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Showing posts from March, 2014

Welcome to the Well

3 Lent John 4:5-42 (This sermon was given in the context of our 4 th through 8 th grade Sunday School group dramatically acting out Gospel.   They broke the Gospel into parts and between each part came pieces of this sermon.) (John 4:5-9)   This story from John’s gospel is Jesus’ longest recorded conversation with anyone.   We see a back-and-forth with this Samaritan woman at the well that is more detailed than we get with any disciple or religious leader.    This would have been shocking, horrifying, completely unacceptable to anyone hearing about or reading this story for so many reasons.   First, she is a woman.   That’s enough in itself to marginalize her in first-century, patriarchal culture.   Jesus had no business being alone with her, much less talking to her or drinking from her bucket.   Second, she is a Samaritan, and therefore an outcast in Jewish society.   Most Jews would travel an extra 9 hours around Samaria to get to Galilee rather than setting foot

Choose-Your-Own-Adventure Sermon

Lent 1, Year A March 9, 2014 Genesis 2:15-17, 3:1-7 (Just as a warning, this sermon is going to require some movement in a minute, if you’re up for it.) Are you all familiar with the choose-your-own-adventure books?   When I was a kid, I loved these books where at each important choice you could decide what the main character would do next.   It was such fun to be the star of the story.   Such fun to have power over the story line.   Such fun not only to be able to choose what would happen next, but also to be able to go back and un-choose it if things didn’t go well.   Such fun to get to see all the alternative possibilities that could come from one starting place.   I always thought it would be wonderful if life could work that way.   If only we could have the wherewithal to really see that we were making a choice in the moment of action rather than just sort of moving unknowingly through life so much of the time.   If only we could see clearly the immediate consequences o

Lent for Families

Make this year’s observance of Lent a family affair.   Here are some ideas that your family might consider this Lent, and please share any others that you come up with that work well for your family: Attend an Ash Wednesday service together.   If you have young children, our 5:30 p.m. service is a perfect way to introduce the season in a way they can understand. Learn about Lent together.   Lent is 40 days long (not counting Sundays, which are like mini-Easters).   40 is a common number in the Bible - Noah was in the ark for 40 days, the Israelites wandered in the desert for 40 years, Jesus spent 40 days in the desert before beginning his public a ministry.   These 40 days are a time for us to get ready to enter the mystery of Easter. Give something up or take something on during the season of Lent.    Think about what you might give up or take on, either as a family or individually.   Children might give up desserts or TV or a certain toy (even for one day a week).   You migh