Love before the foundation of the world 06/02/19

[Editor’s note: some of us understand the phrase “I love you up to the sky and back” that we often say to our children. How close then can we feel to our God who loved us “before the foundation of the world.” What a mighty statement.]

John 17:20-26

Jesus prayed for his disciples, and then he said. “I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one, so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. Father, I desire that those also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory, which you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. . . .

From “If you ever find yourself thinking about yourself, rather than being united with others in the church, remember that Jesus prayed that we would be one. When we are one, bound together by Christ’s love, the world gets a taste of the wonderful things that God has for them.”

Scripture: May 19, 2019—Fifth Sunday of Easter—Acts 16:16-34Revelation 22:12-14,16-17,20-21John 17:20-26; and Psalm 97.

Collect: O God, the King of glory, you have exalted your only Son Jesus Christ with great triumph to your kingdom in heaven: Do not leave us comfortless, but send us your Holy Spirit to strengthen us, and exalt us to that place where our Savior Christ has gone before; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.

Reflection: What chains bind you or the people of your community at this time in your life? Where each day do you notice the freedom of Christ working to break the chains apart?

Sunday School — on break for the summer

Eye Candy: “Adoration of the Lamb“, altarpiece, Cathedral of St Bavo, Ghent; “The great red dragon and the woman clothed with the sun” by William Blake; “And the moon became as blood” by Howard Finster

Ear Worm: “Thy perfect love” by John Rutter; “Nearer, my God, to thee“, exciting version of traditional hymn sung by BYU a capella group; “Your love divine” by Richard Smallwood

Brain Food:

Unity Complex

One can be the singular one / or it can be arithmetically generous
a trillion divided by itself held as fraction / this unity you pray for is it
a lock-step compliance, an orthodoxy / the twentieth century hegemonic earthquake
is it school uniforms and khakis / blue polos and neckerchiefs tied just so
sneakers with white socks pulled up / or is it a complex of color differentiated
a polyrhythmic dance, a tango / of entanglement and then release
collect us all in your manifold arms / and let us be just what we are and
find unity only in your love which is you

~ Michael Coffey

When the truth ain’t the truth” by Garry Deverell; “Stay” by Jan Richardson, includes images

Movies/Videos: “Remember the Titans” (2000), a way out of racial hatred and bigotry; “Adaptation” (2000), a Spike Jonz film

Image “Holy Spirit” by Sue Ann Jackson Land.


Study guide, group activity




: young elementary: activity; bulletin games; coloring page;
older elementary: activity; bulletin games; puzzle



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