Monday, April 18, 2016

WMTRBW 36: The Uprising of Worship

Two things for your consideration this week as you reflect on Sunday's sermon on worship and
Chapter 26:

First, for those of you who asked, here's a link to the National Congregations Study I referenced:  Pages 9-11 and 34-35 in particular deal with changes in worship practices in American congregations.

Second, I found this explanation by Brian McLaren of the idea that Jesus gave himself "for us" and "for our sins" to be really compelling:
We say the words Jesus said about the bread being his body given for us, and the wine being his blood shed for us and for our sins. Those words “for us” and “for our sins” are full of meaning for us. Just as we take medicine “for” an illness, we understand that Jesus’ death is curing us of our old habits and ways. For example, when we ponder how he forgave those who crucified him, we are cured of our desire for revenge. When we see how he trusted God and didn’t fear human threats, we are cured of our fear. When we remember how he never stopped loving, even to the point of death, we are cured of our hatred and anger. When we imagine his outstretched arms embracing the whole world, we feel our hearts opening in love for the whole world, too, curing us of our prejudice and favoritism, our grudges and selfishness.
What do you think of this description of what Jesus might have meant when he said his blood was shed for us? How might this change the way you think about breaking bread and drinking the cup around the communion table?

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