Sunday, September 11, 2011

Friday, September 02, 2011

A Friday Haiku/Prayer

Gracious Holy God,
inspire our voice for peace, then
move our feet towards love.

amen.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Supporting Resurrection House

I just donated to support Resurrection House.  You can too by clicking on the button below.  Resurrection House is the internship I did in 2001-2002.  It remains one of the most formative experiences of my life.  I am a better man, a better christian, a better husband and a better priest because of that experience.  I highly recommend it for any young adult who is wondering what God wants them to do with their life.  I am going to post a longer meditation on that experience in honor of the ten year anniversary of my intern year soon; so check back for that.  In the meantime, please consider supporting the ministry of Resurrection House.  We are raising up the next generation of Christian leaders for the church and the world.






Sunday, May 15, 2011

Easter 4.AVI

So I had a bit of a saga with this sermon. It began on Tuesday when I read the scriptures assigned for the the fourth Sunday of Easter of the Revised Common Lectionary. I was excited to see John 10:10 as the last verse of the gospel passage. It is one of Dad's favorite verses from all of scripture, and I remembered him preaching on it often as a kid. I was excited to use an acronym for the word L.I.F.E. that he used because I like to honor my father as my true homiletics teacher, and his material was always rick solid. I knew the sermon would land using his outline. So, I spent the next few days thinking about what I wanted to say using his acronym as the backbone of the sermon. On Wednesday I flushed out his outline a little bit using my mind mapping software (this detail will be important later). When I got to Friday, which is my writing day, the sermon went down on "paper" pretty easily. That is to say I typed into OpenOffice in a couple of hours.

So,I had my first draft complete and was fairly happy with it. I decided to close out the program and let the sermon sit for a bit before I went back to fix typos and such. Well, as it would have it, when I closed out the program I hit "discard" instead of "save". Unlike every other sermon I have written in the last 10 years, I had not saved frequently as I went. Needless to say, I freaked out and almost chucked my computer through the stained glass windows of my office. Luckily, I didn't it, because folks are pretty fond of those stained glass windows. Anyway, after leaving the building, getting some lunch, and clearing my head a bit, I got a hold of one of vestry members who is a computer expert and he helped find and undelete the file. At this point, I am thinking that I now have a sermon illustration for the Resurrection to use at a latter date, which would be a really cool bonus to the drama of losing the sermon. Alas, this was not to be, because though we found the file, it was so corrupted that the text was illegible. In the words of my vestry member, "Yeah, you're screwed." So, I went back to the outline in the mind mapping software, amplified it a little bit, and preached from that. Some of my colleagues thought that maybe the holy spirit was involved in the whole drama, but I have my doubts. You can watch it here let me know if you think the spirit was involved.


Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Hope

Hope

Hope has gotten a lot of press recently, from Pres. Barack Obama's book The Audacity of Hope to the ridicule of his understanding of hope by his opponents.  Since the time of the Apostle Paul, Hope has been a Christian virtue, a characteristic that promotes our individual and joint well being.  I believe hope is a characteristic that helps us love God with all our heart.  For Christians, I believe, hope springs from knowing that the way things are, are not the way things will always be.  Furthermore we are hopeful because we know we are not alone in our darkest nor our brightest hour.

We are hopeful that the world as it is will not always be as it is because we believe the resurrected Jesus Christ to be the first born of a new creation called the kingdom of God.  We are all able through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus to be new creations as well.  This new creation is not run on fear as our current world is; rather it is run on love, not on separation or individualism; rather on community.  In the new creation we are in communion with God, communion with our neighbors, and in communion with nature.  We are hopeful for this new creation because we know the great stories of the past and want to be a part of the great stories of now.

We are hopeful because we are not alone.  This is one of the great messages of the cross.  God incarnate, the divine one in human flesh, was willing to suffer and die.  God is not separate from our suffering.  God has experienced it too.  To put it colloquially, God has been there and done that.  Hope does not deny the suffering of the world. It is not Pollianna with rose colored glasses.  If God incarnate wound up on a cross how we could we expect anything different.   Hope is motivation to keep moving forward despite the pain and suffering common to life.  Hope is knowing that God will be with us no matter what we do or what is done to us.  Hope is a christian virtue.

Questions for today:
How would you define hope?
When do you and what makes you feel hopeful?
(First posted in 2009, revised 5 April 2011)