05 October, 2005

The curse of the monthly article

One of the roundabout reasons I got pushed into the blogisphere is that I'm required, in my new job, to write a newsletter article on a monthly basis. Oh, okay. I'll just post those things on my blog, too. Good idea, self.

No problem, I thought. What's 250 words? I can talk for that long without warning on just about any subject, right? And if you give me a head start, I can even reference appropriate pieces of the Bible, assuming (a) the Bible has anything to say, and (b) you're interested in what that might be.

But I'm finding it hard to say anything of any substance in one page.

And then came stewardship season. Oh yes, it's time to talk about money and budgets. The single issue which can irritate congregations faster than just about any other. And I'll admit, gentle reader (by the way, I'm assuming I have no readers yet), that I weenied out. Here's the text of the article below.

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The lectionary stories in October take us on a journey through the desert, to a triumphal entry to a new and bright future. On their way from one homeland to another, caught between one kind of life and another, the children of Israel spent a generation in the wilderness. One leader took the place of another. At the end, Abraham's people finally entered the land promised long before--hundreds of years before, or about 70 chapters of Biblical narrative.

The stories from the lectionary that we will read in worship (i.e., The ten commandments in Exodus 20, the golden calf in Exodus 32, the promise of God's presence in Exodus 33, the death of Moses in Exodus 34, and God's presence with Joshua in Joshua 3) step through a section of the Biblical narrative that begins in the wilderness, in scarcity, and ends in abundance. They begin with a disorganized people, without purpose, and end with a purpose and a plan.

October is also the month when we at St. Thomas have chosen to remind ourselves of the great abundance of God's creation, of the wondrous things God has done for us in the past, and remind ourselves of the great purpose to which we are called. This year, with the recent purchase of new land, we look ahead in specific and concrete ways to what God might have us do.