Living the Lectionary is a weekly devotional tool intended to give you ideas for living out the Word of God that we encounter on Sundays in worship.
About this coming Sunday: 6th Sunday After Pentecost – (un)heard – We all want to be heard, but we especially want to know that we are heard when we are speaking about what we believe to be true and meaningful in our lives, like when we speak of our faith. God assures us that we are to continue speaking, even when it seems we are not being listened to. Law: Because of sin, the ears of the world are closed to God’s Word, which will result in some people refusing God. Gospel: God send us as emissaries of His Kingdom, as ambassadors and apostles, to continue to speak the good news.
About this Season and Series:
Sundays After Pentecost/”(Un)Comfortable” – The long season of Sundays after Pentecost is one in which we look to the growth of the Church, and one in which we often encounter Jesus teaching His disciples. In our short series, “(Un)Comfortable”, we seek to understand a Jesus who “Disturbs the comfortable and comforts the disturbed”.
Reflecting on the Readings (readings are linked to text on ESVbible.com)
Ezekiel 2:1-5 – They Will Know – When people fail to listen to us, we often assume that we are at fault, but God assures us that the standard by which He judges our performance is in our speaking His Word (which we can control) not others hearing us or believing us (which we cannot control). How does this standard give you comfort in sharing your faith in God? How might this be a word of relief to those whom you are speaking and sharing with?
Psalm 123 – Heard by God – This Psalm, a lament, assures us that we are heard by God when we come to Him in prayer, seeking Him earnestly. What complaint about our sinsick world might you bring to God today that you might put in His trust?
2 Corinthians 12:1-10 – Heard in our Suffering – Paul goes on about how God heard him in the midst of his suffering against the “thorn in the flesh”. God answers him, even though it may not have been exactly what Paul might have wanted to hear. How is God’s grace sufficient for you in the midst of a suffering that you have?
Mark 6:1-12 – Sent to Be Heard – Jesus laments that He is unheard in his own hometown. This would be enough, perhaps, to stop many from trying to spread a message – but Jesus does the opposite, He multiplies His message by sending out His disciples to carry His message to even more people. Who is God calling you to carry Jesus’ message to?
Gift of God: God’s Word is the gift that we are encouraged to share. What particular verse or concept feels like it has been “given to you” in a special way this week?
Giving Ourselves As Gifts: With whom might you share this particular piece of God’s Word?
Celebrating Gifts Given: Who has shared God’s Word with you this week that you can thank?
Living the Lectionary Ideas
Learn: The issue of being heard is one that connects to the theological concept of “election”, which seeks to begin to answer why some respond to God’s call while others reject it. Read about this concept.
Do: Obviously, the readings this week are greatly about being heard. Perhaps this is just the opportunity for you to be encouraged to share your faith with someone. If you don’t feel it is, then perhaps practicing talking about faith with a fellow Christian may be in order.
Live: God calls for us to live with courage about our faith, even being willing to speak about our faith with the courage. How might you engender this courage in yourself?