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Saturday, July 10, 2010

11th Hour Preacher Party: What are You Preaching About? Edition

A friend of mine who is a pastor relayed this story recently: she found her three year old son sitting in front of her computer one day. She asked him what he was doing. "Working on my sermon," he replied. "So, what are you preaching about, Carl?" she asked. "Jesus."

With that in mind, I offer this simple question this morning in the middle of summer: "What are you preaching about tomorrow?" There are several scriptural answers to this question: you might be trying to find a new twist on the extremely familiar story of the Good Samaritan. You might be starting a sermon series on Colossians. You might be looking at Deuteronomy or at Amos' plumb line, or you might be preaching about something Completely Different. A great conversation about some of these possibilities can be found here.

Or, it might be as simple as my friend's son: "Jesus." It's always that simple, and it can still be complicated, as well....

What are you having for breakfast? As always, I'm serving fair-trade coffee, good earth tea, and blueberry pancakes (I hear blueberries are full of anti-oxidants!) I have the table set in anticipation of company, so I hope you'll join me.

And maybe even have a children's sermon idea. (Please?)

87 comments:

  1. Good morning! Our early highbush blueberries are just coming ripe, as are our raspberries, so I have a big bowlful of fresh mixed berries for everyone. (Now, who's bringing the whipped cream?)
    I'm doing "pulpit supply" preaching tomorrow, trying to weave together Amos, Colossians and the Good Samaritan. What I notice is that all three passages contain imagery of a displaced, transferred, or transplanted person who manages to be an effective agent/servant of God despite the challenges and pressures of that new, sometimes hostile, setting. That'll preach, right?

    Now I just need to come up with an engaging framework that helps me connect the message with a rural, fairly sedentary congregation of folks who already practice much of this "caring for others" stuff in their professional lives. Oh, and I'm working elsewhere 10-6 today and trying to get our farm ready for a loan appraisal. I might be up late tonight!

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  2. welcome, Mainecelt! breakfast is getting to sound delicious! thanks for the berries.

    you sound like you have a busy day ahead of you (and weekend, for that matter.)

    Thanks for joining us. I does, indeed sound like "that'll preach." will be interested in how it comes out.

    Me, I'm sticking with the "good samaritan."

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  3. I have a wedding at 4:00 and my early edition at 5:00.

    I also am preparing to go out of town for a vacation on Monday.

    In the meantime, there will be two funerals while I am gone. I've been coordinating as far as I can with the families, as there is no parish secretary at my church right now. A retired pastor will preside for me.

    this morning I also have to visit a woman who is dying, and write a newsletter column.

    ok, that's enough about me. I'm done.

    How is everyone else?

    Have a cup of coffee? I'm putting the pancakes on soon, and here are MaineCelt's berries!

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  4. Good Samaritan for me, aided greatly by Songbird's reading.

    This morning in central PA finds us being blessed by desperately needed rain. Normally this would also bring the gift of trying to figure out what to do with The Boy, but he is on a trip with his father so I have all day to contemplate the Good Samaritan, a children's message (thanks for the reminder) and read for my Sunday School class (a summer series on the Screwtape Letters because, as my friend noted, apparently I thought it was 1973).

    Hoping I can con my Mom into making waffles. That would definitely make it seem like 1973.

    Blessings upon everyone's day ahead...

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  5. welcome, Kathrynzj, waffles would be nice.

    I liked Songbird's piece as well.

    Thanks for coming to the party. sounds like you have a good day ahead, even with the rain.

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  6. I'm sticking with Amos and Luke. It feels like a fairly harsh sermon at this point. I haven't found much grace in either lesson. So I will have to do some more reading and praying before I stand in the aisle tomorrow morning. My current thoughts may seem more of an assault given that I think both lessons point to our national malaise.
    Meanwhile, I'm off to cook at Salvation Army this morning and my mother will be here this afternoon for a visit.
    I can offer anything that is in my refrigerator since it must be cleaned out by 1:00 so the new one can be installed and this one can be carted away. Having said that, I suspect there isn't much to offer!
    Happy sermonizing everyone.

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  7. Kathrynzj -- were you old enough to chew waffles in 1973?

    We have thunderstorms in the forecast, but that doesn't explain why our cable/phone/Internet just went out. In anticipation? Not pleased. Grateful 3G works in my house!

    I have a big week ahead (four job interviews followed by the gigantic fundraising event of the year at my current church. I will be preaching at the town's interfaith service next Sunday. Since I'm off this weekend, I will work on that sermon today.

    I would ask for your prayers for Y1P. Shortly after their successful Open and Affirming vote, the Search Committee recommended a candidate who is a lesbian. She will be preaching tomorrow, after which the congregation will vote. I am praying today for the church, the candidate and her family (partner and two young children), that all shall be well.

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  8. Happy Sermonizing, Margaret. Hope you find that grace, albeit with an edge.

    good luck with the new refrig, too.

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  9. oh Songbird, praying for Y1P. welcome to the party and prayers for your NEXT week's sermon, too.

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  10. Prayers for you and for your congregation, Songbird.

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  11. anyone for coffee? Pancakes will be ready soon.

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  12. Good morning! I'm preaching tomorrow at a local Presbyterian Church for on of my RevGal friends. It's an ecumencial gesture since I am an Episcopal priest and had to get permission from my Bishop to do this. ahh, the world we live in.

    Anyway. That said I had to pick, weeks ago, what scripture I would use. Often, when this proper rolls around I preach on Amos but tomorrow I'm using Luke and Good Sam.

    I have a story and a draft - but that's only because I had to write two sermons this week and spent an entire day cranking them both out.

    Tomorrow's sermon though needs some work, so I'm taking my cup of vanilla flavored coffee and going to the text...

    thanks, Diane for hosting. I hope you have a restful vacation.

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  13. It worked! My Mom made waffles, and yes SB, I could chew them in 1973.

    I have a good lead on Screwtape, enough to do a class on it tomorrow - seriously, what WAS I thinking and why did all those people sign up?

    Now I am turning my attention to Good Sam (I like that, Mompriest).
    Or maybe bills...
    Or maybe call my friend...
    Or nap...

    Any chance the softball double header starting at noon today gets cancelled because of rain?

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  14. welcome, Mompriest! Presbyterians and Episcopalians may not be in full communion with each other, but you are both in full communion with us Lutherans, so, I say -- go for it!

    yes, I am tired. I'm trying not to be whiny. I hope it gets a little better with an interim. Besides the work, I'm working around all the anxiety in the congregation about the future, and leading while still carrying the "associate" title.

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  15. Ok. So I have most of a sermon. But no ending. You'd think, getting this far, I'd have some idea how I want to close the sucker. Well, actually, I do. I'm looking for a short illustration that neatly expresses inheriting the kingdom of God is about acts of compassion. Should not be hard to do....right?

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  16. "How Big Is Your Neighborhood?" got written in record time on Thursday afternoon. I've "played" since then. Still need to do the final tweek.

    Using the Luke passage and asking the congregation to look deeper into the parable...and that perhaps we are the person in need of the Samaritan's kindness.

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  17. I have a good illustration, but it's not short. and, to me, it's more incarnational. about a Christian and a Muslim neighbor in Bosnia, and the Muslim neighbor giving the Christians 1/2 liter of milk every day for their baby for 442, during shelling of the city, and while others would make fun of him for helping the Christians. It's from one of Chris Hedges' books.

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  18. I think I found a quote from Corrie Ten Boom that will work...

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  19. just back from vacation -- usually I have an idea where I'm going by now. I'm using Colossians, I gave them the title prayer for the church. Guess I'm heading in the what does Colossians say it takes to be a successful church .... and next week will be who is this Jesus who makes it possible :) Now I just have to write it. and Children's sermon, OY!

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  20. Yes. Children's sermon.... anyone?

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  21. Tweaking done. Finished sermon here.

    I have some fresh home-grown sweet corn to share...all day long. Last night...grilled burgers and sweet corn.

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  22. Good morning fellow sermonators!

    I am preaching on the Luke passage, but havent got a good feel for where I am going. Wrote a bit of narrative a couple of days ago from the perspective of the man in the ditch, but I am not sure I want to go in that direction.

    I've got a first interview on Thursday (at last!) with a somewhat promising congregation. My inclination is to rush through the sermon so I can get on with preparing for the interview. And I just found out last night that my very best friend has some serious marital problems, so I am a bit distracted on that front as well.

    The Holy Spirit didn't visit my early morning dreams today. Perhaps she is waiting for me at the farmers market.

    I don't have to do a children's sermon, but the Veggietales "Who is my neighbor" songs keep going through my head as I work with this material. I would be tempted to use it as a springboard for my children's sermon.

    I have some frest blueberry buckle, and my darling husband just put on a pot of coffee.

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  23. The rain has let up enough where I think I need to at least move towards the idea that I may be playing softball today. At least the earlier rain cooled things off a bit (at least that is what I am telling myself).

    I'll check in later, good luck all!

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  24. I have a rough draft based on the Colossians passage. It's about the passage and the Christian life both being like a bowl of spaghetti - messy but wonderful. I think I'm using a quote (and a picture) of Sophia Loren, who said, "Everything I am, I owe to spaghetti."

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  25. I'm struggling with this week's message. We have an obvious object lesson "in the neighborhood." A community in the next county south of us has a batch of people protesting the construction of a new Muslim center. "Not in my neighborhood!" they're screeching. The space the Muslim community is in presently (where they've been for a decade) has become too small.

    My dilemma? I preached on this last week, sort of, weaving Fourth of July celebrations of freedom and independence with the Gospel's proclamation about the kingdom of God being near and within.

    I'm liking the idea of looking at this from the victim's point of view, and of being the neighbor, but not sure yet. I also love Amos' plumb line. Ach!

    Fresh peaches here. They are beyond delicious.

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  26. Welcome, Purple, Althea, Pator Cindy, Altar Ego and Ramona (whew!)

    glad you are here! I love the Sophia Loren quote. And fresh peaches, thanks!

    Blessings on your interview, Ramona.

    All I did was go to the bank for money for our trip, and so many people joined us!

    I hope you are having a good time.

    printing... be back soon

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  27. going with Deuteronomy... preaching on what "prosperity" means in light of our economic restlessness...

    searching for that stellar conclusion...

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  28. Hi all:

    MMM, so much good food!

    I'm doing my Big Ideas sermon series, so now I'm on Forgiveness (like KJ - WHAT was I thinking again??). So, I'm actually way off lectionary.

    But in case it helps anyone, for childrens time I'm bringing this book called "how much is a million?" and talking about the biggest number they can imagine or name and then "Jesus asked us to forgive even more times than that" - If I named them I would call it "70 times 7 equals a gajillion" or something.

    It's a lovely saturday here, but I spent the week cleaning out files at the church (HAD to be done, but goodness, what a job) so now I got a few stories for a sermon, but nothing to tie them togehter and not sure if the church member who contacted me privately really would allow me to tell the big forgiveness story or not.

    Prayers for your congregation Songbird! That is a big leap!

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  29. I am sitting on my front porch enjoying a coolish breeze while it gently rains. Brings back childhood memories of rainy summer days spent reading on the porch...

    I'm preaching on Luke; three years ago I began my sermon with Mr. Rogers' "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood" and I could do that again b/c I am in a different church, but I am not sure that I will.

    Feasting on the Word cites Amy-Jill Levine twice on the good Samaritan, asking who is the least likely person we can imagine to care for us. For Levine, a Jewish scholar, it would be a member of Hamas. Put in those terms being a "Good Samaitan" is a lot edgier.

    I'm also struck that the lawyer is trying to set up boundaries for who he must care for, and Jesus, as usual is tearing those boundaries down. Also apt for these days.

    Finally I'm struck by the emphasis on "doing" not on just "believing".

    And I'm doing a baptism (maybe two--ahem, the parents can't decide whether to baptize the older child tomorrow along with the baby or do it another time--subject for a whole other post!) and I should probably connect that in the sermon, too.

    Bur in a few minutes the Kid and I are heading out for Whole Foods to have lunch and get something for dinner--he wants to cook, and I never say no to that!

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  30. mompriest, you are one incredible woman with a sermon all ready at 10am AND with the whole cross-cultural Presbyterian experience. :-) I'm very grateful to you and for you!

    As is probably obvious, I'm not preaching tomorrow. Instead I'll be at the church building at 4.45am, to go on a mission trip to southern Louisiana at 5. Please, God, let there be some grace in the starbucks drive-thru, which supposedly opens at 430. I really need them to let me in at 4.28. :-)

    I'm attempting a day mostly off today, since the coming week is going to be insane. In order to get to this place I worked 4 consecutive 12+ hour days. Please don't let me have forgotten anything. Amen. :-)

    For those interested, I'll be posting this week on our church blog--an update and story every evening, hopefully, and maybe even with photos if I can find suitably quick wireless!

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  31. welcome, Hotcup, Rev Dr. Mom, Juniper and Teri. lots of good ideas.

    Rev. Dr. Mom -- re: your comment on 'doing vs just believing' -- though I make some traditional moves re who the 'good samaritan is', now I know why I ended up the sermon with the curious sentence, 'go and do likewise.'

    indeed.

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  32. hey everyone...I recognize a few folks from the cruise and it's good to know everyone is well. Songbird many prayers for you and all of the interviews! Good luck with the softball games K and Teri I hope your trip is fantastic and exhausting and wonderful!

    Sermon still has not come together. I've been chewing on that Amy Jill Levine quote as well....I'll just see where that goes. I'm attending a funeral for the husband of a colleague here in the Presbytery this afternoon and tonight my church is hosting it's first outdoor movie night featuring a movie that while we have a license to show it we still cannot name the movie in the advertising. I'm not quite sure I understand that...make that a definite no I don't understand that.

    Happy Summer Saturday everyone!

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  33. I'm preaching from Amos. And then if the original draft is too short, I'll add Luke.

    I have one good story. So I think I'll talk about Amos for awhile before I tell that story. That's my whole plan. well, and pray for the Holy Spirit to do something better :)

    I'll do that after the consumption of more caffeine.

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  34. Hi all,

    Joining the party a little later than usual.

    I'm having a bit of a rough week with my congregation. I'm sure things will be fine now that everything is out on the table. But I'm having a hard time recovering from this one. Spent yesterday and this morning watching bad TV and eating left over pizza. Beloved called me from work a half an hour ago and told me to get off my a$$ and start writing my sermon.

    Come oh Holy Spirit come.

    Would anyone like some pizza, I've got pepperoni or sausage.

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  35. Sermon outline handwritten, needs typing which I'm avoiding by chatting with you all. I'm using First and Second commandment and Good Sam, but with a bit of a twist. This is my second Sunday in my new church. A while back I began to ask my self what a healthy well rounded small church looks like - what's the vision? I came up with
    1. Love each other.
    2. Love God.
    3. Love our neighbors.
    "Hmmm. This sounds familiar. I'm pretty sure Jesus said it." So tomorrow I'm planting the seed for visioning what Loving God, and loving our neighbors as ourselves looks like in our setting.
    With the story of the Good Samaritan, Jesus not only answers, "Who is my neighbor?" He also paints a picture of what loving neighbor can look like.

    There is a nearby church that has a summer lunch program for kids who usually get free lunch during the school year. Our church supports the program which is in need of supplies. So for children's time, I'm going to have my camera and tell them I want to take a picture of Love. Asking them what I should photograph. Then I'll show a sack lunch and go from there with love can look like a PBJ... Then the kiddos will pass out the lists of supplies needed to the congregation.
    Right now it all sounds good on paper. We'll see how it goes.

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  36. I'm doing pulpit supply tomorrow, too. I preached at this same church last week, so at least it's not completely unknown. Tackling the Good Samaritan with my idea from Tuesday. Looking at each of of the characters and seeing if/how "Go and do likewise" could teach us something for each. Or something like that.

    Unfortunately, no children's sermon needed at this place, so I haven't had any thoughts on that. You could always have them act out the story...just don't let the robbers get carried away!

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  37. Welcome all! God_Guurrrll, sorry to hear about your situation. hope you can get it all ironed out. you're in my prayers.

    I'm scrounging around for lunch now. practicing sermon, getting ready for wedding.

    it might be cold pizza, don't know. how about you?

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  38. Mid-life Rookie, thank you for your thoughts which I am using as my sermon conclusion.

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  39. Sorry I didn't leave any food. Running off now to volunteer at ministry for adults with special needs. Manboy goes with me. It's great! Sermon 2/3 typed. Will try to bring some virtual goodies this evening when I return. G&T is at the grocery store right now.

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  40. Here's my sermon. Not a lot of mojo today so I'm newing up an oldie but a goodie with a nod to my current church setting.

    Feel free to stop by here and say hi.

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  41. Peach preserves here and some bread and butter pickles for anyone needing lunch or a snack.
    I am preaching on Good Samar. w/ a little Amos thrown in for good, uh...
    measure.
    Ugh, i know...bad pun, indeed.
    So, I am here checking in on soccer and watching HP2.
    We are bidding farewell to our interim pianist tomorrow and still looking for someone to play for us too.
    I bid farewell on July 25, providing all goes well with the candidate who is coming in. If not, I am not sure what they will do.
    Mia and I are working on sermon and chillin' in the heat.
    Blessings to all.
    Homemade lemonade anyone>?

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  42. 1-4 Grace: HAHAHAHAHA!!!

    That joke is so bad I am going to steal it. Oh, yes. I am.

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  43. Thanks to Christian Century, I think I can now end the sermon with a measure of grace.

    The new fridge is in. As soon as it gets cooler, I'll load it up with everything that came out of the other one. Well, not everything. There were some things in the back of shelves that needed pitching. The half can of cat chow, part of a jar of sundried tomatoes, a few containers of salsa with not much in them and none of it the right color.... ;-)
    Sounds like most of the sermons are rolling in fairly well. Purple starts her sermon by talking about how familiar we are with this parable. I think that it why it is especially hard to preach it. I agree.
    On another note, we fed 119 people at the Salvation Army this morning even though we had planned for 60. You know how this ends, don't you? Yes, there were leftovers!!

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  44. Ok, here is a draft of what I am going to say about Good Sam. For now I'm calling it The Ditch. Still needs some tweeking but before I do that I have to let it sit...Comments, critique, feedback always welcome.

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  45. hey. I'll need to let you guys fend for yourselves for awhile. wedding is getting closer.

    be back later.

    play nice. (ly)

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  46. Finally I got here. I am working on Amos.

    I will be preaching in a continuing Episcopal Church in a diocese that has left the Church. They have been meeting as a house church for the past yr and finally have their own building that is somewhat churchy. It is also 100 miles away.

    They aren't too sure that they want a woman priest but I am all they have. We'll see what happens.

    So I am talking about what happens when the Church is without the plumline of God's authority. And what are the signs of God's authority or presence in their community =congregation. It is a very small bunch--about 10-11 but ya gotta start somewhere.

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  47. Children's sermon: this is indeed a fun week to act it out. Add a few very simple props (bandanas for bandages, sticks for robbers, etc.).

    However, sermons4kids reminded me of one that works really well: Horton Hears a Who. Very similar theme, just Seuss-ified! Check it out on the website. I'm going with this, not reading the whole story, just a bit (as long as I get to the library soon!), and then expanding on it.

    Praying for the Spirit for all of you, for words that come easily and gracefully.

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  48. Songbird - prayers and prayers and prayers!

    GodGuurrll - I'll take some cheese if you have any in the back!

    Diane - Thanks for that story reminder! I read that book back in seminary and remember that story... we're doing vices and virtues from proverbs as a summer sermon series and tomorrow is Hope vs Apathy... this'll be perfect!

    Muthah+ - blessings and blessings!!!

    Okay, off to be hopefull and NOT apathetic about my sermon!

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  49. Wow it sure is good to be back with you. Oh how I have missed your words of wisdom and your humor as well. I have been mia for quite awhile, just today realizing how much I missed being a part of this site. Hopefully I can become a stronger, vibrant part of the community. Between, pnemouia, a teen getting out of treatment, bone infection, teen returning to treatment, a toe amputation,another bout of pnmuia and depression thrown into the mix. I am back ready to make my voice heard and take some authority which was bestoed upon me. Preaching on the good sam. Title who shows mercy. Very similiar to many of you.

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  50. Mostly through, some sections more of a stretch than others.

    Off to an engagement BBQ/swimming party with the hubby and little girls. Taking enough stuff to stay overnight, I think! Hope to be back not too late, as missing bedtime has serious consequences for all four of us. I'll bring back some BBQ to share.

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  51. hi, all. I'm back from the wedding and saturday worship. feet hurt.

    thanks for the children's message ideas! I'll be checking out Horton just in case.

    sometimes we have kids, sometimes not.....

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  52. now, for supper.

    and someone gave me a bag of homemade chocolate chip cookies this afternoon. anyone?

    (they were still warm at 3:00)

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  53. Hello revgals.

    SB! Wow! Sounds like an intense week for you. And a Big Day for your current church tomorrow. Prayers all around.

    DH is preaching Good Sam tomorrow and I am up for children's sermon. I had a great idea about 5 days ago and for the life of me can't remember what it was....

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  54. I am almost done - just a couple of transitional things to make the ending mesh with the rest of the sermon.

    Just made pizza maghareta for dinner - anyone want some?

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  55. Checking back in.
    I've got the beginning and the end of a sermon on Good Sam and I'm plumping up the middle. Just took a nap and I'm hoping to be done by 10.

    Tomorrow is my first Sunday of just one service but with a meeting at 8:15 and Sunday School after worship somehow I missed the take it easy during the summer memo.

    We are doing a reading for the Good samaritan so I really don't want to use it for the children's sermon too.
    Any other ideas out there?

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  56. My sermon is progressing and has reached the stage where I am willing to share the first draft. As always, comments welcome.
    I'm already sure it won't come out this way tomorrow. ;-)

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  57. revie-- sounds like you've had a heck of a ride. May your voice and breath gain power through the One who breathes life into us all.

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  58. I'm fading fast, guys.

    but, I still need a children's sermon. something really easy, kind of general.

    I almost bought of a raft of Seuss books at the store and then thought better of it. I do like Horton Hears a Who, but wasn't sure I could do it...

    I'm leaning toward teaching some kind of way we can pray with our bodies....

    did I mention we're going to San Francisco on MONDAY?

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  59. There is a good Children's Sermon at sermons4kids, but you use the book, Horton Hears a Who and talk about the improtance of helping others, no matter, how small, tall, etc/.
    My problem is that I do indeed have a Horton Christmas ornament, but which box is it in and do I really need to spend time looking for it?
    I could go to Walmart and see what they have....

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  60. Holy Moley..nothing like crusing on the elliptical in the gym, all smug and thinking your sermon is in good shape, when BAM, you realize that your sermon is really two or three sermons and its disjointed and has SERIOUS ISSUES!

    I went ahead and finished my work out, stopped off at the grocery store, came home and made homemade chicken/cheese enchiladas with a side of guacamole - totally from scratch (ok, I bought premade tortillas and canned tomato sauce - but otherwise, from scratch). Yes. It was fabulous. And there are left overs - please help yourself - but save room for the homemade brownies....

    Now. Back to my point. So after all that exercising and feasting I went back to my sermon and ripped it apart. Here is the new version of In the Ditch

    geeze. I hope this version lets me get some rest. LOL

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  61. I must confess, I didn't do much work today, after all. I'll have to skip part of the Clam Festival next Saturday and work on my sermon. (Not a tragic loss, as far as I'm concerned, but don't tell on me, Internets, okay?)
    Best love and hugs to all still working, may you make the Good News heard!

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  62. I have too much immigration reform and not enough Word in my sermon so far. I am now going with the strategy of spewing everything and trimming later.

    We shall see.

    Horton Hears a Who.... hmmmmm.

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  63. okay I almost bought Horton, didn't, so I can't use that.

    I tend to buy things.

    I think i was punchy and had Certain Thoughts when I heard the line, "A person's a person no matter how small."

    who's still working? what if I just said,

    guess what? no children's message.

    it's been known to happen.

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  64. I'm still working and I can't do the 'no children's sermon' thing.

    Somehow immigration reform and children's sermon just ain't meshing for me :)

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  65. I think I'm going to go with a retelling of this story for my children's sermon:

    http://sports.espn.go.com/ncaa/columns/story?columnist=hays_graham&id=3372631

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  66. ok, i havent been working either.

    unless you call rewatching Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat research for the sermon i'm preaching on forgiveness tomorrow.

    but I'm back and ready to go at it now. only 7:30 here.

    really, shouldnt JOSEPH ask for forgiveness after all that busienss with pretending not to know them and hiding the cup?

    KJ - childrens time question reminded me of that little girl who told Michelle Obama that her mom didnt have papers. annnnd, that's all I got....

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  67. ha! I posted before I saw yours, K. your idea = much better.

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  68. Books-a-million open til 11PM. Book now in hand. Learned that they do not sell Hallmark anymore, so no ornaments.
    However, they did have a copy of book
    As I pondered it, I think I gave away my Horton ornament, because I went through an "elephant" stage, but now am not into elephants.
    I Like Grinches. So, anyhow, as I packed away ornaments, I think I may have given it to Goodwill.
    Glad I did not spend half the night looking for it. :)
    And I have my nice Horton book and can hopefully go to bed after I wrap up the sermon.
    How is everyone? Anybody want some mint choco chip ice cream or some peach jam on toast? I have Tazo tea(green) as well.

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  69. ok, I think I have a lame but easy children's sermon idea about "what are hands for?" and have people brainstorm the usefulness of their hands.

    ... and then at the end, hands are for helping, and have someone help someone else up, like the samaritan. and talk about why God gave us hands....

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  70. I really want to go to bed, but I think I'm going to look up your story too, Kathrynzj. You can never know too many good stories, that's what I say.

    until a few years ago, we never used to have a children's message in the summer. and, guess what, no families came to church.

    so, I started having children's messages. attendance is still spotty. but at least I'm sending a message that I expect people to come, and that they're welcome.

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  71. diane - last week or a couple weeks ago? someone posted a hand prayer at the preacher party. wait, that wasnt you, was it? maybe you can find it.

    peach jam and toast, mmmm. this breadholic says yes please!

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  72. Back from the engagement party, toddler and baby convinced they should go to sleep, hubby off at a pastoral emergency, so the house is quiet. I need to look at what I've got and see if it'll preach.

    Brought some very good BBQ'd pork loin and homemade BBQ sauce. Help yourselves.

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  73. oh yeah! the hand prayer. that was last week (I think). but it wasn't me.

    time to look it up.

    and go to bed, too.

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  74. oh, and what a great story, Kathrynzj. I favorited it.

    now you got me thinking about immigration reform.

    I haven't preached on it lately. I loaned someone my book, They Are Us.

    I need to ask for it back, so I can get the statistics, etc.

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  75. Well, I think I'm finished but will do one more read through and then of course hit it tomorrow AM as well.

    One warning about Horton is that it has been adopted by the pro-life movement. The Geisl family has actually spoken against it being used in that way, but it could come up.

    Hope you all have a wonderful day tomorrow. Thank you so much for the support of this wonderful group and thank you Diane for hosting!

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  76. Esperanza -- it's a little late for the pork loin here tonight, but can I have some leftovers tomorrow?

    because I'll need them.

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  77. Well, I've been way too busy today to be much fun around this party...rats!

    And now that everything is done I find that it is also bedtime...sigh...

    Wishing everyone a good nights rest and happy preaching tomorrow!

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  78. Mompriest -- you are welcome any time!

    although, if you had stopped in a couple more times, we would have gotten closer to 100.

    I'm going to bed, guys.

    though, I'll leave the light on for you.

    Party on!

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  79. Thanks for the heads up, Kathryn. I am going to make a point of saying how small, tall, no matter what color, etc. Hoepfully, that will get point across about we need to help people, not because of how they look.
    Sadly, we have a recent news story in our own city about helping. A woman was hit by a car and left. She was run over two other times, at least when someone finally caleld 911.She was killed instantly, but I am amazed at the many others who proably passed her by and did not stop on a busy road.
    I am also moved by the variety of commercials(insurance) where one person helps another and then another person sees it...pass it on philosphy. I have no idea where i am going with that line of thought..it is late for sure.
    So, back to finishing my sermon

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  80. I'm back later than I thought I would be. So much for having a calendar or a plan for the shape of the day.

    The sermon is nearly done but needs tinkering because it didn't go the way I thought it would either.

    Seems to be a theme.

    Anyone else still here?

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  81. I'm still here. Sort of contemplating and stewing since I'm not writing out my manuscript, but speaking from notes tomorrow...

    When you google "progressive christian forgiveness" you get some interesting stuff....

    Also re Horton: I used to worship at a church that was host to dozens of 12 step meetings per week, and so was steeped in recovery culture. They used to joke "get that elephant to an alanon meeting!" Poor Horton -- such a projection screen for everyone's issues.

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  82. Alright, gonna call it a night here. I have a sermon that ties in the Amos, Luke & Colossians readings through the lens of "Nuestras Raices," an agriculture-based community renewal organization in Holyoke, Massachusetts. True story of a group of despised immigrants who were inspired to embody the promise of the Kingdom, speak truth to power, and take action for positive change in their community.

    It makes sense to me right now, in the post-midnight bleary buzz, but I'm off to catch about five hours' sleep before a morning re-reading (and probably re-working!)

    Blessings to all other night-writers and all other preacherfolk in the morn!

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  83. KJ - I *love* that story! I even remember when it happened. Now, I have a children's time ... if I just remember that in the morning.

    The sermon is now completed. Time to copy it to the jumpdrive so I can then print it from the desktop since the house network is flakey again.

    I'm not complaining very loudly about that because the internet has been out or kinda out and the landline has been on, kinda on, and off since Wednesday. So, at least I have the internet for the party tonight.

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  84. Everything is now printed. So I'm done for the night.

    Blessings on your Sunday

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  85. I am done and calling it a night. Never managed to tie in Amos, but they can just listen to the reading by my liturgist, she is one of the best. She always does well with reading, with annucitaing and with her delivery.
    So, perhaps some of hte sermon will be in EA's reading.
    Amos, will have to wait antoher day for a sermon on the plumbline

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  86. Good night and prayers for all

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  87. good morning! I just wanted to remind everyone that the Holy Spirit has our backs!

    Preach it!

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