Saturday, April 24, 2010

Friday, April 09, 2010

Readings for "God the Planter" Bible study on creation in the Scriptures

I'm looking forward to this Bible study more than any I've ever led, I think. This is an issue that is very close to my heart. It looks like we'll be able to utilize another great Bible study discussion guide from the Christian Reflections series from the Center for Christian Ethics at Baylor University.

The major article is linked here
The study guide is linked here:
In the study guide, there are two pieces of art mentioned.  There are two short descriptions of those pieces linked below each picture.  I look forward to seeing you at the study.  Whether or not you have a chance to read the materials, come and share your perspective--you'll be welcome!

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Sermon Texts: Luke 24: 1-39 (with emphasis on Emmaus story)

Sermon illustration:

Sermon Notes:
Gorilla Video experiment

Sermon Title: Seeing Jesus

At the beginning of Lent, I shared the idea of that season that precedes this day being a lot like a compost pile. It is a time when we examine ourselves for things that might be spoiled or rotting, and we throw it in a pile. Then we turn that pile, we poke it and prod it and water it through devotion and prayer and practice, and we have faith that God can do something miraculous with it—in fact, God can make it into the perfect food for new life.

Well, today we hear about that new life—That new life isn’t only Jesus’ resurrection some 1980 years ago. It is the new life that can occur in us powered through that resurrection. That new life grows out of the compost of our sin and death, and it blossoms into a mysterious and sometimes elusive flower.

The risen Christ isn’t necessarily an overpowering presence. He might be like that gorilla walking into the middle of a circle and beating his chest. The Risen Christ is definitely someone you think you would just have to recognize, but in reality, unless we are expecting Jesus to make an appearance in our lives, we may not see him waltzing right in.

The disciples were walking on the road to Emmaus, and they were joined by someone they did not at first recognize.

Stuff about Jesus being present in the breaking of the bread………………….

They did not expect to see him, so they didn’t see him for who he was. Jesus was like the gorilla walking into the midst of the basketball passes and doing a little jig.

• He spoke with them about the prophets, and why they should not be troubled about their rabbi being gone.

He gave them the same reasons he gave them before he had been crucified, but still they did not see—they didn’t see, but they felt. After they invited him in to their home, and he broke bread at the table, after that cue that clued them into the supper they had shared together just three days before, they saw him, they knew what they were looking for, and then they said to one another—didn’t our hearts burn as we walked down the road. He is with us. Praise God.

Sometimes the power of an experience doesn’t fully catch up with us until we have finished it and we reflect on it, right?

May this holy meal open your eyes, not only to the presence of Jesus Christ here and now in this communion, but along the road—the path that is your life. May this meal, today, where Christ will be present in the breaking of the bread, cause you to remember a time in your own life where you might say, “didn’t our hearts burn within us…”