This wonderful gospel story always hits right after stewardship season has ended. Or so it always seemed to me so that it became something important but not quite at the heart of this good news. Pledges still needed to come in. Plans were being made for the next year. I’ve heard sermons about this text that have made me cringe.
I’m sure you have too — and it’s a shame. There is so much more to this little story than money.
It’s that last line in the way that Mark tells it that really captures my imagination. All that she had to live on, it says. I wonder about what I am living on. What is making me get up out of bed every morning and believe that there is big, bright beautiful tomorrow. There are days when that is hard and this prayer to gather into worship is for those days. It’s written for one voice but it might be nice to have four different voices read each section. (I hesitate to call it a stanza.) There might be hope is hearing this struggle and hope in multiple voices.
Call to Worship Inspired by Psalm 146 We come to praise because we have forgotten how and we don't think we have enough left in us to make any sort of joyful noise. We struggle to see into the future and fear for what could come next and it is for this reason that we need to praise. We come to praise with every breath in our bodies and every hope we can carry. We come to praise because God is more than we can imagine and more than we believe and we need to remember this especially now. Praise God! Praise God, oh my soul!
I know you’re all busy planning well beyond this Sunday and into the season of Advent. I’m working on some resources with the amazing Jo Owens of Vibrant Church Communications who just released her Simple Gratitude Bundle for Thanksgiving. You should definitely check it out here.
If you’re looking beyond Thanksgivings, there are some liturgies and group studies in my kitchen that might help your planning. Or if you can wait, you’ll be super excited to see what will come into your inbox in my very occasional liturgy-filled email. You can sign up here.
I am praying for you, dear pastors, liturgists and musicians. I’m praying for you so much.