YEAR B: January 18, 2015
First Reading: I Samuel 3:1-10(11-20)
Have You Seen My New Blue Socks? By Eve Bunting
(Written for ages 4-8)
Comment: In Have You Seen My New Blue Socks?, a duck looks everywhere for his new blue socks. He asks all of his friends if they have seen them, but none of them have. He grows more distraught, until his friend peacock points out that he has been wearing the socks the whole time! Duck didn’t realize the socks were right there, didn’t realize what was right in front of him. In the same way, Samuel is living in a time when the word of the Lord is rare—so rare that even though he is ministering in the Lord’s temple, it doesn’t occur to him that the voice he hears is the Lord. Over and over again, when he hears his name, Samuel runs to Eli. But Eli realizes who is calling, and points it out to Samuel: it is the Lord! Duck didn’t realize what was there all along, and Samuel didn’t either, but with the help of their friends, everything is made clear.
Second Reading: I Corinthians 6:12-20
Hug Machine by Scott Campbell
(Written for ages 4-8)
Comment: The Corinthians are reminded that their bodies are meant for the Lord, and not only that, are temples of God’s own Holy Spirit. Their bodies are important to God, and what they do with their bodies is important, too. In Hug Machine, one little boy hugs everything—not just people, but rocks and trees and animals, too. He likes to give hugs, and he knows that his hugs make other people feel good as well. He uses his body to show kindness and love to other people. Our bodies matter, and what we do with our bodies matters—we can use them for kindness, or use them to be hurtful. We are temples of the Holy Spirit, and we should use our bodies in ways that honor and live out the ways of the Spirit—ways of love and kindness.
Gospel Reading: John 1:43-51
Lost and Found by Oliver Jeffers
(Written for ages 3-8)
Comment: When Nathanael hears that the Messiah is from Nazareth, he immediately jumps to conclusions. “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?”, he asks. Nathanael is initially unimpressed with this Messiah, making assumptions based on where the Lord comes from. But when he meets Jesus, Nathanael is impressed by Jesus’ knowledge about him, and the promise that he will see greater things if he becomes a disciple. Nathanael thought one thing at first, and then realized he was mistaken, and changed his mind. In Lost and Found, a penguin shows up at a boy’s door, and the boy assumes he is lost and needs help finding his way home. The boy brings him back home, but upon parting, realizes how much he misses the penguin—and the penguin misses him, too! It turns out, the penguin wasn’t lost, he was lonely and looking for a friend. The pair is reunited and happy to be together again. The boy thought one thing at first, but then realized he was mistaken, and he makes a new friend because of his realization. Nathanael also enters a new relationship because of his realization—a relationship of disciple to his Lord, who will show him even greater things.
The Lectionary Links this week are written by Sara Ann Berger, Union Presbyterian Seminary alumna and pastor of the Whitmire Presbyterian Church, Whitmire, SC.