Sunday’s Ponderings: Promise and Hope

It has been a long day. Sunday’s usually are, but today came with two worship services, a “pizza with pastors” and a funeral. So it would be an understatement to say I am tired. I am tired and blessed.

Today was in church terms Consecration or Stewardship Sunday. Many congregations spend a few weeks preparing their congregations to offer pledges to budget for the coming year of ministry. Churches do this because it’s practical. Money is needed to pay the bills.

Today was that day at the church I serve West Heights United Methodist Church. This would not normally be a problem, but I am not one of those preachers that can ignore what is happening in my community, state, nation or world. When the news hit about Paris and Beirut, I knew my sermon would have to change.

The interesting thing is that the prayers and liturgy didn’t change. The words of the music and scripture and prayers fit today, even though they had been written and chosen over two weeks ago.

Right before my sermon, the plan had been for our Worship team to sing a song with a running powerpoint with all the pictures of the ministry and mission we had been engaged in for 2015. The song was from Broadway revival of Godspell. the song was Beautiful City using the updated lyrics as heard in this youtube video.

The lyrics were perfect to speak of the call to be in ministry not just in 2015, but in 2016 and 2017 and the years to come. The terrorists that continue to try and break people’s spirits, to force people to live in fear will not succeed as long as there are people who are willing to stand up and live and build a reign of justice and peace.

Out of the ruins and rubble
Out of the smoke
Out of our night of struggle
Can we see a ray of hope?
One pale thin ray reaching for the day

We can build a beautiful city
Yes, we can; Yes, we can
We can build a beautiful city
Not a city of angels
But we can build a city of man



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