Then Jesus began to say to them, “Beware that no one leads you astray. Many will come in my name and say, ‘I am he!’ and they will lead many astray. When you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed; this must take place, but the end is still to come.” (Mark 13:5-7)
November begins with All Saints Day and ends near Advent, when we anticipate Christ’s coming again. So the readings today tell of the final resurrection and the end time. In the turmoil of hope, fear, and disbelief that these predictions provoke in us, Hebrews sounds a note of confident trust. Christ makes a way for us where there is no way, and we walk it confidently, our hearts and bodies washed in baptismal water. The more we see the last day approaching, the more important it is to meet together to provoke one another to love.
Sunday’s Worship Music
As November wears on, our minds turn toward the end of the year and the end of days. Endings are often rife with fear and trepidation, so at traditional services today we sing, “All My Hope on God is Founded.”
In New Day, we sing these words from our Worship Hymn, “We Will Dance” … “We will dance when the sun is shining, In the pouring rain we’ll spin and we’ll sway, And we will dance when the gentle breeze becomes a hurricane.” With these potent words we see in the changing seasons of nature, the seasons of our life, also. And we know that God’s powerful spirit is present in both.
Nothing is Written in Stone.
For Further Reflection:
Worship Corner—The Meal/Thanksgiving
In the Word & At the Table — Lamentations 3:41 says “Let us lift up our hearts as well as our hands to God in heaven” and in Isaiah the seraphs “called to one another and [say]: ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory.’”
In the middle of the service we lift our hearts in thanksgiving. Whether it is giving thanks for the word of God or the Great Thanksgiving that leads to a celebration of communion, we show it is important to give thanks to God for these good gifts. The word Eucharist, another word used to describe the rite of communion, comes to us through a variety of languages and translates to ‘thanksgiving’; the two are linked.
Praising and thanking God are central to our Sunday morning worship services. How does each moment in worship build to this point? Where does God call us to go from here?