Saturday, December 02, 2006

Sermon prep

These thoughts from December 3, 2006 sermon preparations:

Taking a Stand for Justice

The Gospel of Luke tells us not to be watching out for the return of Jesus, but that when he descends from the clouds, then the time will be upon us. We keep looking and waiting and putting things off because there is no urgency to it. We tie up dollars in the local church and in the conference because we want more time to study what to do with it, and still the ship is sinking.

The ship is sinking and we act like the man in the story of the flood waters

-a friend offered him a lifejacket

-a boat comes by

-a helicopter comes by

-the victim replies, “God will save me”

-Dies and goes to heaven, asks God why he didn’t save him

-God replies “did you not understand that the lifejacket, the boat and helicopter were there to save you?"

The answer lies in the fact that we are called upon to look out for one another.

I am grateful for Heifer Project being with us this week. I am reminded of the several other projects that have been taking place this week. December 1 was worldwide HIV/AIDS awareness day. The Board of Church and Society has asked that Advent serve as a time to look to end torture in the world. Our own Advent calendar at the church reminds us of the need to pray for one another as several names are listed at the bottom of each day during Advent.

Insert notes from: health

General Board of Church and Society "Faith in Action Weekly Digest", article on torture

The Gospel of Luke says that in the day that the Son of God descends from the clouds we should stand up and raise your hands for your redemption is near. But, it goes on to say that we should not get caught up in the likes of drunkenness, instead striving for righteousness that we are not caught unawares. What better way to act as though that moment is right now, but that we stand up for righteousness, and doing what is right, looking out for one another. We can then be “the Branch” that is spoken of in Jeremiah, the Branch of the people of Israel that have upheld the covenant to secure the love, respect and health of all within the community. Lest we begin to close the community in too close, let us remember the words of Jesus as he told the story of the Good Samaritan, and who our neighbor is.

If indeed Christ is our hope, the expectation of something great, let us also be the hope of Christ to the world, as we have been left as stewards of the kingdom of God.


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