Sunday, December 30, 2012

What Does Tomorrow Hold?

From the moment you are Baptized into the Christian faith, the holy Christian Church—indeed into the very body of Christ—these are God’s words to you, “Depart in peace.”
God is not just preparing you to leave the temple building. From the time of your Baptism you have seen the salvation of the Lord and can leave this world in peace.
This is what Simeon was singing about. He could die and leave this world in peace because the Word he had heard had been fulfilled.
And thanks be to God in Christ Jesus, you too can sing with Simeon and all of Christ's church here on earth and in heaven: “Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace."
To hear the entire sermon preached for the First Sunday after Christmas, click on this link.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

And This Will Be a Sign for You

This baby born in Bethlehem is the Word of the Lord--and Him made flesh to dwell among and in us to defeat sin, death, and the power of the devil.
He had to be a man. So He became a baby. And now you have been joined to that man. Jesus born in Bethlehem is now born in you by Holy Baptism to dwell with you, and Him with you.
Merry Christmas to you all for another ten days. Then on to the Epiphany of our Lord on January 6.
To access both audio and text of the sermon preached for Christmas Eve, click on this link.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

His Mercy Is for Those Who Fear Him

That tiny little fetus (which simply means, "little one") conceived by the Holy Spirit in the Virgin Mary is in charge...! We see in today's Gospel that Jesus--just a couple of tiny little cells at the time--led His own mother, Mary, to where she needed to be and where He wanted her to be that day, while he was still but a tiny little mass of cells like those that are all too often deemed unviable tissue today by the wisdom of the world and thrown away.

And thanks be to God in Christ Jesus, there is forgiveness for even such a sin and any other you may think is beyond the compassion of our Lord.
To hear and/or read the entire sermon preached for the Fourth Sunday in Advent, click on this link.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Rejoice?! Really?

Rejoice!? Really? And just how is that we are supposed to be reasonable when God is allowing such senseless and unreasonable stuff to go on all around us. It seems every week, sometimes every day brings something senseless and unreasonable into our worlds. Sometimes it's in a little more distant place like Connecticut, or Afghanistan, Liberia—or even with something like Pastor Chambers year long battle with a horrible bacteria. Other times it's closer to home in our own communities and neighborhoods: law breakers shooting our police officers (maybe we even know some of them or their families), police officers shooting law breakers (again maybe we know some of these lawbreakers or their families), murder suicides involving young children. Things like cancer touching people in our own families, and other health problems that result in losing a friend or loved one far too soon at too young an age to even remotely consider such a thing reasonable.
How is all this reasonable? How is God being reasonable? And yet He is telling us to rejoice and be reasonable?

To hear and/or read the entire sermon preached for Gaudete, the Third Sunday in Advent, click on this link.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

"For You I Wait All the Day Long"

We all have our own problems waiting. That's sin at work in us. That's the whole point of the temptation of the evil one in the Garden and in our world today—to get us to stop waiting for God and take life and the pursuit of happiness into our own hands rather than waiting for the Lord to do what He always does and always has done, give us everything we need to live and live life to the fullest.

Because we can't wait, God teaches us to wait.

To hear and/or read the entire sermon preached for the First Sunday in Advent, click on this link.