Worship at Home for Sunday March 3 2024

Dear Friends,

Welcome to the Third Sunday of Lent. The theme is Transactionalism. This Sunday we recall when Jesus confronted the money changers and sellers in the temple.

If you would like a home visit, conversation, or home communion, please call me at 573-437-2779 (church).

  • Congregational meeting this Sunday after worship to vote on new pumps for the boiler. Larry Maciejewski’s grandfather installed the current pumps.
  • Flower Order forms are in the back and due this Sunday.
  • Wednesday Lenten Program March 6 at 6:30pm. The study will be The Grace of Les Misérables by Matt Rawle. Snacks will be served.
  • Youth to Sky Zone in March, but not this Sunday. Talk to Carol Nowack for more information.
  • Dorcas meeting on Monday, March 4 at 7pm.
  • St. Patrick’s Day Potluck on Sunday, March 17 after church.

Blessings, Pastor Stephanie DeLong


Scripture: Exodus 20:1-17 • Psalm 19 • 1 Corinthians 1:18-25 • John 2:13-22

Sermon: Transactionalism

We are continuing the Lenten Sermon Series “Say No.” This week the theme is Transactionalism. You may find yourself wondering what is Transactionalism? In her reflection for this week Rev. Cheryl A. Lindsay defines transactionalism:

Transactions can be neutral. The exchange of ideas, goods, or services can benefit those who give and receive. As relational beings, much of our lives involve transactions–exchanges and interactions between humans. Transactions are a means to an end, but transactionalism occurs when the means becomes the end.

The means becoming the end is the issue. Transactionalism does not refer to going grocery shopping and paying for our bread, milk, and eggs. The youth group selling butter braids to raise money for a trip would be a transaction that benefits both the seller and the purchaser. Butter braids taste great, and the trips are beneficial to the youth. Transactionalism would occur if the sole purpose of the youth group were to sell butter braids.

For many centuries faithful people made burnt offerings to please God. If we read a bit further in the Exodus 20, we come upon this statement from God:

23 You shall not make gods of silver alongside me, nor shall you make for yourselves gods of gold. 24 You need make for me only an altar of earth and sacrifice on it your burnt offerings and your offerings of well-being, your sheep and your oxen; in every place where I cause my name to be remembered I will come to you and bless you. (Exodus 20:23-24)

Faithful Jews would travel to Jerusalem several times a year to visit the temple, and they would make burnt offerings. These offerings often required the sacrifice of animals. To aid the pilgrims and to later to profit from them, merchants sold animals to those who wished to make a burnt offering in the temple. Sadly, what may have been a plan to assist weary pilgrims became the purpose. People felt compelled to purchase offerings to please God. The powerful benefited from the selling what God gives freely.

Jesus became truly angry when he saw this! The temple may have been a prominent place for people to worship, but compelling pilgrims to purchase offerings in the courtyard hinted at selling God’s favor. The powerful were profiting by selling what God freely gives.

God wishes for us to be in relationship on a daily and personal basis. God became one of us in Jesus:

The Word became flesh

    and made his home among us.

We have seen his glory,

    glory like that of a father’s only son,

        full of grace and truth. John 1:14 Contemporary English Bible

God’s glory was and is in Jesus. The cartoon whose link appears below illustrates this point beautifully.


Jesus is the temple. Jesus is the one who dies and rises in three days. Jesus is the one who gives us life and love.

God has come to us in the person of Jesus. We do not give offerings so that God will notice us or love us. God already knows who we are and loves us. When we give our offerings, we do so out of gratitude for all that God has done for us. We give to help others and to share the good news. We give because God loves us.

Prayer: God thank you for coming to us in the person of Jesus. No matter where we are or who we are, we can worship you in love, hope, and peace. Amen.

Prayer list: All who have been on our list for a while, Mark’ s brother Billy, Delores W., Tyra, Freya, Vicki B., Barb Z., Jesse, Tammy. Jennifer, Richard, Tamara, John, Dixon’s great granddaughter, Ashlely and Cody, Garth, Linda, Tessa, Carl, Kimbra, Liz’s father, Dannie, Lathe, Marilyn, Kris, Lee Ann, Bob, Diane, Linda, Keetha, Carly, Mia (Good news, she is healing.), Brenda, David, Dave, Jeff, Bill & Kathleen, Bill with cancer, a student with a court date, Nancy and Pat, places where there is war. If you know of anyone who would like a prayer shawl, please let us know.