Author Archives: Monica

Thursday Prayer

When it all gets to be too much,

When the worries large and small wash over us,

When the last straw happens and keeps happening,

When we don’t have a chance to catch our breath,

Be our deep breath.

Be our persistence.

Be our burden-shoulder-er.

Be our holder-upper.

Thank you.

Amen.img_0187

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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.


RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com

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11th Hour Preacher Party: Choosing Edition

An inconsequential party game to start off:

  • Would you rather eat Valentine’s conversation hearts or marshmallows? 
  • Would you rather take a 30 minute nap in the morning or just go to bed 30 minutes earlier that night?
  • Would you rather vacuum or dust?
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These are the Valentine conversation hearts referred to in the question. 

As you may surmise, I’m pondering the Deuteronomy passage from the Revised Common Lectionary, wherein the Israelites are asked to “choose life!” The other RCL lectionary texts include a third week in the Sermon on the Mount and 1 Corinthians 3. A discussion of those text can be found at the RGBP Tuesday post. Or if you’re a Narrative Lectionary preacher, you are working on John’s question to Jesus: are you the one? Conversation about that is at this post.

What are your choices as you ponder your sermon? What do you need help with? What help can you offer? That’s what the 11th Hour Preacher Party is here for, so let’s share our ideas and resources.


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.


RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com

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Wednesday Prayer: Grounded

 

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Kerr County, Texas, 2010. Photo by Monica Smith.

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear.  Psalm 46:1-2a

Eternal God,

Keep us grounded, rooted, stuck

Firmly in you.

Cradle our faith in you when we have trouble holding it there  ourselves.

Be our refuge. Be our strength. Be present. Be our help. We need you.

Amen.


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.


RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com

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11th Hour Preacher Party: Be Still Edition

I always end up preaching to myself, and sometimes it is something that someone else needs to hear, too. So before we get to work on the sermon: on the off chance you might have a little too much on your to-do list, hear this:

“Be still, and know that I am God”                 Psalm 46:10

And look at this:

window

OK, here we go. Revised Common Lectionary preachers, you get another helping of Jesus’ baptism and the calling of the first disciples, some more Isaiah, and the beginning of a 1 Corinthians series. There is a RevGalBlogPals post about that. Narrative Lectionary friends get Jesus’ first sermon, and we also have a discussion post for that. Non lectionary folks, please let us know what you’re doing; the more ideas, the better!

Children’s moments, prayer thoughts, and other plans are also welcome here. U.S. preachers will want to remember the observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day this weekend, as well as the upcoming inauguration.

And when you get overwhelmed, go back to the top of the post.


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.


RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com

 

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11th Hour Preacher Party: the Home Stretch

Preachers, it’s the home stretch! Fourth Sunday of Advent, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, then we’re finished! Until…you know…the next Sunday.

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My calendar this week is as busy as this branch on the tree. Photo by Monica Smith, 2013

In any case, we are here to party today! Maybe you’re able to work ahead, thanks to a choir cantata or children’s program today. Or maybe you’re working on a sermon for tomorrow. We’re here for any and all resource and advice sharing. Sermon starters and discussions are on the RGBP website, for Narrative Lectionary and the Revised Common Lectionary.

Christmas goodies are on the snack table: we have homemade candy to share. If you’re needing healthy food, we have some clementines.


 

Monica Thompson Smith is a Presbyterian Church (USA) minister, serving as a pulpit supply preacher in South Central Texas. She is a contributor to There’s a Woman in the Pulpit.


RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com.

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11th Hour Preacher Party: Gathering Thoughts

What a week it has been, especially for preachers in the United States, but we know that U.S. elections have affected the whole world community.

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Photo by Monica Smith, 2015

Lectionary preachers, both RCL and Narrative, can find discussions from our site’s Tuesday postings. If you haven’t checked the RevGalBlogPals facebook community, there are several threads where people are working through how and what to preach this week. If you’re not a member, just click “join group,” and the Administrative Team will add you.

In addition, it is stewardship season for many congregations. If that is true of your context, how are you fitting that in?

Share words for children, words for prayers, prayers for each other. And snacks! Share snacks, too.


Monica Thompson Smith is a Presbyterian Church (USA) minister, serving as a pulpit supply preacher in South Central Texas. She is a contributor to There’s a Woman in the Pulpit.


RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com.

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Wednesday Prayer

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Photo by Monica Smith 2016

Oh, God,

Today, please help us remember that…

We are thankful you are here.

We are thankful you give us each other.

We are thankful you love and lift up the brokenhearted.

We are thankful you call us, in love, to do hard things, with love.

We are thankful you remember the orphan and the widow, and all who are vulnerable.

We are thankful you expect us to stand up for those who are oppressed, even when it puts us at risk.

We are thankful you know us: our sins and our regrets, our despair and our hope.

We are thankful nothing can separate us from your love.

Please, help us remember.

Amen.


Monica Thompson Smith is a Presbyterian Church (USA) minister, serving as a pulpit supply preacher in South Central Texas. She is a contributor to There’s a Woman in the Pulpit.


RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com.

 

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11th Hour Preacher Party: Not Such a Party Edition

Preaching friends, I’m not in much of a partying frame of mind. I know many of you in the U.S. are watching the weather forecast with concern, and I know that many of the rest of us are stunned by the devastation Hurricane Matthew has wrought in Haiti, Cuba, the Bahamas, and now in the United States. I also know that the U.S. election is weighing on me, and many of you. I know, too, that there are countless other burdens that we each carry, for ourselves, for others, and for the world. We pray.

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The power of water. Pedernales River. Photo by Monica Smith, 2016

Sunday morning is still approaching rather quickly, and we need a sermon, however. So let’s sit down together and hammer this out. Revised Common Lectionary preachers: find a discussion about your possibilities here. And a Narrative Lectionary discussion is here. Other folks, feel free to chime in with your series or whatever God has called you to preach about this week. I’d also love to hear a children’s time idea or two.

Peace be with all of you, friends.


Monica Thompson Smith is a Presbyterian Church (USA) minister, serving as a pulpit supply preacher in South Central Texas. She is a contributor to There’s a Woman in the Pulpit.


RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com.

Categories: 11th Hour Preacher Party, RevGalBlogPals | Tags: , , , | 42 Comments

11th Hour Preacher Party: Abundance Edition

“I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”    –Jesus, John 10:10

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An abundance of water, enough for a waterfall, in Texas, in late summer!   –Photo by Monica Smith, 2016, Pedernales State Park

That John text isn’t in this week’s lectionary readings, but there is an abundance of things happening and things to consider as we craft a sermon. Texts from the Revised Common Lectionary and the Narrative Lectionary offer us different directions and opportunities to hear the Spirit’s voice. (Commentaries and discussions are at the links). If you’re in the Northern Hemisphere, this is the week that things probably are ramping up program-wise, as the Labor Day holiday is passed, school has started, and the whirlwind has begun. And if you’re in the United States, the 15th anniversary of the September 11 tragedy may need some attention.

What are your plans, preachers? For the sermon? For the day? For the snack table? I’m bringing a Texas Sheet Cake, tradition of my people, to a potluck party tomorrow. Feel free to partake today.

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Monica Thompson Smith is a Presbyterian Church (USA) minister, serving as a pulpit supply preacher in South Central Texas. She is a contributor to There’s a Woman in the Pulpit.

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RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com.
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Friday Five: Back to School

I happily affirm that I love school. I loved going to school. I love that our children are old enough to go to school. I know that not everyone, including some people in my household, have the same experience or love for school, but this time of year always fills me with new energy and hope. crayons

Five questions, then, about school.

  1. What was your favorite thing about school?
  2. Who was your most memorable teacher?
  3. With whom did you sit at lunch?
  4. What is/was your favorite school supply?
  5. What do you think “kids these days” are missing out on?

You may answer in the blog comments, on the facebook post, or post a link to your very own blog post (it’s not complicated; just copy and paste the address of the particular post).

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Monica Thompson Smith is a Presbyterian Church (USA) minister, serving as a pulpit supply preacher in South Central Texas. She is a contributor to There’s a Woman in the Pulpit.

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RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com.
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