The Inheritance of Trust

The Inheritance of God

Fourth Sunday After Pentecost 2019, Year C

In scripture, we encounter the character of Naaman, a great commander of King Aram’s army. He is suffering from leprosy and is desperate for healing. A young woman, a captive from Israel (the “other,” who lacks power and social standing), speaks with authority and certainty to Naaman’s wife that the prophet Elisha in the land of Israel could heal Naaman. Maybe it was out of desperation, or maybe it was the still, small voice of God speaking to Naaman, but Naaman trusted the Israelite woman and embarked on a journey to the land of Israel to be healed.

The Inheritance of God Worship Series: THE INHERITANCE OF TRUST
Fourth Sunday After Pentecost - July 7, 2019

Planning for this Series

How can this historic statement of faith provide further definition and clarity of what the Christian church believes about the nature of our Triune God during the seasons of Trinity Sunday/Pentecost/ Kingdomtide? More importantly, how might this Trinitarian legacy be passed on to our children and youth?

There could be no more appropriate time to demonstrate the concepts of inheritance, relationship, creative speaking, and listening than during this high holy day, Trinity Sunday, celebrated alongside Father’s Day and beyond. For that reason, this series seeks to punctuate the ways in which God, Father (Creator), God, Son (Savior), God, Spirit (Sophia) are dancing together over, among, within, around us in perfect rhythm and divine harmony. This is the POWER of ONE-IN-THREE, THREE-IN-ONE. Not only are we recipients of this POWER, but we are also called to be a reincarnation of this inheritance and to pass it on! What better way, place, or time for the church to demonstrate the richness of this rite of passage than Father’s Day! Here are two ideas for your consideration:

An in-depth study series of the Nicene Creed shared by several generations within your faith community could result in a contemporary translation of the creed through the medium of the spoken word, composed by children, youth, and/or young adults. What is the outcome of this experience? In the prologue of John’s Gospel, the writer substitutes Logos for Word. In the third century, Logos functioned as that which offered logic or reason. However, John is referring to the Greek meaning of Logos, the mind of Christ: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:3).

Perhaps a more contemporary written description of the character of God from the creative hearts and minds of millennials, next-gens, and others might serve to build bridges among multiple generations in your congregation. A stunning example of this art form is aptly demonstrated in “Next Generation Resources” of The Africana Worship Series Book for Year C, (Discipleship Resources, p. 96, The litany is titled “Trinity Sunday: Custom-Made by God’s Own Hand.” Written by Sharletta Green, the litany is a paraphrase of Proverb 8:1-4, 22-31

A second outcome might be an action or embodiment of how we perceive God.

“The Word became flesh and made his home among us” (John 1:14a).

No one has ever seen God. God the only Son, who is at the Father’s side, has made God known” (John 1:18).

Jesus Christ, the Logos, becomes flesh!

“What came into being in him was life and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it (John 1:3b-5).

What a metaphor! How might this concept live in the celebration of worship? Consider various forms of liturgical movement:

  • Dancers (multi-generations, genders) leading the Processional with the Light of Christ, the Bible, the cross, emblematic of the dance of the Trinity (perichorisis)
  • Scripture choreographed, while the voice of the reader is heard, not seen.
  • Procession of the Communion elements

What other artistic ways can your congregation experience, embody, live into the legacy extended to us through the power and presence of our Triune God?


2 King 5:1-14

Naaman, commander of the army of the king of Aram, was a great man and in high favor with his master, because by him the Lord had given victory to Aram. The man, though a mighty warrior, suffered from leprosy. 2 Now the Arameans on one of their raids had taken a young girl captive from the land of Israel, and she served Naaman’s wife. 3 She said to her mistress, “If only my lord were with the prophet who is in Samaria! He would cure him of his leprosy.” 4 So Naaman went in and told his lord just what the girl from the land of Israel had said. 5 And the king of Aram said, “Go then, and I will send along a letter to the king of Israel.”

He went, taking with him ten talents of silver, six thousand shekels of gold, and ten sets of garments. 6 He brought the letter to the king of Israel, which read, “When this letter reaches you, know that I have sent to you my servant Naaman, that you may cure him of his leprosy.” 7 When the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his clothes and said, “Am I God, to give death or life, that this man sends word to me to cure a man of his leprosy? Just look and see how he is trying to pick a quarrel with me.”

8 But when Elisha the man of God heard that the king of Israel had torn his clothes, he sent a message to the king, “Why have you torn your clothes? Let him come to me, that he may learn that there is a prophet in Israel.” 9 So Naaman came with his horses and chariots, and halted at the entrance of Elisha’s house. 10 Elisha sent a messenger to him, saying, “Go, wash in the Jordan seven times, and your flesh shall be restored and you shall be clean.” 11 But Naaman became angry and went away, saying, “I thought that for me he would surely come out, and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, and would wave his hand over the spot, and cure the leprosy! 12 Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Could I not wash in them, and be clean?” He turned and went away in a rage. 13 But his servants approached and said to him, “Father, if the prophet had commanded you to do something difficult, would you not have done it? How much more, when all he said to you was, ‘Wash, and be clean’?” 14 So he went down and immersed himself seven times in the Jordan, according to the word of the man of God; his flesh was restored like the flesh of a young boy, and he was clean.

15 Then he returned to the man of God, he and all his company; he came and stood before him and said, “Now I know that there is no God in all the earth except in Israel; please accept a present from your servant.”


UMH – The United Methodist Hymnal

TFWS – The Faith We Sing

SOZ – Songs of Zion

URW – Upper Room Worshipbook

W&S – Worship and Song



UMH 66, 67, 116, 139, 265, 266, 305, 340, 377, 378, 393, 480, 510, 605,

TFWS: 2018, 2036, 2049, 2051, 2144, 2171, 2174, 2185, 2186, 2213, 2236, 2254, 2260, 2265, 2269, 2282, 2284, 2250, 2253, 2262, 2273, 2278

SOZ: 3, 10, 20, 198, 207, 211, 226, 228

URW: 64, 99, 141, 154, 159, 173, 198, 203, 205, 206, 257, 394, 395, 415, 416

W&S: 3003, 3017, 3018

In This Series...

Trinity Sunday 2019, Year C - Planning Notes Second Sunday After Pentecost 2019, Year C - Planning Notes Third Sunday After Pentecost 2019, Year C - Planning Notes