December 26, 2010

Isaiah 63:7-9 As most of you know, the Revised Common Lectionary of scripture readings provides four readings for each Sunday of the year. Normally it’s one from the Hebrew Scriptures, a Psalm, a Gospel reading, and another passage from the New Testament. Here at St. Andrew’s, we often read all four texts, even though only one or two can be the focus for the sermon. But sometimes I decide to focus the whole worship on only two or three readings, and actually dispense with reading the others. And today is one of those days. What may be unusual about this morning though, is that I decided to skip the New Testament readings. The text from Hebrews was a highly theological piece about the suffering that Jesus endured and his ability to help people when they are experiencing suffering as well. And the Gospel text was from Matthew… the story about Mary, Joseph, and the baby Jesus fleeing to Egypt to escape the angry King Herod. (That one certainly makes sense for the Sunday right after Christmas.) But this week, I was drawn to the Psalm and the reading from Isaiah that seemed to pick up a similar theme. It seemed like a wonderful thing to do during this week that is so full of gathering, and celebrating, and rejoicing. It seemed like a good thing to do for us to pause and give thanks to God, to praise God for all the good things that we experience in life. I … Read more »