Pandemic Prayers for Proper 27

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.