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Showing posts from May, 2017

Sermon for Ascension Sunday, "Head in the Clouds," Acts 1:1-11

Sermon 5/28/17 Acts 1:1-11
Finding Easter: Looking Up

            If you read the May newsletter, you might know that today we’re going to talk a bit more about what the difference is between a disciple and an apostle, and that we’re also going to be celebrating this weird thing called Ascension Sunday. Ascension Sunday isn’t exactly one of our highest holy days. It probably isn’t anyone’s favorite day in the liturgical calendar. There aren’t a lot of well-known Ascension hymns. We don’t have special Ascension decorations, and no one exchanges Ascension-day presents. Many years, if I have been in the middle of a sermon series on Ascension Sunday, I’ve not even bothered to focus on the Ascension during worship. It’s easy to skip right past.             But it’s an important part of our liturgical season. Right now, we’re still in the midst of the feast of Easter, the great fifty days of Easter. Although many of us could talk a lot about the last days of Jesus’ life - the Last Supper, the f…

Sermon, "Of Sheep and Shepherds," John 10:1-10

Sermon 5/14/17 John 10:1-10
Of Sheep and Shepherds

Theologian C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia are some of my very favorite books. You might be most familiar with The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, the first book in the series, but the whole series of seven stories is really wonderful. In the sixth book in the series, The Magician’s Nephew, you learn about the creation of the land of Narnia by Aslan, the lion, the Christ-figure in the books. As a result of a complicated series of events, Aslan sends a little boy named Diggory on a mission to retrieve a fruit from a special tree in a gated garden. The fruit will become a tree which will protect Narnia. But an evil witch is also in the new land of Narnia. When Diggory arrives at the garden, which is surrounded by a wall, he sees the witch climbing over the walls to steal and eat the fruit of the tree Aslan has sent him to find. Only, the gate to the garden isn’t locked – Diggory can walk right in. The witch could have too, but she …

Sermon, "Finding God at Camp/Holy Ground," Exodus 3:1-15

Sermon 5/7/17 Exodus 3:1-15

Finding God at Camp/Holy Ground

“Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” Today we’re celebrating Camp Sunday. We’ve heard from some folks in our congregation about the impact of camp on their lives, spanning through the generations. I want to tell you about some of my experiences at camp too. I suspect, in fact, that if you surveyed pastors, you’d find that a lot of us could point to an experience at church camp as part of our call story, part of how we came to understand that God was calling us into pastoral ministry. But I want us to start today with our scripture text, and reflecting together on this phrase that comes up in our reading from Exodus: holy ground. Through a series of events that unfolds in the Book of Genesis, the Israelites ended up living as slaves in Egypt. And, for a variety of reasons that would make another good sermon series, God chooses Moses to be the person who will lead the Israeli…