MONDAY THE THIRTIETH OF OCTOBER, 2017
Almighty and everlasting God, who, in the abundance of your goodness, does exceed the deserts as well as the desires of your suppliants, pour forth upon us your mercy; that you may forgive those things whereof our conscience is afraid, and add unto us those things which our prayer dare not to ask; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
PSALM ONE HUNDRED AND THIRTY-SEVEN ( abridged )
O pray for the peace of Jerusalem.
By the waters of Babylon
we sat down and wept,
when we remembered Zion.
As for our lyres, we hung them up
on the willows that grow in that land.
For there our captors asked for a song,
our tormentors called for mirth:
"Sing us one of the songs of Zion."
How shall we sing
the Lord's song
in a strange land?
If I forget you, O Jerusalem,
let my right hand forget its skill.
Let my tongue cleave
to the roof of my mouth
if I do not remember you,
if I set not Jerusalem
above my highest joy.
Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and shall be for ever. Amen.
O pray for the peace of Jerusalem.
God of our pilgrimage, you sent your son to our strange land to bring us home to you; give us your songs to sing, that even in our exile we may be filled with the breath of the Spirit of Jesus Christ our lord. Amen.
MEDITATION by Tim Madsen
"He be gone now but his footprint still here"
(transferred from Sunday)
Clarence Jordan was a civil rights pioneer, author of the "Cotton Patch Gospels" and co-founder of Habitat for Humanity.
He was born in Talbotton, Georgia in 1912. From an early age the young Jordan was troubled by the racial and economic injustice that he perceived in his community. Hoping to improve the lot of sharecroppers through scientific farming techniques, Jordan enrolled in the University of Georgia, earning a degree in agriculture in 1933. During his college years, however, Jordan became convinced that the roots of poverty were spiritual as well as economic. This conviction led him to the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, from which, in 1938, he earned a Ph.D. in the Greek New Testament. While at seminary Jordan met Florence Kroeger, and the couple were soon married.
In 1942, the Jordans founded Koinonia Farm, an interracial, Christian farming community near Americus, Georgia. The Koinonia partners bound themselves to the equality of all persons, rejection of violence, ecological stewardship, and common ownership of possessions. For several years the residents of Koinonia lived in relative peace alongside their Sumter County neighbours. But as the civil rights movement progressed, white citizens of the area increasingly perceived Koinonia, with its commitment to racial equality, as a threat. In the 1950s and early 1960s, Koinonia became the target of a stifling economic boycott and repeated violence, including several bombings.
In the late 1960s, the hostilities gradually subsided, and Jordan increasingly turned his energies to speaking and writing. Among the latter are his well-known Cotton Patch series, homey translations of "New Testament" writings which set the story of Jesus in the American South.
In 1965, Millard and Linda Fuller visited Koinonia, planning only to stay for a couple of hours. Inspired by Jordan, however, in mid-1968, the Fullers chose to make Koinonia their permanent home. The Fuller family brought renewed energy to Koinonia. The organisation changed its name to Koinonia Partners and started a number of partnership type ventures such as "Partnership Housing," a project to build and sell quality, affordable homes at cost with a no interest mortgage for low-income area families. This would eventually lead, in 1976, to the creation of Habitat for Humanity. Jordan, however, would not live to see the completion of the first house. On the twenty-ninth of October, 1969, he died suddenly of a heart attack.
Scripture. In the "Cotton-Patch" version of "Luke," chapter six we read:
But you all love your enemies, and be kind, and lend, expecting nothing. And you’ll get plenty of ‘pay’; you’ll be the spittin’ image of the Almighty, who himself is friendly towards the unlovely and the mean. Be tender, just as your Father is tender.
... for peace in the world.
... for the residents of Koinonia Farm and all who seek live in community in the same spirit as the first Christians.
... for Habitat for Humanity and all who work to make housing available and affordable to those on low incomes.
... for victims of the storms that have wreaked havoc in parts of central and northern Europe. DETAILS
... for the parents of autistic children, especially those whose child is prone to episodes of aggressive behaviour.
... for those now facing starvation in the conflict-wracked DR Congo province of Kasai. DETAILS
... for those who have died and for those who mourn their passing.
... for those who are unwell and for those caring for them.
... for those, both close to us and far off, who we hold in our personal prayers.
... for ourselves.
THE LORD'S PRAYER
Father of us, O spiritual one,
your name be truly honoured.
Your kingdom spread, your will prevail
through earth, as through the heavens.
Sustaining bread grant us each day.
Forgive our debts as we forgive
the debts of all who cannot pay.
And from confusion keep us clear;
deliver us from evil's sway. Amen.
From "The Substance of Faith: And Other Cotton Patch Sermons" by Clarence Jordan:
Even though people about us choose the path of hate and violence and warfare and greed and prejudice, we who are Christ's body must throw off these poisons and let love permeate and cleanse every tissue and cell. Nor are we to allow ourselves to become easily discouraged when love is not always obviously successful or pleasant. Love never quits, even when an enemy has hit you on the right cheek and you have turned the other, and he's also hit that.”
Grant, O God, that your holy and life-giving Spirit may move every human heart; that the barriers dividing us may crumble, suspicions disappear and hatreds cease; that we may live in peace with one another; through your son, Jesus Christ, our saviour and lord. Amen.
May the Lord bless us, protect us from all evil and bring us to everlasting life. Amen.
NOW LIGHT A CANDLE
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