The promise and risk of life come to us asking for a response. Jesus had decisions to make. And so do we. We make decisions everyday of our life; decisions and choices about what to do, who we want to be, how we want to live. We sometimes call them temptations. We feel torn and pulled between the promise and the risk. Temptations hold before us the illusion of promise without risk. But that’s not the way the wilderness works, and Jesus knows that.
With each decision we’re betting that the future will be better, not because it necessarily is, but because it might be. And that “might,” the possibility of a better future, of more life, is what gives us the strength, the faith, the hope, to risk a decision and remain open to the future, even when we don’t know how it will turn out. Continue reading Life Is Promise And Risk – A Sermon On Luke 4:1-13
How far will I go for this gospel I claim to love and follow? What am I willing to do and what am I not? I struggle and wrestle with these questions every day.
Because here’s what I see in the world and read in the life of Jesus. Sometimes, perhaps more often than not, the gospel asks us to make a choice, to take a stand, that will inconvenience us, be contrary to our self-interest, or put us in conflict and even opposition with others, ourselves, our family, our country, our religion. Continue reading Where And With Whom Will You Stand? – A Sermon On Luke 4:14-21
The First Sunday in Lent – Mark 1:9-15 I don’t know how I can stand before you today with any sense of integrity and faithfulness and not say something about the Florida shooting. Something has to be said. I’m just not sure what to say or what can be said. I’m struggling with that. And I have been since my Ash Wednesday sermon. We’ve been … Continue reading The Wilderness Of Gun Violence – A Sermon On Mark 1:9-15
Have you ever gotten exactly what you chose only to realize it was not what you really wanted? Have you ever made a choice that you knew was the right choice, a good choice, but it left you feeling empty, as if something was missing? Despite getting what you wanted, what you chose, your life was not enriched, made full and vibrant they way you thought it would be. Instead it felt diminished and impoverished. Continue reading The Choice is Yours – A Sermon on Sirach 15:15-20 and Matthew 5:21-37
Me or we? It’s a question each of us faces and answers everyday as we say our prayers, make decisions, establish priorities, and live our lives. Do we live as insulated and isolated individuals or as a person connected to and interdependent with others? Me doesn’t just apply to a single individual. Me could be a group, a parish, a business. So me or we is … Continue reading Solomon’s Choice, Me or We? A Sermon on 1 Kings 3:5-12
Love triangles. I want to talk with you today about love triangles. You know what I am talking about right? You’ve seen the pictures and headlines on the tabloids in the grocery store check out lines. Love triangles are often the subject of movie plots and sometimes they are the circumstances in which a crime is committed. They are also a part of our lives. … Continue reading Love Triangles – A Sermon on Matthew 10:24-39
So who wants to be a disciple of Jesus? He certainly doesn’t pull any punches about what it takes. First, “Hate your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and even life itself.” Second, “Carry the cross and follow [him].” Lastly, “Give up all your possessions.” (See Luke 14:25-33, Proper 18C) It’s that simple and it’s that difficult. Jesus’ words don’t just sound … Continue reading How Many Priorities Can a Disciple Have? A Sermon on Luke 14:25-33
One of the questions I most often hear people struggle with is God’s will. What is God’s will for my life? What does God want me to do? It is often asked with the idea that God has a certain plan in mind and our job is to read God’s mind, to figure out what God is thinking. The spiritual life then becomes legalistic; a … Continue reading God’s Will