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Saturday, January 23, 2010

11th Hour Preachers Party: All Who Hear with Understanding

(Photo from the collection of Mompriest, "Ground Squirrel Family Listening")

What text from our readings for this Sunday, Epiphany 3 is speaking to you? Are you being stirred to ponder Nehemiah as I am: "8:2 Accordingly, the priest Ezra brought the law before the assembly, both men and women and all who could hear with understanding." I am pondering what it means to really hear with understanding...

Or, are you meditating on this: "Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable to you, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer." from Psalm 19?

Maybe you are thinking, again, what it means to be the body of Christ as we hear it in 1 Corinthians? Or perhaps you considering what Jesus means when he says, "Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing."

And, maybe, given the recovery efforts in Haiti and the call of the Spirit in these readings you are thinking about this from William Sloane Coffin, "The lack of material well-being among the poor reflects a lack of spiritual well-being among the rest."

Wherever you are going with the readings today, whether you have some idea or are completely lost or stuck or too busy to think, we are here to help. Pull up a chair while I pour you a cup of coffee (or would you prefer tea).


  1. Good morning. I'm drinking some coffee from my new single serve Keurig this morning and still have lots of flavors to choose from if you'd like to share.

    I'll tell you, I'm really stuck this week. I've been set on preaching from Luke because I feel that Jesus' statement from Isaiah is at the core of Christianity. Yet how to present that message puzzles me. It makes more sense for me to extend the lectionary this week to comment on the reality that the people Jesus wanted to include were not the people others wanted to include. That seems to reflect more on the Church as a whole -- feeling called to only a specific demographic. I'm in a new call and as such have been looking at statistics a lot lately. I began to think: when we look at percept or mission insite to better understand our community, we're always saddened by the fact that so few are associated with Christianity. Yet isn't that the good news? That there are widows and orphans and oppressed and poor living in our immediate vicinity? That the Church can make room for those who are "unlike" us? That hospitality is possible . . .

  2. I'm not on this week, but am next...
    My 'boss' will be going down the line that how often do we now sit/ stand and listen to someone reading? It is a rare thing. And then talk about hearing and putting what you hear into action.
    I'm doing follow up next week by going down the if upon hearing you then go out and do... and proclaim... expect rejection.
    We have both wondered why the lectionary decided to split the gospel passage in the middle like that...a bizarre decision!
    I have a cup of tea... and nothing edible in the house - am off to find a pile of pastries. Will pop 'em in a dish when I get back, so help yerselves :)

  3. Good morning preachers,

    I'm going to preach on the corinthians text and Luke. I am thinking of going in the direction of Jesus couldn't do it all alone, that he needed many hands to do the work. However Pastormama you have some great thoughts, perhaps I'll go in that direction. It's still early.

  4. Good morning, all. I'm hoping to get cracking pronto, as I have to take a mid-morning break to take my sons to their first swimming lesson. I don't usually schedule interruptions for Saturdays, but now I've got this one scheduled for the next several weeks (dh will take them some, but I wanted to go for their first one). I am guessing it will be more and more the case that I will have kid-related obligations on Saturdays - yet another reminder that I'd really like to change up my sermon-writing rhythm, but I just don't know how.

    I did get a jump on the sermon this week, writing a little more than a page on Thursday afternoon. And I have some fairly well-formed thoughts about how I'm proceeding. I'm preaching the Psalm, which is one of my favorites. The title is "The Core Reality" and I'm looking at what the reality is behind all that the psalmist points us to - the skies, the Torah, our hearts, that reality being the beating heart of God's Love.

    I'm off to fix my morning smoothie and then I'll be back to settle in and get going!

  5. I really prefer Saturdays that don't start early ... that would not be today.

    The plan is to preach from the Gospel lesson with a focus on "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor." We'll see what actually develops.

  6. Good morning everyone, and welcome to the party!

    I have a big phone interview in a few hours (1pm Eastern, 11am where I am) so I am spending my morning preparing myself for that. (Prayers appreciated) a result my sermon is in draft form but needs some work - which won't happen until after the phone call...I'm working off of the Nehemiah and 1 Cor - about how allowing the Word of God to listen through us brings us to a deeper understanding of the Body of God....

    I'll be around most of the day - I have yogurt with honey and granola!

  7. I'm working on Luke and the emphasis is on the Holy Spirit's work. We'll see how it works out. I'm partway there.

  8. Good morning everyone - and prayers for Mompriest first of all. You go!
    Just got back from a trip to the market here, so our house is now filled with good fruits and veggies. The woman I have been buying my vegetables from for years is on her third round of cancer treatment, and has to be on her feet all day picking out veggies for her customers. I pray for Marie.
    Last weekend I spent the day with my middle girl, and today I am spending with my oldest - she joined me at the market, we will go for a swim later, and then she will come to church (50 min drive away) and stop at my aunt's house. SO much nicer to have company.
    I am really walking a dog of a sermon this week, but not sure what to do about it. What I want to say I think is important (Strong Center, Open Doors) based on Nehemiah and Luke, but it sounds way too pedantic at the moment. I'll be working on it until it is time to go for that swim.
    Blessings to all - I am happy to share my hot cocoa and the brownies from last night's feast - later some leftover paneer and chicken masala!

  9. Good morning all! Mompriest, lots of prayers for you and your interview today--and for everyone else of course. Also the picture makes me think that your photos and prayers/poetry would make an awesome book together....

    No preaching for me till Lent but plenty of teaching work as I need to make up tests for both classes. Carol Christ and Goddess Spirituality for the Women and Religion class, and Buddhism for the World Religions class. Also assemble the Buddhist art links and find a good youtube of the Dalai Lama for the latter.

    The PTSD teaching anxiety was kicking my butt yesterday and preventing completion of these tasks so I'd really appreciate prayers today. Thanks!

  10. Mompriest. Hope all is going/has gone well. (not sure of time diff) I got off to a good start this morning - empty house. Focussing on Nehemiah but will bring in Luke. Enjoying getting to grips with these texts - so that is something. Now getting some time with my girl while the boys do a grocery shop. Who knows what they'll bring back but girl time is more important.
    Offering some hot choc and also STILL some Christmas chocolates - still too much temptation around.

  11. P.S. Trader Joe nonfat Greek vanilla yogurt here to share, and granola to mix in as well.

  12. just oatmeal for me today. I'm preaching on 1st Corinthians, and how we need each other to survive. Love the William Sloane Coffin quote, though.

  13. Prayers ascending Mompriest! I'm sure you will do great.

  14. Mompriest, prayers for your phone interview; I know how stressful they can be.

    Tomorrow is our annual meeting. I've only been here 4 and a half months, and I really want us to begin to focus on where we are called as a congregation. Like many churches we're an older congregation with financial strains (we have an endowment but we rely on it WAY too much) and it's easy to turn inward rather than outward. So I hear in this week's readings a great message about the power of the word and focusing on defining our mission -- it seems to me that Jesus is giving his mission statement in Luke (of coures, next week we'll have to deal with the fact that it isn't well received in his home synagogue!)I'm hoping that the sermon will be a good segue for what I have to say in the annual meeting.

    Even though it's not my focus, I love the Nehemiah passage, and I love what the commentator has to say about it at Working Preacher--what would it be like if we stood on the street corner and proclaimed the gospel--for six minutes no less six hours?!

    Anyway, I have lots of ideas, but nothing in writing beyond a few notes. I must get writing b/c I have to go to a benefit dinner tonight and I have an errand I must get done this afternoon as well.

  15. OK - here's what I'm NOT preaching: the kingdom if here, the text has come true, God's love is breaking into the lives of those who thought they'd never get it. None of your petty minded concerns about survival, or running a cozy fellowship, or flower-arranging are going to get in the way of God! (I'll leave you just guessing at some of the hassles we've had this week!)
    I AM preaching the body as unity in diversity (it's Christian Unity week in the UK) and us as servants of Christ, faithfully doing Christ's work of bringing God's love.
    I pray that in my preaching, staying as faithful to the Gospel as I can, God will move people from 'church' to 'Christian' concerns, in God's own time.
    May the words of our mouths and the dedications of our hearts by acceptable in the sight of God and God's coming kingdom.

  16. I have played on the computer, updated my smartphone files, transferred files from my memory stick to my desktop, wrote and rewrote a newsletter article and now I'm going to workout.

    Words written: 0

    Research done: none.

  17. also: want to add my prayers for Mompriest's interview. God be with you!

  18. Prayers for Mompriest!

    Been a while--life stuff got int he way; my life has changed dramatically (in a good way) and I don't have a new routine/rhythm yet. Like Mompastor, I want to revamp that but am not sure how.

    I'm preaching from Luke this week as we install a new Board of Directors. I am so thrilled at the quality of the new Board members--one of them asked to be anointed, saying he felt especially in need of God's grace as he took on the tasks of leading the congregation. Now there's a Board member I can get behind!

    Also, I would ask prayers as I begin discerning God's direction for my life--where I am to go. As some of you know, this has been a long-time concern of mine, and I think I am coming cloer to a resolution. But I need prayer too!

    Blueberry shredded wheat and coffee here...

  19. Prayers for you.Mompriest! :)
    God-Gurl, are you practicing avoidance?
    I have gotten a quote on roof repairs on manse, listening to James Taylor and Carole King.
    Tomorrow I will preach on Nehemiah tomorrow and also (possibly) catch a little flack over the departure of our choir director. Your prayers appreciated on that one. Due to nature of confidentiallity, i am not at liberty to say much, but at same time and catching some of the blame

  20. Mompriest--- prayers for you!

    The coffee is brewing and I'm wishing I could still be asleep. Neighbors behind us at 7 am decided to get a power saw out and use it ;)
    I got most of a rough draft written out last night before getting drawn into the special for Haiti and Conan's last show.

    I'm going with the second half of the 1 Corinthians passage. We were extremely low in number last week so I'm weaving some of last weeks thoughts into the mix too. All of this is leading up to our Annual mtg next week when they'll make decisions about the new year, their pastor search, etc. My prayer for them is that this process will be one of them discovering the gifts they have for ministry and will come together in unity and not conflict.

    Pumpkin pancakes to go around...

  21. My post earlier got lost in cyber-space, so now you get the better, shorter version.

    I'm also going with Christian Unity readings. I have 4 readers ready to read the entire chapter of Luke 24, and then for the "sermon" I'll lead the congregation in a discussion/Bible study focusing on the witnesses in the passage (of all the different sections, resurrection and post-res appearances) and their reception and responses. Then we'll talk about what WE have witnessed and how we will react and respond.

    Also during the prayers of the people I'd like to include prayers for congregations around the world and throught denominations. So, if any of you would like to add prayers for your congregations' ministries/life I'll compile them in the morning to include. If you're willing to leave your denom and/or general location, too, that would be awesome to show our unity with a variety of churches in a variety of places. If that's too identifying I totally understand!

    Back later, but I shouldn't be here too late tonight!

  22. an hour of yoga, more meditation/ shower and some light breakfast...then phone interview in an hour. (and thanks for the prayers)...

    So many wonderful thoughts rummaging around here - looking forward to reading some sermon drafts later...

  23. Praying for you, Mompriest -- hope the call goes well.

    I'm looking at Luke and 1 Cor with any eye towards our planning session following worship tomorrow. The mission of Jesus and the unity of a diversely-gifted body...

    On one of the textweek links I read earlier this week, the author talked about having her young daughter help in the kitchen and how this kind of "help" is more about the child learning than doing anything spectacular. Her point was that God includes us in helping even if we don't yet have the expertise to do the job perfectly. And so we learn.

    To show how our differences can be appreciated, I think I'm going to bring some laundry to be folded (towels, sheets, tshirts) and ask different folks in the congregation to fold them. I'm hoping they'll have their own way of folding that isn't exactly like someone else's way of folding! The point being that the purpose is accomplished even if we have different ways of going about it. Still noodling on that..

    and have 0 words typed. sigh.

  24. Prayers for you Mompriest!

    I've got a few words on paper, but they aren't really what I'm going for at all. This may be a complete do-over before the day is done.

    I'm working with the epistle and gospel lessons and tying in the end of the week of prayer for christian unity.

  25. Mompriest, your interview starts in a few minutes; sending prayers for clarity of word and heart for you and those with whom you speak.

    Nehemiah for me. Gord's idea earlier in the week about whether the Law is a blessing or a burden helped me pin down some of the vague thoughts floating through my head, but they still don't have any shape beyond an opening story.

    I don't have much in the way of food around here--grocery store time!--but I have two lively kittens who will be glad to "help" you type, cook, clean, or any other activity on which you'd like to spend more time than intended...

  26. SheRev, meant to add to your prayer requests (a really neat idea): for our Episcopal congregation in Los Angeles as we begin to grow in vision and ministry with our new rector. Thanks!

  27. Still looking at connecting the 1 Corinthians text and the Gospel. Got almost a page and hoping the sermon fairy comes soon! Thinking on the body of Christ, I remembered spraining my ankles a lot as a teenager and how that affected the rest of my body, being on crutches and not having my hands free because they were needed for the crutches. Connected that with how we pray for people who are suffering each week and we empathize with them because they are part of us as the body of Christ. Connecting that with thinking outward as well, the body is larger than just our congregation. Just as the Holy Spirit came upon Jesus, anointed him, and sent him, we too have the Holy Spirit come upon us, anoint us, and send us as well outside of the walls of our church. Prayers for each of you this day, wherever you find yourself!

  28. After a few false starts I have a draft, which I'll post later after some editing. Now I'm off to do an errand for the annual meeting tomorrow.

    Mompriest, thinking of you right now and hoping that you are filled with the Spirit as your interview proceeds!

  29. SheRev, what a blessing! Please pray for our congregation, New Community of Faith in San Jose as we seek God's guidance for a new pastor and new ministries forming in 2010!

  30. Do any of you know how best to look up an entire passage of the Qur'an? I have a passage I used in an old sermon that I'd like to use in this one, but I inexplicably gave no citation. I've tried googling various phrasings, as well as looking at Qur'an quote sites, but I can't find a reference. Anyone have any ideas?

  31. SheRev, our congregation would be grateful to be included in your prayers! Crossroads UMC in Haslet, TX -- we, too, are seeking guidance and energy to move in the direction God would have us go as we plan our ministries for 2010.

  32. Ok. back from was fun, and we laughed a lot...maybe that's a good sign? Thank you for the prayers!

    Lots going on here..earthchik, no idea how to find the passage - I hope someone knows!

    Now, I need to give my sermon some attention...oh, and isn't it lunch time? Suddenly I'm very hungry! (Do you think a phone interview burns a lot of calories?)

  33. Well, I had high hopes for this day. Woke up later than usual as I had stayed up later than usual watching Boston Legal reruns.
    So I had just finished my bagel and was doing a cryptogram when the phone rang. It was a member of my former parish asking if we could have lunch after the funeral I was concelebrating. It was then 9:35. 45 mintues later I arrived at the former parish showered, dressed and ready to go. It's only 25 minutes away but I was still a little out of breath.
    Lovely service, good visits with old friends at the graveside and then over lunch. Now I am home and have three hours to figure out what to say tomorrow morning. And the young dog is demandinig a cuddle so I guess I will adjourn to the comfy chair with the commentaries and said dog.
    Mompriest, I hope the interview went well. I never know how the interviewers feel even when I think it went well so I suppose that's a dumb thing to say. I hope you feel good about it at least.

  34. Hi, everyone. I have just changed our comment settings. If you were having trounble commenting earlier, please try again. The embedded comments were not working well, or so I was hearing on Facebook! Blogger sometimes offers new options that are buggy, and I guess this was one of them.

  35. Done, done, done. My sermon is complete before the end of the day! I have broccoli soup to share for lunch. You can find my completed sermon at my blog

    God's grace to all of us as we faithfully proclaim God's Word.


  36. Sherev,
    We are the Mt Zion Pres Church in
    Thanks. I got a tiny nap in and have started the sermonizing again

  37. Ok..I posted a draft Stillspeaking So distracted, consequences of so much energy going out...hoping this sermon makes sense...sigh

  38. Oh, and SheRevyou can add the parish I am working for: St. Matthews in Tucson, Arizona.

    I love this idea, by the way!

  39. I posted my sermon at my sermon blog. I also posted last week's sermon ponderings on suffering and Haiti which I had forgotten to do last week.

    Mompriest, glad it felt like the phone interview went well. I never know what to make of them when they are done--it's hard for me to not be talking face to face.

    Now I have to shower and get dressed for a benefit dinner. Our church is being honored for its support of the local homeless shelter--ironically something some members of our congregation have been vocally against. All that happened before I got here, but I still hear about it!

  40. My link to this week's sermon doesn't seem to work, so let me try again here

  41. Good afternoon! I'm brewed a large pot of fair trade, organic coffee, and would be happy to share...

    [I'm a seminarian and so this is my first contribution to the Preachers Party, although I've lurked for a year or so ;-)]

    Got a draft done for tomorrow, concentrating on Luke 4 (my church only reads one lesson each week) but pulling in some "We are Christ's body" bits too. It'll be fun!

    Hope all goes well with the rest of you!

  42. Rejoicing with you, Mompriest!

    SheRev, what a great and gracious idea....Please pray for Sophia Catholic Communion, the small Independent Catholic jurisdiction which I serve as bishop.

    Tests are more than half done but then I took a longish lunch, shower, prayer break so time to get back in gear.

    Earthchick, says it is one of the most comprehensive search sites online, with phrases and topics alike (and in English)

  43. SheRev,
    I would love for you to include the congregation i am in ministry with in Engadine [Sydney, Australia]. We are a congregatin of the Uniting Church in Australia.
    almost church time here on Sunday morning, so shower, dress, move.
    [haven't finished all your comments yet, I'll get to them later]
    still some green tea in the pot if you would like to help yourself.

  44. welcome peregrinaje, glad to have you with us. I've moved on to earl grey tea and mini snickers yourself!

    I'm reading the posted sermon drafts here, some really good thoughts! As always, thank you for sharing...

  45. she rev,
    YOu can include greetings from Riverview United Church, a congregation of the United Church of Canada in Atikokan Ontario.

    I think I have a plan. OR at least a pla. ANd I did up the prep for tomorrow afternoon's study and the role of Scripture within the UCCan. ANd the slow cooker full of spaghetti sauce is smelling ready for portioning out--just cook pasta and supper is made.

    I am thinking about a discussion of rules and why they are important for children's time. That'll work right?

  46. Bit of a prayer of thanksgiving regards words... and the word being read... and our words in response...
    Based on Nehem. and Luke readings.

    Sounds like it was a promising interview Mompriest - yay.

    And now I really do have to write some words... argh. I have landed the joy of giving the 'Immortal Memory' speech at Burns Night supper at uni. Given my area of research is church discipline... and given that Robert Burns was a bit of a laddie, I'm thinking it will end up as more the 'immoral memory'

  47. Welcome, peregrinaje!

    Sophia, thanks for the link - I had tried that one earlier b/c it looked like the best, but I still couldn't find what I was looking for. I guess I'll just use the quote and not use a footnote, but I hate to do that.

    She Rev, cool prayer idea. I'd love for you to include our church - First Baptist Church of Ann Arbor, both for our Annual Meeting tomorrow (with a fairly major and conflict-ridden vote on a church initiative) and for our search for a new youth minister, which we are just beginning. Thanks!

  48. Great! Thanks for sharing your prayers!

    Time for me to finally get out of my jammies today! The church sledding party was cancelled since it got too warm (WHAT?!??!?!) and rained. Sledding on slush is not as much fun. We are, though, still having the potluck dinner! So, time to shower and get dressed for the day. (Night.)

    (Have to say the set up on this form looks like it's going to work better for me, at least. Also, I'm such a creature of habit, I like reading the comments in this skinny version instead of the full page one. That is just me being used to "the way we always do it.")

  49. She Rev, I'd love for you to remember Castlehill Church in Ayr(Church of Scotland) as we seek to face today's challenges of an aging membership called to serve the huge community that's grown up around us.
    Energy and vision would be good:)

    Preaching on that theme from Nehemiah and Luke, my sermon is <a href=">here</a>

    Look forward to reading some others now. Blessings

  50. Sorry, I'll try that link to the sermon again.

  51. I wonder if I can get in now...Earlier there seemed to be an angel with a fiery sword, so I have laboured on alone but have now posted here and am abandoning ship and heading to bed.
    Blessings on all of you as you work on...and as you preach tomorrow too

  52. For the children's sermon based on 1 Corinthians, I am going to use a Mr./Mrs. Potato Head and arrange it with all arms, all ears, etc. and talk about the importance of all the parts and all the people. With the kids we have, it should be a fun lead-in to the "regular" sermon (which no one remembers).

  53. Earthchick, try here:

  54. Thanks, Anonymous! I checked it out (cool! I had no idea that U-M had the Qur'an online!) but still no luck. I have an entire passage that I just want a citation for, and I have no idea where to look. I've tried searching for specific words, specific phrases, and the whole passage. I have found it cited elsewhere online, and attributed to the Qur'an, but never with citation.

    Anyway, I'm done with a draft and hope to be posting it shortly. Then on to preparing to teach Church School, making a dish for the Annual Meeting potluck, and, I hope, spending a little time with my kids!

  55. Hi all. I forget what a sense of community there is here when I've been away for a while. I'm not preaching tomorrow. BUT, Manboy is doing 1/3 of the sermon for youth led worship. Helped him with a bit of it this afternoon. He's off for rehearsal right now. It should be interesting to sit and listen to him as he has listened to me a few times.

    So, SheRev, if you can include prayers for Aldersgate UMC in Carrollton, TX for their Youth Led Worship tomorrow and for next Saturday when our praise band (see Dog Blogger) will do a Haiti relief benefit concert, that would be awesome.

  56. OK, my memory sucks and I am too lazy to look it up so....

    AM I correct in believing that the 5 books of the Torah reached their final redacted form dring the exile and so the Law that Ezra reads is in fact the new form that did not exist before the fall of the Temple?

    Certainy one of the blessings of the Law in this reading is the reconnecting to "this is who we are"

  57. Gord, I'd help you, but I've packed up all my books...:-)

    anyone have an answer?

  58. I have a draft of my sermon up here. Thanks for the party, y'all!

  59. Greetings everyone...glad to see some are finishing up and most are trucking away!

    I am just settling down to work after a pastoral appointment this morning and a squeezed-in budget meeting at St. XL in the afternoon. St. Smaller's annual meeting is tomorrow, so I've got taco soup in the crock pot for the potluck. Add in a chicken/rice/broccoli casserole that needs to be assembled and put in the oven, plus a load of laundry and you have...domestic procrastination!

    Sermon-wise I did most of my prep on Luke...but now inexplicably I am feeling drawn to preach on 1 Corinthians...UGH. I was going to do a whole thing on the prayer shawl...thinking that Jesus was probably wearing one as he read the words of Isaiah. But the body of Christ is one of my favorite images in Scripture and it's tempting to go that direction. There's also several pieces to be done for annual meeting prep still.

    It may well be a late night!

  60. Mompriest, thanks for your comment on my draft! :) I am having a few worries over how similar the message is to my last sermon (2 weeks ago). But I can't help it if God's unconditional love of is a pretty major theme in Scripture!! I may have to acknowledge that in the sermon.

    Blessings, semfem, as you get under way.

  61. I'm coming down the home stretch. Just gotta find that final paragraph to pull my sermon together and give it some pop!

    Would anyone like some ham and cheese quiche, lightly seasoned with basil and enhanced with a bit of green onion?

  62. Earthchick, now I am starting to wonder if the reason it didn't turn up is it's not really from the Qur'an--especially if you found it online without attribution originally. (Like the supposed Oscar Romero one that floats around or the New Age-y one attributed to the Little Flower). Would be curious to see it if you felt like posting here or at your place esp. as I am teaching Islam for the first time in both my classes this term.

  63. Hey Sophia, that's why I was looking for the citation, b/c I suddenly wondered if it was legit.

    I'm not sure if I found it without citation the first time. It's in an old sermon of mine from a few years ago, and what has messed me up is that I didn't footnote it, so I don't know where I found it (but I know for sure I did not find it on any of the websites that I found it today).

    I've quoted it in my draft, here , about halfway down. If it's not from the Qur'an I would love to know where it *is* from, b/c I like it a lot!

  64. Thanks, Sophia! (for your comment on my blog - helpful)

  65. Hey Semfem...hope your sermon comes together and it's not an all-nighter for you...

    and, is anyone else having issues with this comment window? It opens weird and then if I click on a link it opens up in this little window and I can't see the whole blog - so I have to manually enter the blog in a separate window...annoying!

    Anyway - we're having chinese for dinner - hungry anyone?

  66. I have rotisserie chicken from Costco and brussels sprouts on offer. Skinny Cow bars for afters...!

    SheRev, would appreciate your prayers for the Episcopal Church of the Annunciation in Lewisville, Texas. We are facing some challenging times; at the same time, I'm excited to say that we will be hosting the local Ecumenical Service for the
    Week of Christian Unity 2010 tomorrow afternoon.

  67. Rough draft done. Please feel free to check it out at

    Plese stop by and leave your feedback.

  68. Earthchick, have you tried Googling some of the phrases in your quote? I tried it with a few and came up with some other references to it, but unfortunately none referred to specifically WHERE it is in the Quran. Give it a shot. Thanks for the good wishes as I begin...

    Thanks Mompriest...I'm glad your interview went well!

  69. Oops, Earthchick, perhaps you have already done that. Sorry to be dense if so!

  70. Clearly I need to read more carefully. Blah...sorry.

    Just doing my part to get us to 100!

  71. It appears that some date the Priestly source in the Torah to the late exile or early restoration so the redaction process may well not have happened yet. At any rate, I can still use the "this is who we are and why and what that means" angle in the story. AFter all, we don't really know what all was being read--it could just be law codse or the whole Torah

  72. I'm back and compiling prayer requests. It'll be a blessing to include them in our worship! I'll check again in the morning, too, but since this is about all I need to compile tonight, it's worth taking care of some of it now.

    All I really need to work up are my "wrap up" thoughts for the sermon "conversation" we'll have as a congregation tomorrow. Even that needs to be a little loose, though since I don't know exactly where the conversation will go. Shouldn't be too much trouble for me, so if I just do it (please please hold your laughter, folks), I can head to bed for the whole night very shortly.

  73. OK -- I've been having fun looking for the Qu'ran passage, but am naively SHOCKED at the amount of plagarism out there on the internet. Not sure with whom the passage I keep seeing over and over started with, but GEEZ. It shows up on a gazillion websites with the exact same wording!

  74. Sermon done, prayers done, dish for tomorrow's potluck done. Off to bed. Blessings to you as you continue to write your sermons.

  75. I'm about ready to head off to bed myself...early though it is. Morning will be here before I know it.

    Last one up, get the lights? Blessings on all you late nighters...

  76. I have a feeling the lights will be on for a while ...

  77. She Rev, is the plagiarism using the Qur'an text I'm hoping to quote? I don't want to use it if it's all over the 'net like that.

    I think I might just give up on using it since I can't find any source and I'm not even sure it's actually from the Qur'an and esp. if a whole lot of other ppl have used it similarly.

  78. Vicar is on the right track.

    I've finished supper and have the soup all done in the crock pot, plus laundry is in the dryer, but the sermon is eluding me so far.

    I did find a way in to the texts, though, so hopefully once I get going I'll have something to say.

  79. Thanks Gord. Your research helped me out so much!
    I am wide awake thanks to a choc chip cookie and a Coke. I have not had a coke, in a while...tea yes, but not coke.
    I may be partying with all of you tonight

  80. No earthchick, not really, but well, kind of. It's the lead in to that quote. Everyone attributes it to Mohammed with the same sentence, something about across the sands....

  81. I am trying to finish up the notes that I hand wrote this afternoon...
    Luke is what I'm preaching on.
    I am not sure if/how I would use it but Imagine someone standing in the midst of our congregation reading what Jesus read and saying..I'm talking about's about me..

    Anyways comforting to be with the 'sisters' on Saturday.
    God abide and bless God's works and words tomorrow.

  82. Back to work after a lackluster dinner, dropping off older son with SIL, and helping my husband with his altar guild work. I also needed to drive to a neighboring community and get the exact wording off a sign I am quoting in the sermon!

    I've got the long intro done and the conclusion (with which I am pretty happy); alas, it's the meat at the center that's lacking. I know where I want to go; I just am not motivated to write the words. Glad a few of you gals are here to keep me motivated :-)

  83. Oh UGH. Unbelievable. I'm cutting it.

  84. Oh - - sorry, earthchick. I didn't mean for that. I understand your frustration trying to find the source, though.

  85. sorry to be so long getting back. turns out we didn't have internet at the office.

    I have a sermon, preached once.

    thought no one would be at the service because of the freezing rain, but there were 18 people, which isn't bad for this small traditional service.

    I'm just going to go with it again tomorrow. tired.

    Mompriest, I hope the laughter was a good sign!!!

    and what I spent my evening doing:

    I knitted my very first ever MITTEN! easy pattern, there isn't even a right and a left, but still, a sense of accomplishment!

  86. I just read a church member's facebook post that is pretty much the antithesis to the sermon I am writing. crap.

  87. Hey SheRev, I'd love it if you'd add the church I'm serving as student pastor, First Christian Church of Edwardsville, IL in your list of churches to pray for. Blessings to you and yours!

  88. Vicar -- that's a bummer. yuck.

  89. Oh no, She Rev, I'm glad to know what's out there. I was already feeling iffy about using the quote, and now that I've seen that other people have used it also in connection with this Psalm - and all copying each other (I only found two - I assume you found more - but they were so exactly the same it was creepy), I just feel like I shouldn't use it. I really wish I knew how I had stumbled upon it when I preached this old sermon - it was long enough ago that I don't think it was through The Text This Week.

    Anyway, the sermon doesn't have to have it, it was just a nice little addition.

  90. Congrats to Diane and what a bummer, Vicar!
    I am unmotivated to finish. Looking forward to next week when a couple will speak on their mission trip to Boliva. Also, looking forward to a break at a conference next week too.
    In my life as a Baptist, I attended the same conference center in college. Not sure it will hold the same magic for me now.

    Anyhow...back to Ezra and 'da Law.
    Anybody know who the shortest man i nthe Bible is???
    Knee-high Miah

  91. 1-4 Grace, I used to be a Baptist, too. Which conference center?

    I'm as done as I'm going to be tonight. (big sigh)

  92. 1-4 Grace,

    Did you know they played tennis in the Bible? David served on Saul's court.

  93. Did you know the Apostles had a car?

    They were all in one Accord

  94. Did you know that baseball has been around since creation?

    Gensis won one in the big inning

  95. On the Ark, Noah probably got milk from the cows. What did he get from the ducks?

  96. David's Triumph was heard throughout the land.

  97. oh, I almost forgot ... Adam and Eve had a car too

  98. they were driven out of the garden in a Fury


    night, night

  99. Heh. Heh, heh, heh! Groan.

    Would it be terrible if I just now got started? I have my opening illustration and that's all.

  100. Oh, I've got to remember the Triumph one to tell my husband in the morning; he, too, delights in his Triumph, motorcycle version!

    Almost done. I might be done and not quite know it yet; I have to decide if I need one more sentence before the already completed conclusion or not. Tiredness is weighing on the side of being done...

    Prayers for tomorrow, my friends!

  101. Sorry, Vicar! I have been busy writing and not looking at RGBP! It is White Oak in SC. Ever been there?
    ANd the jokes are GREAT!!!!
    Who was the most ambitious man in the Bible?
    Jonah-even a whale coudn't keep him down
    Was Noah the first one out of the Ark?
    No, he came forth out of the ark

  102. Oh good Lord, why can't I just finish this sucker off? I'm so close to being done...just can't hit the right note on the conclusion.

    and man am I tired.

  103. Okay, that's it. It sucks, but it's finished, more or less. The report will have to wait for next Sunday. I'm headed to bed for a few hours.

    Blessings on all pondering, preaching, and proclamation this day.

  104. My first night in AGES to actually sleep an almost normal amount on a Saturday night and what happens? The children show up at 4:00 a.m. GROAN. They've never done that in that middle of the night, but it was the 2 1/2 year olds first night in a real bed. First and last for a while. We all struggled to sleep together until my alarm when off an hour and 15 minutes later. Now the 4 1/2 year old is back in a bed, and my husband is doing everything he can to avoid taking the little one back to his own room and the crib since that is sure to start a huge struggle.

    Ugh. Just here to make sure I have some closing thoughts for our congregational discussion "sermon." Everything else is ready to go.

  105. hey there,

    wasnt at the party, but just came to post for prayers, because my bboy was up every hour on the hour to be sick. so ive been up to elbows in puke all night, now it's 5:49 am, washing the second load of sheets and wondering if it's worth it to try and sleeep for another hour and thinking that satan must be behind the reason that children of ministers ALWAYS GET SICK ON SATURDAY NIGHT???? as far as I can tell, theres no other possible explanation.

    so. asking for prayers.

    blessings all on your sunday,


  106. hey Juniper, prayers ascending... hope all is well


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