(Sunday, July 22, 2012)
Go in peace. Serve the Lord. Thanks be to God.
Do you know what we really wanted to say at the end of the worship service in the Superdome? “Get the hell out of here.”
God did not intend for us to stay in the upper room like the disciples (Luke 24:36-43), held captive by fear that Jesus had been abandoned them. Nor did God intend for us to remain on the mountain top, (Mark 9:2-8) basking in Jesus’ glory.
We were created to live in the midst of a groaning creation (Romans 8:22).
Disciples of Christ stand with each other in the midst of life’s struggles. Disciples are companions on the journey of life that includes gain and loss,
joy and sorrow, pain and healing, victory and failure, not life that consists only of success and satisfaction, security and self-gratification.
When you arrived in New Orleans you were asked to listen for the divine whisper. What has God whispered in your ear this week?
You were invited to be present to what God is up to New Orleans and in our own lives. How will you practice that kind of presence in the days, weeks and months to come?
We invited you to hear God’s call on your life and to get real about following Jesus. What if we quit playing the game of faith and actually lived this life of faith with every twist and turn?
What does it mean to be a disciple of Jesus, and to take the risk of following the one who died on the cross?
How will you tell others about your encounter with Jesus this week?
The world knows us by our actions.
The cross traced on our foreheads at baptism is only visible when we follow, when we take the risk to challenge the prevailing signs and images.
How will you take seriously the promise you made at your confirmation to “strive for justice and peace in all the earth” (ELW page 236)?
Church: Pray for the Lutheran World Federation, of which the ELCA is a member, as the prepare to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation in 2017.
World: Pray for all of the countries of the world separated by walls of any kind – physical, spiritual, political, economic.
New Orleans: Pray for the people who are held captive by the systems that perpetuate poverty.
Self/Group: Pray that you will be accepted back into your congregation as leaders who will inspire a stronger commitment to mission.
Thanks: Give thanks for the adult leaders who spent the week with you in New Orleans.