This blog comes to you from the people at Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO
Lamenting the Drought 071212
I’ve heard the complaint from philosophers that Christianity is a magic religion, that whatever we want we can ask for, and when we do wrong we expect punishment for it.
So, it is easy to sweat through this drought in the Midwest US by claiming it is because I, or we (whoever ‘we’ is) have failed to do something right, or have done something wrong and offended God. It might be easy for any of us to find a reason God could be offended, or to find a reason God is upset with hischurchofChristians.
But the Old Testament is called ‘Old’ for a reason. With Jesus comes an amazing leap of human growth. Jesus brings us finally to where God wanted us to be all along. I do not believe that God is angry at us, and I still think that the only sin is forgetting our ever-present relationship with God.
Because of the heat and the drought, we’re taking things slowly during the day, and we see much of the region slowing down, and trying to keep cool. We pray together, and hope you too will pray and keep your Bible at your side. Maybe we can use this time of day to contemplate what is going on in the world. What should we be doing, and what should the church be doing?
Pray for peace
PeaceMennoniteChurchkeeps a prayer list for those in need. If you need prayer, or want to e-mail our pastor, e-mail billd @ peacemennonitechurch.net (Take out the extra spaces to use this e-mail—the spaces confuse spam generators).
Pray with us!
We are praying as a church, and attempting to follow the centuries’ old tradition of praying with other Christians three times a day. We are following the prayer liturgy at www.commonprayer.net
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2 Corinthians 7:2-16
1I will extol you, O Lord, for you have drawn me up, and did not let my foes rejoice over me.
2O Lord my God, I cried to you for help, and you have healed me.
3O Lord, you brought up my soul from Sheol, restored me to life from among those gone down to the Pit.
4Sing praises to the Lord, O you his faithful ones, and give thanks to his holy name.
5For his anger is but for a moment; his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may linger for the night, but joy comes with the morning.
6As for me, I said in my prosperity, “I shall never be moved.”
7By your favor, O Lord, you had established me as a strong mountain; you hid your face; I was dismayed.
8To you, O Lord, I cried, and to the Lord I made supplication:
9“What profit is there in my death, if I go down to the Pit? Will the dust praise you? Will it tell of your faithfulness?
10Hear, O Lord, and be gracious to me! O Lord, be my helper!”
11You have turned my mourning into dancing; you have taken off my sackcloth and clothed me with joy,
12so that my soul may praise you and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks to you forever.
16For these things I weep; my eyes flow with tears; for a comforter is far from me, one to revive my courage; my children are desolate, for the enemy has prevailed. 17Zion stretches out her hands, but there is no one to comfort her; the Lord has commanded against Jacob that his neighbors should become his foes; Jerusalem has become a filthy thing among them. 18The Lord is in the right, for I have rebelled against his word; but hear, all you peoples, and behold my suffering; my young women and young men have gone into captivity. 19I called to my lovers but they deceived me; my priests and elders perished in the city while seeking food to revive their strength. 20See, O Lord, how distressed I am; my stomach churns, my heart is wrung within me, because I have been very rebellious. In the street the sword bereaves; in the house it is like death. 21They heard how I was groaning, with no one to comfort me. All my enemies heard of my trouble; they are glad that you have done it. Bring on the day you have announced, and let them be as I am. 22Let all their evil doing come before you; and deal with them as you have dealt with me because of all my transgressions; for my groans are many and my heart is faint.
2 Corinthians 7:2-16
2Make room in your hearts for us; we have wronged no one, we have corrupted no one, we have taken advantage of no one. 3I do not say this to condemn you, for I said before that you are in our hearts, to die together and to live together. 4I often boast about you; I have great pride in you; I am filled with consolation; I am overjoyed in all our affliction.
5For even when we came into Macedonia, our bodies had no rest, but we were afflicted in every way—disputes without and fears within. 6But God, who consoles the downcast, consoled us by the arrival of Titus, 7and not only by his coming, but also by the consolation with which he was consoled about you, as he told us of your longing, your mourning, your zeal for me, so that I rejoiced still more. 8For even if I made you sorry with my letter, I do not regret it (though I did regret it, for I see that I grieved you with that letter, though only briefly). 9Now I rejoice, not because you were grieved, but because your grief led to repentance; for you felt a godly grief, so that you were not harmed in any way by us. 10For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation and brings no regret, but worldly grief produces death. 11For see what earnestness this godly grief has produced in you, what eagerness to clear yourselves, what indignation, what alarm, what longing, what zeal, what punishment! At every point you have proved yourselves guiltless in the matter.
12So although I wrote to you, it was not on account of the one who did the wrong, nor on account of the one who was wronged, but in order that your zeal for us might be made known to you before God. 13In this we find comfort. In addition to our own consolation, we rejoiced still more at the joy of Titus, because his mind has been set at rest by all of you. 14For if I have been somewhat boastful about you to him, I was not disgraced; but just as everything we said to you was true, so our boasting to Titus has proved true as well. 15And his heart goes out all the more to you, as he remembers the obedience of all of you, and how you welcomed him with fear and trembling. 16I rejoice, because I have complete confidence in you.
The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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