abbykk

wandering the space between art, creativity, justice and faith


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june churchish–pentecost

welcoming and centering

singing morning has broken

Morning has broken like the first morning
Blackbird has spoken like the first bird
Praise for the singing, praise for the morning
Praise for them springing fresh from the Word

Sweet the rain’s new fall, sunlit from Heaven
Like the first dew fall on the first grass
Praise for the sweetness of the wet garden
Sprung in completeness where His feet pass

Mine is the sunlight, mine is the morning
Born of the One Light Eden saw play
Praise with elation, praise every morning
God’s recreation of the new day

Morning has broken like the first morning
Blackbird has spoken like the first bird
Praise for the singing, praise for the morning
Praise for them springing fresh from the Word

singing called me higher

I could just sit
I could just sit and wait for all Your goodness
Hope to feel Your presence
And I could just stay
I could just stay right where I am and hope to feel You
Hope to feel something again

And I could hold on
I could hold on to who I am and never let You
Change me from the inside
And I could be safe, oh
I could be safe here in Your arms and never leave home
Never let these walls down

But You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord
You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You lead me Lord
Where You lead me
Where You lead me Lord

And I could hold on
I could hold on to who I am and never let You
Change me from the inside

And I could be safe, oh
I could be safe here in Your arms and never leave home
Never let these walls down


But You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord
You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You lead me Lord
Where You lead me

And I will be Yours, oh
I will be Yours for all my life
And I will be Yours, oh
I will be Yours for all my life
And I will be Yours, oh
I will be Yours for all my life
So let Your mercy
Oh, and I will be Yours, Lord
And I will be Yours for all my life
So let Your mercy light the path before me

‘Cause You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord
‘Cause You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord

Oh, ’cause You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord
Oh, ’cause You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord, where You lead me

Where You lead me Lord
Where You lead me
Where You lead me Lord

reading

(passages are linked to the text in context if you want to read the full passage or chapter)

excerpts from genesis 1 (nrsv)

In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day…

And God said, “Let the waters bring forth swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the dome of the sky.” So God created the great sea monsters and every living creature that moves, of every kind, with which the waters swarm, and every winged bird of every kind. And God saw that it was good. God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.” And there was evening and there was morning, the fifth day….

…God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.

john 14:25-27 (nrsv)

“I have said these things to you while I am still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.

john 14:25-27 (the message)

“I’m telling you these things while I’m still living with you. The Friend, the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send at my request, will make everything plain to you. He will remind you of all the things I have told you. I’m leaving you well and whole. That’s my parting gift to you. Peace. I don’t leave you the way you’re used to being left—feeling abandoned, bereft. So don’t be upset. Don’t be distraught.

singing beautiful things

All this pain
I wonder if I’ll ever find my way
I wonder if my life could really change, at all
All this earth
Could all that is lost ever be found?
Could a garden come out from this ground, at all?
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us
All around,
Hope is springing up from this old ground
Out of chaos life is being found, in you
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us
Oh, you make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us
You make me new,
You are making me new
You make me new,
You are making me new
(Making me new)
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us
Oh, you make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us
You make me new,
You are making me new
You make me new,
You are making me new

discussing

what is peace and what brings you peace?

how do you define comfort and what brings you comfort?

how do you learn?

what is something you have been learning lately?

bringing it together and coming to the table

praying together

singing hold us together

Don’t have a job
Don’t pay your bills
Won’t buy you a home in Beverly Hills
Won’t fix your life in five easy steps
Ain’t the law of the land or the government
But it’s all you need
Love will hold us together
Make us a shelter weather the storm
And I’ll be my brothers keeper
So the whole world will know that we’re not alone
He’s waiting for you
Knockin’ at your door!
Every moment of truth
When your heart hits the floor
And when you’re on your knees, now see
Love will hold us together
Make us a shelter weather the storm
And I’ll be my brothers keeper
So the whole world will know that we’re not alone
This is the first day of the rest of your life
This is the first day of the rest of your life
‘Cause even in the dark you can still see the light
It’s gonna be alright, it’s gonna be alright
This is the first day of the rest of your life
This is the first day of the rest of your life
Oh, ’cause even in the dark you can still see the light
It’s gonna be alright, oh, it’s gonna be alright
And love will hold us together
Make us a shelter weather the storm
And I’ll be my brothers keeper
So the whole world will know that we’re not alone

 

blessing

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april churchish

james brown – get up offa that thing

dixie chicks – some days you gotta dance

luke 19:28-40

After he had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem.

When he had come near Bethphage and Bethany, at the place called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of the disciples, saying, “Go into the village ahead of you, and as you enter it you will find tied there a colt that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ just say this, ‘The Lord needs it.’” So those who were sent departed and found it as he had told them. As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, “Why are you untying the colt?” They said, “The Lord needs it.” Then they brought it to Jesus; and after throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. As he rode along, people kept spreading their cloaks on the road. As he was now approaching the path down from the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the deeds of power that they had seen, saying,

“Blessed is the king
    who comes in the name of the Lord!
Peace in heaven,
    and glory in the highest heaven!”

Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, order your disciples to stop.” He answered, “I tell you, if these were silent, the stones would shout out.”

fitz & the tantrums – handclap

what makes the world feel upside down?

whitney houston – i wanna dance with somebody

what do we have to celebrate?

brocklesby crooke – be free

v.i.c – wobble, radio version

sharing the table and praying

the wood brothers – sing about it

blessing

david guetta – just a little more love; wally lopez remix


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march churchish – LENT

“the goal is to help the interfering ego stand aside and allow fragments of fantasy to emerge into consciousness.” – Jo Milgrom, Handmade Midrash, p. 6

a liturgy of ripping

*source: Jo Milgrom and Carl Jung, p. 7 of Handmade Midrash.

Creating God, we are completely human only at play. 

May we enjoy a spirit of play here today.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Somehow, someway, what we takes seriously slips through our fingers , as if we never held it at all. This can be the very nature of our faith, and our freedom

May we seek your greater Spirit here, O God, holding tightly to our childishness and letting everything else fall away.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Our imagination is a gift, a entry point for deeper connection.

May we tap into other ways of knowing this morning,

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Amen.

Kriah is the Hebrew word for tearing or ripping. It can refer to a specific Jewish custom of ripping fabric in mourning, but is also found throughout the Biblical text. For Christians, the great symbolic tear is in the curtain that separated the holy of holies was Jesus died. We have many more associations, everything from the play on words in RENT  to personal associations (anyone else ever split their pants in an embarassing way?).

 joel 2:12-14

“Even now,” declares the Lord,
    “return to me with all your heart,
    with fasting and weeping and mourning.”

Rend your heart
and not your garments.
Return to the Lord your God,
for he is gracious and compassionate,
slow to anger and abounding in love,
and he relents from sending calamity.
Who knows? He may turn and relent
and leave behind a blessing—
grain offerings and drink offerings
for the Lord your God.

 

What do you need to tear up? For what are you mourning? What losses are you grieving? What is frustrating in your life? Are you experiencing disorientation, the feeling of being without direction or in a place you do not recognize… and if so, what did you lost that put you in this place? What in the world, from our local communities, to our shared global tragedies, are causing you to mourn, causing you spirit to be restless, or continually tugging at your heart? As you think about ripping up whatever is in front of you, name these things, in your heart, in your head, or write them down…

and rip them to shreds. but wait and we will do it together.

Pile all your shreds in the middle. This becomes out materials, out of which we will create.

These parables are told together. Let’s assume there is purpose there. These stories share themes and have different ways of telling similar truths. We will listen and respond by creating images out of our shreds. After reading 2 & 3, you can adjust the image you created, or push it to the side and start over. Nothing we create is permanent, unless you take a pic with your phone.

“The term midrash describes both a method and a genre of literature in which imaginative interpretation discovers biblical meanings that are continually contemporary.” – Jo Milgrom, Handmade Midrash, p. 3

reading 1 | luke 15:1-7

Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear Jesus. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.”

Then Jesus told them this parable:  “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it?  And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’  I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.

reading 2 | luke 15:8-9

“Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Doesn’t she light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it?  And when she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin.’

reading 3 | luke 15:11-32

Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons.  The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.

“Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need.  So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything.

 “When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you.  I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’  So he got up and went to his father.

“But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.

“The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’

“But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.

“Meanwhile, the older son was in the field. When he came near the house, he heard music and dancing. So he called one of the servants and asked him what was going on. ‘Your brother has come,’ he replied, ‘and your father has killed the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.’

“The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. But he answered his father, ‘Look! All these years I’ve been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!’

“‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’”

reflecting on our process and sharing what we made

praying over what we have shared, and all else we need to share

closing

joel 2:28-29

And afterward,
    I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
    your old men will dream dreams,
    your young men will see visions.
Even on my servants, both men and women,
    I will pour out my Spirit in those days.

“the whole point of seeing something differently is to do something about it.” – Jo Milgrom, Handmade Midrash, p. 8

May we dreams dreams, may we prophesy when we are filled with your truth, may we receive and share your Spirit in a hurting word. Amen.

blessing


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february churchish

opening with gratitude

what are three things you have been grateful for in 2019?

singing – beautiful things by gungor

All this pain
I wonder if I’ll ever find my way
I wonder if my life could really change, at all
All this earth
Could all that is lost ever be found?
Could a garden come out from this ground, at all?
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us
All around,
Hope is springing up from this old ground
Out of chaos life is being found, in you
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us
Oh, you make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us
You make me new,
You are making me new
You make me new,
You are making me new
(Making me new)
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us
Oh, you make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us
You make me new,
You are making me new
You make me new,
You are making me new

singing all who are thirsty

All who are thirsty
All who are weak
Come to the fountain
Dip your heart in the stream of life
Let the pain and the sorrow
Be washed away
In the waves of His mercy
As deep cries out to deep (we sing)
Come Lord Jesus come

reading together – Luke 10:25-37

Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he said, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” He said to him, “What is written in the law? What do you read there?” He answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” And he said to him, “You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live.”

But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell into the hands of robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan while traveling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, having poured oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said, ‘Take care of him; and when I come back, I will repay you whatever more you spend.’ Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?” He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”

reading in conversation

what associations do you have with this story? what meanings have you heard?

another perspective

Martin Luther King Jr, from his last speech, “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop”

“Now, you know, we use our imagination a great deal to try to determine why the priest and the Levite didn’t stop. At times we say they were busy going to a church meeting, an ecclesiastical gathering, and they had to get on down to Jerusalem so they wouldn’t be late for their meeting. At other times we would speculate that there was a religious law that one who was engaged in religious ceremonials was not to touch a human body twenty-four hours before the ceremony. And every now and then we begin to wonder whether maybe they were not going down to Jerusalem, or down to Jericho, rather, to organize a Jericho Road Improvement Association. That’s a possibility. Maybe they felt it was better to deal with the problem from the causal root, rather than to get bogged down with an individual effect.

“But I’m going to tell you what my imagination tells me. It’s possible that those men were afraid. You see, the Jericho Road is a dangerous road. I remember when Mrs. King and I were first in Jerusalem. We rented a car and drove from Jerusalem down to Jericho. And as soon as we got on that road I said to my wife, ‘I can see why Jesus used this as the setting for his parable.’ It’s a winding, meandering road. It’s really conducive for ambushing. You start out in Jerusalem, which is about twelve hundred miles, or rather, twelve hundred feet above sea level. And by the time you get down to Jericho fifteen or twenty minutes later, you’re about twenty-two feet below sea level. That’s a dangerous road. In the days of Jesus it came to be known as the ‘Bloody Pass.’ And you know, it’s possible that the priest and the Levite looked over that man on the ground and wondered if the robbers were still around. Or it’s possible that they felt that the man on the ground was merely faking , and he was acting like he had been robbed and hurt in order to seize them over there, lure them there for quick and easy seizure. And so the first question that the priest asked, the first question that the Levite asked was, ‘If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?’

“But then the Good Samaritan came by, and he reversed the question: ‘If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?’”

one more perspective

from a conversation between Eboo Patel, the Muslim founder of Interfaith Youth Core, and Nick Price, an Evangelical and his friend. Published in Faithfully magazine, 2018

Patel: I’m going to go back to something that a great theologian named Nick Price once said to me, which is there’s the Great Commission and there’s the Great Cooperation, and something else that Nick taught me … I feel like I’m tape recording some of our conversations in my head. Nick and I, when were back at our Van Buren address, six to eight years ago, and Nick was working for InterVaristy at (the University of Illinois at Chicago), [he] did a little Bible study with me. We talked about the Good Samaritan story. And Nick points out that the Good Samaritan story is typically exegeted as a generic other.

Nick, I think you literally opened a Bible, and you pointed me to a chapter called “The Woman at the Well.” We read this together, right? And it is a chapter on Jesus arguing with this woman at a well. They’re having a theological dispute. “You pray to a God you do not know.” Who’s the woman at the well? She’s a Samaritan woman. So who is the Good Samaritan? It’s not just a generic other, it’s not somebody from the village across the river. The Samaritan is somebody who has a different doctrine than you. The Samaritan is somebody who worships and believes in God differently. And Jesus was saying go and do likewise. The story begins “How do I attain eternal life?” Right? There is no more cosmically imbued theological question than how do I attain eternal life, right?

So, my response to this person would be if you want to put 99 percent of your energy into the Great Commission, go for it, right? But please do not pretend that the Great Cooperation is not also a Christian thing to do.

Price: Right, and I would actually argue even more strongly than that from a Christian perspective. I don’t think you can faithfully do the Great Commission without having that posture, honestly. This idea of that “Parable of the Good Samaritan” is such a powerful one because the Samaritan is other in every sense of the term ethnically, culturally, religiously, and that’s the hero of Jesus’ story. And he says, “In the kingdom of God, my people are people who go and do likewise.” So it’s like okay, so your very identity as a Christian is contingent upon you having the exact same posture that Jesus had. I mean, there is no other greater divide than the Divine God coming into our world and becoming a human being. You want to talk about getting outside your box and embracing the other, God himself does it. And Jesus says this is what my people do.

making it our own

what did you hear new from these perspectives? how were you challenged? what excites you about text or these readings? what frustrates you? how can you apply it?

responding to the word

we need to talk about churchish and money. what can we give to? how?

singing to the table

Hear the voice of love that’s calling
There’s a chair that waits for you
And a Friend who understands
Everything you’re going through
But you keep standing at a distance
In the shadow of your shame
There’s a light of hope that’s shining
Won’t you come and take your place
And bring it all to the table
There’s nothing He ain’t seen before
For all your fear, all your sorrow and your sadness
There’s a Savior and He calls
Bring it all to the table
He can see the weight you carry
The fears that hold your heart
But through the cross you’ve been forgiven
You’re accepted as you are
So bring it all to the table
There’s nothing He ain’t seen before
For all your trials, all your worries and your burdens
There’s a Savior and He calls
Bring it all to the table
Bring it all
You can bring it all
And come on in, take your place
There’s no one who’s turned away
All you sinners, all you saints
Come right in and find your grace
Come on in, take your place
There’s no one who’s turned away
All you sinners, all you saints
Come right in and find your grace
And bring it all to the table
There’s nothing He ain’t seen before
For all your sin, all your sorrow and your sadness
There’s a Savior and He calls
Bring it all to the table

sharing the table

praying

Let’s try something a little different–just really trying to listen to each other as prayer.

So, when someone shared, they will close with–that’s my story.

And we will respond with–We hear you. God hears you.

When it seems like we are done… Amen!

singing i need you to survive

I need you, you need me
We’re all a part of God’s body
Stand with me, agree with me
We’re all a part of God’s body

It is his will, that every need be supplied
You are important to me, I need you to survive
You are important to me, I need you to survive

I need you, you need me
We’re all a part of God’s body
Stand with me
Agree with me
We’re all a part of God’s body

It is his will, that every need be supplied
You are important to me, I need you to survive
You are important to me, I need you to survive

blessing

 


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december churchish

welcome to churchish. we will start when it feels right, but always feel free to get coffee, tea, move, whatever. we hope that as we gather, by connecting with each other, and with something in ourselves, we connect with God.

Centering

Singing

O Come, All Ye Faithful (#133)

O come, all ye faithful,

joyful and triumphant

O come, ye, o come ye,

to Bethlehem

Come and behold him,

born the King of Angels

O come let us adore him,

O come let us adore him,

O come let us adore him,

Christ the Lord.

 

Sing choirs of angels,

Sing is exaltation

Sing, all ye citizens

of heav’n above

Glory to God,

glory in the highest

O come let us adore him,

O come let us adore him,

O come let us adore him,

Christ the Lord.

 

Hark the Herald Angels Sing (#127)

Hark! The herald angels sing,

“Glory to the newborn king”

Peace on earth, and mercy mild,

God and sinners reconciled,

Joyful all ye nations rise;

Join the triumph of the skies

With angelic host proclaim,

“Christ is born, in Bethlehem”

Hark! The herald angels sing,

“Glory to the newborn king”

 

Hail the heaven-born Prince of Peace!

Hail the sun of righteousness!

Light and life to all he brings,

risen with healing in his wings.

Mild he lays his glory by;

born that we no more may die;

Born to raise us from the earth,

born to give us second birth.

Hark! The herald angels sing,

“Glory to the newborn king”

Joy to the World (#134)

Joy to the world, the Lord has come!

Let earth receive her king!

Let every heart prepare him room,

and heaven and nature sing,

and heaven and nature sing

and heaven, and heaven and nature sing.

 

Joy to the earth, the savior reigns!

Let all their songs employ!

While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains,

repeat the sounding joy,

repeat the sounding joy,

repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.

 

He rules the world, with truth and grace,

and makes the nations prove

the glories of his righteousness,

and wonders of His love,

and wonders of His love,

and wonders, and wonders of His love.

Reading

Luke 2: 1-8

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while[a]Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to their own town to register.

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

John 1:1-5, 14

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Talking together

Talk about a favorite Christmas tradition or part of this season.

Talk about the part of this season that annoys or irritates you most.

Talk about a powerful memory from this season, it could be good, it could be bad, it could be complicated.

Listening

Bethlehem by Over the Rhine

Oh little town of Bethlehem
Have you been forsaken
In your dark and dreamless sleep
Your heart is breaking
And in your wounded sky
The silent stars go by
Oh little town of Bethlehem
Be still tonight be still
Mary she was just a kid
Jesus was a refugee
A virgin and a vagabond
Yearning to be free
Now in the dark streets shining
Is their last chance of a dream
Oh little town of Bethlehem
Be still tonight be still
Cradled by a crescent moon
Born under a star
Sometimes there’s no difference
Between a birthmark and a scar
Oh little town of Bethlehem
With your sky so black
May God impart to human hearts
The wisdom that we lack
Should you chance to find
A hope for all mankind
Oh little town of Bethlehem
Be still tonight be still

Talking

What did you hear or notice in the song? What stuck with you? How does it help you make meaning of this season?

Where do you hear resonance between the Christmas story and your life, or current events? How does it help you make meaning of this season?

sharing at the table

praying

Go Tell it on the Mountain (#136)

CHORUS

Go tell it on the mountain,

over the hills and everywhere,

Go tell it on the mountain,

that Jesus Christ is born.

VERSE 1

While shepherds kept their watching,

o’er silent flocks by night,

behold throughout the heavens,

there shone a holy light.

VERSE 2

The shepherds feared and trembled

when lo above the earth

rang out the angel chorus

That hailed our savior’s birth

VERSE 3

Down in a lowly manger

the humble Christ was born

and God sent us salvation

that blessed Christmas morn.

blessing


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november churchish

welcome

centering

singing all who are thirsty

All who are thirsty
All who are weak
Come to the fountain
Dip your heart in the stream of life
Let the pain and the sorrow
Be washed away
In the waves of His mercy
As deep cries out to deep (we sing)
Come Lord Jesus come

 

singing the summons

Will you come and follow me if I but call your name?
Will you go where you don’t know and never be the same?
Will you let my love be shown? Will you let my name be known,
will you let my life be grown in you and you in me?Will you leave yourself behind if I but call your name?
Will you care for cruel and kind and never be the same?
Will you risk the hostile stare should your life attract or scare?
Will you let me answer prayer in you and you in me?

Will you let the blinded see if I but call your name?
Will you set the prisoners free and never be the same?
Will you kiss the leper clean and do such as this unseen,
and admit to what I mean in you and you in me?

 

reading Isaiah 1:11-17

“The multitude of your sacrifices—
    what are they to me?” says the Lord.
“I have more than enough of burnt offerings,
    of rams and the fat of fattened animals;
I have no pleasure
    in the blood of bulls and lambs and goats.
When you come to appear before me,
    who has asked this of you,
    this trampling of my courts?
Stop bringing meaningless offerings!
    Your incense is detestable to me.
New Moons, Sabbaths and convocations—
    I cannot bear your worthless assemblies.
Your New Moon feasts and your appointed festivals
    I hate with all my being.
They have become a burden to me;
    I am weary of bearing them.
When you spread out your hands in prayer,
    I hide my eyes from you;
even when you offer many prayers,
    I am not listening.

Your hands are full of blood!

Wash and make yourselves clean.
Take your evil deeds out of my sight;
stop doing wrong.
Learn to do right; seek justice.
Defend the oppressed.[a]
Take up the cause of the fatherless;
plead the case of the widow.

singing i need you to survive

I need you, you need me
We’re all a part of God’s body
Stand with me, agree with me
We’re all a part of God’s body

It is his will, that every need be supplied
You are important to me, I need you to survive
You are important to me, I need you to survive

I need you, you need me
We’re all a part of God’s body
Stand with me
Agree with me
We’re all a part of God’s body

It is his will, that every need be supplied
You are important to me, I need you to survive
You are important to me, I need you to survive

discussion & reflecting

Stokely Carmichael’s Black Power Speech in Berkeley

“I’ll Never Understand Why” by Shad, feat. Bernadette Kabango

music

lyrics

“Maybe Both, 1865” by Sho Baraka

music

lyrics

communion

singing to the table

Hear the voice of love that’s calling
There’s a chair that waits for you
And a Friend who understands
Everything you’re going through
But you keep standing at a distance
In the shadow of your shame
There’s a light of hope that’s shining
Won’t you come and take your place
And bring it all to the table
There’s nothing He ain’t seen before
For all your fear, all your sorrow and your sadness
There’s a Savior and He calls
Bring it all to the table
He can see the weight you carry
The fears that hold your heart
But through the cross you’ve been forgiven
You’re accepted as you are
So bring it all to the table
There’s nothing He ain’t seen before
For all your trials, all your worries and your burdens
There’s a Savior and He calls
Bring it all to the table
Bring it all
You can bring it all
And come on in, take your place
There’s no one who’s turned away
All you sinners, all you saints
Come right in and find your grace
Come on in, take your place
There’s no one who’s turned away
All you sinners, all you saints
Come right in and find your grace
And bring it all to the table
There’s nothing He ain’t seen before
For all your sin, all your sorrow and your sadness
There’s a Savior and He calls
Bring it all to the table

praying together

singing hold us together

Don’t have a job
Don’t pay your bills
Won’t buy you a home in Beverly Hills
Won’t fix your life in five easy steps
Ain’t the law of the land or the government
But it’s all you need
Love will hold us together
Make us a shelter weather the storm
And I’ll be my brothers keeper
So the whole world will know that we’re not alone
He’s waiting for you
Knockin’ at your door!
Every moment of truth
When your heart hits the floor
And when you’re on your knees, now see
Love will hold us together
Make us a shelter weather the storm
And I’ll be my brothers keeper
So the whole world will know that we’re not alone
This is the first day of the rest of your life
This is the first day of the rest of your life
‘Cause even in the dark you can still see the light
It’s gonna be alright, it’s gonna be alright
This is the first day of the rest of your life
This is the first day of the rest of your life
Oh, ’cause even in the dark you can still see the light
It’s gonna be alright, oh, it’s gonna be alright
And love will hold us together
Make us a shelter weather the storm
And I’ll be my brothers keeper
So the whole world will know that we’re not alone

 

blessing


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October churchish

welcome and centering

singing- morning has broken

just for fun… Cat Stevens made this famous, but it was written by eleanor farjeon in 1931

Morning has broken like the first morning
Blackbird has spoken like the first bird
Praise for the singing, praise for the morning
Praise for them springing fresh from the Word

Sweet the rain’s new fall, sunlit from Heaven
Like the first dew fall on the first grass
Praise for the sweetness of the wet garden
Sprung in completeness where His feet pass

Mine is the sunlight, mine is the morning
Born of the One Light Eden saw play
Praise with elation, praise every morning
God’s recreation of the new day

Morning has broken like the first morning
Blackbird has spoken like the first bird
Praise for the singing, praise for the morning
Praise for them springing fresh from the Word

singing – all creatures of our God and king

did you know–these lyrics come from St. Francis of Assisi?

All creatures of our God and King,
Lift up your voice and with us sing,
Oh praise Him! Alleluia!
Thou burning sun with golden beam,
Thou silver moon with softer gleam!

Refrain:
O praise Him! O praise Him!
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

Thou rushing wind that art so strong,
Ye clouds that sail in heav’n along,
O praise Him! Alleluia!
Thou rising moon, in praise rejoice,
Ye lights of evening, find a voice!

O praise Him! O praise Him!
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

Let all things their Creator bless,
And worship Him in humbleness,
O praise Him! Alleluia!
Praise, praise the Father, praise the Son,
And praise the Spirit, Three in One!

O praise Him! O praise Him!
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

psalm 19 – NRSV

God’s Glory in Creation and the Law

To the leader. A Psalm of David.

The heavens are telling the glory of God;
    and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.
Day to day pours forth speech,
    and night to night declares knowledge.
There is no speech, nor are there words;
    their voice is not heard;
yet their voice goes out through all the earth,
    and their words to the end of the world.

In the heavens he has set a tent for the sun,
which comes out like a bridegroom from his wedding canopy,
    and like a strong man runs its course with joy.
Its rising is from the end of the heavens,
    and its circuit to the end of them;
    and nothing is hid from its heat.

The law of the Lord is perfect,
    reviving the soul;
the decrees of the Lord are sure,
    making wise the simple;
the precepts of the Lord are right,
    rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the Lord is clear,
    enlightening the eyes;
the fear of the Lord is pure,
    enduring forever;
the ordinances of the Lord are true
    and righteous altogether.
More to be desired are they than gold,
    even much fine gold;
sweeter also than honey,
    and drippings of the honeycomb.

Moreover by them is your servant warned;
    in keeping them there is great reward.
But who can detect their errors?
    Clear me from hidden faults.
Keep back your servant also from the insolent;
    do not let them have dominion over me.
Then I shall be blameless,
    and innocent of great transgression.

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
be acceptable to you,
Lord, my rock and my redeemer.

singing- so will i

God of creation
There at the start
Before the beginning of time
With no point of reference
You spoke to the dark
And fleshed out the wonder of light

And as You speak
A hundred billion galaxies are born
In the vapor of Your breath the planets form
If the stars were made to worship so will I
I can see Your heart in everything You’ve made
Every burning star
A signal fire of grace
If creation sings Your praises so will I

God of Your promise
You don’t speak in vain
No syllable empty or void
For once You have spoken
All nature and science
Follow the sound of Your voice

And as You speak
A hundred billion creatures catch Your breath
Evolving in pursuit of what You said
If it all reveals Your nature so will I
I can see Your heart in everything You say
Every painted sky
A canvas of Your grace
If creation still obeys You so will I
So will I
So will I

If the stars were made to worship so will I
If the mountains bow in reverence so will I
If the oceans roar Your greatness so will I
For if everything exists to lift You high so will I
If the wind goes where You send it so will I
If the rocks cry out in silence so will I
If the sum of all our praises still falls shy
Then we’ll sing again a hundred billion times

God of salvation
You chased down my heart
Through all of my failure and pride
On a hill You created
The light of the wold
Abandoned in darkness to die

And as You speak
A hundred billion failures disappear
Where You lost Your life so I could find it here
If You left the grave behind You so will I
I can see Your heart in everything You’ve done
Every part designed in a work of art called love
If You gladly chose surrender so will I
I can see Your heart
Eight billion different ways
Every precious one
A child You died to save
If You gave Your life to love them so will I

Like You would again a hundred billion times
But what measure could amount to Your desire
You’re the One who never leaves the one behind

song by Hillsong United
Songwriters: Joel Houston / Benjamin Hastings / Michael Fatkin

looking & sharing

“the more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.” – Rachel Carson

sharing in communion

praying together

singing- called me higher

I could just sit
I could just sit and wait for all Your goodness
Hope to feel Your presence
And I could just stay
I could just stay right where I am and hope to feel You
Hope to feel something again

And I could hold on
I could hold on to who I am and never let You
Change me from the inside
And I could be safe, oh
I could be safe here in Your arms and never leave home
Never let these walls down

But You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord
You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You lead me Lord
Where You lead me
Where You lead me Lord

And I could hold on
I could hold on to who I am and never let You
Change me from the inside

And I could be safe, oh
I could be safe here in Your arms and never leave home
Never let these walls down


But You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord
You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You lead me Lord
Where You lead me

And I will be Yours, oh
I will be Yours for all my life
And I will be Yours, oh
I will be Yours for all my life
And I will be Yours, oh
I will be Yours for all my life
So let Your mercy
Oh, and I will be Yours, Lord
And I will be Yours for all my life
So let Your mercy light the path before me

‘Cause You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord
‘Cause You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord

Oh, ’cause You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord
Oh, ’cause You have called me higher
You have called me deeper
And I’ll go where You will lead me Lord, where You lead me

Where You lead me Lord
Where You lead me
Where You lead me Lord

blessing