Reflections to start the week
Monday, September 30, 2013
It’s not all about Sunday.
This simple truth gets expressed in a variety of ways.
It was expressed by Archbishop William Temple who said that the church is the only organization that exists for the sake of those who are not its members.
It’s indicated in the sign I saw posted over the exit at the church which read: The worship is over. The service begins.
It’s the prayer after communion that asks for the strength and courage to serve with gladness and singleness of heart, a liturgical acknowledgement that it is not always easy.
It’s the claim that the dismissal is the most significant part of the liturgy, as we are sent out into the world to do God’s work.
It’s the habit of one peculiar priest (not naming any names) to conclude bible study with the “so-what” factor, i.e., an invitation to articulate and identify the relevance of scripture to life in the world. If you can’t come up with something, what’s the point?
It’s the theme of promises made in baptism, that we will proclaim by word and example the good news of God in Christ, that we will seek and serve Christ in all persons, that we will work for justice and peace. In other words, we promise to participate in the changing of the world.
It’s the beautiful poem sent to me by a beautiful friend last week. The poem, written by Mary Oliver, is entitled: The Vast Ocean Begins Just Outside our Church: The Eucharist. Thank you, Mary Oliver. Thank you, beautiful friend.
Something has happened
To the bread
And the wine
They have been blessed. What now?
The body leans forward
To receive the gift
From the priest’s hand,
Then the chalice
They are something else now
From what they were
Before this began.
To see Jesus
Maybe in the clouds
Or on the shore,
Someone else Besides. on the hard days
I ask myself
If I ever will.
Also there are times
My body whispers to me
That I have.
So put faith to work today. Sunday worship may seem to punctuate your weekend. Let it launch your week.
Rev. Jay Sidebotham
RenewalWorks is a ministry of Forward Movement.