Sermon Introduction –
The grace of the day rests in the image of a mother hen gathering there brood under her wing. When danger or harm, weather or risk comes their way then mother hen gathers the brood. In like manner, God gathers us under the wing to protect and care for us.
Introduction to this week’s readings –
Though we sometimes doubt and often resist God’s desire to protect and save us, our God persists. In holy baptism, God’s people have been called and gathered into a God-initiated relationship that will endure. Lent provides the church with a time and a tradition in which to seek the face of the Lord again. Lent provides another occasion to behold the God of our salvation in the face of the Blessed One who “comes in the name of the Lord.”
Reading: Genesis 15:1-12, 17-18
Introduction: God promises a childless and doubting Abram that he will have a son, that his descendants will be as numerous as the stars, and that the land of Canaan will be their inheritance. Abram’s trust in God is sealed with a covenant-making ceremony, a sign of God’s promise.
Reading: Philippians 3:17-4:1
Introduction: Although Paul’s devotion to Christ has caused him to be persecuted, he does not regret the course he has taken. Writing from prison, he expresses confidence in a glorious future and encourages other Christians to follow in his footsteps.
Reading: Luke 13:31-35
Introduction: Neither Herod’s plotting nor Jerusalem’s resistance to maternal love will deter Jesus from his sacrificial mission