As leaders/teachers/preachers, we can’t get fixated on where we are in our spiritual walk, to the detriment of those we are leading/teaching/preaching to. For instance, let’s say I’m currently experiencing the power of the resurrection in my personal life. Each day is a new level deeper into His resurrection power and it is amazing, mind-boggling, and eye-opening. As a result, when I teach, that is what I focus on. I feel frustrated at those who seem not to know the empty tomb. Soon, in an attempt to bring balance to those who may not know this resurrection power, I am no longer talking about the redeeming power of the cross. Eventually, I become cold and closed any time someone mentions the cross or suffering. I am myopic in my scope. Basically, I’ve taken the good place that I’M at in life and made it the ONLY place people should be.
That is one of the reasons the lectionary is beautiful. You are unable to hover around verses that you like. You are forced to face verses that make you uncomfortable. You may love thinking about “Jesus wept” (John 11:35), but loathe contemplating “Depart from me, I never knew you” (Matthew 7:23), and in your personal devotional life, you may be able to avoid the tougher verses all your life. However, with the lectionary (the Church’s set, sturdy 3-year Scripture readings), both the congregation and the priest are forced to face ALL aspects of Sacred Scripture. The wisdom of the cyclical, revolving nature is that, instead of digging in our heels and insisting on getting what WE want out of Scripture, we are encouraged (hehe, or forced) to let go of our reservations and trust, to embrace the entirety of His loving Word to us, not just the parts that naturally hit us right.