Advent Sermon: “Ready or Not!”

Advent Sermon: “Ready or Not!”   Sunday, December 3rd, 2017 Scripture: Mark 1: 1-8 I turned off the Christmas music this week! I just couldn’t take it any longer. It’s been said many times, many ways Merry Christmas to you and it’s only December 3rd. And it felt like spring earlier this week. And it’s Advent! Today actually begins the season of Advent, the start of the liturgical calendar, and the countdown to Christmas; even though the world has moved onto to Christmas deals and lights, those in the church are still counting down the days to celebrating the coming of … Continue reading Advent Sermon: “Ready or Not!”

All Saints Sermon: “Living a Life of Joy: The Generosity of the Saints”

SCRIPTURE READING Our Scripture reading is from 1 John 3: 16-24 16 We know love by this, that he laid down his life for us—and we ought to lay down our lives for one another. 17 How does God’s love abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees a brother or sister in need and yet refuses help? 18 Little children, let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action. 19 And by this we will know that we are from the truth and will reassure our hearts before him 20 whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, … Continue reading All Saints Sermon: “Living a Life of Joy: The Generosity of the Saints”

Commemorating the 500th Anniversary of Reformation Day: “That All May Be One”

Today around the world, Christians of varying types are commemorating the 500th Anniversary of Martin Luther’s nailing of 95 theses to the church door in Wittenberg that sparked the Protestant Reformation. It’s not necessarily a day to “celebrate”, but a day to “commemorate” or recall and show respect for, as I don’t think we need to celebrate division within the Body of Christ. While I understand Luther’s desire to reform the church, there have been reformations and divisions ever since. It seems like Christians can hardly agree on much of anything. During my congregation’s annual Trunk or Treat gathering, I … Continue reading Commemorating the 500th Anniversary of Reformation Day: “That All May Be One”

Holding Onto the Moment

This past Sunday I had the joy of baptizing one of our smaller, but one of the fastest members of our congregation. This little guy can run fast! As I was holding him and began to place the water on his tiny little head, I was deeply moved. Every baptism is unique. Some of them include squirrely babies, cries, and laughs, but in their uniqueness they are all holy. I am thankful for holy moments, when you just know that something sacred is happening. Yesterday I did something I have never done during a baptism. As I made my last … Continue reading Holding Onto the Moment

Sermon: “Living a Life of Joy: I’ve Got a New Attitude”

SCRIPTURE READINGS 2 Corinthians 4: 16-18 16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. Philippians 4: 8-9 8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9 Whatever you … Continue reading Sermon: “Living a Life of Joy: I’ve Got a New Attitude”

We Need Another Saint Francis

Every year I try to take the time to write a brief reflection on Saint Francis Day, the Feast Day of Saint Francis, October 4th. As I looked over reflections from previous years, I was surprised by how many of them focused on the same thing, the issue of violence and our need for peace. Unfortunately, I suppose this year is the same. This past week has been a challenging one across our nation and even at home. The nation is still reeling over the worst mass shooting in American history. The city I call home, Indianapolis, is trying to … Continue reading We Need Another Saint Francis

Sermon: “Living a Life of Joy: Lighten Up!”

Sermon Oct 1st, 2017             Living a Life of Joy: Lighten Up! Nearly every Sunday I can still feel the butterflies before I preach. After preaching for several years now, I can still get a little nervous over the enormity of the call to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. No pressure right! During one of my first times ever preaching, a mentor of mine reminded me that if I’m not a little nervous throughout my entire career, then I’m doing something wrong. I can remember the time when I was preaching at my college church when Bishop Duecker came up … Continue reading Sermon: “Living a Life of Joy: Lighten Up!”