The burning bush story is one of call and response. Something is being called for in the name of God. And I can’t help but believe that call and response is also the story of our lives. Something is being asked of us in the name of God.
The burning bush experience does not happen apart from or in spite of every day life but in the midst of life, in the keeping of our flocks. That’s what Moses was doing when this happened. He was keeping the flock of his father in law. He was doing the ordinary routine things of his life, the same things he did the day before, the week before, and the month before. Burning bushes show up as we keep our flocks of routine and every day life; marriage, parenting, work, friendships, errands, church, reading the news, household tasks. Continue reading The Burning Bush: What If? – A Sermon On Exodus 3:1-15
Read the headline news, listen to the stories behind the names and circumstances on our prayer list, observe life and you will quickly be reminded of what you already knew. Siloam’s was not the last tower to fall and Pilate was not the last to hurt or kill another person. Tyrants and towers are a reality of this world and our lives. They come in all sorts of events, ways, and circumstances. Sometimes it’s intentional, other times it’s accidental. Sometimes it’s of human origin, other times it’s the way of nature. Accidents, disease, crime, divorce, famine, poverty, war, earthquakes, tornados, and tsunamis. Those are but a few of the tyrants and towers in this world.
Whenever and wherever tyrants act and towers fall we are faced with the reality that life is fragile, unpredictable, and often tragic. In those moments we are often quick, too quick, to seek and offer easy explanations. “They got what they deserved.” “God has a plan.” “Everything happens for a reason.” “He’s in a better place.” “There’s a lesson to be learned here.” “This was God’s will.” “Someday when we get to heaven we’ll know why.”
Jesus has heard something like these explanations from the people who tell him about the Galileans whose blood pilate mingled with their sacrifices. It sounds a lot like they are saying that something bad happened because they were bad people. To this kind of thinking and all the other simplistic, trite, and unhelpful responses in the face of tragedy Jesus says, “No, I tell you.” Continue reading “Tyrants Act and Towers Fall, Choose Life (Luke 13:1-9)”
The collect and readings for today, the Third Sunday in Lent, may be found here. The appointed gospel is Luke 13:1-9. At that very time there were some present who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2He asked them, “Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? … Continue reading Sermon for Lent 3C: Repent, Towers Are Falling And Trees Are Fruitless
When I look at my to-do list and my calendar I do not see “turning aside.” I suspect that is true for most of us. We live busy lives. To do lists are long, calendars are full, and time is short. There is no time for “turning aside.” It is not productive or efficient to turn aside from the life and the task that is … Continue reading What Might You See By Turning Aside?