Showing posts from May, 2014

"I'm Not Leaving Until We Get It Right."

A couple of days ago our church staff gathered for worship in the Chapel, as we do every Tuesday. Rev Tim Morrison gave the message, based on 1 Thessalonians 5:8-28. He began the message by asking us to mention specific moments that touched us in our faith journeys: a sermon, a work of music, a teacher or lesson, a time we received care from another. As I thought about impactful sermons on my life (there have been several), one sentence echoed in my ears:

"I'm not leaving until we get it right."

This sentence was spoken by Bishop Alfred Norris (this link is for the bio and picture only; the sermon podcast is a different message from the one I am referencing in this post) at the opening worship service of the Texas Annual Conference several years ago. Bishop Norris ordained me an Elder in 2001. I remember listening to this sermon several times while cleaning the garage one day (don't ask)-- I had bought it on cassette tape. In the sermon he talked about a conversatio…

Prayer from Worship, May 18

Several members complimented me on the pastoral prayer offered at worship last Sunday. It was taken from the United Methodist Book of Worship, page 494. I chose this prayer specifically for that day, since our theme was "Making Sense of the Old Testament." This prayer not only shares wonderful imagery about God; it directly quotes God (from Genesis 2 & 4), and speaks to the Old Testament understanding of God that is not largely discussed today: that God is a God of justice and mercy, and that as followers of God we ought to embody those traits.

Creator God, breathing your own life into our being,
you gave us the gift of life.
You placed us on this earth with its minerals and waters,
flowers and fruits, living creatures of grace and beauty.
You gave us care of the earth.
Today you call us: "Where are you? What have you done?"

Silent prayer for creation.

We hide in utter shame, for we are naked.
We violate the earth and plunder it.
We refuse to share the earth'…