On Fridays in January, we look at the scripture that our campers will be studying during Day 1 this summer of “Awesome God. Awesome Love.”
Prayer: Gracious God, lead us this day to see the ways that you continue to build your kingdom with your church leading the way. Help us to see in that grand design our place, our path, our part. In the name of the One who was drowned on the cross by the overwhelming wave of evil, sin, and death, but who was found to be alive and living forever. Amen.
Reading: I Peter 3: 18-22 (Click to read text)
Stop and GROW: After reading the text, discuss/ponder the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Book of Faith questions, which are part of Camp Mount Luther's GROW Time with campers.
QUESTION 1: What scares, confuses, challenges, or doesn’t make sense to me in this text?
QUESTION 2: What delights me in this text or is my favorite part of the story?
QUESTION 3: What stories or memories does this text stir in me?
QUESTION 4: What is God up to in this text?
Reflection: I have been in a few churches in my life. Some of them, like my current church are built in the “Upper Room” style with the worship space on the upper floor. A few of them were built in the round or semi-round so that the people inside can see each other gathered around the Table and Font. Another set were built in the “cathedral” style with a long center aisle and side aisles under stone arches. A few of them were built in the symbolic style where you should notice that the outside looks like a boat and the inside has visible beams and boards like the inside of a boat. It is the reverse image when you are inside, with the boat above you, but if you crane your neck back and turn your heart and mind towards heaven then the image of the church containing you and carrying is not too hard to see. Perhaps the phrase, “we are all in the same boat” is one that the church as a whole should more whole-heartedly learn and say with each other. Our baptism was never meant to be seen as an individual spiritual moment. Together, we are always together.
Captain, my Captain, Christ Jesus—it is you we will follow. Lead us, save us, make us clean in your goodness. Help us to work together. Build us up in your image. Make us strong to serve and save in your name.
Now that I think about it, I have never seen a baptismal font that is shaped like Noah’s Ark! Perhaps more should be. --Andrew Fitch
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