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Memory Lane Is a Dead End Road

Exodus 17:1-7 If you have been in worship the last few weeks, you have probably noticed something about our journey with the Israelites through the wilderness: these people complain a lot. When the armies of Pharaoh pursued them by the Red Sea, they said to Moses, “What have you done to us, bringing us out [...]

About Twenty Minutes

Exodus 16:2-15 I have often heard teachers say “There’s no such thing as a stupid question.” It is meant to encourage people not to be embarrassed about asking questions. The problem is: it’s just not true. There are stupid questions. Of course, what is a stupid question is varies according to age or stage. If [...]

Standing at the Edge

Exodus 14:19-31 Up a creek without a paddle. Caught between a rock and a hard place. Between the devil and the deep blue sea. Any of these idioms could apply to the Israelites at this point in their story. Moses had gone to Pharaoh and demanded the release of the Israelites, but that hadn’t worked [...]

Contagious Courage

Exodus 4:1-12 Last week we read the story frequently called “Moses and the Burning Bush.” We talked about God’s instructions for Moses to take off his shoes, for he was standing on holy ground. Today I’d like to talk about Moses’ response to the whole encounter. It starts, of course, with Moses seeing the angel [...]

Barefoot with God

Exodus 3:1-15 At my service of installation last February, the friend I asked to give the Charge to the Pastor revealed one of my secrets to those in attendance that day. OK, so it isn’t a very well-kept secret, since it’s on display most Sundays from September through March. But here it is: I love [...]

An easy yoke?

Matthew 11:25-30 Raise your hand if you’re tired this morning. I’m a little tired this morning. Actually, I’m a little tired most mornings. I stay up too late, usually doing nothing of real importance. I always tell myself I only need six or seven hours of sleep. It’s actually not true. My body really prefers [...]

Joe’s Story: To Go On as Though Something HAS Happened

Isaiah 55:8-12; Matthew 10:5,7 Guest Preacher Rev. Jill Job Saxby Joe was on a mission. It was just an ordinary late afternoon, the skies darkening with the threat of rain. And here was Joe, age 78, climbing into his ten year old Chrysler, setting out with a sense of purpose, fueled in roughly equal parts [...]

Cast-outs and Covenants

Genesis 21:8-21 The story of Hagar and Ishmael is one of the more painful stories of the Old Testament. You may not be very familiar with it—it’s not a popular story—so I’ll give you the background before reading the scripture. God promised Abraham, then called Abram, “I will make of you a great nation.” Then [...]

Co-Creators

Luke 24:44-53 Genesis 1 As many of you know, my first career was in publishing. So to go back to my roots, we are starting today with a writing lesson. Let’s talk about verbs. A good verb goes a long way. If you have a good verb, the perfect verb for its context, you don’t [...]

I’ll Rise

Luke 24:44-53 Ascension Sunday is a strange day in the life of the church. First, it’s not really a Sunday; it’s a Thursday. Historically, the Day of Ascension (or in the Catholic Church, the Feast of Ascension) takes place forty days after Easter. This is because in the Book of Acts, we are told that [...]

Listening to the Dream

John 10:1-10 “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” The dictionary defines abundance as “plentiful: present in great quantities” and “well-supplied: providing a more than plentiful supply of something.” Synonyms include “copious, rich, profuse, and lavish.” We know how our society defines abundant life: as a life of abundance, with a [...]

God on the Road

Luke 24:13-35 Today is the third Sunday of Easter. Liturgically-speaking, we are a long way from today’s text. Good Friday was over two weeks ago. For Cleopas and his fellow traveler, it has been just a couple of days. It is Easter Sunday to them, only they don’t know it yet. It still feels like [...]

Learning to See

John 20:1-18 Last month ABC premiered a new show called Resurrection. “The series follows the residents of Arcadia, Missouri, whose lives are upended when their loved ones return from the dead, unaged since their deaths. Among the returned is Jacob Langston, an eight-year-old boy who drowned 32 years earlier.” [1] In the pilot episode, when his [...]

Do you see what I see?

Matthew 21:1-11 Two of my fellow students in seminary had cerebral palsy. They both used wheelchairs, but that was pretty much where their similarities ended. Ann Marie was tall; Sophia was small. Ann Marie was blonde; Sophia had dark hair. Ann Marie’s CP was more severe than Sophia’s, with greater limits on her speech and [...]

Dem Bones, Dem Bones

Ezekiel 37:1-14 I know a woman who, a number of years ago, was at a desperate place in life. She had just left an abusive marriage and still feared for her safety. She carried pepper spray on her keychain, and had a bottle by every door. She always looked over her shoulder, always checked the [...]

Surely Goodness & Mercy

Psalm 23 The 23rd psalm is not recognized and known only in the church. People who could not quote another scripture to save their lives can at least stumble their way through the 23rd Psalm, even if they don’t know it’s the 23rd. It has been called “An American secular icon.” But it is not [...]

  • A Christian Family: Loving, Welcoming, Serving

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