Text, scripture, and audio from weekly sermons.
Click "Read More..." to access the audio and listen to the sermon.
I know Jesus says not to be, but I'm feeling alarmed.
The President of the University of Missouri system resigned Monday amidst racial turmoil, as accusations are hurled and America's original sin of race still looms large.
Pick your shooting of the week, from a South African training facility in Jordan to Penn station to neighborhoods on the south side of Chicago or by Woodcroft shopping center last weekend.
It is Tuesday of Holy Week, and Jesus' full rhetorical powers are on display.
In Mark's gospel, it's the first time Jesus has been to Jerusalem. After the triumphal entry into the city on what we now call Palm Sunday at the beginning of chapter 11, Jesus heads to Bethany, staying outside the city walls with his friends. He dares to return the next morning, knowing there are already leaders there who want him dead, strides right into the temple, tossing tables aside - people scurrying out of the way, animals rushing for cover, birds flying in the air, coins hurled as he screams: "Is it not written, ‘my house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations,' but YOU have made it a den of robbers!"1 They escape the city again.
There are times when two people connect, when the tie that binds is blest beyond explanation. My Great-Grandma Croghan and I were that way. We were as close as a 3 year old and an octogenarian could be. When she died, my family told me she had gone to heaven. I said, "I'm going to miss her so much," to which they responded, "She'll always be in your heart."
Then, for weeks on end, I would stretch my shirt collar open, look down at my heart and have a conversation with her. Sometimes, I would just say, "Hi, Croghan!" and other times, I would tell her about my day. While this memory for me is colored by the illumination of my family, I can remember the outline of its truth - I loved my Great-Grandma and she loved me. I loved her enough to want to keep her with me, keep her in my heart.
The disciples, fresh off the news of Jesus' resurrection, trudged up the rocky slopes. The angels had broken to Mary and Mary the Easter news that he was not dead, but alive, and sent them back with a message: "Do not be afraid," he said. "Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; THERE they will see me." So they strapped on their boots for a hike.
It began as a regular day. "One day," Luke says, "while [Jesus] was teaching..." Earlier, chapter 5 begins, "Once, while Jesus was standing by the lake....", then he calls his first disciples. "Once," Luke says in verse 12, one time, when he was in one of the cities, there was a man covered with leprosy. One day, today, this day, like any other day, Jesus was teaching and people began to gather.