Year B
Proper 12
Sunday 29 July 2018


Eucharistic Preface


Let us lift up our hearts.
    We lift them to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
    It is right to give our thanks and praise.

It is indeed right to give you our thanks and praise, O God,
for we are overwhelmed
by the length and breadth, height and depth
of your mysteries, your glory, and your love for us in Christ.

You brought forth the earth and the heavens,
and from tiny fragments you created a rich abundance
to nurture and strengthen all who look to your hand.
You have given yourself generously to your people,
despite their eagerness to crown every new hero
and corrupt themselves before idols
of wealth, sex and power.

In your Son, Jesus,
you have given us the saviour we longed for.
Though he was crucified by the corrupt,
you raised him to life and he comes to us again,
striding over chaos and death,
dispelling our fears with a love beyond comprehension,
strengthening us in our inner beings,
and bringing us safely to the land of our destiny.

Therefore with .....

©2003 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



Short Preface
(for insertion into Eucharistic prayers with fixed prefaces)

We give thanks for your Son, Jesus,
who comes to us, striding over chaos and death,
feeding us with your abundance
and making known to us
the length and breadth, height and depth
of your mysteries, your glory, and your love for us in Christ.

©2003 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




General Prayer of Thanksgiving
(Preface reformatted for use apart from communion)

We give you all thanks and praise, O God,
for we are overwhelmed
by the length and breadth, height and depth
of your mysteries, your glory, and your love for us in Christ.

You brought forth the earth and the heavens,
and from tiny fragments you created a rich abundance
to nurture and strengthen all who look to your hand.
You have given yourself generously to your people,
despite their eagerness to crown every new hero
and corrupt themselves before idols
of wealth, sex and power.

In your Son, Jesus,
you have given us the saviour we longed for.
Though he was crucified by the corrupt,
you raised him to life and he comes to us again,
striding over chaos and death,
dispelling our fears with a love beyond comprehension,
strengthening us in our inner beings,
and bringing us safely to the land of our destiny.

Therefore, with our hearts lifted high,
we offer you thanks and praise at all times
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

©2003 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




Declaration of Grace / Absolution

With a love that surpasses knowledge,
Christ comes to us saying, “Trust in me. Do not be afraid.”
Though we have nothing to offer but our broken selves,
he brings forth an abundance of mercy beyond our imagining.

Sisters and Brothers,
    your sins are forgiven;
        be at peace.

©2003 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




Commission & Benediction

Go out into the world.
Seek God, and the wisdom of God.
Hide yourself from the corruptions of power and adulation.
Entrust whatever you have to Christ
for with him, there will always be more than enough.

And may God strengthen you in your inner beings.
May Christ Jesus dwell in your hearts through faith.
and may the Holy Spirit plant your roots deeply
   in the abundant richness of God’s love.

We go in peace to love and serve the Lord,
    In the name of Christ. Amen.

©2003 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net






Paraphrases of the Scripture Lections
for Proper 12 - Year B - Sunday 29 July 2018
Lections from The Revised Common Lectionary.
Copyright 1992 by the Consultation on Common Texts (CCT)
P. O. Box 340003, Room 381, Nashville, TN 37203-0003, USA. Used with Permission.


* 2 Samuel 11: 1-15

    The onset of spring seems to arouse powerful men, and military campaigns were usually undertaken after the winter ended. One year, King David sent out the Israelite army under the command of Joab and his officers. They decimated the Ammonite army and marched on their capital city, Rabbah.
    David himself had his feet up in Jerusalem while his troops laid siege to Rabbah. Late one day, after an afternoon siesta, David wandered out onto his rooftop balcony. Looking down into the homes of his neighbours, he spied a woman undressing to take a bath. He couldn’t take his eyes of her beautiful body. His lust got the better of him, and he sent a servant to check out who she was. The servant reported back, saying, “Your Majesty, her name is Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam. She is married to Uriah the Hittite who is presently serving in your army.”
    David was unperturbed and hastily arranged for her to be brought to meet him. She arrived at the palace and was left alone with the King. He had sex with her and then sent her home again. If he wanted to get away with it, he had picked the wrong time of the month. A few weeks later he received a message from Bathsheba saying, “I am pregnant with your baby.”
    David hatched a scheme to cover his tracks. He contacted Joab and arranged for Uriah the Hittite to be sent as a courier with military reports for the palace. When Uriah arrived, David made a great show of asking him all about the war and how Joab and the troops were getting on. Then he said to Uriah, “You’ve earned some leave. Go home, enjoy a night with your wife, and I’ll send you back in a day or two.”
    Uriah left and David even had the palace kitchen send food and wine around to his house. But Uriah didn’t go home to his wife. He spent the night in the barracks of the palace guard. When David heard about it in the morning he sent for Uriah and said, “I gave you some leave, Soldier. You’ve been on a tough assignment. Why didn’t you go home?”
    Uriah replied, “It wouldn’t be fair to my mates. They’re all out there in tents – the whole army, Joab and the other commanders, and even the sacred Ark. How could I go home to eat and drink and sleep with my wife when they’re still roughing it? On a stack of bibles I swear to you, I couldn’t do it.”
    David was getting desperate. He said to Uriah, “I need you to stay here another day and then tomorrow you can take a delivery back to Joab.”
    So Uriah hung around in Jerusalem as instructed. David invited him to dinner and made sure that his glass was never empty. By the time Uriah left that evening, he was quite drunk, but he still didn’t go home to his wife. He slept on a stretcher in the barracks again.
     David had only one card left. In the morning he sent Uriah back to the front with a dispatch for Joab. It included a royal order saying, “Send Uriah to attack the enemy’s strongest defence post. Then, pull back the rest of the troops so he’ll be stranded and killed.”

©2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



* Psalm 14

Heartless, mindless scum kid themselves
........that there is no God.
They are corrupt and callous.
........The things they do would make you sick.
........There is not an ounce of good among them.

The LORD scans the human race, one at a time,
........looking for any who are still wise;
........for even one who still has a heart for God.

But it’s like looking for a needle in a haystack!
........They’ve all lost the plot.
........Everyone is caught up
................in their own perverse ways.
........Every last one of them.

Don’t they know where all this will get them?
........They never look to the LORD for anything;
........they chew up God’s people and spit them out.

But it will soon be their turn to cringe in fear,
........because God sides with those who play straight.
If you think you can trample
........the dreams of the battlers,
........Watch out! The LORD will be there for them.

We can hardly wait to hear the songs of freedom
........as justice marches down from God’s mountain!
What a day it will be
........when the LORD redistributes the wealth
........and God’s people are compensated
................for their suffering!
........Our ancestors will rise up with joy!
........The streets will fill with singing and dancing!

©2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



* Ephesians 3: 14-21

........Because of the overwhelming goodness of all God has done for us in Christ, I fall on my knees in gratitude. I pour out prayers of thanks and praise to the God who conceived us, to this God in whom every people of every place find their life and their true identity.
........I offer up prayers for you too. God overflows with rich and vibrant life, and I’m praying that through God’s Spirit this overflow will be channelled into you, to put new steel into every fibre of your being. I pray that through your trust in Christ, he may put down roots in your heart, and that you may put down roots in his love. You can’t have your feet on any firmer ground than that!
........I’m also praying that you and all God’s beloved people might somehow be able to fathom the astonishing extent of the mysteries God has opened to us, even though they stretch from the depths of the earth to the outer reaches of the galaxy, from horizon to horizon, and from here to eternity! And finally I’m praying that you will be intimately acquainted with the love of Christ — a love that goes far beyond anything we can get our heads around. For it is that love that will pump you full of life, the rich and vibrant life of God.
........So now, credit where credit’s due — all glory to God. It is God whose Spirit, working powerfully within us and through us, is capable of things beyond our wildest dreaming — things so extraordinary we’d have never even thought to ask for them. So all the accolades belong to God.

In the church, glory to God!
In the messiah, Jesus, glory to God!
In every generation, glory to God!
In every age, from now to forever, glory to God!
And so say all of us!

©2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



* John 6: 1-21

........Shortly before the annual Passover, a sacred Jewish festival, Jesus took a trip over to the other side of Lake Galilee. As usual, a sizable crowd followed him. Indeed, every time he helped a sick person, people said it was a sign, and growing numbers began to follow his every move. After beaching the boat, Jesus headed up the hill with his closest followers. As they sat down, they looked back and sure enough, there was the crowd coming up to join them. Jesus put a question to Philip: “Where can we buy bread to feed all these extra guests?”
........He actually knew what he was going to do, but he wanted to see how far he could stretch Philip’s thinking. Philip replied, “Even if there was a bakery out here, you’d need to take out a mortgage to pay for a slice each!”
........Another of the disciples, Simon Peter’s brother Andrew, spoke up: “There is a lad over here with five bread rolls and a couple of fish. It’s a drop in the ocean for this mob though.”
........Jesus said, “Get everyone to sit down,” and they did. The grassy clearing where they sat was quite spacious, and it needed to be — there were close to five thousand people there. Jesus took the bread rolls, and after giving thanks to God, he began handing them out among the people sitting on the grass. He did the same with the fish, and somehow there was enough to go around. More than enough in fact. When everyone had eaten their fill, he sent his disciples to gather up the leftovers, saying, “Don’t let anything go to waste!”
........Having started with only five bread rolls, they gathered up twelve shopping bags full of bits that people couldn’t eat! When it began to dawn on people what he had done, they started saying, “It’s a sign! He’s got to be the great prophet who God promised to send into the world.”
........Jesus realised that they were getting carried away and that if he wasn’t careful they’d be starting a revolution and proclaiming him king, whether he liked it or not. Discretion seemed the better plan, so he slipped off and went bush by himself.
........That evening his disciples went back down to the lake. Jesus hadn’t come back but darkness had fallen, so they loaded the boat and pushed off toward Capernaum. A squall blew up and they’d been pushing through rough waters for about an hour when they saw Jesus walking across the waves, not far from the boat. It scared them half to death, but Jesus called out to them, “Look who I am. There’s no need to be afraid!” They pulled themselves together and were keen to bring him on board, but suddenly the boat ran aground — in the exact place they had been heading for!

©2000 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net



Alternative Hebrew Bible Lections themed to the Gospel Lection

* 2 Kings 4: 42-44

    During the famine, a man arrived from Baal-shalishah, bringing a sack of food as the required offering to God from the first fruits of his harvest. He gave the offering to Elisha, as God’s representative. The sack contained twenty loaves of barley bread and some fresh ears of grain. Elisha told his servant to give it to the hungry people outside so that they could eat. But his servant said, “There’s a hundred people outside. How am I supposed to give this to them without it seeming like a cruel joke?”
    But Elisha stood his ground, saying, “Give it to the people and let them eat. It will be enough for them all and they’ll have some left over. We have the LORD’s word for it.”
    So the servant handed it out to the people. They all ate and there was some left over, just as the LORD had promised.

©2003 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net




* Psalm 145: 10-18

LORD, everyone and everything will thank you, their creator,
........and all who are loyal to you will sing your praises.

As your people, we will promote the glory of your reign,
........and broadcast the news of your power for good.

We will tell everyone about the great things you have done
........and about the magnificent splendour of your reign.

You will reign forever and ever, LORD,
........your rule is in place for all generations to come.

Everything you say can be relied on, LORD,
........and everything you do is generous and loving.

When people fall, you put them back on their feet;
........when people are crushed, you stand them tall again.

Everyone looks to you for what they need,
........and you meet their needs when the time is right.

You open your hands
........and satisfy the desires of every living thing.

Justice marks everything you do, LORD,
........and generous love colours your every deed.

When honest hearts cry out to you, LORD,
........you are right there alongside them.

©2001 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net