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Creative Expression for Lent B Old Testament Track

(Liturgy to go with this creative expression can be found here.)

 

On the way into the worship space, or during a children’s time, or before worship (or during coffee hour the previous week after worship, even), you might invite people to participate in decorating blocks to be used as symbols throughout the season. You will need five blocks, four square and of equal size, one double the height. You can use boxes for a larger symbol, or big toy blocks for something table-top sized. Be sure to use something that will be visible throughout your worship space.

The first week you can invite people to colour part of a rainbow, or to paint the block in rainbow stripes, or to stick on stickers in a paint-by-number kind of way to make a rainbow block.

The second week you can invite people to use a Sharpie or other permanent marker to sign their names on the block.

The third week you can invite people to draw/colour two stone tablets on one face of the block, and/or to write numbers or what they remember of the 10 commandments on the tablets or on the sides of the block.

The fourth week you’ll use the double-height block, and you can invite people to colour in section of a Rod of Asclepius (already outlined for them on the block!), or to draw a desert in the background.

The fifth week you can invite people to add a heart sticker to an outlined heart on the front of the block.

(You can also, of course, simply prepare these yourself ahead of time—though then you might want to print your church roll or something to glue on the box for week 2, so you have people’s names on the block without their stopping to write it themselves.)

Each week after the confession, someone should place the block in a visible spot in the church—on the communion table, on another table put up for this purpose, or if you are using boxes, in front of the table or around the chancel.

On Palm/Passion Sunday, during the assurance of forgiveness, the blocks can be constructed into a cross as follows, with one person holding each block/box and putting it in position until it all holds together: Rod of Asclepius at the bottom, signatures/names at the top, rainbow to the left, tablets to the right, heart in the center like a keystone.

You will need to prepare the blocks whose sides meet in the cross with an adhesive (double sided tape, glue dots, even velcro or wall-mounting strips, depending on the size and material you have used) so they will stick together, of course. Be sure the people assembling the cross press them firmly together!

 

Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson.

CTW: covenant-making God

One: Hear and believe the good news: God has called us “my people”!
All: God has set up a covenant, over and over again,
choosing us even before we can choose,
faithful even when we are faltering.

One: In the flood, in the wilderness, in exile;
in certainty and doubt, abundance and scarcity;
God’s promise is true to the thousandth generation.
All: We see the rainbow, we hear our names, we learn the commandments,
we look up for our help, we know in our hearts:
we love because God first loved us,
we follow because God first came to us,
we can be faithful because God is faithful.

One: Come, let us worship God together.

 

(On Palm/Passion Sunday, this may be used as an Assurance of Forgiveness with a few minor alterations noted here….and during the assurance, the blocks placed after the confessions throughout Lent can be constructed into a cross as described here.)

 

Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson.

Confession: our own people

Covenant-making God, you have brought us into freedom
and showed us what it means to be your people.
We admit to you that sometimes we would prefer to be our own people.
We confess before you and one another that we have made idols—
of busy-ness, of possessions, of jobs,
of celebrities and politicians, of the news cycle,
of our own desires and traditions.
We proclaim the words of your commandments while ignoring their spirit.
We have believed the lie that we must earn your love by following the rules,
forgetting that you chose us first, saved us first, loved us first,
long before commanding us to live your way.
Forgive us, O Lord our God.
Show us once again your gracious favour, to the thousandth generation,
that we might live according to your word.
We pray in the name of the One who fulfils all righteousness, Jesus the Christ. Amen.

(A block with the tablets of the commandments may be placed near the rainbow and name blocks.)

 

Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson

Liturgy for other weeks of the Lent B Old Testament series may be found here.

confession: boxed up

Even with those simple commandments, Eternal Love, we manage to get it wrong. We misuse your name on an almost daily basis, and dishonor our friends and neighbors by talking behind their backs. We hunger for what others have, and think we can put you in a box, storing you away on a shelf. We find little enough time for our families, for ourselves, you – much less setting aside an entire day for that rest you call Sabbath. Forgive us, Abiding Love. We think we are  so wise with the choices we make, only to end up with all that
keeps us from you. Your Word has come, to fill our speech with grace, with hope, with peace. As we journey to Jerusalem, may we invite others to join us as we seek to follow Jesus Christ, our Lord, our Savior.

Silence is kept

 

Submitted by Rev. Thom Shuman, author of Lectionary Liturgies.