By Vicar Lisa
Every Sunday, I must send a journal to my Clinical Pastoral Education supervisor. She is mainly interested in what I am wrestling with each week. One of the things that I have realized in writing these journals is that I am wrestling with “must do too many things” overload!
But still, I have a lot to be grateful for. I enjoyed my time at seminary even though it is very intense. It was nice to have worship every day with other people leading. Nice to be able to lift my hands and voice in praise and just feel the presence of the Holy Spirit. Plus, I just love my cohorts so much. My soul feels like it had a mini vacation even if my brain did not!
In my drive from the Denver airport on Saturday, I experienced a near white-out blizzard. Car crashes were all around me and to say I had about 1.5 hours of white-knuckle trauma is an understatement! And as the weather cleared as I got further south, I heard an amazing PBS broadcast on being grateful and why we tend to take for granted all the things that are going right and why we focus on the negative things in life. I found it fascinating.
I am not going to go through all the details but basically, human beings seem to be hard wired to focus on the headwinds and disregard the tailwinds. We tend to feel like we are deserving or entitled to the good things and yet, feel so put upon by the slightest discomforts or inconvenience. And then, the broadcast focused on how being grateful, taking on an attitude of gratitude, will make us happier, healthier, more productive human beings. So, I made a promise to myself to be more appreciative of the good things and try to minimize the things that annoy me.
So, I am appreciative that I got home unscathed unlike many others. And I came home exhausted, but my men (husband John and dad) and the dogs (all four of them) were thrilled to greet me.
And then, I looked around and saw how messy things were in our living quarters and found myself getting annoyed. How hard would it be to vacuum up the dog hair piling up in the corners? Couldn’t he (hubby) wipe the crumbs off the kitchen table (yes, I have a thing about crumbs) or the beard hair off the bathroom counter. But then I remembered the broadcast.
I was home, and safe. I got hugs and licks from everyone/ everydog. I was surrounded by people and critters that love me. I have a beautiful home. And my hubs did do a load of laundry and made the bed, as best as he could. So, I took a deep breath and smiled. Instead of being annoyed, I gave him a hug and told him I was happy to be home. And I am. Annoyance gone. I just hope I can remember to keep practicing gratitude!
So, that is where I am for now. Grieving but blessed. Stressed but I know God is in control. And feeling very content because I scrubbed the house from top to bottom this afternoon!
So, I thank you all for reading the rants of a seminarian who had a long week! God bless you and keep you!
Also, thank you for understanding our cancellation of church last Sunday. The parking lot was very icy, and the snow was predicted to be a lot more than we got. If this happens again, hopefully I will have enough snap to pull together a Zoom Church session.
Serving This Sunday, All Saints Sunday – Nov. 5, 2023
REMEMBER THE TIME CHANGE!!! Sleep an extra hour!
10 a.m. Worship with Holy Communion
E-formation – All Saints Sunday, Nov. 5, 2023
Some people are proud of themselves for being so humble! It is not easy to heed the call in the gospel for next Sunday, to be humble as was Christ. Come to worship, and give God the glory, and God will give you all the glory you need.
Sunday’s excerpt from the fifth section of Matthew (19:3—26:1) speaks of Jesus going up to his death in Jerusalem and of the last things for humankind. Matthew’s community has experienced the destruction of the city and awaits the return of the messiah to right the world’s wrongs. In this context Matthew contrasts his view of the religious devotion of the Jewish leadership with that of the Christian community, which is called to follow Jesus by taking the role of servant. Since Matthew anticipates an imminent end of the world, he is not concerned with the establishment of church authority. Early Christians began to popularize the name “Father” for God, which although uncommon among Jews was the usual title for the chief Roman god, Jupiter. Phylacteries are the small leather boxes containing passages of Scripture that Orthodox Jewish men don during prayer. The garment fringes (Numbers 15:38-39) are reminders of living by the law of God.
In the eighth century BCE, the prophet Micah spoke in the southern kingdom of Judah against the rulers’ complacency despite the growing military threat from Assyria. The recorder organized Micah’s oracles into a pattern of judgment, hope, judgment, hope. In today’s excerpt, Micah condemns secular and religious authorities especially for their economic injustices. According to Micah’s theology, the people’s coming hardship is God’s punishment for their immorality.
1 Thessalonians 2:9-13
Paul defends his lifestyle and his preaching content in his ministry in Thessalonica. The excerpt suggests an unbroken chain: the word from God comes through the preacher into the lives of the faithful. It appears that Paul worked for his living and was not financially dependent on his hearers.
Zion's Lutheran Church