For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat. For we hear that there are some who walk among you in a disorderly manner, not working at all, but are busybodies. Now those who are such we command and exhort through our Lord Jesus Christ that they work in quietness and eat their own bread. (2 Thessalonians 3:10-13)
Lord Jesus, show us how to handle the situation where people desire to work but there are no jobs.
But as for you, brethren, do not grow weary in doing good. (2 Thessalonians 3:13)
Holy Spirit, show us clearly the good you would have us do.
And if anyone does not obey our word in this epistle, note that person and do not keep company with him, that he may be ashamed. Yet do not count him as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother. (2 Thessalonians 3:14-15)
Father, show us how to be brothers to those in the body who are in need.
Now may the Lord of peace Himself give you peace always in every way. The Lord be with you all. (2 Thessalonians 3:16)
Lord, we need you to be with us and give us your peace. Thank you.
The salutation of Paul with my own hand, which is a sign in every epistle; so I write. (2 Thessalonians 3:17)
Thank you, Lord, for Paul’s faithful witness to the gospel.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen. (2 Thessalonians 3:18 )
Lord Jesus Christ, pour out your grace upon us all. Amen.
Sunday: 66, 67 * 19, 46; 1 Macc. 2:29-43,49-50 or Hab. 1:1-4(5-11)12-2:1; Acts 28:14b-23; Luke 16:1-13
Proper 28 Closest to November 16: 98 or 98:5-10; Malachi 3:13-4:2a,5-6; 2 Thessalonians 3:6-13; Luke 21:5-19
Monday: 89:1-18 * 89:19-52; 1 Macc. 3:1-24 or Hab. 2:1-4,9-20; Rev. 20:7-15; Matt. 17:1-13
Notes from the Front Line
***** Christ Church Schenectady Prayer Table Report, Saturday,November 16, 2013, 9:15 – 10:30 a.m. Louise Popa, Steve Evans. and Torre Bissell on State St. and Darlene Chesnut and Mark Pasko on Albany St. Incredible blue sky and balmy weather.
+–indicates received a wooden cross made by Dennis Adams of North Carolina
a–indicates was anointed with Holy Water
199–”199 Promises of God”, a small paperback with encouraging quotes from the Bible
Roy (man) — “I have alcohol on my breath.” We prayed for sobriety.
+Javon (young man) — “For my family.”
Mark (man) — Pray for +John who asked prayer for Vivian who drives his girl friend Julie crazy. Also prayer for day off to work at soup kitchen.
Ashed (man) — “Hit and Run” prayer
+Paula (regular) and her friend +Kathy (mom) and +Alexis (Kathy’s daughter). We prayed for Paula’s family and then we prayed for Kathy. Kathy said her daughter Zaradia is terminally ill with liver disease. We told her there is nothing terminal if we are in Jesus because he can raise us to new life when we die. Kathy believes in Jesus. We urged her to tell Zaradia the hope that she can have in Jesus for eternal life with him. Kathy said she is going to tell her. I gave Paula the word Jean and I got this morning: “I hear you when you cry out to me.”
a + 199 Harry (bottle guy) — He asked prayer that he would stay clean and sober. He has had 2 months clean.
+ 199 Andrew (man) — “Peace and provision”
+ a 199 Joseph (man) — He asked for blessing on his family. He had just come back from 3 months in Chicago visiting his grandchildren. He has been to the prayer table before.
+ a 199 José (man) — “for good health and that I will be able to keep working.”
199 Stephen (young man with bright purple and pink hair “I was bored.”) — He asked for the gifts and power of the Holy Spirit to live the Christian life. [He was baptized while he was in jail.]
+ Dinah (woman) — “I’m on my way to the bus.”
+ a 199 Taiquan (young man) — He asked prayer that he would be a good father to his daughter and a good role model to his younger brother. He has given his life to Jesus. He was walking by with two other guys his age. He stopped for prayer, they went on.
+ 199 Imani (young woman) — “For me andmy family.” +199 Phoenix (Imani’s daughter)
+ a 199 Omella (young man with a limp, his right leg was shorter than the left leg) — He gave his life to Jesus before and is still walking with him.
Steve (man) — We prayed for a place for him to start his business.
a 199 Sabitha (regular) — “for finances”
+ Alfredo- drove right up to the prayer table! He wanted a new cross because, as he showed us, his was wearing out. Prayer for him and his family, blessing, protection, provision and for him to be the father God is calling him to be.
+ Lloyd-straighten out a situation they are in and peace between him and his wife (threw the beer bottle he was drinking from away before he came over)
Prenauth-he needs a weekly arm injection for his mental illness-prayed for healing of his mind and for him to turn his stress over to God
++++ (4 sisters, from young to older, all school age) Denise, Mimi, Cece, Envy- we prayed for each one for school, friends, blessings, and that they would be a blessing
Wells (adult male) prayed for his mother who has breast cancer
++ Estelle(mother) and Angel(daughter)- prayed for their pastor, John, for healing (we have prayed for them recently on State St.)
+Janet-prayed for strength, protection, and that God would be her shield (I have prayed for her before on Albany St.)
Dennis-spent a long time with him, he was drinking, he know a lot about God and had personal experience with Jesus, but was choosing to be disobedient. Please pray for him to want to obey God.
***** News from Bishop Grant and Doctor Wendy
Rt Rev Dr Grant LeMarquand and Dr Wendy LeMarquand are missionaries of SAMS (Society of Anglican Missionaries and Senders) Bishop Grant is area bishop for the Horn of Africa (Ethiopia, Somalia, Eretrea, Djibouti); under the Most Rev Dr Mouneer Anis, Bishop of Egypt with North Africa and the Horn of Africa
What does Love Look Like?
What does love look like? This question has been quietly simmering in the back of my mind lately. It popped up as I lost my shoe to the grasping mud for the second time. I felt around for it with my foot, hoping to find it and nothing else in the muddy water. I was half supporting, half carrying our oldest worker to her home to recover from combined pneumonia and malaria. Although she is nearly 10 years younger than I am, she looks nearly 20 years older; my generations of good nutrition contrasting with her heritage of deprivation.
”What does love look like?”, I wondered, stopping myself from running out to protect the precious 2 inches of rainwater left in our last rain barrel. I was watching the community children as they laughed and chatted while letting the water run unused. After all, they didn’t want to rush taking turns to wash their feet! This is sharing life with the poor. It is sharing in the lack of running water and understanding the lack of foresight to conserve it when the means of conserving water are so often unavailable, and even unimaginable.
What does love look like? I am struck by the sheer power of goodness shining through the midst of difficult circumstances. God is unfailingly good. And the challenge to look for, to see and to express His goodness in every aspect of life – surely this is what love looks like.
Horn of Africa Area Assembly:
The audience hushed as ‘Jesus’ walked in, resplendent in wig and re-purposed Mothers’ Union uniform. It was the 3rd bible study drama of the Area Assembly. This one, presented by the Opo, was bound to be good! In quiet solemnity, the crowd followed Jesus, holding wounded heads bound in cloth, walking with shortened and twisted limbs, and otherwise looking generally woe-begone. With quiet majesty, Jesus healed all. As all sat down, one of the disciples approached the Lord, clearly explaining in Opo that the crowd needed to eat. A regal gesture from Jesus sent him back to the crowd, where 5 small loaves and 2 real fish were produced in hushed reverence. As Jesus lifted the basket high in mute thanksgiving, the plastic bag under the loaves and fish was ripped away, revealing the hidden bounty of bread rolls underneath. Electrifyingly, the crowd leapt to their feet, their cries of joy erupting from the absolute silence like a foretaste of resurrection! As one man, they dove in a free for all scrum, loaves of bread flying everywhere, mouths full of laughter and food – real joy… and really funny!
Area Assembly: 200 gathered for 2 days of business, worship and teaching. See attached “Bishop’s Charge” http://gallery.mailchimp.com/9c9acb225d20d4c20ad4369dd/files/bishop_s_charge_2013_PDF.pdf
Clergy and Lay vote at Area Assembly
Definitely NOT boring! Just a couple of years ago, life was fairly predictable. Most days I could be found in my office, in front of my computer screen doing professorial preparation or in the classroom teaching. But now, a kaleidoscope of travel has kept life, well, let’s say ‘interesting’!
South Sudan: Speaking at the retreat for students graduating from Bishop Gwynne College and then at the graduation itself combined joy (finally a chance to go to the college where Wendy and I were to have gone almost 30 years ago but were prevented by war), and frustration (preaching at Emmanuel Jieng Church, the wonderful worship interrupted by an hour long campaign speech by the country’s Vice President as he ‘greeted’ the people).
Addis: learning Amharic; jumping through residency permit hoops; filling in at our English congregation while the rector was away; leading and preaching at the Remembrance Day service organized by the British Embassy with 40 ambassadors and their ‘Military Attaches’; introducing a famous Baptist preacher at the Sunday evening service at St Matthew’s. During one of our trips to Addis, a couple of terrorists blew themselves up while trying to assemble a bomb that they had intended to detonate at a large football match between Ethiopia and Nigeria. The devastation would have been horrific. The country is now on heightened alert. Nothing boring about life here.
Gambella: Life has been no less varied. Reports, repairs, preparation, Area Assembly (like a church ‘Convention’ or ‘Synod’ for the Episcopal Area of the Horn of Africa), and of course, interruptions – the stuff of ministry here. Wonderful visitors from the Mothers’ Union (one from London, one from Juba, one from Addis) to train local literacy facilitators in how to teach the women in our Gambella churches how to read their own language; great visit from St Matthew’s Church representatives to the Area Assembly. Much less helpful visit from a (now) former priest (deposed for neglect of duty, deception, violence and threatening behaviour among other things). Not much that is ‘routine’ here either.
I have often told people that nothing is mediocre in Africa – it is either spectacularly wonderful or truly awful. I recently read the Old Testament story of the spies going to check out Canaan. Most of them (10 out of 12) came back with the report, “The people were like giants; we seemed like grasshoppers next to them.” A couple of days after reading the passage, I realized that I had caught a case of that exotic disease, ‘grasshopper syndrome’. I was having a tough time trusting that God would give the resources (material and spiritual) that are needed for this work. The ‘cares and occupations’ were taking a toll. I began to long for that 9-5 routine at the desk and in the classroom. A bit of boredom sounded kind of nice. A series of people and events have helped. Bishop Mouneer in Egypt has provided great wisdom; countless encouraging emails seem to arrive just when I need them; and (of course!) Wendy is always there to pray and support. God is good – I may be a grasshopper, but our God sure isn’t.
***** South Colton Mission Prayer table–Zion , Colton, Friday Nov. 15, 2013 50–part sun,cold wind, Jo Ferris
4 tooted and waved with smiles— 1 before I did
there were no –no waves
Anne –construction of their new house on Cold Brook
Bicknell Bldg. Supply —delivery of construction materials
Kevin —his job with the state
Henry –asked for prayers “that God’s will be done”
Higley Flow State Park –new trail Lodge –opening soon