Poem based on 2nd Sunday in Easter John 20:19-31
Lectionary Poems, Daily meditations, 10W (ten minute audio worship for commuters), opening litanies based on the psalms, random thoughts and interesting articles from Pastor Dan in Anchorage. Newly added, pontifications from my son Levi. Permission given to use in any way that advances the ministry of God's love and grace in this world. Posted on mid-day Monday.
Pastor: Give thanks to the Lord who is good, whose love endures forever.
Congregation: Let everyone say, God’s love endures forever.
Pastor: Open the gates of righteousness and we will enter and give thanks to the Lord.
Congregation: They are the gates through which I may enter and give thanks for the Lord has become my salvation.
Pastor: I marvel when I see that which was rejected by the world, has become the foundation of humanity
Congregation: This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Pastor: Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord,
Congregation: with boughs in hand we will join the festal procession.
Pastor: You are our God and we give you thanks and exalt your name
Congregation: Give thanks to the Lord who is good and whose love endures forever.
Friday April 25th, Matthew 28: The angel spoke to the women: "There is nothing to fear here. I know you're looking for Jesus, the One they nailed to the cross. He is not here. He was raised, just as he said. Come and look at the place where he was placed. "Now, get on your way quickly and tell his disciples, "He is risen from the dead. He is going on ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there.' That's the message." And the Angel said to them, fear not!!! Where have heard that before? Every time the messengers of God come into the world, they start with the message “fear not.” One reason is that the church of that day, just as the church of our day, seems to preach more fear than faith. The power status quo lives in fear that the power status quo will no longer be the power status quo, so any intrusion of God would indeed be seen as a fearful moment. To the least, lost and lonely the message is always one of hope, not fear. Hope is reborn and the message is that the power status quo may not be the power status quo forever which, though it may not seem like it to some, in the long run is good news for all.
The following is a 10 minute worship for April 13th, Palm Sunday. You can listen on the flash player below. You now also have the option of receiving these notices each week and on festival days by signing up for the 10W constant contact email list on the right side of the 10W blog where it says "Please Join our Email List." The song for the day is Christ Our Savior Lutheran singing Amazing Grace.
Tuesday April 15th, Matthew 26: When Jesus was at Bethany, a guest of Simon the Leper, a woman came up to him as he was eating dinner and anointed him with a bottle of very expensive perfume. When the disciples saw what was happening, they were furious. "That's criminal! This could have been sold for a lot and the money handed out to the poor." When Jesus realized what was going on, he intervened. "Why are you giving this woman a hard time? She has just done something wonderfully significant for me. You will have the poor with you every day for the rest of your lives, but not me. First the question; who is Simon the Leper? Some commentaries make the leap that he was someone who was healed by Jesus of his leprosy, others say that it is a misinterpretation and he was a pottery maker, and still others say that he was just a Pharisee with that name for some unknown reason. All scripture says is that this is what he was called and Jesus went to his house for dinner. While there, a woman came in and using very expensive perfume anointed Jesus. Simon the Leper seemed to say nothing of note. At least some of the disciples were concerned that they were not in charge of the money this could bring into their coffers, and Jesus was just grateful for the anointing and adoration before his burial. He then points out that the task of the Church, first and foremost is to worship God, as did the woman with the perfume. Jesus’ second statement is the reminder that we will always have the poor with us, which is not a call to ignore them, but rather to take care for them also. It is an echo of Jesus answer to what is the greatest commandment, to love God and to love others, with love being used as a verb not a noun. Sometimes the church gets all caught up in other agendas and fights and comfort levels, we are after all made up of failing and sinful people. For each church question the counter question needs to be asked, how does this move forward the agenda of honoring God and caring for those in need. If it doesn’t fit into those two areas, it still might be a good thing to do, but it is not central to who we are and what we are called to do. Perhaps it is time to break open the flask and honor Jesus first and foremost and to honor our neighbor as ourselves. And to do it in that order.
Thursday April 17th, Matthew 26:Then they came on him--grabbed him and roughed him up. One of those with Jesus pulled his sword and, taking a swing at the Chief Priest's servant, cut off his ear. Jesus said, "Put your sword back where it belongs. All who use swords are destroyed by swords. Don't you realize that I am able right now to call to my Father, and twelve companies--more, if I want them--of fighting angels would be here, battle-ready? But if I did that, how would the Scriptures come true that say this is the way it has to be?" How quickly we turn to the sword. How quickly we doubt God’s power and replace God with our illusion of Power. How quickly we justify our sword with doing God’s will, bringing freedom, democracy, hope to those poor people out there somewhere, when in reality we all know the sword is always about our power, someone else’s death and our greed. School shootings are met with the solution of more guns, staggering economies with more tax cuts for those who profit from war and weapons to give us the illusion of power. Jesus brings freedom from the need to be in control and freedom for the promotion of a world in which guns and swords no longer exists. There are no second amendment rights in heaven.
Friday April 18th, Matthew 27: -After they had finished nailing him to the cross and were waiting for him to die, they whiled away the time by throwing dice for his clothes. Above his head they had posted the criminal charge against him: THIS IS JESUS, THE KING OF THE JEWS. Along with him, they also crucified two criminals, one to his right, the other to his left. People passing along the road jeered, shaking their heads in mock lament: "You bragged that you could tear down the Temple and then rebuild it in three days--so show us your stuff! Save yourself! If you're really God's Son, come down from that cross!" This was meant to be the ultimate insult, the king of the Jews, hanging there on the cross dying a slow and agonizing death. It was meant as the insult to the marginalized and controlled people in the occupied lands by the powers who are laughing. The real joke is that it does not go far enough. Instead of king of the Jews, Jesus was at that moment was not only King of the Jews, but King of all creation, including those who would both laugh and mourn at his passing. Those who are laughing, mocking, jeering as well as you and I, are all recipients of God’s love in spite of the laughing, mocking and jeering. This is the message; Christ died for you, and did not stay on the cross or in the tomb. The rest of the story is next week.
Saturday April 19th, Matthew 27: After sundown, the high priests and Pharisees arranged a meeting with Pilate. They said, "Sir, we just remembered that that liar announced while he was still alive, "After three days I will be raised.' We've got to get that tomb sealed until the third day. There's a good chance his disciples will come and steal the corpse and then go around saying, "He's risen from the dead.' Then we'll be worse off than before, the final deceit surpassing the first." Pilate told them, "You will have a guard. Go ahead and secure it the best you can." So they went out and secured the tomb, sealing the stone and posting guards. Not understanding the power of God, we think only of the human quest for power. In the human power equation there is manipulation and sleight of hand. In the human equation there is concern for what is in it for me. In the God side there is hope for a future for this creation called good, there is forgiveness, and there is a calling to treat one another as we would our own flesh and blood. The King of the Jews was buried in that tomb and the powers that be assumed that hope and a longing for the freedom that comes with forgiveness and welcoming one another as brothers and sisters in Christ, was buried there also. What happens next is for all of creation called good to see.
The following is a 10 minute worship for April 6th, Jesus Condemned, NL. You can listen on the flash player below. You now also have the option of receiving these notices each week and on festival days by signing up for the 10W constant contact email list on the right side of the 10W blog where it says "Please Join our Email List." The song for the day is Christ Our Savior Lutheran singing How Deep the Father's Love for us.
The following is a 10 minute worship for April 6th, Lazarus Come Forth, L5. You can listen on the flash player below. You now also have the option of receiving these notices each week and on festival days by signing up for the 10W constant contact email list on the right side of the 10W blog where it says "Please Join our Email List." The song for the day is Christ Our Savior Lutheran singing Precious Lord, Take My Hand.
The following is a 10 minute worship for March 30th, Jesus & Pilate, NL. You can listen on the flash player below. You now also have the option of receiving these notices each week and on festival days by signing up for the 10W constant contact email list on the right side of the 10W blog where it says "Please Join our Email List." The song for the day is Christ Our Savior Lutheran singing Abide with me.
The following is a 10 minute worship for March 30th, Blind and seeing, L4. You can listen on the flash player below. You now also have the option of receiving these notices each week and on festival days by signing up for the 10W constant contact email list on the right side of the 10W blog where it says "Please Join our Email List." The song for the day is Christ Our Savior Lutheran singing Amazing Grace.
Pastor:There are times when we seem almost blind to the blessings that surround us. In the midst of our fear, our pain, our complacency, we either don’t see or don’t care about the Lord’s presence in our lives. But then something happens, the scales fall from our eyes and we see what has been there all along.