Every week, sure as the sunrise, Sunday rolls around and the sermon needs to be prepared. And it’s that time again.

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(Not technically a sunrise. More of a sunset). Photo by Monica Smith, La Grange, TX 2019.

If you’re a Revised Common Lectionary preacher, the Tuesday RevGals post may provide some food for thought. Or maybe you’ve jumped off lectionary temporarily, or you’re doing a sermon series, or the Spirit has moved you this week in particular.

In any of those cases, please share your thoughts and concerns, questions and challenges, good ideas and ideas that need help.

As always, I’m praying for you as you prepare. Peace be with you, preachers.


Monica Thompson Smith is a Presbyterian Church (USA) minister, serving as stated supply pastor of First Presbyterian Church, Luling, TX. She is a contributor to There’s a Woman in the Pulpit.


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22 thoughts on “11th Hour Preacher Party: Sure as the Sunrise

  1. this week is number 2 in a four week series on parts of Luke chapters 1 and 2 . Last week the experience of Zechariah in the temple, the angel and Mary., Mary and Elizabeth, including the Magnificat. this week is the birth of John and Jesus, including Zechariah’s song. just started writing, but thinking about when we praise God, when does praise well u and overflow/erupt from within us.

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  2. I’m wrapping up the last few weeks of a summer series on the parables – this week – the parable of the mustard seed, plus the Mt text of the power of faith the size of a mustard seed….in these faith-straining days.

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  3. We are off-lectionary for the summer, re-visiting favourite “Sunday School Stories” – tomorrow is “Moses in the Bulrushes” (which is actually going to be about the courage of all of the women who surrounded Moses – the midwives, his mother and sister, Pharaoh’s daughter). Sermon is done, but I still have no idea what I’m going to do for our Story for All Ages (ie “Children’s Time”). The whole service is story-based, so I’m trying to think of ways to engage people in thinking about courage in the face of extreme danger/oppression.

    I’m also officiating at my first-ever wedding this evening, so “Squee!” (and hoping that I remember to do all of the paperwork correctly…)

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  4. Good morning, and what a gorgeous day it is here in Cleveland!

    I’m using the alternate Isaiah text for a social justice sermon. One of our secretaries has read it and said it’s very bold, which has me a little nervous, because it isn’t particularly. It’s more of a call to begin the conversation, in a congregation in which the views cross the spectrum. I’m PC(USA), serving an ELCA church as an interim, and the ELCA just voted at its national assembly to become a sanctuary church as a national church body. In addition, the ELCA has a wonderful resource for engaging in these difficult conversations, so I’m touting that — in addition to the new PC(USA) pastor called to address gun violence and the Washington National Cathedral statement on Trump’s divisiveness, and I’m wearing my orange stole. Because God is WEARY of our worship without action.

    Farm-fresh blackberries, anyone?

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  5. I am in Lectionary, & using Hebrews 11 & the Luke 12 passages. My non-SBC Baptist congregation needs the faith, provision & second coming conversation, after the week (another funeral + last week’s news.

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  6. I’m in RCL as well – I’m supplying this week. Honestly, I don’t like this lection and would love to get away from it. However, I know that when a passage is giving me this much trouble it’s because Spirit is trying to get me to see something uncomfortable. I wish she would have shown up on Wednesday when I started writing 🙂
    I’ve heard this preached so badly and have so many negative associations with this scripture that I’m talking about how we get to relearn how scriptures are interpreted, and it doesn’t mean that our parents or pastors were wrong or trying to hurt us – just that the Gospel is living and we get to relearn it all the time.
    At the end of the day God wants to give us the kindom and Jesus shows up if we are ready or not. (And we can’t ever really be ready.)

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  7. The good news will be from the RCL Luke 12 passage, exploring what the Kingdom of God looks like as Jesus consoles us by revealing that God is delighted to gift us with the Kingdom and the theme of readiness, watching and waiting. Will/do we recognize Jesus as He comes to us in the homeless, hungry, thirsty, sick and prisoner? Do we see Jesus in the eyes of the other? And timing is everything considering the news especially of the past week.

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  8. Doing pulpit supply on “where the treasure is, there the heart will be also.” Settled pastor asked me to go ahead and address the money/stewardship issues head-on, so that’s what I’m trying to do. It’s actually a passion of mine, but a little harder to do when you don’t know the congregation well.

    For the kids, I’m going to talk about how we remember things, and ways that we can remember God’s amazing love for us – by trying to count the stars in the sky or the grains of sand on the beach (drawing on Hebrews and Genesis). Hoping that they have some creative ideas of how we can all be reminded of God’s love!

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  9. Haven’t visited the preacher party a very long time, but really struggling this weak. Preaching Isaiah, and, in light of recent news in my part of the world (US), this is a real challenge. Trying to keep the anger from interfering with the message.

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    1. Agreed, that’s a tough one in the current US context. If you focus on v.17, can you give examples of how to live out your faith locally? There’s plenty of condemnation for the current administration here, but it’s both easier to act and easier to preach about local opportunities. Blessings to you!

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