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Showing posts from December, 2014

Prayer in the Aftermath of Pakistan School Shooting

God of all people, you made all things, you know all things, you are present in all times and places.  We grieve with your Spirit over the deaths of children and innocent adults in Pakistan.  We mourn the loss of life due to religious violence throughout the world.  We long for a day of justice, of peace, of true rest. 

The prophet Amos warns us to be careful when calling for the day of the Lord, for it will not be what we expect. We are careful with our words. We are cautious with our prayers. 

We wholeheartedly ask for comfort for the families of the slain.  We pray for those who will move the bodies of the slaughtered innocent.  We ask for Your intervention on those who see this action and who have contemplated acting similarly in the past or in the future. 

We commend to you the souls of the departed for they are children of your creation and chicks to be gathered under your wings. 

Amen.

The Beginning of the Good News

Mark 1:1-8 Where’s Mark’s joke? Or poem? Or news story? The author of this gospel doesn’t ease the reader into the text. BOOM, it starts. “The beginning of the good news of Jesus Christ…” We don’t get an angel, shepherds, a dream, or even a longer description of the prophet, John the Baptizer. Instead, we are plucked right into the story.
We know that Mark is the earliest written gospel that we have. We are talking about a story that existed in a similar written form to what we have in our hands, in our homes, in every hotel room, in our own language- a story marked just under two thousand years ago. Why doesn’t this gospel have the birth narrative or any of the larger details from Matthew or Luke? Why isn’t there a longer, more poetic entry like in John?
Interestingly, Mark’s gospel originally ended very abruptly as well. What we consider the last chapter of the story had only 8 verses. It reads: When the sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought…

Advent Confession

There is no one who calls on your [God's] name or attempts to take hold of you, for you have hidden your face from us and have delivered us into the hand of our iniquity. (Isaiah 64:7)
Holy God, in times gone by you have created, planted, and nurtured.  From the beginning of time, You are a restorer- merciful and gracious. Yet your people have turned from you. I have turned from you.
I have sought the comfort of my own knowledge,  The security of my own skill, The surety of what I can prove.
I have made the tangible my god  And imprinted with my vanity. 
And You, Dance Partner of my soul, have allowed me to consume the fruits of the labor.
They do not satisfy.
I have sinned against you and with the same mouth I speak Advent hope.
Forgive me, O my Maker.
Recast me, Spirit of wholeness. 
Redeem my life and restore my worth for you kingdom. 
Hear my Advent prayer.
Amen.