Wednesday Prayers: Bear Fruit!!!

I've had the gospel reading for Advent 2 in my head all week, particularly John the Baptist's "You brood of vipers... bear fruit worthy of repentance!"

The Postulant posted a great sermon about how Advent is a penitential season, a time to prepare and make things right (well, right-er, anyway).

But it's the "bear fruit worthy of repentance!" that's sticking with me.

How much do we want to smack people when they're apologizing for the same thing for the billionth time, without any change in the choices they make-- without even any intention of change? (Yes, I know we're called to forgive 70x70 times. Still, I think God's OK with my being angry.) BEAR FRUIT WORTHY OF REPENTANCE!

How frustrated do we get when we keep doing the same damn dumb thing, over and over, instead of hunkering down, asking for God's help, and doing the hard work of making new habits? BEAR FRUIT WORTHY OF REPENTANCE!

I loved this week's sermon (yes, we'll talk soon about how I'm back worshiping with the local Lutherans), because the pastor took sin seriously, in a loving rather than an angry way. I want us to be talking about sin-- not so that we can shuffle around feeling like crap (NOT what I think we're called to do), but so that we can move towards greater freedom and joy, so that we can become more fully who God made us to be.

Because really, that's what sin's about. It's all the sludge that holds us back. It's the plastic imitation of stuff that's much better. We are God's beloved, and God longs for us to have the real thing-- love, freedom, joy, peace.

So this week, I'm praying for God to show me where I'm not bearing fruit, and to prune me where necessary.

What are you praying for this week? How can I pray with you?


  1. Glad the Lutherans are doing it for you right now. I got in trouble on the net once long ago for using the word "sin."

    would love to hear that sermon....

  2. Diane, people are definitely touchy about "sin," but I think it's a useful word. Maybe we need to talk more about it (in better ways) rather than just throwing it out. The sermon hasn't been posted yet, but it'll be here when it is: http://www.christlutheran-etown.com/celc/.

  3. Hey soul sister...we are thinking about many of the same things right now. I've been blogging about Advent as well. I've never thought of it as a penitential season but that is how I'm treating it this year. Weird. We are on the same wave length more often than not!

  4. I am praying I take deep breaths and spread joy within my classroom. good luck with the fruit

  5. I was thinking about fruit today too. What would the fruits of repentence look like? A million cherries of generosity . . .

    for more, go here: http://liberationtheologylutheran.blogspot.com/2010/12/producing-worthy-fruit.html


"So keep fightin' for freedom and justice, beloveds, but don't you forget to have fun doin' it. Lord, let your laughter ring forth. Be outrageous, ridicule the fraidy-cats, rejoice in all the oddities that freedom can produce. And when you get through kickin' ass and celebratin' the sheer joy of a good fight, be sure to tell those who come after how much fun it was."
-Saint Molly Ivins