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Saturday, May 25, 2013

11th Hour Preacher Party: TMI Edition

I have just returned from the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland where I was serving as chaplain to the youth delegates (18-25 year olds). Although days were long and intense, there was much to be encouraged about in the work of God's people engaged in God's mission in Scotland and throughout the world. And reflecting with the young people each day gave me a whole new perspective on the church. Sometimes we get so bogged down in the mundane that we forget to look up and see the stars. I am grateful for all that I learned and shared with these inspiring young people this week.
In our gospel, Jesus tells us "I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now". I think in text-speak we would call that TMI - too much information. Jesus does not overload us but does give us the Spirit to help us work out the gospel for our day. Isn't that a great comfort - we're not alone in trying to discern what is right for the church in today's world and, although Jesus didn't issue decrees on absolutely everything, the Spirit helps us work out the rest. Oh that we would listen more diligently for the Spirit's voice!
The moderator of the GA based her daily reflections on hope - that same hope that we read of in Romans 5 - hope that does not disappoint us.
So, though weary from a physically and emotionally exhausting week, I am looking forward to preaching that hope tomorrow. How about you?
Join the party and share what you have and ask for what you need and let's do this thing together!

114 comments:

  1. One of the quotes of the week was "hope is hearing the music of tomorrow, faith is dancing it today" can't remember who originally said that - does anyone know so that I can attribute properly?

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    1. Liz, a quick Google suggests "Captain" Bob Smith. http://getmotivation.com/captbobsmith.htm

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  2. love the quote Liz, but don't know where it is from.

    a quote I am including just because I love it, is from a newspaper article today : Judgment is commonplace: grace is amazing. [http://www.smh.com.au/comment/rudd-rethink-keeps-the-faith-20130524-2k6e8.html#ixzz2UGez9300]

    I am using an image from the face book group, with the comment about not saying anything heretical, because I'm not preaching on Trinity.
    finished writing, though not many words. Another Minister has put together 16 images on teh theme : the church is about ....'
    I am going through the first half of them tomorrow, and asking people which ones they most connect with, which ones might be important for the community. this builds on last week, of asking what story do we have to tell, what can't our lives keep silent about.
    finishing with asking what of God's world do we delight in and what might God delight in of our lives.

    and a Baptism tomorrow, so lots of visitors, may even be a third of the congregation, which is one reason for not preaching on Trinity this year - I have in the past :)

    going with a lovely song after the semron, that I put images to a few weeks ago. you can buy the mp3 of the web.
    Whole and Holy

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    1. All of this sounds wonderful! Love the idea of putting together images around "the church is about," and asking the people the questions you're asking.

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  3. I woke up early and anxious. I am preaching Romans, and have worked hard on it this week but don't feel clear about what I'm doing, sermon-wise. I have always loved this gorgeous text and want to do it justice. It is so dense, and there are so many possibilities, I just need to land on one and proceed!

    Though I've been up for awhile, I'm just now making it to the computer to start writing. Well, I still need to do some more thinking, first, I guess. But I'm at my desk and ready to do it.

    Looking forward to partying with y'all!

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    1. In similar shape with John (although it's less gorgeous). I've been pondering it for two weeks, but my initial approach seems a little light-hearted in the face of tornado/cleaver attacks/various other more local disasters.
      I'm at the desk, too, though. So maybe there's hope. :-)

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  4. Confirmation at our place tomorrow. Each candidate had to write a brief biography and include something about Jesus that inspires them to be a disciple and why they are getting confirmed. We have asked five adults in the congregation to respond by sharing something about Jesus that inspires them to follow him, and a concrete way in which their faith affects their daily life. That means no need for a substantial sermon which has been great after a week that included three days out of town.

    Thinking of you all as you prepare to preach the Mystery of the Trinity. It always seems to me a real challenge to preach it in a way that proclaims Good News rather than just trying to explain doctrine!

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    1. Jemma, what a marvellous idea! And one I may adapt at some point in the future...

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    2. We've been working for a while to build people's capacity to talk about their faith. We're mostly liberal liturgical Protestants, so it's a little out of our congregation's comfort zone, but every time we invite a panel to reflect on something, or to share experiences, we get great feedback so we're hoping it goes well tomorrow.

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    3. Love the idea "something about Jesus that inspires them to be his disciple". A non threatening invitation to talking about ones faith. I'd love to hear more about it.

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    4. Great idea, maybe someday I'll get somebody to commit to baptism/membership and get to use it!

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  5. sounds wonderful. I love the idea of having people speak about their faith.

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  6. Saturday - 1.30pm, and I am finally settling down to collect my thoughts. I started back onTuesday, but spent so much time either in Edinburgh, or watching Edinburgh on the video stream, I have nothing other than a vague idea about hope, things we think of in threes, and the beauty of psalm 8... oh, yes, and the computer keep freezing...
    Ah well - it's all about the Spirit's working anyway!!

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  7. 10.30 pm, and I am hoping to be in bed very soon.
    maybe this will be the week to bite the bullet and use the iPad for leading worship, that measn I don't need to format the service to print out. which measn bed is sooo much closer.

    blessings as you prepare,

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  8. Thank you, Holy Spirit for this group, for this collection of women from around the world proclaiming God's Word.

    I'm sitting down at 9 am Sat to write tomorrow's sermon. Family & friends will arrive in about 3 hours for our youngest's high school graduation. Many, I hope, will be at worship tomorrow morning...so my ugly ego has been active all week. Now, I pray that my words, the worship actions will witness to God's grace...

    We have a ministry of prayer quilts, and included in worship tomorrow we will bless the graduates, gift them w/a prayer quilt, and invite the congregation to come forward and tie blessings/prayers into the quilt being held by the graduate. First year doing this, I hope the ritual is as moving for all as I imagine. I have a congregational leader reading the parts so I can participate as a mother.

    The sermon stirring the past few days begins w/the image that has haunted me, of the couple in Bangladesh comforting each other in a hug, in death...and most lately the story of two 9 year olds, best friends in Oklahoma, who held hands as they died in the tornado. We are relationships...created in God's image, relationships of caring and love, reflections of the Holy Trinity. It is when we are in relationship, with each other, with the world, that we are closest to as God intends us to be...

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    1. What a lovely image of Trinity - when we are in relationship.

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  9. Oops! Completely forgot that its Trinity Sunday. Yay for the party reminding me!

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  10. At my house this morning, re: my sermon for tomorrow.
    kzj: "Are you talking about the Trinity?"
    me: "Well, I guess I have to, but I fear falling into Modalism."
    kzj: "We almost can't help it as soon as we start talking about the Trinity."
    Pause.
    me: "What *is* Modalism?"
    Thank goodness my wife went to Princeton. kzj explains it all.

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  11. Well I did my sermon and liturgy prep 2 days ago as I have, the last 2 days, been on the second leg of my course in becoming a spiritual directory. I'm glad it is all done as I am totally exhausted!

    Am going for Trinity as I haven't preached it in this parish (I was overseas last year). We have just been given a data projector for our church and I am going to put on a slide show of images of Trinity before the service begins. Then I am going to use Rublev's icon and also the idea of a mutual relationship in the dance. Keeping it as simple as possible as my congregation is not sophisticated and I hope it goes off ok.

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    1. Pat, I was hoping to read about your spiritual direction program, but I don't know which blog is yours! Anyway, I wanted to share my experience of yesterday with you:http://metanoia-mrc.blogspot.com/2013/05/ten-years-of-ignatius.html Congrats on finishing your program!

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  12. *squeals excitedly, points to picture above*
    THAT'S MY SCHOOL!!!! :D

    *ahem*

    So all-age chat on two of my favourite things: God and chocolate. Thanks to the Revgals facebookers for thoughts. Going for the 'God is like a Mars Bar' option. I've just been shopping and am surrounded by just over 100 mini Mars Bars - which will be given out with each order of service tomorrow. Riffing on the three parts of the Mars Bar - choc/ nougat/ caramel. Might divide the congregation into three sections and get each section to try and only eat one of the components... which, while you might just be able to do it with the chocolate by licking it off, is trickier with the other bits.
    Even so, without the caramel it's a Milky Way,
    without the nougat it's just a Rolo,
    without the choc it's a sticky mess
    ...each needs the other to make a Mars Bar.
    Meet the heresy of partialism, coming soon to kirk by the sea.
    So, very dubious theology will be done tomorrow, nevertheless we shall 'taste and see that the Lord is good' lol!

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    1. similar to the AquaFresh toothpaste exercise! you squeeze out the three-color toothpaste and get kids to try to separate them. it can't be done. if it could, each color on its own would still be toothpaste, but we wouldn't understand the fullness of the toothpaste experience in just the one stripe.

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    2. I love it. Any excuse to eat chocolate! I must remember it for next year.

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    3. In case any U.S. Revgals are puzzled by the above description, a Mars Bar in the U.K. is essentially the same as a U.S. "Milky Way" (only with much better chocolate). To confuse the matter further, a U.K. Milky Way is the same as a U.S. "Three Muskateers" bar.

      As you were.

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    4. Eating chocolate is far superior to a good, wife, mother, woman analogy!

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    5. Nikki - on my way to the shop right now! Cheers mate. xxx

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    6. lol! no worries Liz. And while I was in the sweet aisle picking up packs of mini Mars Bars my supervisor wandered along doing her groceried, looked in my trolley and grinned hehehe

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  13. Somehow, I've got to pull off a sermon. I am physically exhausted and feel rather yucky. Thankfully I am at least home alone today - DH and Littleman are off on a scouting adventure. Perhaps am early morning nap will bring me some inspiration and strength, I'll check back in, after a while...hopefully with renewed energy,

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    1. PKLM - Hope the nap did the trick. There is certainly plenty of inspiration at the party today. Yay for RevGals.

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  14. working on both a funeral meditation (for a funeral of someone I've never met, but whose family is both lovely and odd--they moved all the pieces of the service around, after asking me to put together the service. why ask a professional anyway?) and a Trinity sermon. Debating about whether to stick close to Proverbs (the text that'll be read and the inspiration for some of the liturgy), to tie into the idea of the hymn sing and preface the summer series on the faith we sing (we're having a hymn sing, obv, and some of the liturgy is about that...), or to go all out on a Trinity experience, including asking people to open up that book in the pew rack and look for the Nicene Creed.

    I was hoping that by the time I woke up today, I'd have a clearer idea of the choice, but....alas.

    and, unusually, I have no idea what I'm going to eat today, so I can't even tempt you all with the anticipation of lunch. LOL.

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    1. Whatever you decided to eat, I hope it's more impressive than my chewy granola bar.

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  15. My sermon is done. Preaching Proverbs with a side of John.
    Focusing more on community and the delight God has in community.
    Using the idea of Ubuntu. ‘A person is a person through other persons.’ which is Zulu maxim.

    Thankful for this community in which I take delight!

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    1. I was once asked to speak about Ubuntu at the funeral service of a beautiful South African lady - it was a lovely notion for a funeral, our connectedness.

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  16. Starting off the day pretty irritated. I got a call two days ago from one of my organists. This weekend the perfect storm of worship music is happening - both organists and the sub are out of town. The organist scheduled for the weekend wanted to know if I knew of anyone who could play! ME? I haven't even been here two years! If she (lived here all her life) doesn't know, I sure don't!

    So I have no music for tomorrow. Normally, I'd just change the hymns and play guitar, but I'm still battling an annoying cough and the congregation can't sing to guitar without a strong leader. I've searched out some instrumental recording of 3 of the 4 hymns, so maybe that will work. I'm just more than a little miffed that this becomes my problem! I'm tempted to just drop all the hymns and sing a verse of a couple of well known stuff a capella.

    I still have no idea where I'm going with my sermon. The Romans passage speaks to me, but nothing has jelled yet. I do have a sermon from 3 years ago, but I'm not really thrilled with it. At least I have a fall back.

    I'm doing a nursing home service tomorrow afternoon, and then the invocation and address at the community Memorial Day service on Monday. I wish I was further along on all three.

    On a happier note - I'm going to pick out my garden plants. Maybe I'll even have time to play in the dirt a bit today! Communing with God through nature might just get the sermon juiced flowing!

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    1. I would totally go for the a capella experience, personally. How annoying that this wasn't all dealt with earlier, and that it becomes an issue for you on Saturday. UGH.

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    2. I'm using music as a way that the Holy Spirit directly speaks to us - I wonder if the loss of music could be quantified as a "lessening" of the Trinity in your service tomorrow?

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  17. If it's of any help, you can find an old sermon of mine on the Trinty here

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    1. Tremendously helpful, Nik! Muckle thanks!

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  18. Oh - I almost forgot. One of my classmates posted this video on his fb page. It's a great meditation on hope and faith: Hope by Joanna Hoffman.

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  19. Happy to be with you today! Glad to see y'all!
    Finishing up with a combo of the Romans and John text. Let's see if I can make sense this year...

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    1. Sally-Lodge, we're glad you're here too! Hope you found some sense. If not, mystery will do, right?

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  20. Wow, so much going on--graduations, confirmations, gardens...

    Like many of you, I had a very full week last week and the day I had planned for sermon writing filled up as well. So, I am trying to write it today, fitting in other appointments/tasks as well. Cat has been to the vet and back, I am trying to get an outline done before heading off to the geek shop to get my iPad replaced (cracked the screen, I think from using one of those covers with a keyboard) and ink cartridge for my printer, then back home to write and do laundry.

    I am going to focus on the Proverbs passage, which I love, and glance at John--but that seems so amorphous to me (like a lot of John); we are using a lot of Celtic imagery in the liturgy today and so I will probably pull in some of that as well.

    Another image for the trinity--an apple (skin that holds it together = God the creator, flesh = Jesus, core with seeds that creates more apples = Spirit) and then's the illustration from I don't remember where, with three drops of water becoming one drop.

    Doubt I will use either, but there you are!

    Off to run errands!

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  21. I've back from a morning of gardening as several of us gathered to help one of our 90yo couples spruce up their place. Now some errands and then, eventually, to my almost-finished sermon.

    I'm doing a blend of Trinity-Pentecost, partly because I wasn't here last week and partly because I want to use the mystery of God in relationship with Godself + the interruption of the Spirit to offer some reassurance that some of the conflict we are experiencing is, indeed, God laboring among us.

    It won't work, as the conflict emerges from the tension between the both-and pastor and some either-or parishoners, but it's what I have to offer.

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    1. So as a both-and pastor, maybe instead of thinking "it won't work," it could be *both* "it won't work" *and* "it will!" ;)

      I think what you're thinking sounds lovely.

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    2. You're right!

      I suppose it will work however the HS wants it to.

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  22. Good morning! I have just wrapped up my sermon for tomorrow - I found some inspiration from Alyce McKenzie's "Edgy Exegesis" at patheos.com. While it is in my nature to "finish" and then tinker off and on to infinity and beyond, I am stopping now! It is a beautiful day here, and I want to go for a long walk in the sunshine! Was going to work in the yard, but the lawn mower is broken, the weed whacker needs a repair, and the borrowed power washer is not as powerful as I had hoped. So....

    And, may I just throw in that after tomorrow, I only have one more sermon to preach before VACATION! TBTG!

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    1. ^ Alyce McKenzie was my homiletics professor!! I love her. She created an outline for us to use to craft a sermon that has never failed me on even the worst of weeks. I do not use it all the time, but it is a life-saver when I am stuck.

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    2. Amy - what is your "never failed me" outline for a sermon? I'm always looking for new resources! :)

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    3. I have it on my computer at work - it is the process we had to use to write a sermon for her class - the outline for the paper that got submitted with the sermon. It has never failed to knock something loose for me when I am having a tough prep.

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    4. If it is something emailable...purplespeaking123(AT)gmail(DOT)com.

      Also wondering if it would help a lay leader in preparing a sermon. We have a situation in my presbytery where the person is great...except for the preaching. I've heard a sermon...and help is needed. I've suggested Paul Wilson's "Four Page Sermon".

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    5. I would love to see that outline too!

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  23. I have my sermon written, now I'm letting it marinate as I finish some laundry. I'm throwing out a theory I've been playing with for a while now: If God is Love, and Jesus is Word, could we also say that Holy Spirit is Music? Not as an end-all, be-all definition, but as one mode of being and communication?
    I am looking forward to the discussion I hope this will create. It started in my head in 2008 when I read a commencement address for music students. The author spoke about the mystery of music - how it touches something deep within us - and heals wounds we didn't even know were there; how it releases emotions we didn't realize were pent up. Over the years, I have seen this over and over. Honestly, I have begun to wonder if in many of the worship services the music is more life-giving than the sermon.

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    1. YES, I have wondered this too. Especially the music we participate in - our full body can assent to worship. I find that there are things I have trouble believing if I say them, but if I sing them they feel very true!

      Good music can very much be the breath of the Holy Spirit. OTOH, when music goes poorly - ugh!!

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  24. 9:41am here, and I am exhausted. I had great plans to work on my sermon both Monday and Wednesday, and ended up in meetings and pastoral care visits. My toddler got the stomach bug on Thursday evening and so my planned Friday writing for a few hours day didn't happen. I got a few articles read, hopefully they will inspire soon. Although, I feel like I haven't slept in 3 days (oh wait...).

    Preaching on Romans. I thought I knew where I was going, then was talking with my husband (also clergy) and his thoughts threw me for a loop - so now I'm trying to come back to my center and figure out where the Spirit is leading me to speak.

    My last sermon (a few weeks ago) I was having trouble figuring out how I wanted to finish it. So, I wrote all of it that I wanted to say and then just let the Spirit lead me to finish it. Worked out well, but I'm not sure I'm comfortable doing that every sermon (sometimes I start to feel like I'm just rambling and saying the same thing over and over again). BUT, I know I CAN do it and maybe I'll find that I enjoy it and my sermons more when I do that.

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    1. Deb! This is me, too! Preaching Romans and making the mistake of talking about it with my clergy husband. There are SO many ways to focus on this dense text, every thing I read and every conversation I have makes me second guess my own thinking. Partly because my own thinking isn't entirely clear yet! Gotta get clear soon, though!

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  25. Good morning!
    First Sunday as in the new place. People could not be nicer or more welcoming. Even the first session meeting ( local governing body) went really well. We talked about money , trust ,authority , history and permission giving and worked through solutions to pressing issues that everyone could affirm. Great first meeting!

    Preaching Romans and John with a title of Spirit of Hope and Truth. Not clear past that or how trinity may or many not come in.

    Memorial day is a huge deal in this part of the world. The local cemetery is a few blocks from our rental house. Almost ever grave is freshly decorated. Hope that does not disappoint will be central. These folks have come through some really rough times. I see so many signs of Spirit filled hope that many are not yet able to see.

    My best guy left for a long planned business trip before dawn on monday morning. He has not even spent a night in our new place. I asked him what he wanted for a first meal. Pot roast with all the trimmings. I can do that! Off to shop and cook and finish writing before he comes home around 6

    Blessings All!

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    1. So glad you are having a great first week!

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    2. Aww, good to hear about your new place - and hope you have a brill reunion, with all the trimmings! x

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  26. Playing with the idea of "access" in Romans 5:2 and I find myself going back to the RGBP Facebook conversation we had earlier this week about wifi access. Someone mentioned how that post got a lot of traction - seems to have hit a chord with a lot of people. The whole idea of access/inclusion versus safety/security.

    Access is such a deep issue, isn't it? No matter what we're talking about.

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    1. It really is. It reminds me why the idea of planting a church was so appealing (fresh start!) but also tricky, because the norms you establish at the beginning stay with you, even when you don't know you have established any in the first place.

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    2. So right now, in addition to touching on issues of technological accessibility and accessibility as relates to disability, I'm naming all these big things that we are having national conversations about, around issues of access:
      - education
      - health care
      - marriage and its benefits
      - citizenship
      - economic and political power

      Pretty big and basic stuff. But what I'm stuck on right now is how Paul is addressing the really big and basic issue - access to God, right relationship to God - but this doesn't seem to be as much of a live need/desire for people now, at least not for my people. Not sure how to name this need (at least not in this particular sermon) in a way that resonates.

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  27. I'm at the church now, waiting for a couple coming in for a first premarital counseling session and working on the sermon a bit more. It's way too big and long at the moment; things will have to come out, but I'm leaving them in for now. I found myself explaining how we can't explain the Trinity, but that's okay, because the disciples didn't understand anything Jesus was saying, and they got to hear it in person. (Let's just say I've preached that as an assurance in the past, but I don't find it completely satisfying.) The opening illustration is the skunks I had in my yard this time last year, which stirs up all sorts of feelings about being dislocated from my familiar understandings and location. We'll see how it all looks together later.

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  28. We may have the shortest worship ever tomorrow. For the last month, they have been reminded that tomorrow, they are invited to bring a photo, object, poem, 'a something', which has blessed them and reminded them of the presence of God.

    I have 300 words...as an introduction...and the rest I am trusting to the Spirit.

    As with Celeste, Memorial Day is very important here and the park right next door to the church is where they display all the flags on this weekend. The cookie table will have a flag thing that plays "God Bless America"

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  29. Hi all, always a learning experience to drop in here, BEFORE I'm finished for a change. I'm still doing multi-voiced worship so the question is always, what questions to ask and how to engage the congregation in the message.
    I want to include the Pope's all-inclusive statement this week, so may use this from YouTube
    but am more inspired from an old Tom Long piece in Interpretation from July 2004 about what Paul was trying to do in all of Romans.. "I am not ashamed" not being a personal thing, but a corporate statement. GOOD STUFF if you can find it.

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  30. I've just returned from playing on the beach with the dog. Still really tired from my week but refreshed too. Might have a nap before dinner - just because I can! And then I really have to get the jumble of thoughts out of my head onto the ipad.

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  31. I come bearing freshly made beet/apple/celery juice. Our household just gained a juicer last week and I've been going crazy with it ever since. Super yummy.

    I also come bearing some Trinity images brought to you by my confirmation class. This past class (confirmed earlier this month) was obsessed with the Trinity and the dual nature of Christ.

    One says: "the Trinity is like a triplet note. Each has equal value, is distinct yet comes together to make one note, a note that's even more amazing than what you'd get if it was just one plain boring note."

    Another says: "the Trinity is like three items made of duct tape - a bag for, a rose, a bracelet. They may look different and serve different purposes but they all are from one roll of duct tape."

    Another, focusing on the Trinity during the crucifixion: "The Trinity is like the Iron Cross (the ring gymnastics move). Jesus is man making the cross with the HS and the Creator there, supporting, holding up. It takes all three persons of the Trinity for the cross to really be the cross."

    These are some lovely insights I'm pondering as I avoid writing my sermon!

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    1. Wow! What wonderfully creative and insightful confirmands

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    2. that reminds me of a class that insisted that the Trinity is like a spork--it's a spoon, it's a fork, and the handle can be a knife. Though they didn't tell me which person what which aspect...lol. Your class is much more creative and thoughtful. :-)

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    3. Amy - may I quote your students in my sermon. Those are lovely!

      Teri - can I use your metaphor too?

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    4. Ramona - yes, of course! They've given me permission and knowing these kids, I'm confident they'll be more than happy to have their wisdom shared even further! :)

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    5. go for it. :-) Sometimes I refer to it as a "sporfe" LOL.

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  32. Oh, mercy. I feel like I've maybe read too much theology this week. Not really, but I am having a hard time translating everything I've been thinking back into language that not only makes sense but actually has some sort of resonance with people. Ugh!!

    It's so beautiful here today, and the husband and kids have gone to the park to play ball. Waaah! I wanna be there!

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  33. Left over Chinese Takeaway food here. Was amazing - should be even better tonight. Sermon, alas, is still in my head. Prawn Cracker anyone?

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  34. Ok, I've finished and posted with some visuals. i have to decide exactly how and what visuals will be used tomorrow. I have a keynote prayer on Ps 8 with lovely images. Not planning on using the 'Eve of Destruction' video that I put on the blog, but will use the 1 minute one of news about the Pope. it's too perfect for my message. It's hard to post the sharing parts but we'll see how they go.
    Now to walk the dogs and get a bit of exercise while Hubby goes off to the Nats game. I'll check back.

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  35. Romans 5, on Trinity Sunday 2013.Get ready, world, for my Worst. Sermon. Yet.

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    1. Is it any consolation that my John 16 sermon for Trinity Sunday incorporates the skunks in my yard last spring? It's an automatic stinker.

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  36. Martha, that made me laugh. I've been tearing my hair out over this one! Thank you for always being able to lighten the moment! :-)

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  37. Still wrestling with the music situation. I've got a CD burned, next off to test it on the player in the sanctuary. Perhaps this is a blessing in disguise - I get to introduce part of a new setting of liturgy, because the tune is familiar, and I happen to have it on CD.
    Hopefully, the music will work tomorrow.

    Decided to totally go with the 3-year old sermon on the Trinity. Just need to edit and go over the order of worship. And do the nursing home order of worship.

    I may or may not get to the Memorial day address - I have beeeeaaauutiful plants that want to be planted! And this is taking much longer than the time allotted for it.1

    My wonderful spouse is smoking a pork butt - and activity which has given us all sorts of laughs today as we talk about the process! So, later there'll be plenty of pulled smoked pork to share!

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    1. Ramona - would love some of that pulled pork. The later I work, the hungrier I get! (1:30am here)

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  38. I have a sermon here...at least, kind of. it has only a passing relationship to the scripture reading, so there's that. it kind of hurts my soul to do that, but it's just about impossible to talk about the trinity from one text, so I'm consoling myself with that.

    now to figure out what to do for dinner....then to write a funeral homily...

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    1. Hehehe. Patrick. That's modalism, Paaatrick.

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  39. Teri - what a joyful sermon - and I loved the video. Thanks for sharing.

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  40. I have a sermon. Hoping, overnight, it will edit itself. But, since its already Sunday here, I'm going to let it rest while I get some rest. I'll leave you to get the lights and I'll put the coffe on in the morning for any who are also having to tweak.
    Thanks as always for your inspiring company.

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  41. Dangit! Hate it when blogger eats my comment!!

    I ended up going to the park after all, meeting up with hubs and the boys, along with two of their schoolfriends and their parents, and we all played baseball. It was great fun, and a gorgeous afternoon, and I'm so glad I pried myself away from my desk to do it. When I got back, the rest of the sermon practically wrote itself! (well, part of it got composed while I played 2nd base)

    My problem now is that I started the sermon with an image I had intended to come back to later in the sermon, but I never made it back. I'm trying to figure out now if I should just lop that whole first bit off. I like it, and I think there are some points to be drawn out from it, but I'm wondering if people will see the points on their own, or if I need to spell them out more.

    Still, it feels good to have a draft. Now I have to figure out what's for dinner!

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    1. Earth chick, we too have enjoyed a pretty day, walking on the beach. Didn't even worry that the sermon wasn't done but came back refreshed and ready to work. TBTG

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  42. Remarkably, I am finished! Which is good, because our 8-year-old is playing under the lights at 7:45 p.m. What is this Senior Pony of which they speak? I am mystified.
    I am also happily mystified by the Trinity, and I write about it here: You Can't Handle It Now! It includes the story of the skunks in my yard last year. Really.

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    1. Hehe. Steep learning curve in these ball games.

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  43. For possibly the first time ever I got bored in the middle of making dinner and kind of decided to just have the part that was already made. Really hope that doesn't mean I'm going to be starving later.

    now...a funeral homily. John 14, many mansions, woman who was famous for her hospitality....surely that 7 minutes will write itself, right?

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  44. Preaching Romans 5 and reading about hope makes me want to use an illustration from Star Wars. Would it be too much of a stretch to compare the trinity to Father, son &the Force? Back to the drawing board.

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    1. Megan - Father, Son and Holy Force sounds good to me. :)

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  45. And, funeral homily, check. I always have a hard time writing any funeral homily that doesn't start with the Ecclesiastes 3 text. This time I decided that even though it won't be read, I'll just mention it anyway. Because what's better at an elderly person's funeral than using that to get to a quote from Great Is Thy Faithfulness? Though we're not singing that either. LOL. ah, well, at least it all flows and there is some passing reference to each of the 4 (FOUR) scripture readings...

    now to figure out what to do until bedtime. oh, right...a children's time. crap.

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    1. Teri, there have been a few good Trinity Children's time suggestions here today. (I'm going with the Mars Bar one-any candy with three components would work, right?)

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  46. I too am going with the candy - because if I am going to commit heresy just as soon do it with chocolate

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  47. I did far too well at procrastinating tonight...I looked up from minted.com and with a shock, realized it was 9:30 and I hadn't had dinner yet. (Nor had I started the sermon I finally decided to write--took me all week to decide which direction to go.)

    So I've ditched the original dinner plans and tossed something frozen into the microwave, and then will be (ahem) buckling down to write this sermon.

    And hadn't even thought about a kids' sermon...yikes.

    My sermon writing mojo has left the building after a humongous funeral yesterday...but I better find it soon!

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  48. Extremely grateful tonight for a preacher husband who after spending a day hiking with my littleman and his Cub Scout group feels more inspired than I to preach for me tomorrow. I didn't even ask - I just asked if he had any thoughts that might help me....I shared what little I had thought of and he was like "Can I preach?" I'm like "heck yeah!" I've really not felt well for a couple of days - everything I eat makes me feel sick and I've sat at my computer most of the day with no inspiration. Thanks be to God. So I'm joining the rest of you in prayer as you finish up and proclaim the good news tomorrow.

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    1. PKLM - so sorry your feeling yucky. But yay a for preacher husband who steps up without being asked. God is good. Hope you feel better soon. x

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  49. home from worship, the Baptism family were 10 minutes late for worship, but made it during the opening hymn. and the bay looked at me and smiled while I spoke to him about Jesus living and dying and rising and loving him before he was born.
    and the image of kittens as a way to avoid talking about the trinity went down well 
    not sure how the sermon went, but it’s done, now lunch and rest before turning into denominational leader for the region and leading the conclusion of a ministry for a youth worker in one of the congregation nearby. Then a day off! Hallelujah!!!

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  50. OK, I have like 350 words that I wrote earlier today, and now I'm wondering where I was going with what I had written. It's not so much that I can't start over but its already 9:15pm and I'm still tired. But, I took the afternoon to play in the backyard with my boys (husband, son, and dog). Here's hoping the spirit flows and I get SOMETHING done.

    I really feel like I have preached this text before, but I can't find a sermon anywhere...oh how I wish I had one. :)

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    1. Deb, seems like lots of us chose to play today and that is good. But hope the Spirit shows up with words to preach - maybe she is playing too and will be round later!

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  51. OK. Coffees on and there is some hot Scottish Breakfast tea. Also some berries and low fat yogurt for those who manage to eat Sunday mornings. It's Trinity - Father, Son and Holly Spirit all have our backs, right? Be blessed.

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  52. Just checking in before worship. Still not thrilled with my sermon, but I'll walk it proud anyway.

    But first, I have to move my desk - I discovered a new leak right over my files!

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