The Bridge – Week of March 22, 2015

This Weeks E-Bridge from Seymour Congregational Church!

What you will find here:

Some thoughts on the text

Announcements!

Some thoughts on the Jerimiah text for this Sunday Jer; 31:31-34 – written on your heart

The promise of a “new covenant” in this passage may evoke the Christian scriptures, stories, and promises for many of us. Yet when first written these words signified the promise of a faithful God to a devastated people for restoration, perhaps even in their lifetimes.

Jeremiah lived through the demise of his civilization when the Babylonians invaded Judah, assaulted Jerusalem, and reduced the temple to rubble, exiling, or killing the royal family, priests, prophets, and majority of the population. The resulting chaos may be unimaginable to readers who have not lived through war and its aftermath in their own land. Here in the United States, those who survived the attack on Pearl Harbor or the attacks on the World Trade Center will have experienced some of what the citizens of Judah saw and felt. However, in neither case did the US government – or even those of Hawaii or New York – fall. In fact, in both cases governmental, religious, and social organizations responded immediately demonstrating the preservation of American institutional life. Not so in 586 BCE.

In Judah in 586 BCE, broken families would have been ravaged by grief and loss; those left behind would have had to scramble to find surviving relatives and a place to sleep if their homes had been destroyed. Produce and food animals were either destroyed or taken. Every object of value was plundered. Anyone with any authority or skill to help rebuild the society
was dead or gone.

And for those who asked “Why?” there were the words of Jeremiah (26:18) and Micah (3:12) whom he quoted, predicting the conflagration: God would destroy Judah and Jerusalem for their sin, specifically the injustices of their officials. Now the day of destruction had come upon them. Surely all hopewas lost.

Yet God had not abandoned the people. God spoke to and through Jeremiah. The same God who planted the garden of Eden and crafted humanity from its soil will replant Judah. God will replant, tend, and nurture human and animal life amid the ashes of Judah, Jerusalem, and the temple.

Been there – in our worst dreams – maybe but for most of us not really- God does promise to be with Israel and us.

In those days they shall no longer say, ‘The parents have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge.'” Instead, according to verse 30, “all shall die for their own sins; the teeth of everyone who eats sour grapes shall be set on edge.” The remission of the sin of the past generations gives the survivors and their descendants an opportunity to
start their lives over with God as they rebuild their homes and nation. This promise was so important that God also sent it to Ezekiel, exiled in Babylon.

This new beginning will be at a time not specified – “the days are surely coming” – accompanied by a new covenant. God will make, literally engrave, this new covenant on the hearts of the people, instead of on tablets that
can be lost, stolen, or broken. And there it is for us. Tender words for our God , A Promise of forgiveness

and reconciliation you can write it on your heart. No matter how bad it gets God remains a constant positive force in our lives.

And some words on John 12:20-33

We here little of the Cross in today’s world. There was a time when folks would talk about their particular cross to carry or bear. That is to tolerate or endure or suffer. We even have some old Hymns that focus us on the cross. Does the cross have any meaning in today’s culture? Does the meaning culture gives the cross, have any connection to Christian faith?

References to “Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior” have become popular among sports figures and music stars. After a victory or during an award, stars will give “glory” to God for their accomplishments. I give glory to Jesus.
As admirable as these testimonials might be, do they really speak of God’s “glory?” Have you ever noticed none of these testimonials ever mention the cross? When was the last time someone thanked God for “this cross”. But it is so much about the cross. As we come closer to Easter, the cross looms larger. In this Sunday’s gospel, Jesus stated his glory in plain terms. It was the cross.

Rev Ed

ANNOUNCEMENTS

MAUNDY THURSDAY – April 2nd –  Rev. Ed will be serving a spaghetti dinner at5:30 PM.  Please sign up downstairs at coffee hour if you plan to attend.The Service will be at 7:00 PM in the Sanctuary.

BIBLE STUDY:  Rev. Ed is holding a Bible Study at 12:30 PM every Thursdaythrough March 26th.  The study will be on the Gospel of Mark.  Brown bag, or Tupper wear lunch.

Is any member of your family having a birthday or anniversary?  Why not surprise them and put flowers on the altar for their celebration?  Or remember a loved one.  Flowers mean so much.  Our Flower Chart in the hall is completely empty for  March.  Calling YOU to please sign up!!

Raffle Basket Please bring in baskets asap. We wish to have as many baskets as possible for the Bunny Breakfast questions see Teresa!

Tag Sale volunteer sign-up sheet has been posted (sale date is Sat., May 2nd) and can be found on the back table during coffee hour – thanks for helping any way you can (bake goods needed ~ work before, during & after sale ~ donate items for sale!). See Laura if you have any questions.

BOOK CLUB:  Our book club meets the first Friday of each month. We each take turns picking a book of our own choice and then the discussion takes place in our home. Books of every genre are chosen which makes for lively
discussion. For more information contact Karen Baker, 888-0394.

Thank You to everyone who made the Bowling ng fundraiser for D.V. a success!

Palm Sunday –  Reserve the Date March 29th  “Sanctuary”  Cantata – Sung Service

Advertisements