Offertory Prayer

Invitation to the Offering
The offering you made last week empowered ministry within our congregation and in response to the needs of our community. It also helped support the work of ministries beyond the local church that reach people who are in desperate need to feel the touch of love and reconciliation. Through the Episcopal Fund, your church not only supports the Bishop who serves your conference, but the global work of our United Methodist episcopal leaders. Your giving makes possible their witness for the whole church in many areas including evangelism, justice ministries, global health and working with the world’s poor. This ministry happens thanks to the generous support of United Methodists like you. I invite you once again to give generously as we worship God through the sharing of our gifts, tithes and offerings.

Learn more about the work of the Council of Bishops of the UMC at: http://www.umc.org/who-we-are/council-of-bishops

August 3, 2014 -- Eighth Sunday after Pentecost/in Kingdomtide

God of abundant grace and compassion, you heap blessings on us with the reminder that we have been blessed to be a blessing. As we offer our tithes and offering this morning, we remember that we live in a world where so many don’t have enough to eat or clean water to drink. The words that Jesus spoke to the disciples ring loud in our ears: “You give them something to eat!” As we put these gifts in your hands and lift our eyes in gratitude, bless the gifts and multiply them to ease the need in places we may never go for people we may never meet. We ask this in the holy name of Jesus, the Christ. Amen. (Matthew 14:13-21)

"Prayers by Ken Sloan. Copyright General Board of Discipleship. www.GBOD.org Used by permission."

Friday, January 28, 2011

Admission Requirements, a Reflection on Psalm 15

The reading from Micah this week proclaims what the Lord requires of us--to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God. The lectionary response is Psalm 15 which begins with the question, "Who is allowed in?"

The requirements for admission are:
to walk blamelessly and to do what is right and speak the truth

do not slander, do no evil to friends, and do not reproach your neighbors

stand by your oath--even to your hurt

do not lend money at interest, don't take a bribe.

Those seeking acceptance in the congregation were supposed to modify their behavior outside the building. Further integration--they had been told what was right and, now, they were supposed to live out what they had been told.

Their relationship with God is affected by, even dependent on, their relationship with their community. Moreover, doing the right thing changes the doer: "Those who do these thing shall never be moved."

1 comment:

Joel Peterson said...

As a current high school senior, I see countless peers worrying about their "admission decisions" to their dream colleges. What I don't see a lot of is initiative about entrance into heaven. I think most of them think that heaven is something for old people to worry about.

What I see even less of though, is people who are active in their faith enough at a young age to be to the point of being called by God to a ministerial vocation.

I think we can agree that God's call isn't anywhere near as straightforward as admission to heaven--or college for that matter!

Perhaps a more allegorical/exploratory approach is what we need to implement in order to get young people thinking about their call.

*insert plug for my book, which attempts to do just that. haha*

It's called The Journey (by Joel Peterson, obviously) and it's on Amazon.com if you are interested in checking it out.