Looking to Heaven: Eastertide

Jesus went to heaven, and the disciples would have liked to have stayed there.

Looking at the heavens.

Just like the transfiguration.

Let’s move in, we are ready for heaven.

Or at least we can spend all the time with the pure ones, the disciples, the ones in the know.

And Jesus said, don’t worry I’m going to send you to the ends of the earth, don’t worry I’m going to give you a million Easters, 2,000 years to learn; 2,000 years of grace.

Talk about a grace period for one’s debts.

Many weeks and Sunday for Easter to unfold into your hearts, and your children’s hearts and your children’s children’s children’s house.

I’m going to give you time to learn how to be community.

I’m going to leave you with my one commandment, love one another.

Stop looking at heaven, the answer isn’ there.

Look to earth, to the relationships.

I want Answers: a prayer

Lord, I confess that it would be a heck of a lot easier to throw up my hands and say God will provide.

It’s easy to look to heaven for answers, instead of grace. I’m a practically minded person, somedays solutions are all I want. Not hints or insights or learning journeys, a neon sign pointing to what I should do and how I should fix it seems easier.

Though I know this is easier, I also know you are a God who loves me and teaches me exactly the way I am. You do not force my hand, nor my choices. And the truth is, sometimes even when the solution is made obvious, I have trouble recognizing it until afterwards.

You have foresight, I am only blessed with hindsight.

Like Thomas, we think the solution is seeing to believe, and instead he ignore’s the wounds and give Jesus a hug.

This is why Acts is so important, because it’s only after the fact of Jesus’s Resurrection that they start to understand what it’s all about.

This is why Easter is not one day, because we need time and hindsight to truly act upon the commandments that Christ has given us.

Remind me Lord that this Unfolding Easter, this grace in action, this time to practice the kingdom over and over is a gift. And that solutions wouldn’t have helped me understand anyway.

For God is about love and grace and forgiveness, not solutions.

Because we are not a problem, we are the part of the relationship.

Remind me of this I pray.

Amen.

Acts(ion): April 19th Narrative Lectionary Seeds of Faith Prayers

Mark 6:7-13

Acts 1:1-14

Call to Worship
This is the day that the Lord has made

Let us Rejoice and Be glad in it

The Lord calls us together from all the ends of the earth

Come let us pray together in whatever way we can

Call to Worship

There is a time for everything?

A time to dance and a time to sing, a time to mourn and a time to rejoice

There is a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing. There is a time to look to the heavens and time to look to earth.

Let us pray and act together on earth! Alleluia, Amen

Prayer of Confession: Lord we confess that this baptism by fire is not the one we envisioned. Never did we imagine we would stand so close to poverty and death. We confess that we did not understand how fragile our human structures are. We did not imagine how dependent we are for one another in prayer and support. You would think after reading Acts every year, we would have had a better inkling of what it means to enact community on earth. But we have forgotten or lost sight of it. Help us to reclaim community of work and prayer that helps us to love and serve one another as Christ commanded on Maundy Thursday, we pray. Amen.

Prayer of Confession: Lord we confess, we would rather look towards heaven, than earth. How easy it is as humans to skip to the end. We want the kingdom to come right now, and have trouble learning that there is work to be done in the in-between. We confess that we though humans would stop being human and suddenly just all be the same, or get along, or all believe the same things. You know better Lord. Remind us how to eat, pray and live in harmony, even when we cannot see and touch one another. We pray in Christ’s name Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: Christ sends no one out alone! He sends the Holy Spirit before us, companions along the way, and Christ promises to return once again. Be comforted by the ever present grace & forgiveness of God. Tell one another the truth: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven. 

Assurance of Pardon: God sends us nowhere where we cannot be touched by grace. Know the truth In Jesus Christ we are forgiven. 

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: Lord please send everything we have out in the world. Remind us to pray, encourage us to be in relationship with one another, and focus us upon the needs of the here and now, and help us to address the realities here on earth we pray. Amen.

I Want Answers: A Confession/Prayer about God of Grace

 

Shannon A Thompson

Author. Speaker. Librarian.

Lady Jabberwocky

Write with Heart

A Pastor's Heart

Thoughts on Life and Faith

10:00 am Worship @NCPC

Won't You Be Our Neighbor

Martha Spong

Clergy Coach

r e F o c u s

a ministry for transition

Church Set Free

Love is the answer - now what's your question?

Living Contemplatively

Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation

PNEUMYTHOLOGY

ROBERT LAMBERT JONES III

A Spirit Filled Life

Seeing the Sacred in the Everyday

Improvisations

thinking outloud online

G-Free Rev

Knittin' and Preachin'

Infinite Windows

Meditations on faith and art

Mom Meets Blog

Managing motherhood, midlife and a blog