Thursday Thoughts  

This week, we're starting a new sermon series on Discipleship, beginning with prayer.

Question:  What is your favorite way to pray?  What makes it best (for you)?

This conversation on prayer led to some interesting observations.  We did discuss the rosary as a way of praying with which we are less familiar and comfortable.  In my experience, praying the rosary becomes a way of engaging your hands and mouth with prayer, and further engaging your mind in another prayer.  When I participated in this prayer at St. Peter's (in Lincoln), I found myself praying twice, both in the communal "Hail Mary" and in the personal, internal prayer.  As Protestants, we have nothing like this, and, I believe, there is something there to learn.

We also talked about our reluctance to do something simply because we've been told to!!!

Joel 2:23-32
     Promises of Plenty for the people.
     Young men with see visions, old men dream new dreams.
     Blood and fire and smoky mist--not the most optimistic passage we've ever seen!

We talked quite a while about whether this passage supports predestination.  As good Methodists we don't hold to predestination, but we do want to understand our Calvinist brothers and sisters who do.  We can see some options for that in this passage, but hold to a God who loves and saves all.

2 Timothy 4:6-8, 16-18

Luke 18:9-14
     Two men praying:  Tax collector and Pharisee
     "The proud humbled and the humble honored."

How do we see others?  Are we willing to understand others better or are we quick to "throw stones?"  Much of the Pharisee's sin is in pointing fingers at others, whereas the Tax Collector sees himself as a sinner.  We did talk about those who see themselves doing a "necessary evil."  The taxes were going to be collected.  Is it better to have someone they knew collecting the taxes?  What expectations do we have of those called into public service?  We assume and trust that they are called into service, but at times it feels like manipulation and a growing self-centeredness and arrogance from elected leaders.  How do we respond?  How Should we respond?

Finally, we returned to prayer, and to building up our own prayer lives.  We discussed our favorite ways to pray, as well as practices that remind us of our need to pray.

Next week:
All Saints' Sunday
Daniel 7:1-3, 15-18
Psalm 150
Ephesians 1:11-23
Luke 6:20-31

More Posts

Thursday, December, 18, 2014
Thursday, October, 9, 2014
Thursday, October, 9, 2014
Friday, September, 19, 2014
Friday, September, 12, 2014
Thursday, March, 6, 2014
Thursday, January, 16, 2014
Sunday, January, 12, 2014
Thursday, January, 2, 2014
Friday, November, 15, 2013
Friday, November, 8, 2013
Thursday, October, 24, 2013
Friday, October, 18, 2013