Man Out On a Limb

Face to Face with Jesus

Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost, Year C

What would it be like to encounter Jesus face to face? That’s the question this series sets out to help us answer. We can’t know, of course, but we can get a glimpse of what happened to those who did meet Jesus in the Gospel texts we examine here.

We are entering the story, placing ourselves in dialogue with Jesus. What a thrill it is to be face to face with Jesus. What a joy to be in his presence, hearing his word, receiving his instruction.

Yet, what we discover is that, like those in these stories, we are often off track, often misunderstanding, and often letting our own desires get in the way of hearing the word he has for us. It is . . . funny. Let’s admit it: our humanness is funny. In the end, we are laughing at ourselves. We are embracing with humility and with joy the overwhelming grace of God that continues to surprise us with hospitality and opportunity.

Every encounter with Jesus brings transformation. At the very least, we see ourselves in a new light, in all our humanness. And we can either weep or laugh. When we weep, we might pull into ourselves and run away from the source of pain and shame. But if we can laugh, then we might be able to stay and find healing and a new way of being alive in the world.

Through these encounters, these face-to-face moments that individuals and groups had with Jesus here in the Gospel of Luke, we can find a way to new life and new hope if we’re willing to be honest with ourselves and with him.

Following are some hymn and song suggestions that relate specifically to the scripture and theme of this worship series.


  • The Faith We Sing=TFWS
  • United Methodist Hymnal=UMH
  • Worship and Song=W&S

Theme hymn suggestions:

  • The Summons TFWS 2130
  • I Am Thine, O Lord UMH 419
  • Be Thou My Vision UMH 451

Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost – Man Out on a Limb

October 30, 2022 – Luke 19:1-10

  • Have Thine Own Way, Lord UMH 382
  • Give Thanks TFWS 2036
  • Amazing Grace/My Chains Are Gone W&S 3104
  • We Fall Down W&S 3187

In This Series...

Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost, Year C - Lectionary Planning Notes Twenty-Second Sunday after Pentecost, Year C - Lectionary Planning Notes Twenty-Third Sunday after Pentecost, Year C - Lectionary Planning Notes Reign of Christ, Year C - Lectionary Planning Notes