Visit our new site at

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Tuesday Lectionary Leanings~Peace I leave with you edition

Living God,
long ago, faithful women
proclaimed the good news
of Jesus' resurrection,
and the world was changed forever.
Teach us to keep faith with them,
that our witness may be as bold,
our love as deep,
and our faith as true. Amen.

 By the time we actually preach this week's sermon it will be May, and hopefully spring, but liturgically we are still in the midst of Easter, which means our lectionary readings continue to be drawn from Acts, Revelation and John.  This week in Acts we find an account of Paul and his traveling companions in the act of discerning what Paul's vision means; They set out for Philippi, a Roman colony, where they encounter the faithful Lydia. journeying, ending up in the house of Lydia.

Our reading from the Revelation of John presents us with a vivid picture of the New Jerusalem. I cannot hear this reading without also hearing, "Shall we gather at the river?" My favorite rendition by the Miserable Offenders is now available on iTunes, but this version by Anonymous 4 is hauntingly beautiful as well.

The lectionary provides us with a choice of gospel readings this week. Our first option continues Jesus' farewell discourse to his disciples. Jesus reassures his faithful followers that that he will send an Advocate, the Holy Spirit, to empower them, and he promises them peace even as he leaves them behind. The alternative gospel reading, also from John finds Jesus outside the Sheep Gate going in to Jerusalem where he heals a lame man who lies by the gate, telling him to "Stand up, take your mat and walk."
Where is the Spirit leading you this week?Will you explore Lydia and the ministry of women in the early church? Are you drawn by the images of paradise in the form of the New Jerusalem? Perhaps you are seeking the peace Jesus promises. Share your ponderings, your inspiration, your questions with us.


  1. I am committed to preaching without notes on Sunday and since it does not come easily to me, declaring it here helps me! I need to get started in my ruminations. I've only posted once or twice here, but take the invitation seriously to participate. Thank you to you all.

    I am drawn to the alternative Gospel about Jesus healing the person, and in particular to the last few words of the pericope: "Now that day was a sabbath." In other words, Jesus "broke the rules" to do his work in the world.

    My congregation needs to hear about permission: permission from the church, from God, from me, to bring their questions to the community of faith. In particular, they need permission to start encountering Scripture as the highly intelligent, faithful people that they are, and not be bound by our old clerical rules which placed them in another role.

    So that is where I am starting. Now I need to figure out my metaphor...which will be today and tomorrow's work!

  2. I have communion this week and am using the Road to Emmaus story as I have not preached it for a long time. I am thinking that for Children's Time I am going to talk about family meals and why it is important to have times when we eat together.

    Sermon wise I am thinking of pushing the Breaking of the Bread beyond the communion image in the story and asking when else we see Christ in the act of breaking bread together....

  3. Preaching Lydia this week. That's all I've got so far. But I get points for the bulletin being finished, right?

    Stacey, why are you committed to going without notes? Blessings in that.

  4. Marci, committed to that because I have learned that it is my best preaching style in this congregation. Clear, energetic, received well, and I have the greatest contact with the congregation that way. And, it is harder to do, for me at least, so takes a different kind of preparation.

    And yes, major points for bulletin being done!

  5. Talking about Paul's engagement with Lydia and all sorts of interesting and unlikely people as a missionary. Since we are in discernment about what kind of church we want to be, this ties well with the notion that we are likely to be led to unlikely places and people as we do God's work.


You don't want to comment here; instead, come visit our new blog, We'll see you there!

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.