Grace Episcopal Church
28 July 2016
At Mtt. 5.22 Jesus admonishes that one who calls another “fool” is liable to judgment, and yet in our gospel lesson for the coming Sunday He places (at Lk. 12.20) the epithet “fool” in God’s mouth. At first glance this might look like an example of a different standard being applied to God, that as Judge He is not subject to judgment. This distinction would be valid, even if we chose to cloud the argument by pointing out that the words translated as “fool” are in each case different. In Matthew the word is mōré (stupid person); in Luke, Jesus uses aphrōn (one lacking in perception and moderation). The reality is that God is judged by no one, except to the extent that He chooses to reveal how He judges Himself.
God does choose to reveal His character, i.e., how He judges Himself. He does this in becoming one of us, in Jesus, and giving all of Himself. He does this even in the story which includes last week’s Old Testament lesson (Gen. 18.20—32, the judgment on Sodom and Gomorrah). In the verses which immediately precede what we heard last week, the Lord speaks aloud before Abraham, saying, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do, seeing that Abraham shall become a great and mighty nation … No, for I have chosen him, that he may charge his children and household after him to keep the way of the Lord …” (Gen. 18-17—18). In other words, God reveals His way to Abraham, to us. He reveals His character and His will, and it is up to us to respond freely to this revelation not only in how we live but in how we become examples to others.
Abraham participates in God’s soliloquy that “he may charge his children and his household”. We experience God’s living Word both in Jesus’ presence and in holy Scripture in order that we may charge/instruct those whose lives we touch. God uses us to reveal His character and will to others. To be instruments of this revelation we must know God as intimately as He was known by Abraham.
Can we know God this intimately? We can and do, even the more so! At Genesis 18 God passes before Abraham, and Abraham invites God to his table. In the Holy Eucharist we stand before God, and He invites us to His table. We participate in His very life, enjoying communion with Him by and through the Body and Blood of His Son. We are formed and made more Christ like in order that God may use as His instruments to instruct all people of who He is and what His will is.
With each participation in the Holy Eucharist we become more Christ like. We each participation we become more the instrument God intends. Be formed; be formed that God may use you to reveal Himself to those who do not yet know Him.
Grace abounds: Please thank:
§ Bobbie May for the Sunday coffee hour.
Call for Contributions: If you have a spiritual reflection to share, or want to point your fellow worshipers toward a resource, submit your contributions to Fr. Karl (by email) by Wednesday in the week of publication.
Don’t forget “Something Extra for Grace”: Supplemental giving envelopes can be found in pews. If you want to give something extra, please use an envelope to ensure that you are credited.
Music this Week: The Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost (Proper 13C)
Prelude Trumpet Concert in D T. Albinoni
Michael Winkler, trumpet
Entrance Hymn432 “O praise ye the Lord” Laudate Dominum
Offertory Hymn 665 “All my hope on God is founded” Michael
Communion Hymn 564 “Come down, O Love divine” Down Ampney
Closing Hymn 564 “He who would valiant be” St. Dunstan’s
Postlude Allegro (Trumpet Concerto in E flat) F.J. Haydn
§ Ben Dobey, our Organist & Choirmaster, is retiring: On July 31st a celebration brunch will be held in honor of Dr. R. Benjamin Dobey and the ministry of music that he has shared with us. All food will be catered by the hospitality committee. Please stay and help clean up as you are able.
§ Caleb Klinzing and the Spanish students from IDEAS Academy: (A public charter school part of the Sheboygan Area School District) are hosting a brat fry on July 31st to raise funds for a service learning trip to Costa Rica in the summer of 2017. If you are unable to attend, please consider making a donation on the gofundme page: https://www.gofundme.com/24jwby5k
§ ESTHER: IT’S TOUGH BEING A WOMAN: Grace Church Women’s Bible Study will begin on Monday August 29that 10:00am. Join us for a faith journey through the Book of Esther. Beth Moore will take us through a very personal examination of this Old Testament story of Esther as she peels back the layers of history and shows us how very contemporary and applicable the story is to our lives today. If you’ve ever felt inadequate, fearful or find yourself in situations that seem overpowering, this is the study for you. Just as it was tough being a woman in Esther’s time, it is tough being a woman today. During this nine-week study we will watch a lecture on DVD’s, use a workbook ($15.99), and talk about Beth’s teachings. The Book of Esther contains treasures to aid us in our sometimes hurried, harried and pressured lives.
§ For those of you who are interested, there is a sign-up sheet in the Narthex.
§ Love INC - Love In The Name of Christ:
§ The Guild of Martha & Mary: launched their “Feed Your Soul” cooking ministry, here at Grace Church, with 3 Neighbors-In-Need referred through Love Inc. Please pray for the new cooking ministry! If you want to get involved please call Jenna, Love Inc. Coordinator, at 920-783-6701, ext. 103 or call Paul Aparicio at 920-912-6009.
§ “Freedom Cry Anti-Sex Trafficking: This Coalition is hosting a lantern walk on August 19th. They are looking for 150 mason jars and 150 battery operated tea lights to place along the walk. They will need these supplies to be dropped off at Love INC. by July 31st.
§ For more information regarding Love INC, items needed and volunteer opportunities please see their July bulletin in the Narthex.
§ Education for Ministry (EfM): This class was created to help you find your vocation and ministry with a trusted group of friends. By studying scripture, history and reading other people’s writings, we discover more about God’s wonderful plan for our lives. The EfM class will meet on Tuesday nights starting September 13 at 5:30 pm. at the St Peter’s Church House, Sheboygan Falls. Interested individuals can contact Barb Drewry-Zimmerman at: email@example.com or call 920-893-5189 for registration materials. Cost is $350 & scholarships are available. Registrations are due by August 1. They can be mailed to Barb at: PO Box 67, Boulder Junction, WI 54512.
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