June 10, 2012

For Sunday June 10, 2012
Year B, Second Sunday After Pentecost
Second Sunday after Pentecost :: Green :: 1 Samuel 8:4–11, (12–15), 16–20 (11:14–15) :: Psalm 138 :: 2 Corinthians 4:13–5:1 :: Mark 3:20–35
Editor’s Note:  We are in the midst of about 25 weeks of texts which are less connected by one theme than to each other week to week.  The lectionary follows somewhat sequential readings in the Hebrew Scriptures and the Psalms which supplement them.  The New Testament Readings are also sequential week to week, but do not necessarily fit a theme.  Given this, I will be attempting to tie Call to Worship and Invocation to Hebrew Scriptures, Stewardship to Epistle, and Communion to Gospel with little concern for overarching theme.

Call to Worship (Responsive)   
Adapted from Psalm 138
L: Give thanks to God with your whole heart;
P: We bow down in God’s temple and give thanks.
L: All the kings of the earth shall praise you, O God,
P: For great is the glory of the LORD.
L: Though we walk in the midst of trouble,
P: You stretch out your hand to deliver us.
L: We trust in you, O God, to fulfill your purpose,
P: And know your steadfast love endures forever.

Almighty and Everlasting God, we come into your holy temple to sing your praises and offer our prayers.  And though we come, we must confess the many times we have cried out to other “kings and lords”of our lives.  We have built altars of money, position, power and pride.  We have rejected your will to our own demise.  Forgive us, O God, the folly of our ways, and lead us back to your loving care.
Stewardship Moment:
Every “thing” in your life is temporary.  I hate to be the bearer of the reminder, yet it is true.  Possessions my theoretically last forever, like plastic in a landfill, but you will not hold them forever.  Relationships may be life long, but then there is death.  I could go on, but my goal today is not to depress you, but to make you think.  I suspect the temporary nature of life is exactly why so many strive for immortality: authors, artists, musicians, record holders, even philanthropists want to leave something behind so the world will remember them.  I think our greatest legacy as Christians could well be leaving a strong and faithful church for future generations.  We do so by truly giving of ourselves: our time, our talents and our tithes and offerings.  Not holding back, but giving freely in anticipation of that which is to come.  We now receive the tithes and offerings which will help to leave a legacy . . . of faith. 
Offertory Prayer:
Everlasting God, you have given us a gift and a burden in our finite lives and awareness of time: and so we do tend to seek ways to leave a legacy.  Take these tithes and offerings.  Bless them.  Use them to make a legacy of faith for future generations.  Guide each of us, the givers in living lives which do the same.  We ask it in faith for the one who gives us life. Amen.
Communion Meditation:
Mark 3:21 says “when his family heard it, they went out to restrain him, for people were saying ‘He has gone out of his mind’”.  It would appear to most Biblical Scholars that the “it” involved was that Jesus was healing on the Sabbath, and his family was embarrassed!  This leads us into this dialogue where Jesus declares that his “family” is anyone who is doing the work of God, presumably without concern to the day of the week.  When we come to this table we are doing just that: the work of God.  We are pausing to remember, to give thanks, and yes to heal the brokenness in each of our lives.  This is where we do the work of confession and accept forgiveness.  This is where we become the family of Jesus Christ.
  All material copyright 2011-2012 The Jubilee Fund, Inc.and appears on this site via a partnership agreement between the Jubilee Fund and the Center for Faith and Giving.  Permission granted to reproduce and use any of the above for Churches and Congregations to the glory of God without requirement of compensation or notification.
www.thejubileefund.comFor Sunday June 10, 2012