Posts Tagged 'Lent'

First Sunday of Lent 2017 – Genesis 2:15

Monday, February 27, 2017

This is the last week I will be posting on this blog.  My blog is moving to Church Health’s website.  I hope you choose to follow me there.  I will continue to share my blog on Facebook and Twitter.

Lent begins this week with Ash Wednesday.  Our passages for this first Sunday of Lent offer the following four scriptures from the lectionary: Genesis 2:15-17, 3:1-7; Psalm 32; Romans 5:12-19 and Matthew 4:1-11.

Genesis 2:15The LORD God took man and put him in the Garden of Eden to till it and keep it.

The creation narratives of the first and second chapters of Genesis might provide ample opportunity for debate, but I love this vision of our role on Earth as its caretakers.  We are asked to be good stewards of God’s creation.

Creator God, thank you for this wonderful day.  Help us to understand our role in caring for your masterful creation.  Amen.

Palm Sunday 2016 – Luke 19:35-36

Friday, March 18, 2016

Luke 19:35-36Then they brought the colt to Jesus; and after throwing their cloaks on it, they set Jesus on it.  As he rode along, people kept spreading their cloaks on the road.

Military victors would ride into towns on horses, on mighty steeds.  By riding in on a colt Jesus was conveying his mission was one of peace.  Jesus came to Jerusalem in peace, but we know in hindsight that by the end of the week he will be killed through a violent death on a cross.

God of peace, forgiveness and mercy, help us to honor the variety of images of you that will be represented in the many faces we will meet today.  Amen.

Palm Sunday 2016 – Luke 19:33-34

Thursday, March 17, 2106

Luke 19:33-34As Jesus’ disciples were untying the colt, its owners asked them, “Why are you untying the colt?”  They said, “The Lord needs it.”

And they let the disciples have the colt.  We have had a rash of robberies in my Memphis neighborhood, something which has rarely happened in all the years I have lived here.  But now whenever a stranger or two are walking on our sidewalks or standing by a car, the neighborhood social media site lights up with warnings.

God of us all, help us to lead with trust in one another.  Help us to be better neighbors to all our brothers and sisters.  Amen.

Our Upcoming Move to Crosstown Concourse Memphis 2016 – Psalm 118:22-23

Wednesday, March 16, 2015

Psalm 118:22-23The stone that the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone.  This is the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.

Today is the day for our third State of the Center Address, and the last one before we move into our new home at Crosstown.  We will move from thirteen buildings spread over Midtown Memphis to three floors and 150,000 square feet in our new vertical village.  I know some are anxious, even scared.  Others are excited beyond belief.  Honestly, I am somewhere in between.  But when I read this passage, I immediately thought of the dilapidated eyesore that Sears Crosstown had become, and I smiled as I realized what God was making possible for us.

Wonderful God, architect of all creation, thank you for the many blessings you have bestowed on us individually and on the Church Health Center organizationally.  Amen.

Palm Sunday 2016 – Psalm 118:24

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Psalm 118:24This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.

My parents begin each day holding hands and repeating this verse together.  It is a simple but powerful verse that can set the tone for one’s entire day.

God of wonder, bless us and the services we offer in your name today.  Amen.

Palm Sunday 2016 – Psalm 118:1

Monday, March 14, 2016

We will celebrate Palm Sunday this week.  Jesus will enter Jerusalem to shouts of “Hosanna!”  But as you know, next week the shouts will turn into “Give us Barabbas!”  There are only two lectionary passages for Palm Sunday and they are: Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29, Luke 19:28-40.

Psalm 118:1O give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his steadfast love endures forever!

If you are like me, you have moments in your life where you just know God had to have played a role in the outcome.  In your quiet time today, take a personal inventory of all those moments across your life, and give thanks to God.

Steadfast, loving God, while it is sometimes hard for us to sense you, thank you for being an active presence in our lives.    Amen.

Fifth Sunday of Lent 2016 – Psalm 126:3-4

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Psalm 126:3-4The LORD has done great things for us, and we rejoiced.  Restore our fortunes, O LORD, like the watercourses in the Negeb.

The Negeb or Negev is a desert region of southern Israel.  With an average annual rainfall of about eight inches, this is a dry, desolate region of the world.  As I am typing this, there is a downpour going on outside my Memphis home, and the image of life-giving water flowing through a desert is moving.

Life-giving God, help us to fully appreciate the abundance you offer us in everything, even something as simple as a glass of water.  Amen.

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