Archive for August, 2013

Standing Tall

Wednesday, August 28th, 2013

Rev. Dr. Melanie Miller

August 25, 2013

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Contemporary Testimony:   WomanWord: A Feminist Lectionary and Psalter: Women of the    New Testament, Miriam Therese Winter

A woman is bent,

Surely You meant when You lifted her up

long ago to Your praise, Compassionate One,

not one woman only,

but all women bent by unbending ways.

Biblical Testimony:  Luke 13:10-17

10Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the sabbath. 11And just then there appeared a woman with a spirit that had crippled her for eighteen years. She was bent over and was quite unable to stand up straight. 12When Jesus saw her, he called her over and said, “Woman, you are set free from your ailment.” 13When he laid his hands on her, immediately she stood up straight and began praising God. 14But the leader of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had cured on the sabbath, kept saying to the crowd, “There are six days on which work ought to be done; come on those days and be cured, and not on the sabbath day.” 15But the Lord answered him and said, “You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the manger, and lead it away to give it water? 16And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan bound for eighteen long years, be set free from this bondage on the sabbath day?” 17When he said this, all his opponents were put to shame; and the entire crowd was rejoicing at all the wonderful things that he was doing.

How We Wait

Thursday, August 15th, 2013

Rev. Dr. Melanie Miller

August 11, 2013

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Contemporary Testimony:  “Waiting but Not Watching the Clock” by Katie Munnik

And Plum blinks open his eyes, finished with yet another newborn nap. He’s hungry again – he’s a wonderful eater – and he’s opening his mouth enormously wide, throwing his head off to the side to make sure that I get the message. Our midwife gave me some good advice when we were talking through the details of keeping this little one’s tummy full. She said not to look at the clock. The clock only tells the time. Look at the baby. He’ll tell you if it is his time to eat. Just be ready for him when he needs you.

Biblical Testimony:  Luke 12:32-40

Be dressed and ready, and keep your lamps lit.  Be like the household staff awaiting the owner’s return from a wedding, so that when the owner arrives and knocks, you’ll open the door without delay.  It will go well with those staff members whom the owner finds wide awake upon returning.  I tell you the absolute truth, the owner will put on an apron, seat them at table and proceed to wait on them.  Should the owner happen to come at midnight, or before sunrise, and find them prepared, it will go well with them.

Understanding this: no homeowner who knew when a thief was coming would have let the thief break in!  So be on guard – the Promised One will come when least expected.

Festooning Prayers

Thursday, August 1st, 2013

Rev. Dr. Melanie Miller

July 28, 2013

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Contemporary Testimony:  Rediscovering New Testament Prayer by John Koenig

The prayer that Jesus taught…with light from the Spirit, fans out into a rainbowlike display of what it means for us to participate in the coming reign of God. C.S. Lewis wrote that he had gotten into the habit of mentally “festooning” individual petitions of the Lord’s Prayer as he prayed them. Festooning means “to adorn with colorful decorations,” and Lewis used the term to describe his way of adding “private overtones” to certain of the petitions. I think we can all do that. Both the prayer itself and the Spirit within us encourage our imaginations to paint with the full palette of the kingdom.

Biblical Testimony:                                 Luke 11:1-13

Jesus was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of the disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.” Jesus said to them, “When you pray, say:

Father-Mother, hallowed be your name.

May your dominion come.

Give us each day our daily bread.

And forgive us our sins,

for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us.

And do not bring us to the time of trial.”

And Jesus said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and you go at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; for a friend of mine has arrived, and I have nothing to serve.’ And your friend answers from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door has already been locked, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot get up and give you anything.’ I tell you, even though your friend will not get up and give you anything because of being a friend, at least because of your persistence the friend will get up and give whatever is needed.

“So, I say to you, Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. Is there anyone among you who, if your child asks for a fish, will give a snake instead of a fish? Or if the child asks for an egg, will give a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father-Mother give the Holy Spirit to those who ask!”

What Do We Do with Our Fear

Thursday, August 1st, 2013

Rev. Liz Hulme Adam

July 21, 2013

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Contemporary Testimony:  from Unweaving the Rainbow by Richard Dawkins

“We are going to die, and that makes us the lucky ones. Most people are never going to die because they are never going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place but who will in fact never see the light of day outnumber the sand grains of theSahara. Certainly those unborn ghosts include greater poets than Keats, scientists greater thanNewton. We know this because the set of possible people allowed by our DNA so massively outnumbers the set of actual people. In the teeth of these stupefying odds it is you and I, in our ordinariness, that are here.”

Biblical Testimony:                               Genesis 18:1-10a

The Lord appeared to Abraham near the great trees of Mamre while he was sitting at the entrance to his tent in the heat of the day. Abraham looked up and saw three men standing nearby. When he saw them, he hurried from the entrance of his tent to meet them and bowed low to the ground.  He said, “If I have found favor in your eyes, my lord, do not pass your servant by.  Let a little water be brought, and then you may all wash your feet and rest under this tree. Let me get you something to eat, so you can be refreshed and then go on your way—now that you have come to your servant.” Very well,” they answered, “do as you say.” So Abraham hurried into the tent to Sarah. “Quick,” he said, “get three seahs of the finest flour and knead it and bake some bread.” Then he ran to the herd and selected a choice, tender calf and gave it to a servant, who hurried to prepare it. He then brought some curds and milk and the calf that had been prepared, and set these before them. While they ate, he stood near them under a tree. “Where is your wife Sarah?” they asked him. There, in the tent,” he said.  Then one of them said, “I will surely return to you about this time next year, and Sarah your wife will have a son.” Now Sarah was listening at the entrance to the tent, which was behind him.