“Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book.” ― John Green, The Fault in Our Stars
I’ve felt like the opening quote describes more than once in my life, about stories that ultimately didn’t matter. They were set in a galazy far, far away… or on the planet Cybertron… or in a surreal city called Gotham. The real question is – beyond our subjective emotions – is there REALLY a book that vital, objectively essential, containing a story so true that our shattered world will never be put back together without it?
Christians profess that the Word of God – our shared story, which is ultimately HIS story – holds that level of importance. Yet many of us – including pastors – find ourselves unchallenged and unmotivated to dig into the treasure trove that is our scripture. We’ve tried doing our own thing, or reading through it in a year, he chronological plan, etc. Sometimes it takes root, bears fruit, but often it lasts as long as our diligence to that New Year’s gym membership.
That’s why, starting on November 27, the elders of Refuge are STRONGLY URGING church members to join in the “Common Lectionary”, which is just an uncommon phrase for a shared reading selection with churches around the world, bringing church-goers across the continent the same Scripture passages each week. It affords us the following but not exhaustive benefits:
- It covers a great breadth of Scripture–the whole counsel of God.
- It relates the gospel of the New Testament to its Old Testament antecedents.
- It follows the Christian year, with its focus on Christ.
- It speaks to the persons and work of the Trinity.
- It protects the congregation from a narrow preoccupation with the New Testament to the exclusion of the Old Testament.
- It harmonizes what members are reading and creates areas of Word-centered dialogue.
We’ll be using it as the basis for our Bible Reading Encouragement Group, Men’s Morning Wednesdays, and selections will get used in services and sermons the following Sunday as well. Get on page with us through Advent and into 2018!
- Find and download the entire year’s selections as PDF here.
- Pick up a bookmark sized seasonal printout at church this Sunday!
- Read more about the Common Lectionary HERE.