Friday Greetings — July 13

 Dear Centenary friends,

 By the time you read this, it'll be Friday, July 13th, but I'm writing it on Thursday, July 12th...which is significant only because, every once in a while, I'll spend a few minutes with an internet search of "on this day in history."  What great historical events have occurred on July 12th at various points in history?  Too many to name here, to be sure; but one standout caught my eye as I surfed my way through the years of the last half-century:  on July 12th, 1976, one of the longest running game shows in television history debuted - Family Feud.  For the last 42 years, Family Feud has pitted two families against each other in a contest to identify the most popular responses to survey questions, all in the quest for cash and prizes.  Over the years, the show has had various producers, numerous hosts, a vast array of sponsors, a number of foreign language spin-off's, and has been broadcast on more than a few networks.  There's been one constant throughout those decades, though:  while it's funny to watch the antics of one family attempting to outdo another, the funniest moments have come when members of the same family have decided to abandon the principals of teamwork and engage in a little competition amongst themselves.   There's "more than one way to play" when your game is Family Feud - a motto that would not have taken the authors of this Sunday's scripture lessons by surprise; not one bit.  From the deeply conflicted marriage of King David and Mikal in our Old Testament Lesson, to the tortuous twistings and turnings of King Herod and his dysfunctional "family," there's more than a little feuding going on!  And that's where we're headed this weekend in worship: what do the Scriptures have to say to us about family feuds?

So, come to worship scripturally prepared!  This Sunday's readings are 2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19 and Mark 6:14-29.  Read both passages, and then ask yourself:  When has family feuding afflicted my own family (be it my nuclear or my extended family)?  When have I been gut-wrenched to watch another family fractured by feuding?  Are there times when I've wondered if feuding would divide our nation or our church?  

Opportunities to feud in the family or fend for the family come to us day by day; but there's no better way to celebrate the One whose love for God's family knew no limits, than when we're in worship together.  See you on Sunday!

Pastor Susan