With my current role as a community organizing I am regularly being asked to preach about organizing. Attached is the sermon I often use in Christian Contexts. Let me know what you think and if you are interested in organizing. This is the version I preached at Grace Presbyterian. Where Does God Dwell -
What do we do when we read a part of scripture that hurts? I was invited to preach at my home congregation, and the text for that Sunday was perhaps the most painful possible text for me to preach on. So how can scripture help us see our pain in new way and find a path from pain to life.
As we move into our focus on the Gospel of John. We begin with the call to discipleship. This moves us into the story. So what does it mean to be called into discipleship. You can read more in this Sermon from January 5th.
The other week at Advent we had some conversations about renewal and we decided that Ezekiel's vision of dry bones was a great launching point. So we did two things. We weaved into the service a reminders of why we worship as we do. We began this by asking people to remove their shoes because they were standing on Holy Ground. It was great because as expected some people revolted (which was then woven into what I said) . You can read the text that was written for this here
Then I preached on renewal. God's word and God's breath, reforming us and giving us life. You can read the sermon text here.
I was amazed, even with the revolt, people seemed to respond quite well. It is amazing what shifting people just slightly out of the usual forms can to to help people re-see what the richness of worship.
I always love a good questioning of religion when it is insightful. So what is religion about? It is interesting how Jesus uses the image of a shepherd, someone who spends time with the sheep developing a relationship, and in our case leading us to both truth and beauty that shines, even in darkness. Click here to read.
Once again the disciples teach us about what it means to be human. They have just had one of the most intense spiritual experiences imaginable. They have witnessed the death and resurrection of Jesus. So how do they respond? They go fishing. Back to their old habits. Jesus though comes and using actions that now reflect our worship Jesus calls his disciples back and calls Peter to keep calling them back to their new life. Click Here to read
The readings of Easter allow us to struggle with the question of, "Now what?" What is our human experience of Easter?
The Second Sunday of Easter lifts up the story of Thomas who both shows us how we encounter Jesus in our doubts and question, but also how Jesus comes to us precisely in response to what we need. Click here to read.
On the Third Sunday of Easter the disciples have gone from encountering the resurrected Jesus to only return to their old patters. They have gone fishing. Jesus again appears, in a story filled with imagery of worship, to call them, and specifically Peter to become leaders. Click here to read
I am always amazed at how the different disciples open up for us different experiences of Jesus. This Easter I was struck how Peter, John and Mary Each display how different people approach the mystery of Easter. Peter is the person who can just barrel in. John is the one who can stand back and contemplate and begin to believe. This Easter it was Mary, who came to experience Jesus though her tears that spoke most profoundly to me. It is interesting how the one who stayed to mourn became the Apostle to the Apostles. Click here to read
The story of the three Magi, theseZoroastrian Priests, point us towards the Mystery that Paul will later teach. That what ever false selves we create before God and others to distinguish and separate our selves from them or from God, do not matter. Christ, God, in grace comes to us. Creating a new self. Which is the only self that really matters. Click here to read
What is todays call for reformation? Perhaps it is heard in children being dismissed from school in Sierra Leone because they can't afford school fees. Is perhaps the call of reformation today the call to see how by grace we are all children of God, infinitely loved. Click Here to Read this Reformation Day Sermon
So what is at the heart of Christian Spirituality - Love. Our love for God, and how we love others. Better yet it is about how we are caught up in God's love, and how that love flows through us to others. Click Here to Read This Sermon
What is the one place to start with if you want to deepen your spirituality? I would suggest with devotions. Devotions bring together prayer, scripture and reflection on our days - which together are essential for helping us experience the relationship we have with God each day. Click here to read this sermon.
So what does a life of passionate spirituality look like. There are many example. Each one can help us understand the patterns that we find as we seek to follow God's calling. St. Anthony give us a powerful example of what it means to respond to God's call, the need for community and teachers (even for a hermit), and how we are called into the darkness of the world in order to be purified and bring God's light. Read this September 16th sermon.
Jesus encounters a gentile woman and he is transformed. How are we open to welcoming and encountering others so that that presence of God within them may transform us. Read this September 10th, 2012 Sermon