Let's be honest. Following Jesus is not for the faint of heart. At times it can be terrifying to think of the consequences to relationships, maybe even our lives. Perhaps that is why over and over again Jesus tells his disciples, "Don't be afraid."
There are Sundays where something special happens--like yesterday. Charles Taylor, 90+ years old offered our special music. THAT is what you need to hear...well, stay for the sermon too!
And just think. When you are 90 you can sing like that too!
Trinity Sunday. It is the only Sunday of the church year dedicated to a theological doctrine. We know it, but what do we do with it?
We like the spectacular story of Pentecost in Acts, but what about the quieter version told by John. Not as flashy, but so much more powerful, harder, and life changing.
It is the fastest growing group in our world--Spiritual but Not Religious. But what does it mean to be spiritual? What does the Spirit lead us to do and be?
We can hear a passage of scripture so many times. We can have it emblazoned on our minds and in our hearts. But if you leave out two important words, the whole meaning is changed. Hearing them opens us to seeing Jesus in a new way.
It was Easter afternoon when two disciples made their way to Emmaus. A stranger walked along with them that they didn't recognize...until he broke the bread. How often are we blinded to seeing Jesus? Might our eyes be open as we break bread together?
He gets a bad name every year, right after Easter! Doubting Thomas! But is it deserved? What did he doubt? Who did he doubt?
Maybe we need a Doubting Thomas to wake us to faith!
If Easter doesn't scare you, you aren't paying attention!" But fear isn't the last word. The women left the tomb with "fear and great joy." May we experience both this Easter Day!
We have good intentions. We want to do good. But there are times when things get in the way, we are detoured, things happen. It is easy to get discouraged, but what if God's spirit might breathe on us anew. Might our dry bones live?
The only way to get prepared to cross the bridge is to get moving. But many times we just settle for what is. God is always calling us to be "unsettled." That was the call to Abram, and to us!
Lent is a time of preparation. But before we can even begin we have to recognize where we are. We have to remember our basic story, the one that starts way back in the garden. It is a parable. It is true. It is our story. It is where our journey to the passion begins.