Sermon: More Than Enough Blame

Mark 2:1-22 Eight years ago in January, I was serving as the associate pastor of a church in Ohio, and it was the night of the Confirmation lock-in. (A lock-in is when you spend the night in a church on purpose. Everybody brings a sleeping bag. Nobody gets any sleep.)...

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Sermon: I Know Who You Are

Mark 1:21-45 There could be people in this room who remember. Back in the nineteen seventies, the neighborhood was changing. We were feeling all the fears, and prejudices, and questions that come with being a white church in a black neighborhood. Church membership...

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Sermon: Silent Night

Luke 1:57-80 If you had been in the room that day… If you had been in the room crowded with neighbors, you would have felt the spirit of unreasonable joy. This was not any old bris! If you had been there you would know you were beholding a miracle. See Elizabeth...

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Sermon: The Power of God

Isaiah 40:1-11 I recently came upon the testimony of a man named Jim Zenner who is veteran from the war in Iraq. He was writing about something called moral injury. This occurs when a person experiences an internal conflict between his core values and his behavior;...

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Sermon: Waiting for the Prophets

Jeremiah 33:14-18 Imagine the scene. About five hundred and eighty-eight years before Jesus was born, Israel had been divided into a Northern Kingdom and a Southern Kingdom. Now the Southern Kingdom, Judah, was under attack. The Assyrians were invading from the north;...

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Sermon: Getting to the Second Story

Isaiah 5:1-7 and Isaiah 11:1-5 Today the Narrative Lectionary gives us two scriptures from the prophet Isaiah, and thank goodness we get both. Can you imagine if all we got was the first one? It means something that the Song of the Delinquent Vineyard does not get the...

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Sermon: Rocks In Our Hands

1 Kings 12:1-17, 25-29 When the sharp edges of the horror start to soften, there’s a popular story that kind-hearted people tell about God. You’ve heard this story before. It pretty much goes like this: God is in charge of the universe. God has a desire for how things...

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Sermon: Find Us In The Fray

2 Samuel 5:1-5 and 2 Samuel 6:1-5 Today we hear the story of God going into the city of Jerusalem. If you think this was a celebration of glittering praise, you’re absolutely right. The procession of the LORD comes with glad singing and dancing, probably crashing...

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Sermon: Naomi’s Prayer

Ruth 1:1-18 You might know, there was a time when I lived and worked in a transitional house for women in recovery from addiction and homelessness. If you have ever lived in any kind of dwelling with any other human person, then you understand. Disputes were not...

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Sermon: What We Have

Deuteronomy 5:1-21 and Deuteronomy 6:4-9 Sometime in the past, you might have shared communion with one of our deacons or parish nurses in your living room. Sometime in the future there might come the day, when one of us will visit you bringing communion right into...

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