The Season of Ordinary Time
OCTOBER 4, 2020
WORLD COMMUNION SUNDAY
Mark 4:13-20, 30-34
13 Then Jesus said to them, “If you can’t understand the meaning of this parable, how will you understand all the other parables? 14 The farmer plants seed by taking God’s word to others. 15 The seed that fell on the footpath represents those who hear the message, only to have Satan come at once and take it away. 16 The seed on the rocky soil represents those who hear the message and immediately receive it with joy. 17 But since they don’t have deep roots, they don’t last long. They fall away as soon as they have problems or are persecuted for believing God’s word. 18 The seed that fell among the thorns represents others who hear God’s word, 19 but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the worries of this life, the lure of wealth, and the desire for other things, so no fruit is produced. 20 And the seed that fell on good soil represents those who hear and accept God’s word and produce a harvest of thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as had been planted!”…
30 Jesus said, “How can I describe the Kingdom of God? What story should I use to illustrate it? 31 It is like a mustard seed planted in the ground. It is the smallest of all seeds, 32 but it becomes the largest of all garden plants; it grows long branches, and birds can make nests in its shade.”
33 Jesus used many similar stories and illustrations to teach the people as much as they could understand. 34 In fact, in his public ministry he never taught without using parables; but afterward, when he was alone with his disciples, he explained everything to them.
New Living Translation (NLT)
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
As we focus on the Ephesians over the next few weeks to better understand the soul shift from me to we, go further in your study by watching the Bible Project’s overview of Ephesians. This video breaks down the literary design of the book and its flow of thought. In Ephesians, Paul shows how the good news should create ethnically diverse communities that are unified by devotion to Jesus and to each other.
Following the weekly gathering, you’re invited to respond to the service by engaging in group discussion with those gathered with you. There are also additional activities if you’re looking for more ways to respond!
When Jesus is pressed to explain what the Kingdom of God is like, he comes up with a perplexing analogy: the force powerful enough to overtake the Roman Empire, to outlast the powered-up kingdoms of the world is… a seed, some dirt, a shrub. The most effective communities, Jesus seems to think, are those who can say “yes” to God’s invitation to do things that–though small in themselves–take on a life of their own.
- Where (by yourself and with your community) are you finding spaces to hear from God?
- What is taking root in your life these days?
- How might God call your community to fruitfulness?
invite someone to offer this sending blessing to those gathered:
By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. So may your community be fertile soil, ready to receive the seed of God’s Word, so together you can produce a harvest of thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as had been planted!
In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, you are sent to join God, through the Church, in bringing his kingdom to earth.
Want more to do?
Paul writes that, “We are carefully joined together in [Christ], becoming a holy temple for the Lord” (Eph. 2:21). This is why the logo for the Me to We series includes the Temple.
In this video, the Bible Project explore how Israel’s temple in the Bible is described as the place where God’s space and humanity’s space are one. In fact, the whole biblical drama can be told as a story about God’s temple. In the opening pages of Genesis, God creates a cosmic temple, and in the person of Jesus, God takes up personal residence in his temple-world. By the end of the biblical story, all of creation has become God’s sacred temple
CWC 125th ANNIVERSARY
Join us in celebrating 125 years of College Wesleyan Church (but did you know that wasn’t always our name). Check out the 125 Website for more interesting facts. Watch video testimonies, look at pictures, and share your own. Click the “Take a Walk” link to virtually walk through all the past locations, and discover things that were happening in the world during those times.
OTHER WAYS TO RESPOND
The Sunday Worship Service is the start to a week of continued worship service. God’s kingdom-values are revealed to us each Lord’s Day so we can respond by more faithfully living out those values in our home, work-place, market-place, and all our relationships.
If you would like some practical ways to love others well, specifically during this season of special circumstances, click below to find opportunities.