't have a funeral between Christmas and New Years this year. Not so much.

    I know - these things happen in God's time, not according to our schedules - but it's the consistency of God's timing that gets me every time. I will have to go back and check our burial registry, but I'm pretty sure this is five years in a row.

    The woman who died is someone I delighted in visiting and I'm so sad that I won't be able to do that anymore. Darn.

    That was a phone call I really didn't want this morning - for my church community as much as for myself - though I'll admit, I'm pretty much spent.

    End of whine. I am blessed. I know that.

    Back to that blank page... I'm doing three "Christmas Reflections" in the service tomorrow. We're Intergenerational tomorrow, so they need to be short and child-friendly. The best part is that we have an 11 year old girl doing her first scripture reading in tomorrow's service. She is so excited!

  37. okay, so this sermon is sort of turning out as a compare and contrast of Ahaz and Joseph, with the clear suggestion being that we be more like Joseph. I wasn't really planning that approach, but oh well.

    I wonder, though, if I can say that when we make room for God the way Joseph did, our lives may be "less full of things and feasts and more full of ridicule and heartache, more full of compassion and less full of false piety." Too accusatory? (the funny thing is, I can't think of a single person in my congregation who displays blatant (Ahaz-like) false piety, so it wouldn't be an accusation at all...)

  38. muthah+ and Sue, I'm sorry to hear of the losses in your congregations.
    I guess for this sermon I don't need to get into the weird obsession people have with Mary's virginity and Joseph's chastity, right?

  39. Sally - I need a recipe for mincemeat pie!! Can you help me? Post a comment on my blog if you have a recipe to share. These things are HARD to find recipes for!

  40. Also, for anyone who might want to read it, I posted my Christmas Eve sermon a few days ago: a sort-of meditation on the swaddling cloths.

  41. okay, I know this is off topic but it was too funny not to share.
    My brother finally woke up (he moved to a bed so I could have the couch at last) and asked if he could use my shower instead of the one in the guest bathroom. When I asked why, he said that "that shower is like being spit on by a kid with no lips and no tongue--the water just drools out on you."

    obviously I've never used the guest shower...but no one else has ever complained. If they had, though, it wouldn't have been half as amusing.

    Back to your regularly scheduled program...

  42. Hey Songbird!
    Sue and Muthah+, my heart goes out to you and the families involved.

    Still sweating Joseph here, but I think I have something that will work, it just needs a bit o' polish.

    'Thou shalt not sacrifice thyself on the altar of the perfect sermon...' - I keep repeating that to myself. Hard this time of year with the full pews and all.

    I think I am going to break out the 'guest' coffee just a tad early.

    Keep going all!

  43. Okay, I have a sermon. It's not good. I pray that my preaching professors will never read it. Transitions? What are those? focus? why?

    anyway, it's here awaiting constructive criticism while I go take a shower (and let my brother take one too).

  44. Must. not. play. marbledrop....

  45. However, I interrupt the Preacher Party for a brief advertisement. On the sidebar is a link for getting Amazon gift certificates for the last minute shopper - and RGBP benefits BIG time when you do that - we get 6% of the amount. That means for a 25 dollar gift certificate, we get 1.50. So... if you haven't done your shopping and you are so inclined, use the link in the side bar.

    What a great idea.

    I've opened a bottle of merlot and have some brie and camenbert with crackers. If you're done preaching come party :)

  46. My joseph story for tomorrow is posted at my place.

    All I have left to write is a story about light (so far I have an opening, scene-setting paragraph) and a prayer for Christmas Eve. Mind you "writing" the latter may mean finding one I like and borrowing it....

  47. oh and the sauna is warm too. The Christmas Ham goes into the oven when I go to bed (in 2-3) and it will smell wonderful

    Spare a prayer for teenage son who is on the verge of being re-named "OBNOXIOUS SOD." sigh :( it's going to be a long weekend if he doesn't snap out of it soon.

  48. sorry the site was in Finnish - here's one in English

  49. muthah+ and sue, so sorry for your losses. especially hard at this time of year.
    we are doing sermon lite tomorrow, reading to stories with commentary, so they've been done for a little while.
    One story is Kate DiCamillo's Great Joy, and the other is an old one called Why the Bells Chimed.
    I'm having a hard time remembering what day it is.
    more coffee, anyone? we have toffee flavor fair trade.
    songbird, I'm pretty sure you don't have to get into that particular aspect of the story. Joseph's chastity and all.
    Now I have to go shopping for Christmas eve groceries. hope they aren't all out!

  50. Or then again I could go play Deep Freeze instead...

  51. Lorna, I've got one of those sons too! What is it with them?

  52. Hello everyone...busy day around here!

    I've got a plethora of random but interesting notes for tomorrow about NAME. What it means to be named, what it's like when we don't yet have a name for something, how having a name changes things. And why did a prophecy about "Emmanuel" suddenly mean "Jesus"? Maybe his middle name was Emmanuel...Jesus Emmanuel Christ.

    (btw, if anyone else out there is working with the "naming" aspect of the Matthew text, I strongly suggest listening to episode #197 of This American Life online--all about how things change when they have a name. Great stuff.)

    So today, I've got to turn that into a sermon for tomorrow (on the short side), and begin work on Monday night's sermon (also on the short side). Also finish some Christmas knitting and make some cookies. And maybe even start packing to leave on Christmas Day.

    I think I'll go read some of y'all's sermons to prime the pump, so to speak. :)

  53. I found a couple of stories that I just need to decide between. Then I was reminded that I volunteered to make a cake for the "Jesus' birthday party" themed children's program, because I have a ton of extra cake mixes and frosting. The problem: said cake mixes and frosting are at the other house. So, shall I make my trip to the grocery store, or to the old house?

  54. I thought his middle name was Howard.

  55. Hi all.

    Just sitting down to finish stuff for tomorrow. Who da' man? Joseph da' man.

    Joseph, I think, is kind of like "the wind beneath my wings" guy for Mary and Jesus. He is like many of our spouses, and many of our congregants, who quietly and faithfully act behind the scenes to support those whose ministries are a little more upfront and obvious. I know there are times my spouse might be tempted to divorce me quietly, too --but an angel of some sort reminds her that what is within me --and within her-- is of the Holy Spirit ...

    The pastor of the UCC congregation that hosts my MCC church and I are each doing a brief meditation on the Luke passage and splitting other duties at an 11:00 pm Christmas Eve service. He gets shepherds, angels and gloria's. I get bureaucracy, a full inn and swaddling bands.

    Ready for a snack? I've got cold boiled shrimp and cocktail sauce left over from a friend's fabulous open house last night ...

  56. Anyone have ideas for children's time on Joseph this week?

  57. If you're preaching Joseph, you might want to check out Madeleine L'Engle's journal entry "Opposing Parallels" in the December book WinterSong. Or read it on my blog at my blog.

  58. Hi again!

    I just received a most interesting e-mail from a colleague who has inspired me to conceive this Sunday as "The Feast of the Annunciation to Joseph."

    Silly me --I've never thought of it that way before.

  59. OK, the theme fro tomorrow is Christmas is Chaos and Calm. The Children's moment is called A moment of chaos. (Later, after Joseph's story, we will have a Moment of calm which will basically be a time of silent meditation with a few words of intro). ANy ideas how to create some controllable chaos with about 8 children aged 7 and under?

  60. Well, I've announced the Christmas Eve services on Facebook, moved furniture so Roomie has a bunk (took a futon apart and put it back together, and done two loads of laundry (only three to go). Still have to finish the laundry, polish up the Joseph sermon, and put tpgether a cheat sheet for the Christmas Eve story (which actually has to wait until tomorrow when I get to the church and look at our creche...).

    I'm ready for dinner. I have a chicken casserole to offer...not very exciting.

  61. Just back from Live Nativity. We were short a wise guy, so I did the honors...I dropped the gift--I think mine was myrrh-- and broke off the spout--hopefully this is not a long treasured relic from some past church member. Spouse is on the way home to take us to dinner, stuff for tomorrow mostly done, and the Vicar of Dibley is on at 8:00 p.m. YAY!

  62. Eeek...the one thing I had failed to anticipate today was that the flower ladies might forget the 42 people who had signed up to adopt candles in memory of departed loved ones...Soo, having spent the morning producing lovingly calligraphed labels saying
    "Given in memory of X" I then had to upset all the flower arrangements on the window cills in order to fit the candles in.
    Suspect my head may be removed from my body some time in the next 24 hours...
    However, on an adrenalin high from this, I've done the Crib Service from Alpha to Omega and have only to produce a thought for the day for 8.00 Communion on Christmas day and I'll be home and dry.
    And, honestly, tonight sleep matters more.
    Write well, my friends, - and prayers that the Holy Spirit comes to fill up any gaps that your words might leave...
    Have I told you that I love you all recently??

  63. Whoa! Gord, I think I just decided to focus on the brink between chaos and calm for Christmas Eve, so how cool to see you working that for tomorrow. Not sure about suggestions for chaos limited experience is that they tend to create their own chaos whether you like it or not.

    I'm kind of giddy because I just FINISHED my sermon for tomorrow morning! It needs trimming and editing, as it's a bit long, but I feel really good about it and most of all, it's DONE!

    I do want to take a whack at Luke 2 tonight though, so there is more work to do. But it feels good to have that one piece done!

    Church people brought plates of cookies today, so if anyone wants rum balls, stop on by!

  64. Vicar -- thanks for the L'engle journal entry - I think that will definitely find a place in my sermon (that I STILL haven't started - been dealing with plumbing issues)

  65. Goodness everyone has been busy- apologies for putting the coffee on and promptly disapearing- life took over in a mad rush... and I have just surfaced at 10:42pm!

  66. Songbird - I thought his last name was Murphy.

    Gord - good luck with that...sorry, can't help you out there. Most of my children's time attempts end up in chaos, but I don't really have a "method" per se. *sigh*

    Blessings to all our overseas friends who are ready for bed and some well-deserved rest. Sleep well!

  67. Sounds like everyone is busy! After my breakfast of champions babygirl and I spent some much needed mamma babygirl time snuggling giggling and what-not. The result? I very warm feeling, a happy daughter, and no sermon work at all. sigh. Honsetly, this felt much better then finishing any sermon! So I guess I'll be hard at work tonight, after supper and tucking in the wee one.

  68. Gord - You might try a Simon-Says-ish game, where part of the point is for them to pay attention and be chaotic when you want them to, and not when you don't.

    I now have a story chosen and Jesus' birthday cake in the oven. Time for dinner. I picked up some sushi at the grocery store, but it is the most awful stuff ever, even for grocery store sushi, and that is saying something. So, must do a bit of scavenging.

  69. WEll I've had supper, done dishes, taken photos off the camera (and posted some on the blog, uploaaded some to Facebook), played some scrabulous...

    And I still have an introductory paragraph to Monday's story. Maybe a nice warm tub will spur my creativity. ANd if not, at least I've had a nice warm tub.

  70. We had company, and after they left, I quickly saw what I wanted to add to the sermon. It's a little shorter than usual, but no one will complain, I feel sure. You can see it here, if you want.

  71. Well, friends, I have a sermon and everything else I need for worship in the morning except sleep.

    So I am calling it a night, finishing the laundry and going to bed.

    Blessings on those still writing...

  72. Okay, I could use some RGBP guidance here.

    I have two examples of different approaches once you know the name of something that ails you. Both examples are brief (only a paragraph).

    One is my experience discovering that I have a mild sleep disorder, thereby realizing how unfruitful it is to beat myself up mentally for my sleep patterns. The other is a friend's experience mistaking skin allergies for scabies and getting the proper diagnosis from the doctor.

    Which one should I use? Both would be too much.

  73. It's been a while since I've said hello. This week I did write a manuscript and I've posted it here. I am worn out enough... that I'm afraid I'll forget God's words with out writing them down. Peace and rebirth to each of you.

  74. semfem, with no context in which to set the answer, I vote for scabies

  75. Is there going to be an eve of christmas eve preacher's party? or am I the only one looking at tomorrow to finish the christmas eve sermon?

  76. Vicar of H, we hadn't planned one, but that doesn't mean we can't squeeze something in after Sunday Afternoon Music and before Monday's post. I can post something late in the afternoon.

  77. Vicar--good point, I really didn't give enough information in my question. I guess I'm more wondering to myself if I should talk about my own problems or somebody else's in this sermon.

    The story of me and my sleep disorder touches on the psychological effects of not having a name for something that is wrong. The story of my friend and his non-scabies touches on how we can panic and fill in the gaps however we want until we know the name of our medical problem.

    I'm leaning sort of towards the scabies story, just because I am hesitant to blab on about my sleep disorder from the pulpit. It seems like a little too much disclosure.

  78. songbird, I guess we could just keep commenting here. couldn't we?

    I don't really want to make more work for you. I'm just looking for procrastination preacher partners.

  79. semfem, I think that panic that leads to "horibilizing" is very common so the scabies story hits most folks. And if your story feels like a little too much, don't tell it yet.

  80. Good point, Vicar. Thanks.

    And I would definitely be up for a really last-minute preacher party tomorrow afternoon/evening/night/wee hours, no matter where it's hosted.

  81. Well my story is about 75% written -- I think. I may look at it tomorrow afternoon and decide it is crap and start over.

    I would be up for more procrastination wherever/however it happens...........

  82. I'd also be up for a preacher party tomorrow, as I have about as much done for my Christmas Eve sermon now as I had this morning for my sermon tomorrow.

    Semfem, I'd lean toward the scabies story, as long as you have your friend's permission to talk about it.

  83. I have a call in to the scabies friend, but he hasn't called back yet. Urgh.

    I'm printing this out and calling it good. May need some tweaking tomorrow if he says not to tell the story. But I am going to try and get to bed at a decent hour (thereby debunking the sleep disorder story, heh) since for a change I am done relatively early.

    Night, everyone. May all preaching and pondering bear proclamation tomorrow.

  84. I'm using the Joseph poem tomorrow, and the sermon is done, the Advent portion is written, I have eaten a wonderful (not) meal of macaroni and cheese made with Velveeta, and I am going to bed. How ya doin' with Joseph, Rainbow Pastor?

    Christmas Eve service is a concept in my head, but not written--much. Good night, and blessings as y'all proclaim the word of the Lord in the a.m. Yawn...

  85. Shorter here too, sb. My family has arrived and we spent some time guffawing around the kitchen table. That felt good.

    Sermon is good. The Holy Spirit will make it better.

    Sounds like good things are happening around the Preacher Party. Awesome.

    Peace, friends.

  86. Finally got the sermon done -- ended with the Joseph poem. I was pleased to remember I actually have the book from which the excerts of the poem were taken. I had forgotten it was on the shelf! Too many books...

  87. Hi friends, I meant to join you all yesterday, as it was the first Saturday I didn't have to do some kind of work or something. But I was so busy with the kids, wrapping presents and packing, I missed you all. Dogoneit. So here is my Merry Christmas Wish and prayers that since we are preaching God is with us, may God be with you as you preach today.
    We are leaving right after church for Grandma's house in a loaded van. Love you all.


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