After a couple of weeks of unusual schedules, I'm hoping this Sunday's schedule will be normal - two services at 9am; Sunday School at 10am; another service at 11:15am.
I've enjoyed the break and the snow, but, now that Christmas is concluding (today is the 12th day of Christmas), it's time to resume a more typical schedule - not that this Sunday will be ordinary.
This Sunday begins the Epiphany season and we will soon turn our attention from Jesus' birth and childhood to his ministry. This Sunday is a combination of both.
In the sanctuary we will hear of the magi's visit to Bethlehem and recall how they, strangers from the east, found Jesus (Matthew 2:1-12). We will also hear Mark's short version (Mark 1:9-11) of adult Jesus' baptism. We will honor both by bringing our gifts, as did the magi, and renewing our baptismal covenant.
The gift Christ wants most is our love, which the magi's devotion represented. Our recommitment to our baptismal covenant is a sign of our desire to love Jesus with our fullest selves. To celebrate that, we will receive Holy Communion, a gift to sustain our attempts at faithful living.
Those in The Well will also receive the sustaining gift of Holy Communion, a gift from the God who is bigger than all we face. Psalm 72 celebrates this God and will be the guiding scripture for The Well this Sunday. With all the challenges this life can bring, remembering that God is bigger than all of that will help get the year off to a good start and help us through the hurdles we face throughout the year.
This will be another extraordinary Sunday. I hope you'll be part of it (and that it will occur in our regularly scheduled programming - if not, I'm told Centralâ€™s Facebook account is good to let you know about changes).
I hope to see you Sunday.