Hope

"This child is destined for the falling and the rising of many"- Simeon

God has intruded into our cycle of birth - innocence - rebellion - maturity - midlife - old age - and death. He has given us something eternal. What we see is not a generational division, but a timeless unity.

For: 
December 27, 2020
Luke 2:22-40
Christmas 1
Sunday between Christmas & New Year's
God has sent the rich away empty - Mary the mother of Jesus

Mary makes a spiritual leap that I think we all should make this Christmas season, especially in the midst of our fears and the growing social unrest of 2020. She says that the Messiah will be born on the wrong side of the tracks.

For: 
December 20, 2020
Luke 1:46-55
Advent 4
Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low... - the Prophet Isaiah

As we look through the Bible, most of Jesus’ words were comforting words. He went around healing people – not just their bodies, but also their hearts. When we have been broken by life, Jesus is not there to tells us what we did wrong. He comes to bring us comfort.

For: 
December 6, 2020
Isaiah 40:1-11
Advent 2
"But in those days, after that suffering..." - Jesus talking about the apocalypse

For now, you are the second coming of Christ. If this is the apocalypse, how much more important is it that you be loving, kind, and future-oriented? 

For: 
November 29, 2020
Mark 13:24-37
Advent 1
"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" - Jesus

Jesus is saying in his first message, "I am not blessing you for your accomplishments. You are already blessed for being on the path. Blessed are all those who hunger and thirst to become better people. Your heart will be filled with goodness."

For: 
November 8, 2020
Matthew 5:1-12
Pentecost 23
"Live out your time as foreigners here in reverent fear…" I Peter 1:17

The coronavirus is teaching us to be mindful of the invisible.  Even as we worship online, we are members of the Church triumphant. Along with myriads of angels and saints only seen by our imagination, we commune in the family of God.

For: 
April 26, 2020
1 Peter 1:17-23
Easter 3
He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide by what his ears hear... - Isaiah 11:3

It is possible for a roll of film to go a decade or two without being developed. During that time, the images are invisible. Any attempt to see what is on the film results in erasing the image. Only by carefully processing the film is the photographer’s art brought to light. Often things are hidden away until it is the right time for them to be revealed. A baby is hidden in womb until it is born...

For: 
December 8, 2019
Isaiah 11:1-10
Matthew 3:1-12
Advent 2
They shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation...

I don’t know how to get others to the mountain. I only know that it is where I need to be. “O house of Jacob, come, let us walk in the light of the LORD!” (Isaiah 2:5).

For: 
December 1, 2019
Isaiah 2:1-5
Advent 1
Jesus says, “By your endurance, you will gain your soul."

The Rock of Gibraltar for people in Jesus’s day was the temple in Jerusalem. Solomon had built the first temple and it lasted over 400 years. Jesus He says Herod’s temple won’t last 40 years.

For: 
November 17, 2019
Luke 21:5-19
James 4:13-14
Pentecost 23
"Take courage, all you people of the land. For I am with you," says the LORD of hosts.

In this modern era, it takes courage to speak about the reality of Heaven. Our bodies are mortal, from the moment of our birth we begin to die. Yet, our culture idealizes youth and riducules those who are content with the aging process. Often we are told that believing in heaven is silly, only a pie in the sky.

For: 
November 10, 2019
Haggai 1:15 to 2:9
Luke 20:27-38
Pentecost 22
God’s love has been poured into our hearts.

There’s a vicious circle that I often get stuck in; I think that because I am a Christian, I should always have the right answer, never have any doubts, and in practice, be a model of perfection. Guess what? I’m not perfect yet. 

For: 
June 16, 2019
Romans 5:1-5
Pentecost 2
"...for you have drawn me up, and did not let my foes rejoice over me."

What does it mean to us? It means that Christ's resurrection was for everyone. Even those who are broken in the pit, can be drawn up.

For: 
May 5, 2019
Psalm 30
Easter 3
Holy Saturday vigil
But now thus says the LORD, he who created you... Do not fear, for I have redeemed you...

Each of us have been created twice. On the one hand, we have been birthed into this world as unique individuals. God has a plan for each of us. Unfortunately, everyone else does too. We pray for our creator to help us discern what He has created in us. On the other hand, we believe that God has both created and owned our nation.

For: 
January 13, 2019
Isaiah 43:1-7
Epiphany 2
God has filled the hungry with good things

Jesus came at Christmastime to a world where religion no longer served the people. Mary sang her hope of a different order. What about today? We live in a time of social upheaval and political polarization of equal magnitude to that of the first century. 

For: 
December 23, 2018
Luke 1:46-55
Advent 4
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice

This Christmas learn to rejoice, not because things are going well, but because Jesus is near. He promises to be near as we face difficulty. He is also near in terms of his coming kingdom. 

For: 
December 16, 2018
Philippians 4:4-7
Isaiah 9:2
Advent 3
Remember those in Prison

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