Sunday, September 26, 2010

Gospel Paradox - Sermon

This is my sermon (minus inflections and a few more jokes). probably long but it made for a quick blog post.

Sermon on the mount (Matt: 5-7, Luke 6):
Matthew 6:
22"The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light. 23But if your eyes are bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!
24"No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.

Anytime there has been an opening to preach I ask myself: “self, is there a burning message (a burden) on my heart that God wants me to share”. I’ve preached a few times at our last church and my time finally came up to preach here. This is probably the most written out I’ve been for any sermon. Not because I need the notes, I love winging it and am not a natural organizer; but because it is such a burning heart message for me I don’t want to mess up the delivery any more than I will by nature..

Monday, September 20, 2010

Sabbatical for the Sabbath

My blogging regularity has been on decline for the past 2 wks. I'm filling in for our pastor on Sunday. I've been busy working on a sermon.

I've preached before; I think I was an adequate mouthpiece. This time seems different though. It's probably the most I've prepared my sermonading. By that I mean the most written out. Mostly I want to preach the current heart burden I have. Gospel Paradox - specifically being a justified sinner. Getting this view at the base identity; beyond identity the definition of who you are

So given a topic I could rant for 1hr about if I get going, I need to keep it to 20 minutes to explain it and why it matters. That's why I'm writing it out. Something odd & true about putting in so much time to keep something short.

So to all 6 of my faithful, loyal readers I will be back upto speed soon with the fine nuances if paradox, family, frisbee and life in general.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Notes from HM-MMX

A friend asked me to pass along my notes from Hutchmoot. So here they are. Not a real post; just some notes (and very scattered & random too). A while back I said I was done with HM specific posts. Well, I was wrong.

Perfected in Weakness - Sam (SD) Smith, Travis Prinzi, Pete (Arthur Sherman) Peterson
Better to have little faith in a big God, than big faith in a little one.

John Ruskin - (author to be looked up)

Weakness defines our struggle & not our person.

The Immersed Imagination - Andrew Peterson, Ron Block
Mark Helprin - The Winter's Tale
Madelyn L'engle - Walking on Water

Walt Wangerin Jr.
compose experience:
-(a creator's task) put things in order & experienced
-Art seeks the reader (received as experience)
-Artists are shapers

5 Covenants (of a shaper):
1. Percieved reality - found in life, makes it believable
2. craft & compatriots - we stand on the shoulders of giants (the ppl & their works)
3. Relationships - community - use, not misuse
4. Must not lie - fiction is true, lies are false
5. Assumed truths - Axioms - Christ - some truths pour through the work without being mentioned.

Comment time (so much for just notes & not being a post, I was wrong again):
Walt made a point of being a writer who is a Christian, not a Christian who is a writer. This hung in my ears for a little bit and caused me much pondering.

I think his primary point is that if you see Jesus in everyone, and in every story; it will pour out from your creative work. "The Book of the Dun Cow" never mentions "God" or "Jesus", and still is a story of good vs. evil and providence. Your work will automatically reflect your worldview (like it or not).

I think my initial hang-up was from forcing a sense of priority determining into it. Too much drumming of "Jesus needs to be your top priority". In reality, when Jesus becomes heart knowledge it is bigger than top priority, it colours all priorities. It's the paper you write your priorities on (something like that).

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

A Defeat of Strength

"The Cross cannot be defeated for it is defeat." - GKC 'The Ball and the Cross'

I used to despise the song lyric "little ones to him belong, they are weak but he is strong" from Jesus Loves Me.
Why can't God use me when I'm strong? Or when I'm no longer a little one and get bigger & stronger he can't use me? I want to both be strong & be used by God. It wasn't that I was worried about not being used, I don't want to be weak. Vulnerability - get outta here; I want to open a can of whoop ass for Jesus.

The Christian church is unique in that it's built on weakness. The cross is a symbol of being defeated. Jesus was abandoned on the cross. The apostles were average joes not spiritual supermen. It was more a collection keystone cops than the Justice League.

Then it is fully a doctrinal point that the church is built upon fallen people who are full of mistakes. "Not a museum of saints, but a hospital for sinners." I heard that this week and it made sense and made me smile.

Since giving up on my strength identity (and perpetually giving it up as it sneaks back) that lyric doesn't bother me at all. If it succeeds despite my weakness it proves all the more that God is doing the work.

When Christ at a symbolic moment was establishing His great society, He chose for its cornerstone neither the brilliant Paul nor the mystic John, bur a shuffler, a snob, a coward - in a word, a man. And upon this rock He has built His Church, and the gates of Hell have not prevailed against it. All the empires and the kingdoms have failed because of this inherent and continual weakness, that they were founded by strong men and upon strong men. But this one thing - the historic Christian Church - was founded upon a weak man, and for this reason it is indestructible. For no chain is stronger than its weakest link. - GKC 'Heretics'

Friday, September 3, 2010

Courage of Christ

I wrapped up listening to Orthodoxy (again) yesterday. Definitely my favorite book.

"This truth is yet again true in the case of the common modern attempts to diminish or to explain away the divinity of Christ. The thing may be true or not; that I shall deal with before I end. But if the divinity is true it is certainly terribly revolutionary. That a good man may have his back to the wall is no more than we knew already; but that God could have His back to the wall is a boast for all insurgents for ever. Christianity is the only religion on earth that has felt that omnipotence made God incomplete. Christianity alone has felt that God, to be wholly God, must have been a rebel as well as a king. Alone of all creeds, Christianity has added courage to the virtues of the Creator. For the only courage worth calling courage must necessarily mean that the soul passes a breaking point--and does not break." GK Chesterton -'Orthodoxy'