Two different ideas came as I pondered this passage
First, when the disciples say how great the temple is, Jesus responds by saying that it isn't going to last much longer. Although they were talking about an actual physical building, I want to use it as a metaphor for religion itself. According to recent research (see USA Today, for example, None is the second largest category, second only to Catholicism.)
How bad would it be if instead of almost everybody in America being a Christian that very few are? We know that the early Christians did fine without the temple as also did the Jews themselves. But, how would the world do without organized Christians to care for it?
That question underlies my second idea. Jesus told them "Many will come in my name and lead you astray."
So, I'm asking how many of these denominations and congregations within them and Christians belonging to those congregations, how many of them are living Christ-like lives and how many of us are leading others astray?
As we prepare for next week's celebration of the Reign of Christ, or you may think of it by its traditional name, Christ the King, let us reorient ourselves to be conveyors of Christ to the world.
God of miracles, you are continually working wonders! We are amazed by your extravagant love and kindness. You invite us be mindful of everything that you have provided. Free us from worrying about what we do not have. Open our eyes to recognize your children who are in need. May these gifts bountifully bless those in our community, we pray through Christ our Lord. Amen. (John 6:1-21)
July Offertory Prayers were written by the Rev.Rosanna Anderson, Associate Director of Stewardship at Discipleship Ministries, The United Methodist Church.