Living the Lectionary – GIFTwrap

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 Season and Series: 

About the week starting November 22nd: Christ the King Sunday – GIFTwrap – As we end the Church year that we have known as the “GIFTED” year, we reflect upon how God has given us this year as a gift. Law: At the end of our church year, we consider the year gone past, and in it, we likely see our sins piled up in one big lump. Gospel: God puts to death our sinfulness, and makes us a new creation in Jesus Christ. He frees us from our sin and gives us the freedom to live in His Kingdom.

Christ the King Sunday/End of the Church Year – Christ the King Sunday is the liturgical celebration of the end of the Church Year. It is sort of the “New Year’s Eve” of the Church. Since it is the “last day of the year” it naturally makes us look to the last day of all years, when Jesus comes back as our King.

Reflecting on the Readings (readings are linked to text on ESVbible.com)

Isaiah 51:4-6– God continues forever – Isaiah compares the everlasting nature of God with the temporal nature of things. What things have “worn out like a garment” in your life, or has “vanished like smoke”? As you mourn those things, what are their eternal counterparts that you find in God?

Psalm 93– The Waters – The waters and floods have a prominent place in these readings. The image of water usually brings Christians to a remembrance of Baptism. How does the imagery in this psalm compare to your ideas around Baptism and the Baptized?

Ephesians 2:1-10 – GIFTED – We are gifted with saving faith that makes us into the “workmanship” of Christ. This means that we ourselves and others should occasionally be able to see the mark of Jesus’ work in our vocations. How is Jesus working through you while you’re at work?

Mark 13:24-37– Stay Awake! – Jesus’ speech to His disciples here brings up images of how the natural year and seasons ebb and flow.  The signs of nature tell us when to plant, when to bundle up, and when to seek shelter. What are the things that Jesus is encouraging you to notice of the spiritual and churchly seasons?

Living the Lectionary Ideas

Learn: Why does the Church Year end at the awkward time of late November? Read some about the Church Year and its internal logic by googling it, or pick up “Ancient Future Time” by Robert Webber.

Do: At the end of our years, we normally look back over our past and plan for the future. Commit to doing some reflecting and planning this week, especially around your spiritual life.

Live: The readings for Christ the King Sunday call us to remember our place before our King as subjects. How might you live with a character of humility before God this week?

Local: Look for times when people are serving you this week and truly thank them for their service to you.

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