AS we gather, as we begin our week, let us pray… (prayer source)
O Lord, your Word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path. Give us grace to receive your truth in faith and love, and strength to follow on the path you set before us; through Jesus Christ, Amen.
This week brings us to the 2nd Sunday After (Of?) Epiphany. The RCL readings for Epiphany 2A are here.
I remember many years ago when teaching Sunday School using a Lectionary-based curriculum being amazed at the logistic gymnastics the compilers would go to in their attempts to link all the passages together under one thematic statement. As a preacher I quickly learned that often this was a fool’s errand and that I needed to choose to focus on one or two passages. In my experience this is most true during the Ordinary Time seasons–a fact I was reminded of when reading through the passages for this week.
We have Isaiah giving what could be called a job description or mission statement for the Servant. Of course whether Isaiah meant it for the Messiah is a matter of some debate.
Or we have the first in a series of readings from the first 3 chapters of 1 Corinthians. And given what else he has to say to the community as the letter progresses Paul is being exceptionally effusive in his thanks and praise here.
Then we have the Gospel reading. Last week we had Matthew’s description of Jesus’ baptism. This week we have John’s non-account of Jesus’ baptism, followed close behind by the beginning of the discipleship group. John’s proclamation prompts some to go check out Jesus. And then in turn Andrew goes to his brother and says “you gotta meet this guy”. The rest, as they say, is history.
Another option for this week is to do something for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. There are a variety of links about that here.