Sunday, February 7, 2016

The First Sunday in Lent (C), February 14, 2016 - Deuteronomy 26:1-11

These Syrian refugees make me think that maybe the phrase,
"A wandering Aramean was my ancestor" was meant to remind
the people of where they'd been, and how far they had come.

Note: Please also see my poem from Lent 1, 2013, "He Departed from Him Until an Opportune Time," based on the gospel text, Luke 4:1-13, at:

(Also - for a little fun - page down (or click on Bonus Poem, "I Want to Say" on the right) for the previous daffodil post.)

Why Go to Church?

Our forebears knew how great their need
To say their thanks with such a creed
As this, reflecting whence they came.
They gave their ancestors a name:
Not smarter or more powerful 
Than those who sheared them for their wool;
Not self-reliant, needing none,
When by themselves they'd been outdone;
Not conqu'ring heroes who were pure,
And strangers made them insecure;
Not brave, or strong, or hardy stock,
But "wandering!" - like some lost flock
Where someone had to show the way!
That someone was the LORD, portrayed
By how they thanked; and still it's true,
And still why we should sit in pews.

Scott L. Barton

When you have come into the land that the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance to possess, and you possess it, and settle in it, you shall take some of the first of all the fruit of the ground, which you harvest from the land that the Lord your God is giving you, and you shall put it in a basket and go to the place that the Lord your God will choose as a dwelling for his name. You shall go to the priest who is in office at that time, and say to him, “Today I declare to the Lord your God that I have come into the land that the Lord swore to our ancestors to give us.” When the priest takes the basket from your hand and sets it down before the altar of the Lord your God, you shall make this response before the Lordyour God: “A wandering Aramean was my ancestor; he went down into Egypt and lived there as an alien, few in number, and there he became a great nation, mighty and populous. When the Egyptians treated us harshly and afflicted us, by imposing hard labor on us, we cried to the Lord, the God of our ancestors; the Lord heard our voice and saw our affliction, our toil, and our oppression. The Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with a terrifying display of power, and with signs and wonders; and he brought us into this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey. So now I bring the first of the fruit of the ground that you, O Lord, have given me.” You shall set it down before the Lord your God and bow down before the Lord your God. Then you, together with the Levites and the aliens who reside among you, shall celebrate with all the bounty that the Lord your God has given to you and to your house.

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