Today we went from the seed to the sapling as we explore the LifeCycle of Giving. The gospel text from the lectionary was Luke 18: 1-8. This story of Jesus focuses on a widow looking for justice and an unjust judge who doesn’t care about anyone or anything. Jesus, we are told, shares this story to encourage us to pray and to hold fast, to hang on and not lose our faith.
Saplings, trees and plants need a little adversity to make their roots go deep. If the weather is too easy, the roots stay shallow and a strong storm or wind can uproot them. In so many ways the same is true for people. It seems to me, though I dislike it a lot, that it is through difficulties that I grow in my faith.
Today’s service spends some time looking at injustice, at suffering and how God never leaves us when life gets hard. In the sermon I spend some time pondering how we, how I can be like the unjust judge distancing myself from suffering that isn’t personal and as a culture, we do the same. You can find the whole service or just the sermon here.
What a beautiful day we had together at First United Methodist Church. This Sunday we presented our third graders with bibles, commissioned a mission team and blessed our bibles at our Downtown Alive service. I love gifting bibles to third graders. Over the last few years the new ones are so colorful and inviting.
We have continued our sermon series, “Connect: Building Our Life Together.” We have used different colored building blocks focus on the various ways we are building our lives together: orange, the color of adventure for our work, the color brown representing stability and support and we focused on our relationships and today the color was blue for devotion and contemplation.
Our Hebrew text was from Jonah. I have been stewing for days because as I practice I kept substituting Noah for Jonah! So what did I do today? Exactly what I was afraid of, at least six times I said Noah instead of Jonah! Sigh. Stewing about it and practicing didn’t seem to change it, but nonetheless that is life.
Today’s worship service, or sermon alone can be found here.