Sermon: Re-Form- Leaving Comfortable Places

emerge series“Re-Form- Leaving Comfortable Places”

(April 23, 2017) The more we learn about butterflies (and moths) and the process of metamorphosis, the better it preaches about the transformations of the Christian life. Tombs, cocoons (or chrysalises), wombs, and locked rooms may seem like safe places, but instead are the places where Jesus finds us. Like the caterpillar, we are broken down to be re-formed in God’s hands. Are we really ready for this complete transformation? (Luke 1:26-38John 20:19-31)

IMG_0058A new favorite of many in the congregation, and as promised, my self-disclosure of how very wrong I was about butterflies’ bodies.

Sermon: Reclaiming Tradition

tradition-main

“Reclaiming Tradition”

(November 27, 2016) When King Josiah and his people discovered the Word of God, buried in the Temple, they knew it was time to recommit to the faith of the past. Sometime, the Word of God is hidden in the rubble of old traditions and crumbled lives, and it’s up to us to dust it off, reclaim it, and let it reclaim us. (2 Kings 22: 1-10; 23:1-3)

Sermon: Redeeming Blood

blood“Redeeming Blood”

(March 13, 2016) I’ve never been comfortable with embracing the blood and suffering of Jesus’ death, not because I’m squeamish, but because I don’t like what that says about God. But if redemption is in Christ’s blood (just like, as an Italian, hospitality is in mine), is it possible to redeem this image and let it speak to me– and to many of us– in new ways? (Luke 23:33-47)

Personally, I think that if you’re only going to listen to one of my sermons so far this year, it should be this one. It’s deeply theological in some ways, and also deeply personal.

“Poured Out” monologues for Lent by Dr. Marcia McFee, (www.marciamcfee.com) used with permission, but not reproduced here. 

Sermon: Whatever Forms

Minolta DSC“Whatever Forms”

(January 24, 2106) One part of our baptismal and membership vow as members of the Methodist Church is to resist evil, injustice, and oppression in whatever forms they present themselves. So, that could be quite a lot, really… (Luke 4:14-21)

What’s your life verse?

Sermon: Crumbled Grace

ash wed“Crumbled Grace”

(September 6, 2015) A woman came to Jesus, begging for healing for her child, and she was Syrian… I mean, Syrophoenician. Dare we believe, even in the face of global crisis, that the smallest act of love, the smallest scrap of grace, makes a difference? (Mark 7:24-37)

Sermon: Prayer, Interrupted

candles votives blowoutPrayer, Interrupted

(June 28, 2015) With grief and sorrow, and the commitment not just to pray, but to act, we lift our laments for the attack on Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in South Carolina. (Psalm 1302 Samuel 1:1, 17-27)

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I quote from a reflection by my colleague, Steve Garnaas-Holmes.

Sermon: Wind, Water, Flame

flame 8  no cred needed“Wind, Water, Flame”

(May 24, 2015, Pentecost) We talk about the Holy Spirit in curious ways– ways that perhaps betray our discomfort with it’s unpredictable, life-shaking nature. Are we ready to let the Spirit shake us up, let it rock us? (Acts 2:1-6, 12-21)

(money shot for those who want to hear me sing at about the 7:40 mark)