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Saturday, November 08, 2008

11th Hour Preacher Party: Impatiently Waiting for the Day Edition

Good Morning, gals and pals! Here in the Midwest, we are experiencing the first snowy weekend of the fall. Huge wet flakes fell yesterday, mostly melting already. Today: freezing rain and winds. This is a reminder to me that the End is Near: soon it will be Thanksgiving, then the cold winter season will completely descend on us. Where are the mittens, the scarves, the ear muffs? And where is the ice scraper? Where is the shovel?

The end is near: that's what many of the week's texts remind us. Are we tempted to sleep? Is it oil that we are needing? Are we impatiently waiting for the King to come, the feast to begin? Or is it repentance instead of oil that we are needing? Where is the Spirit leading you this week?

I'm putting on the fair trade coffee, as always; I'm putting out apple-cinnamon muffins, and orange juice. I've got some Good Earth tea for the non-coffee drinkers too. I've also got some pretty red placemats and napkins. I'm trying to put all the parts of my sermon in order: the promise and the warning, the hope and the fear. Do I have enough oil to go the distance? Come and join me. I'm pretty sure that it is when we join together in community that the Spirit joins us, and the flame will not go out.


  1. We have a baptism tomorrow so I'm starting with the Joshua text. The parents are declaring their household for the Lord. The rest of us, like the people of God, are renewing those same vows because we need to do that more rather than less. It helps remind us that we, too, have chosen God. And coming together as that family every Sunday is, for me, like making sure my lamp is lit and I ahve enough oil for another week to see where God is leading me.

    And now back to bed so I can be bright eyed at the Salvation Army this morning. I've got parents/godparents this afternoon. Having spent two days discerning calls to priesthood and deaconate, I've got nothing to offer other than pretzels.

  2. It's Remembrance Sunday for us...We have 2 huge Remembrance services, for which my colleague is preaching as he is ex RAF but I get to do the normal parish communion in the valley which ought to reflect the day to some extent. It's got to be short, though, to enable me to get up the hill for the 2 minute silence at 11
    Oh heavens.
    No thoughts.
    No time.
    Definitely not enough oil.
    But I do have a bowl full of russet apples and some Fair Trade banana chips, which work well as brain food I'm told...

  3. Banana chips sound delicious!
    I have a wedding at noon, not very effectively rehearsed, and the couple showed up without the needed paperwork and checks. I should have asked at the beginning of the rehearsal and sent people home. Considering that I already took my 13-year-old shopping on the hope of the check, I'm feeling, well, short of oil this morning. Good thing I wrote the homily before the rehearsal, isn't it?

  4. Good morning!
    I love your reasoning for the end being near! Big, wet, heavy snowflakes - indeed!

    Music class for The Boy adn I this morning, then Farmer's Market, then I am not sure what he is going to do and if I will be included.

    Pass the coffee and the banana chips please.

  5. Welcome everyone. banana chips sound great. I need some brain food. Don't know what's wrong with me lately.

    Wow, Margaret, your plate is full. I like what you are doing with the Joshua text.

    Kathryn, I know how you feel. is Remembrance Day like Veteran's Day? That is this next week as well.

    Songbird, I know how you feel....hope the wedding goes well at noon.

    Will Smama -- Farmers Market? that sounds good. let us know what you find there.

  6. good morning all- the end (beginning) is near for me- but there's no snow to tell me that. here, at last, in my new home, it looks like fall. the trees a brilliantly painted. and sometimes there's that crispness that is the gift of fall. no, snow is not my harbinger... a due date of december 4th and increasing physical discomfort now that i'm in the last month of my pregnancy. i set a goal for myself, last summer, of finishing my coursework for this semester by Thanksgiving, or really, the weekend before Thanksgiving. Two weeks before due. Because I set that goal and because I really want some time to emotionally/physically/spiritually prepare for birth and because the baby could really come any time now... I WANT TO ACHIEVE IT.

    Two days ago I had my last occasional assignment of the semester. I still have tons of reading I'm supposed to do every week, but... I woke up this morning thinking... I'm just going to work on my papers for the next two weeks. I might do a little pre-class reading so I'm not totally lost, but, especially starting next weeks- only writing! So this week will be final preparations to write. Next week writing, writing, writing... no reading... this is tough for the overachiever in me, and the people pleaser in me who has a hard time blowing off syllabi, but it has to be.

    i'll take some tea, diane. thank you very much.

    peanut butter puffins, anyone?

    blessings on your writing, living, marrying, serving, being this day.

  7. Sarah -- December 4 is my sister's birthday!!!!

    have some tea.

    you are in our prayers, as your work toward your goal(s)

  8. whoa... bitter cold here too! the coffee pot just got going. the sermon is percolating... just need to get it poured out onto the page... motivation however is sorely lacking. my unmade bed still looks warm and inviting...

  9. welcome hot cup! glad to have both you and your coffee pot!

  10. Greetings all!

    Margaret and Kathryn, you do have busy days...
    And SB, I so sympathise with the paperwork/check issue--been there myself.
    WS, bring us something good from the Farmer's Market! I love them and rarely get out to them any more.
    And blessings, Sarah, on the days to come and all that they will bring forth for you.

    I'm not preaching tomorrow, it's our wonderful interactive "house church" Sunday...just what I need after my first chemo round, too, as I would NOT have gotten a sermon together.

    We'll be looking at Amos and Matthew. THe Amos passage is one of my very favourites in the entire Bible...
    Amos 5:18-24
    "Alas for you who desire the day of God! Why do you want the day of God? It is darkness, not light; as if someone fled from a lion, and was met by a bear; or went into the house and rested a hand against the wall, and was bitten by a snake. Is not the day of God darkness, not light, and gloom with no brightness in it? I hate, I despise your festivals, and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies. Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them; and the offerings of well-being of your fatted animals I will not look upon. Take away from me the noise of your songs; I will not listen to the melody of your harps. But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream."

    Not all of us will get "Well done, good and faithful servant." Those verities we've leaned on like a house wall may well bite us in the hand--or elsewhere!

    And of course the Matthew--the Boy Scout pericope--"Be Prepared!"

    Also have Remembrance Day tomorrow, and then our annual Budget Forum after church before our annual meeting next week.

    Today--had the stitches out from my chemo port insertion already (ouch!) and then later a meeting re:my contract (pro forma, really, not much to change).

    The banana chips sound like something I could eat right now...sadly, my usual Saturday breakfast of bagels and cream cheese is not settling well on my stomach (mentally, that is).

  11. Short on oil here, too.

    I'm being presented to the congregation of my new call tomorrow. Well, it will officially be my new call if the congregation votes favorably! I am wondering if I made the right decision to go lectionary this week.

    I'm stressing right now. I realized at about 6 pm last night that I had forgotten to pick up my robe and the dress I was going to wear from the dry cleaners and that this dry cleaner has no Saturday hours!!! So, off to Cokesbury I go, hoping they have something in my size.

    I'll take some of those peanut butter puffins and banana chips, please! Blessing, everyone!

  12. ooh, iris! hope you get a lovely new robe for the occasion!!!!

    can't wait to hear all about your sunday.

    thanks for your blessings all.

  13. Well, I have 716 words, and I've yet to mention those wacky virgins. I'm taking off to do the wedding, and then it's straight to the gospel, I swear!

  14. G'morning everyone! I'm not preaching this week as I'm on a study leave that was approved last January. I usually take the week of Remembrance Day to start planning Advent.

    My father-in-law (retired UCCan) is doing the Remembrance Day service at our church tomorrow. He always does such a great job of it.

    To answer Diane's question - I'm not sure about the UK (though I could hazard a guess), but yes, our Remembrance Day is much like your Veterans Day. We will mark it on Sunday, but also on Tuesday....eleveth hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.

    Go to Gord's place and listen to the video. It's beautifully done.

  15. Rainbow Pastor -- good summmary! Have you ever considered hosting the preacher party? just checking :)

    Iris -- praying for the Oil of Inspiration for you! And good prayers for tomorrow.

    I'm working "passionate spirituality" into my sermon right now (Natural Church Development), with the admonition to remember that our identities are hidden in the world -- just the cross is revealed. That's why faith/trust is the oil.... to keep trusting even when the circumstances are against us, to keep praying even when the well is dry and we seem to busy, to keep working for justice even when it seems discouraging. That's the "staying power" of faith.... ok, I'm starting to preach now, so I'll be heading back out.


  16. I have a memorial service at 1, but my sermon is done. Matthew, how we prepare to meet the bridegroom every Sunday in worship: preparation means coming prepared to be joyful.

    Surgery on Tuesday to repair a hernia from my abdominal surgery in the spring. Please pray for me.

  17. Joan -- we will be praying for you on Tuesday....

  18. Since we've been blizzard bound these past few days, the cupboards are bare, I have nothing to offer. Pass those banana chips! I've been working Amos and Matthew, with a focus on life of discipleship. Nothing on paper yet, though, so I'd better get cracking!

    I only have two of my usual three services tomorrow because the road to my most remote church is covered with 12 foot drifts. Yikes!

  19. p.s. -- blizzard! ouch! it's just cold here!

    praying for you, too....

  20. Just for disclosure. All Gord did was find and post the video to which Sue refers....

    Yes, Remembrance, Armistice, and Veteran's Day are all teh same thing.

    I am talking about loyalties and split and choices tomorrow. What shows where our loyalties lie, what god(s) we have chosen to serve?

    Hopefully later I'll get out and finish putting teh summer stuff away/getting winter stuff out (if the wind dies down that is). Unfortunately I feel the beginning of a possible sore throat/ear...

  21. The cold, snow, wet winds are just a distant memory to me. How strange to so quickly forget what that all feels like....

    I wrote my sermon a few days ago, before my retreat. Here I have no idea what will happen next, so I rarely am able to leave the sermon to the last minute. And sure enough while on retreat two parishioners died, one a significant member from years back, who has been in a nursing facility for years, in her 90's. But also strangely enough, we may not even have a funeral at the church for either one. Seems that once a person gets old enough, and the family estranged enough, no one wants to do anything to honor that life. Sigh.

    Anyway, I am off for a variety of things today. I hope I get to walk my dogs. And I will be back to tweek that sermon. I have tea and coffee, but not much else...which means also a trip to the grocery store.

    Blessings, all.

  22. Do you think possibly that the sleep of the foolish might be NOT an unreadiness for catastrophe, but an insistence ON catastrophe as the final consummation? I really think we do this parable a disservice by severing it from all Jesus' very careful handling of the appetite for Final Disaster in the previous chapter. Still thinking about it though.
    I am going downstairs to make Vaguely Oriental Chicken Soup for our marriage preppers.

  23. Late check in here which is good for all of you! I refueled this morning by cooking up a storm so we have the following or US luches and "across the pond" dinners: Cranberry Chutney (please leave enough for the potluck tomorrow after church!), a big pot of chili, and artichoke dip with bruschetta. Now for someone to clean the kitchen...

    I am not preaching the widows, but the OT reading - -it is "stewardship sunday" here and we are talking about tithing and what we give to God. But in the spirit of self care, am not working on it until suppertime. There are things I want to do first on this grey chlly rainy day.

  24. I'm traveling, so I'll toss in a bag of airline peanuts and a couple of mints I picked up at the end of the conference!

    My preaching is going in a totally different direction--why aren't we prepared? why are we sometimes the foolish ones?--but I just got out of a talk by Parker Palmer and was struck by a line in the gospel that I'd totally missed before. Palmer talks about the false illusion of scarcity vs. Jesus's reality of abundance, and how the world is different depending on which approach we take. Suddenly I noticed the wise bridesmaids refusing to share with the foolish ones because there wasn't enough oil. What if they had dared to share? Maybe by God's miracle and their willingness to trust in abundance, there would've been enough and everyone could've been at the party...

  25. ah, betsy, how I like your idea of sharing.... not sure if it is faithful to the text, but I'm sure we do disservice to the text as well, when we have a "scarcity model" of God's mercy....

    I think Matthew wanted his community to be vigilant in the face of a delayed "appearing". So in the world as it is now, God's glory is always hidden until that return, and we all sleep, wise and foolish.

    So to keep being faithful, passionate even, disciples, "for the long haul" is the goal.

  26. one column of a two column comparison chart done- the easier column. much procrastinating done- scared of the harder column. dreaming of a pie i'll bake when the chart is done- naturally sweetened pumpkin pie should be ready for those writing into the night. choir rehearsal in an hour- want to get a good start on the second column before it starts. so better get to that.

    my husband is VERY jealous of those of you with snow, especially those of you in the dakotas, where he grew up.

  27. getting close to done on the evening draft. then I have to go to the hospital. is it my imagination or is it kind of a slow day???

  28. well the draft is done... perhaps i'll just tweak it as i preach it. time to suit up in long johns and winter wear to walk mochajava as it is 34 outside... brrrrr!!!

    happy writing. happy weddings. happy planning to the rest of you...

  29. I finally have a Saturday with nothing on the calendar! My laptop is camping out at the church which changing my typical sermon writing routine. I don't know if that's good or bad.

    The week has been full of non-sermon productive things. Most of the time I choose one scripture for the bulletin but this week has Joshua and Matthew so I have options. I think I'm preaching from Joshua but it's really too early to tell for sure.

  30. betsy--as someone said to me earlier this week, "This text needs some Hannukah!" Made me chuckle.

    We're recovering from a startlingly warm week here--we beat a record yesterday with 73F, but it soon clouded up and now we are slowly getting some of that cold air many of you are talking about. (To compare, snow would not be unusual at this time of year here. 73F is nowhere near normal.)

    I'm preaching Matthew and struggling some with the bridesmaids. Gained some valuable insight at my former mentor's blog: Think I'm going a similar route to him.

    At text study earlier this week, one amusing mental image featured the foolish bridesmaids standing outside the wedding feast yakking on cell phones...and then being shocked when they realized they'd been locked out.

    May also procrastinate by doing some baking, or working on that insert for tomorrow's baptism.

  31. a little Hannukah! I like that! too bad I'm just about done.

    Maybe tomorrow.

  32. I've got a draft that wanders all over the place before coming to a pointless conclusion. I think it may be going in the trash. Yuck, I hate that.

    Would it be rude to mention that it's 77 here? And it was "cold" this morning at 44. I can't really imagine snow today...

    I've made a big pot of mashed potatoes and a pecan pie for the Thanksgiving Potluck tomorrow. Help yourself, just leave a little for me to take and a piece of pie for Mr. Esperanza.

  33. hi there - i'm here. I have E's one hour video game time to finish the draft I started earlier this week. IT's actually ok so far, but I still have a WAYS to go and not sure if it's more than an hours worth of work or not. BUT that's all the time I got today, so it just has to be. And the clock is set annnnnnnndddd GO.

  34. No major duties, to my knowledge, in church tomorrow...just plugging our Project Christmas donations for a needy local family, and reminding folks about our Sunday School Christmas card project for servicepeople and disabled vets.

    Yesterday "Daily Dish" blogger Andrew Sullivan ofThe Atlantic magazine had a very good blog post regarding the passage of Prop 8. His "money quote," as he'd put it, was that the gay community needs to be "patient and relentless in explaining our lives." For some reason this exhortation is converging in my mind with both the Joshua and Amos passages. I'm feeling very affirmed and encouraged in explaining my own life, as a Christian who also happens to be gay; to help people of faith who think of me as "one of those people over there" that, no, I am one of [i]you[/i]: Someone who, with my partner, have chosen whom we'll serve; who are trying to live our way into justice and righteousness, as hard as that is and as feeble as our efforts can sometimes be; who want to keep our lamps filled and our wicks trimmed.

    Meanwhile...despite doctors' orders, my recuperating (from pnemonia) DP insisted on going "Amishing" this morning to finish up our loved ones' Christmas baskets. We had a good time, and made the lady at the farm where we purchase our stuff smile. DP came home and promptly fell into bed; I am working up the courage to tackle some housecleaning.

    Let's see -- I have some caramel apples from the orchard in town, and some cider, and some pomogranate infused green tea with local honey. In a bit there will be some homemade potato bread as well. And later tonight there will be homemade chicken soup with wholewheat egg noodles and lots of aromatic veg.

    Greetings and best wishes to all, and pray for me as our evangelism committee (which is pretty much one other person and myself) continue to discern how we can get our sometimes very insular congregation to look and move OUTWARD.

  35. Cokesbury had a robe for me, thank God! It fits great, no alterations needed, which is good because there is no time for that anyway.

    I am greatly appreciating the thoughts on the parable you all have shared. Time for me to get busy...

    Help yourselves to some cheese pizza.

  36. I'm off lectionary, so I'm just here to provide and receive relief this week! I was supposed to be going the stewardship route with Joshua, but the stewardship committee decided to wait a couple of weeks on that. Not wanting to do two big stewardship pushes within a few weeks of each other, I decided to take this opportunity to go back to Josh 4, one of my favorite passages that the lectionary skips.

    I'm going to continue on with our remembrances of witnesses from last week's All Saints Day and talk about "Memory Aids" or memorials that help us remember God's gracious acts in our lives. I paired with the a Colossians passage that points to the cross.

    Next week, when I'm out of town, they're going to take it another step further by writing things for which they are thankful on stones and making a pile of those as a memorials for all of God's gifts.

    After all these weeks of celebrating witnesses and blessings, etc, we'll hit the final stewardship dedication Sunday on Christ the King. Not sure what I'll do there, yet, but I've got time.

    Anyway, our day is not snowy, but certainly not 77. It's been a steady, windy, cold, wet 35 around here. We dragged the kids on all sorts of errands this morning, so now they're napping before we head to a parishoners' house for REAL Chinese dinner. Yum!

  37. wow Lutheranchik, great thoughts.

    and Iris! congrats on the robe. looking forward to more....

    now off to the hospital.

  38. I'm back, after a wedding that started late, but at least I got paid, and errands after that. I got a bigger stacking storage unit for yarn, isn't that exciting? It's full now, and so is the old one. I fear it's a troubling fact.
    Sermon now has fewer words after an edit of what is written so far, and I must begin to delve into the bridesmaids, I fear. Sigh.

  39. Both dogs just got on the couch with me.
    That's not helping...

  40. Songbird -- maybe your dogs and my cats need to get together - -the kitties are "helping" here, which means walking on the keyboard. Good times!

    Yarn storage is always a good thing!

    sermon? oh yeah, sermon. Deuteronomy 26:1-11 - -firstfruits, tithing - -very fun given the prices in the grocery stores and other economic conditions.

  41. SB, given the size of your dogs that must no leave much room for anyone else!

    Well the switch has been made in the shed. The laundry is done. A nap seemed to happen.

    A sermon on split loyalties? Well that will happen too. I have faith anyway...

  42. nice to see you and your dogs are back Songbird. I'm back from the hospital. Everyone is recuperating nicely, even the 91 year old.

    Now I have to take this ahem of a sermon and practice it and see if any of it dances.

    see you later....

    pray for me....

  43. Hi friends,

    no preaching for me this week (again)--it's weird to go from every week or every other week to not preaching again until the 4th Sunday of Advent. I'm mildly distressed by the preaching schedule, but I won't bore you all with that.

    Instead...I'm making applesauce, again! This is the last of the apples. In about 10 minutes I'll have hot cinnamon (sugar free) applesauce for you to enjoy!

    We are doing Joshua here and talking about storytelling. I'm giving 3rd graders their Bibles during the children's time. And we're having an evening potluck to "celebrate our story" (that's the actual name of the event)--we'll have a potluck, give out a couple more 3rd grade Bibles, and have a storyteller from our congregation tell the story of our church from 1839 to today, along with a few personal stories from older members--the man who brought the pews from McCormick seminary on the back of a big truck, the person who was liturgist the day the pastor quit during worship and walked out, etc. Should be fun.

    Can I get anyone anything? We have some leftover sandwiches from the funeral reception this morning. I have applesauce. I'm going to a "meet-n-eat" (fellowship event at a local restaurant) that's apparently at an Italian place--maybe there's tiramisu? I'm taking orders...

  44. I have a draft! Before dinnertime! Someone ring the church bells!!!

  45. back from choir rehearsal and a conversation with the pastor of the second of two churches we're participating in. trying to get back in the studying groove. second column underway...

    want to bake a pie...

    hubby is making homemade pumpernickel bread in our new bread machine. anyone want some when it is done?

  46. bread please!!!

    I have 310 words. all of them are the scripture. It's one of those "once I get in it will write itself" days. time for tea.

  47. oh Songbird, I can't bear to look at it yet, seeing how I feel about mine! but, congratulations.

    yes, I want bread too.

    now, I'm going to preach.

  48. A counseling appt., worship team practice, then the longest baby shower I ever attended in my life, and grey skies and the snow that Diane talked about, jut a little further east. Very dreary out! I need sleep, but I have a meeting to attend. Fortunately for me, my husband is preaching tomorrow! Yay! Yawh...

  49. Praise be, I think I'm done.
    it's rather disjointed and I'm not sure it says a great deal but I think I'll risk it..unless God delivers a great alternative overnight. The current version will arrive at my place once we hit midnight (such is the tyrrany of NaBloPoMo)
    Just realised I overlooked an offer of tiramisu may be bedtime (in fact an hour beyond...) but that is just too good to miss.
    Sleep well, friends, when you get there.

  50. bread is taking time to bake, but will be ready soon, fresh and hot... may the smell of it inspire your continued labors.

    i have finished the chart... i'm not sure i know yet what form my paper will take, but i have a lot of raw material to work with, and that should help. i guess i'll start easing into sabbath now by making a pie!!! let me know if you'd like some!

    blessings all!

  51. OK, the second of my three churches cancelled service tomorrow, since most members' roads are still blocked and they're trying to round up their cattle which got caught in far off pastures where there is no food available but there are dangerously deep drifts they could get stuck in. A good number of members are still without power (and thus heat) after 3 days. So your prayers are requested!

    Since I am down to one service tomorrow, which surely be lightly attended, my sermon-writing efforts have become...feeble and unfocused shall we say? We did get out of the house for the first time since Wednesday, so I do have Chai tea and muffins to offer now!

  52. chai tea and muffins sound awesome. Now I am off to a wedding reception, a la-de-da one, I'm told. I need to dress up for it.

    But with all of the worship services tomorrow (by myself) I don't think that I will stay very late). I also might want to make some minor sermon adjustments.

    Or not.

  53. Well I am home for a short time, tweeked the sermon and posted it....Preparing the spirit. Comments welcome, especially with my ending...or any other part that does not seem to flow...sigh..

    I have to pick up my son, but I'll be back to read other sermons...

  54. I've finished my essay on The Great Schism. Now I'm trying to help the Harpist with her college essays. I would like to say that this is as easy as backing a trailer.

    I made fresh bread. :) Help yourself. We will be up a while.


  55. Deb, Snowman sounded shocked when I asked to see his! I pointed out that his brother allowed both parents (English majors, we) to proof-read his essays. He seemed shocked. I pointed out that neither of us wanted to rewrite or tell him what to say. He continued to express dismay at the very possibility.

  56. I'm home, after our 6 pm. Saturday service, which is when I get to preach every week, and why I don't post here very often - since most weeks my Saturdays are taken up with family stuff right up till when I leave for church. Anyway, could someone please tell me how to post my sermon (which is a Word document) to my blog (which is Blessings to and prayers for all of you late night writers, and may the Spirit be with all as we enter the Sabbath together.

  57. Mumpastor, cut and paste the text right into the "compose" box in Blogger. Glad you joined us tonight!

  58. Hey, we have brownies! Anybody want a homemade-from-scratch brownie?

  59. pie is cooling. cream waiting to be whipped. bread is hot and ready. stew on the table. eat up!

  60. Thanks, Songbird - I had to delete a bunch of html formatting stuff at the top, but it did post, and it is here. Comments welcomed, hope it helps any of you who are feeling "stuck". Iris, many blessings on your preaching tomorrow, I just snuck over and read your blog, and I will be praying for you! Songbird, we have brownies here too, let's share!

  61. Sarah, I'll have some of that pie!

    I have some semblance of a sermon, which I would consider practically finished in other circumstances. I'm totally overthinking this one. I know, I have to just be myself and preach like myself...but I'm feeling a little less than myself as I write for this ocassion. Does that even make sense?

  62. I'll always go for a brownine (or anything chocolate for that matter). One of these days I will find time to bake on Saturday (and organize things in basement storage, and half a dozen other things...).

    Just finished a nice hot bath and started a novel called The Shack. Terribly temtped to go read some more of it (about 4 chapters in thus far).

    Loyalty calls though. WHat gods draw us astray in the here and now? ANd how to gently give the congregation the "Joshua challenge"? Would Joshua believe our answer any more than he believed the people of ISrael?

  63. Sb and KP,
    May my kittehs play with your dogs and cats?
    I have Cranberry Sierra Mist (only avail during hoidays) and some apples from the mountains.
    Also, working on salad for studnets at nearby school for the studnts dinner of the denomination. They are suffering a tough loss today.
    So, back to wrk on sermon...somebody ahd a good link...was it Gord or Scott?
    Anyhow, very good stuff!
    Now to shed some light on these silly virgins with no oil.

  64. I'll take one of everything that has been baked or cooked so far, please! I haven't had dinner and am pondering what would be best at this late hour.

    In other news though, I am done with the sermon! Slightly concerned that I borrowed too much from my mentor, but it is finished and isn't too long (we have a baptism tomorrow at St. Smaller).

    I still have to prepare to teach a portion of a First Communion workshop tomorrow afternoon, so I'm not quite home free yet, but at least this one big thing is finished.

  65. It is done and here.

    I would like some pie, and stew,and bread, and brownies and cranberry sierra mist please. mmmmmm

  66. Soup's on! With potato-buttermilk bread. And a little Sirius "Coffeehouse" musical action. That'll preach, won't it?

  67. OK, brownies, pie, soup, fresh bread. Pass them all. I had leftovers for supper.

    The sermon is as it was, rambling and mostly point-less. Or too many points, maybe. And, as usual, I am on the lookout for a children's sermon. Most I've found seem to involve a flashlight and batteries. Anyone have another idea?

    No one's touched the pecan pie, so help yourselves. At least the Thanksgiving Potluck means that no one will care if the sermon is short (like anyone cares on a normal Sunday!).

  68. OK. I'm ready to settle in and write. I don't totally know where I'm going, but I feel like I've preached this idea before. I just hope it wasn't here and a couple of weeks ago!!! I'm pretty sure it was in a baptismal sermon on Deu. 6 - - something about telling this generation and the next and the next. I think I'll dig that one up and see if there's anything worth saving for this one.

    (Just to clarify I'm off lectionary and back at Joshua 4 with the pile of rocks memorializing God's leading of the Israelites across the Jordan and into the Promised Land.)

    Got horrible news that the 9 month old baby of a friend had a murmur at his check up and is now looking at a heart transplant. Don't know the details of the conditions, etc, but would appreciate prayers for the little one of a friend and seminary colleague - - husband and wife are both pastors. Both just left their first calls last week - he to take a new one, her to stay home with this baby and their toddler.

  69. I'm back from the wedding reception... pretty early, dancing and buffet and etc, but I had a cosmopolitan, and now I feel like going straight to bed.

    but a brownie would be nice.

    I think I need to fix the sermon, but I'm not sure I'm capable of doing that right now.

    see you in a little while.

  70. Oh yeah - - I'm up and probably for the long haul. I don't have a word written yet, nor the final plan for my adult ed on stewardship. This being my first year preaching every week, I firmly believe sermons should be suspended during football season. That must be my problem.

  71. Give me oil in my lamp keep me burning, (Yee-ha).
    Give me oil in my lamp I pray (halle-lu).
    Give me oil in my lamp, keeo me burning...keep me burnign till my sermons done!
    My name is 1-4 Grace and i approve this message.

  72. I am proably half done, but not drawing a conclusion or even pointed in that direction yet.
    But, lovely word Verf. in the are all my mateys for sermonizing this evening.

  73. All right, I'm as done as I'm gonna be tonight. I'll do some tweaking in the morning.

  74. Blessings, everyone! Good night!

  75. Ugh - - I'm looking everywhere for the bit about the US Vietnam Memorial that someone posted somewhere in the next week or two. I can't find it. If anyone remembers where it is, I would GREATLY appreciate it!

  76. oh dear she rev, I don't know where that Vietnman piece is. was it on Rev gals?

    I don't know if I can stay up any longer, even though I need to.

  77. she-rev--it's at Vicar of Hogsmeade's blog, I believe.

    Unless you are thinking about something different than I am...

    (and I'm still here, will be for a while as I figure out what and how to teach kids about Communion tomorrow.)

  78. Holy cow! Wow! Nice memory (funny to say that when I'm writing a sermon about memories and memorials!). Thanks semfem

  79. I didn't remember it cold--I had made a note of it in my notes for last week. I didn't use it in my sermon for All Saints, but wanted to record it for a future year. :)

    Either way, it's a great illustration and I hope it helps you, she-rev!

  80. okay, late-night friends, I am contemplating prayers of the people and a children's time about stories (to segue into giving 3rd graders bibles). I brought tiramisu and REALLY GOOD bailey's cheesecake back with me from the dinner. holy cow, the cheesecake is amazing, so please have some!

    RE the bridesmaids children's sermon: a retired pastor in my congregation is supply preaching somewhere and he said he's doing something about going to the movies--half of your friends buy candy before the movie and half don't, then the first half won't share so some have to leave and end up missing the best part of the movie while they're out buying candy. and then they find that they can't get back in because the ticket-takers are checking tickets and they've left theirs inside and can't prove that they were in there before. How would you feel if you missed the best part of the movie because you didn't buy candy/popcorn/whatever ahead of time? Be prepared--the best is yet to come in our faith journeys too. (or something like that)

    Take that FWIW, with huge helping of bailey's cheesecake. :-) I have cocoa ready too! Help yourselves...I am about to fall into bed after a long sabbath-free weekend...

  81. Iris - prayers that tomorrow goes smoothly.

    All - how are your stewardship conversations going? Also, I'm weaving the election and Veterans day into my prayer tomorrow - does anyone have one already that you'd like to share??

  82. Oh Teri! Childrens time! Totally forgot about that.
    Most of mine are little - got lots of 3s and 4s, so they would not get that movie thing at all. Earlier this week, I was thinking of teaching that oil in my lamp song that 1-4 grace or someone was singing earlier, but now it seems like a bad idea. As do all ideas, actually, just now. Oh, Saturday night! You are such a bummer sometimes!

  83. I had to set up the video for tomorrow and decided to eat while I was out. I took the sermon stuff along and made some progress but it's not quite done.

    semfem - good answer for she rev. I couldn't answer from my cell phone (it's a dumbphone).

  84. sorry I can't stay up with you guys. just can't even though I need to. All this late night food sounds yummy! i'll be leaving some camomile tea on and a light on for anyone.

    be back early (dark) a.m. when I'm tweaking....

  85. juniper, I would teach the "oil in my lamp" song if we had kids! And we may, actually, so that's my backup plan in case we do.

    I especially want to teach the silly verses, like "give me gas for my Ford, keep me trucking for the Lord" and "give me hot sauce for my taco, help me witness in Morocco".

  86. give me beans for my burrito 'cause God is really neato

    give me wax for my board keep me surfin' for the lord

  87. give me boots for my feet so I can feed the sheep

  88. what if we make it to 100 comments based on verses to that song?

    give me a pillow for my bed so I can raise the dead ???

    maybe not for children's time

  89. "Give me umption in my gumption, let me function, function, function..."

  90. Give me beer for my mug so I won't be called a slug.....
    msut be over 21 on that one

  91. I don't know that song....but I can say that after a long day I am tired....I do have apple pie and vanilla ice cream and Tazo "Refresh" yourself!

  92. I know I know more verses, but absolutely NONE are coming to my head. I'd make some up, but really, I can't afford to even think about doing that with ZERO words written.

    Also, I've figurd out why this sermon theme seems so familiar to me. I preached it like 8 weeks ago! Ugh.

    It's a variation on theme, but really. Give me a break.

    I'm having a hard time focusing and caring knowing that in less than 48 hours I'm going to be chilling in Key Largo!!!!!

  93. Give me blood for my heart so I'll preach as long as Barth

  94. give me alter for my nator 'cause God is truly greater

    guess what was wrong with the mission trip van ...

  95. oh! I keep trying, but it's too late to rhyme and be clever. I'm going to watch TV for an hour then go to bed and hope I'm smarter in the morning.

    give me a brain in my head, or tomorrow I'll be, well, you know....

  96. Oh thank goodness. I just found and skimmed the previous sermon. It introduced the theme of remembrance, but didn't run with it as much as do it. It was our Scottish Heritage Sunday, so I spent time sort doing the 5 minute Presbyterian church history, but talked about the importance of remembering where we came from and how God has been involved in our history, just as important, not in why and how.

    I think I still have enough to say to write another "remembrance" sermon. In fact, I can even link the two by showing how God continually calls us to remember these defining moments, these salvific, graceful points in our history (both parting of waters include instructions to remember). Whew. It still works.

    Now I better write SOMETHING!

    (I'm already mentally on the beach since it's 30 degrees outside here.)

  97. Here ya are, Mompreist!!!!
    Now ya can sing with us

  98. Oh cool...
    word verf is "houslite"
    Like the lamp with the oil can be our house light that stays on until we get our sermons and prayers done and even til the break of day.
    Yes, it is late and I am silly

  99. give me words for my sermon keep us learning learning learning

  100. Give the Spirit for the night, help write, write, write

  101. mompriest, if you are still around...I'd love to borrow one of the Jewish legends you refer to in your sermon, and weave it into mine. Is that okay?

    I know, I said I was done, but this illustration is just too good to pass up.

  102. Okay, I'm heading to bed after writing some thank yous and filling out baptismal and membership certificates. I'll print out my sermon and FC notes on the way.

    Blessings on all pondering, preaching, and proclamation today. (especially for those still writing!)

  103. Sermon? Far from done.

    Adult Ed on stewardship? Done and not bad!

  104. I had way too many tangents with great stories or illustrations but none of them went together. The edited, focused sermon is too "preachy" to me. But then again, what'd I expect from a prophet?

    So I'm walking it proud 'cause I don't have anything else.

    blessings on your Sunday

  105. I went to bed early and now I am awake! My husband is either just finishing up his job in Connecticut (latest end time would be 5 a.m.) or already on his way home! I really feel like one of those bridesmaids now, but the question is: am I wise or am I foolish? If he's on his way, great that I'll be awake! If he won't be here until 8:30 or so, I'll be sorry I didn't get more sleep!

  106. By the way, I'll be teaching the song to the children after sharing a story someone told in Bible Study (with permission) about sitting on the beach after twilight with a Bic Lantern, intended to keep bugs away, and unintentionally providing a guide to shore for a kayaker. We never know who our light might be helping. Amen! (Feel free to adapt as helpful.)

  107. I'm back! I have been for about 30 minutes. This is shaping up nicely with more of a stewardship emphasis than I thought would be possible which is good since it's the last time I preach before our dedication on Nov. 23. I think the stewardship sermon on the day of dedication is almost too late since most folks come with the card already filled out. Hopefully this is the final food to think on before the cards are completed and returned for dedication.

  108. back this a.m. doing pretty much everything at all three services with the help of the intern. have a sermon which is not one of my best ones, and I'm trying to work on the last few sentences, and make them better.

    but I don't have much time....

    wondered what happened with all the comments!

    wish I could think of more verses, too....

    give me gas for my Chevy
    keep my truckin' toward the levee...

    ok, that's stupid

  109. Diane, you sound like you could use a cup of coffee. I just made a fresh pot. Anyone else need a cup?

  110. yes songbird, I could use a "cup". I did what I absolutely had to do, which was to fix the last paragraph, a long run-on sentence which didn't tie things up as well as it needed to.

    I need to get through this dry spell I've been having.

    Preferably before Christmas.

  111. OK - - my very detailed outline is done, and I probably have about 300 words to write to flesh the last bit of it out, but I think it's time for a shower! It should cut my getting ready time down if my hair can dry while I type the ending. Here comes the morning push!

    Plane to Key Largo is exactly 24 hours away! Woo hoo!

  112. Key Largo aaah! it's 20 something and bitter here.....

    everybody sounds about ready...

    remember, the Holy Spirit has our backs!

  113. Hi all,

    Just finished my pastoral prayer and am getting ready for church. May the Holy Spirit infuse us with her gumption as we preach, lead worship and inspire our congregations today.

    BTW, we are singing "Keep your lamps trimmed and burning." I love that hymn.

  114. The sermon is mostly ready..."Trimmed and Burning" is the title. Is it, in part, a reflection on my experience at the Obama Rally in Grant Park last Tuesday night. Read it here.

    Blessings on you all! Preach 'em into the Kingdom.


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