Not too long ago I was in a garden shop and I bought a "meadow in a can." Have you ever seen one? It's a rather clever form of marketing. The would-be gardener has only to purchase a can about the size of a large frozen orange juice can. But it's not frozen and there's no orange juice in it. Inside the can is a huge variety of wild flower seeds. The idea is that the would-be gardener is to spread these seeds over an unsuspecting meadow. Then all that is needed is the waiting, while the stretch of lawn is transformed into a riot of color, a magazine cover example of beauty and grace.
UPCOMING WEEKS In addition to the lectionary resources there are thousands of non-lectionary, scripture based resources...
Christopher Keating Thomas Willadsen Bethany Peerbolte Ron Love Mary Austin George Reed Dean Feldmeyer
For July 5, 2020:
Say You Love Me (But Stay Six Feet Away) by Chris Keating — The voice of the beloved calls to us this week. The lush poetry calls our attention to the pure gift of God, and will likely resonate with communities longing for interaction, mutuality, and the rich abundance of love’s delight.
Contents "Mumbling Hope" by David O. Bales "If It Hadn’t Been Spring" by David O. Bales
Mumbling Hope by David O. Bales Genesis 24:34-38, 42-49, 58-67
Phabi and Nahum rode obediently behind Eliezer, tossed rhythmically side to side on their camels. They glanced to one another with knowing looks. Eliezer was mumbling again. “I suppose I could’ve told them the whole story. They were certainly interested. A display of wealth will do that, especially to a fellow like Laban.”
When I was a boy, I heard a preacher remind his congregation about the true nature of the cross. He observed that we have turned the cross into both a lovely adornment in our sanctuaries and a piece of jewelry for our bodies. It is, for us, a smooth, attractive, gilded thing. But the original cross, he insisted, was nothing like that. The cross that Jesus bore -- and the cross, therefore, that we are invited to take up as his followers -- is harsh and heavy. It is rugged and bloody. It is heavy wood across the back, not silver or gold on a lapel or necklace.
Here in England we're now well into the wedding season, in which many young couples will follow the age old tradition of plighting their troth. Some of them will do so here in Pulham St. Mary church, and several more here in our benefice in South Norfolk.
Although our country has the highest divorce rate in the whole of Europe and is second only to the United States in the world, and although many couples now live together outside marriage, nonetheless marriage is still a very popular institution.
I think one of the best lessons I have learned in ministry is the lesson of win-win. Have you ever heard of win-win? In a world where win-lose situations seem to dominate our interactions, the discovery of the possibility of building scenarios where everyone can benefit, where everyone can, in effect, win, has been an incredible answer to prayer. In church, community, and family life it has been a powerful way forward on numerous occasions. Recently, an experience in negotiations in a sensitive church situation resulted in a win-win, and it was unbelievable.
Good morning, boys and girls. Does anyone live on a farm or near a farm? (let them answer) What do farmers use today to plow fields and harvest the grain? (let them answer) That's right, tractors. Before farmers used tractors what did they use? (let them answer) That's right, horses. Did you know that farmers also used to use animals called oxen? These animals are like bulls that have horns and are very strong. They can pull a plow easily as long as they worked in pairs. If the oxen didn't work together, it was hard.