16th Sunday after Pentecost
The kingdom of God isn’t about fairness, it’s about God who has enough love for everybody and then some. The abundance of God’s love means that we have an abundance of resources in this world to help others if we choose to live into God’s ways.
If we choose to turn the world upside down, where the first are last and the last are first, we’ll hear complaining, grumbling, yelling, and even violence in response to this extravagant love. There will be so many who don’t want it, even if the reign of God means everyone has enough.
We’re so hung up on our view of fairness, our view that we worked hard to get what we deserve, that we forget what God desires for all of us-and abundant life in Christ, who gave up everything, and laid down his life for us.
The Israelites complain that Moses has brought them out into the desert to die because they have no food. But God tells Moses to inform the people that God has heard their complaints and will send them food. Then, in the evening, quails fill the camp, and in the morning manna covers the ground.
Paul reflects on how he is united with Christ whether he is alive or dead, but how he is convinced that he must remain in order to keep serving God’s people. Then he encourages them to continue to live in ways that reflect God’s reign, even when it results in suffering.
Jesus tells a story about an employer who hires workers throughout the day, but pays them all the same at the end. When those who started at the beginning of the day complain, he challenges them, asking whether they resent his generosity to others. This story leads Jesus into his famous words about the first being last and the last first.
Prayer of Brokenness
God of Justice and Mercy, we confess that often our desire for justice is a desire for punishment of those who have done us wrong. We confess that we sometimes do not show mercy to those who have wronged us, yet we expect mercy ourselves. Forgive us for our selfish, foolish ways. Forgive us for not seeking Your way that turns the world upside down.
In Your reign, You welcome those who have come around last. You embrace those who realize they need to turn their lives around even at the last moment. You love us all as Your children. Help us to love with that same love. Help us to show mercy as You have showed mercy to us. Help us to practice justice that repairs and restores, rather than punishes. In the name of Christ, who has shown us the Way, the Truth, and the Life, we pray. Amen.
Prayer with Deacon Ginny tonight at 7:30pm . And it will continue using the ZOOM meeting format every Thursday. It is important that you register no later than 11:30am., by email to the office on Thursdays or after contacting directly Deacon Ginny at email@example.com . A log in with meeting ID and password will be emailed to you, so you can enter the meeting.
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Please note that on Thursdays along with musical rehearsals, ALL MUSICAL pieces and parts of the Sunday’s Worship service will be recorded. 6:00pm to 9:00pm.
Please see the changes on our Sunday schedule.
Christian Formation Hour – 8:45am to 9:55am
If you need more information regardless of topic and ZOOM log in information, please contact Nicole Putong at Worship@firstumclombard.org .
Children’s Hour – 9:15am to 9:55am
Our children ministries moved from Saturday’s morning to Sunday morning, please for ZOOM log in and other children ministries related activities please contact Chris Smith Kozlowski at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Online Worship Service @ 10am.