for Sunday, July 15, 2012
7th Sunday after Pentecost
15th Sunday in Ordinary Time
lectionary focus: 2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19
note: With this story, I begin my second year of posting children’s sermons. This has been an awesome spiritual journey for me…not just through the discipline of the process but because of your feedback. So many blessings shared! Thank you for being here and thank you for sharing God’s love with all of His children. We are not Christians alone. The Peace of Christ be with each of you. –Fran
In 13 days the Olympic Games will start! Athletes from all over the world will gather together to compete in this sporting festival and we will get to watch their skill and learn about the many participants and their countries. The Olympic Games will be 17 days of excitement. And they will begin with the Opening Ceremony. At the Opening, all of the athletes will process or parade into the stadium. There will be music and banners and flags and lots of smiling people. The spectators and the athletes will be cheering and laughing and flashing their cameras. There will be some speeches and singing the Olympic anthem and the list of rules and then the Olympic flame will be brought into the stadium and the giant cauldron will be lit to burn and shine throughout the days of the Olympic Games. The Opening Ceremony takes several hours and is a really big deal.
But why do they do this big procession? Why not just start the games? Why do they make a big deal of gathering together?
Throughout history people have used processions or parades to start important ceremonies. By walking forward together in a formal and orderly way, people give witness to their unity and their beliefs. With the Opening Ceremony at the Olympic Games, the countries of the world unite in sportsmanship and friendship.
In our Bible story today, King David calls for the people of Israel to process through the town. King David leads the people in this joyous ceremony all for the Glory of God. They dance and sing and play instruments. They are filled with the joy of the Lord. They walk forward together to celebrate being the children of God.
And so it is that we, too, process here each Sunday. We don’t just walk into church. We enter God’s house with purpose and enthusiasm. We look around at our church family with smiles. We wave to our friends. We prepare ourselves to praise God in worship. The acolytes process with the torches and the cross; Pastor Sid processes and welcomes us; the choir processes, leading us in song. And when you come down here to the chancel steps, you process, walking forward together with enthusiasm!
So like the Opening Ceremony at the Olympic Games, we process at church to make a big deal about us being here together. Like King David and the people of Israel, we process with joy to celebrate being the children of God. Alleluia!
Will you pray with me? (This is an echo prayer: the leader says a line and the children repeat it back.)
We process into Your house
We are thankful
to be Your children.
We are not Christians alone.
My mission is to share, inspire, and encourage.