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Sunday
Nov222009

Speaking Truth to Power

Today we come to the close of the Christian year; next Sunday begins a new one with the First Sunday of Advent. Each year the lectionary scriptures focus on Jesus as King and how that stands in contrast (and as a threat) to the Roman Emperor with his wealth, military strength and hierarchy. In the gospel reading from John we have Pilate confronting Jesus. Pilate is the governor and main representative of the Emperor in the region known as Judea. And then there is Jesus.

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Sunday
Nov152009

We Pour Out our Souls to You

We all know that families can be a place of sanctuary and connection in a chaotic world or a place of manipulation and criticism that you can’t wait to get away from. Or of course it might be a little bit of both or something between those two extremes. Family life can be complicated as personalities can clash or members see themselves in competition with one another rather than members of a team; relationships change due to divorce or death, expectations are not fulfilled or circumstances cause family members to grow apart – etc. etc.

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Sunday
Nov082009

At Our Core

Today is Stewardship Sunday – the day we dedicate our pledges to the mission of RBCC UCC. We all know that Stewardship is SO MUCH more than simply money. Stewardship is a tapestry of diverse colors and textures. At its core, Stewardship is first and foremost a deep awareness of gratitude to God. In Psalm 127 we are reminded of how important it is that God builds the house that otherwise it will fall. Stewardship begins with gratitude to God for ‘building the house” – whether that house is our church building, our mission, our very lives. We are not here on our own accord, our lives – our church – our community, is a gift and a vessel of God’s love.

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Sunday
Nov012009

Steadfast Love

Today is All Saints Day, the day we remember loved ones who have gone before us. Saints are not perfect people, by any means, but they are those who have impacted our personal lives in ways that have been transformative. Saints may also be men and women we have not known personally, but have impacted our world for the better.

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Sunday
Oct252009

Open Our Eyes

On Thursday morning over breakfast I read this in the Seattle Times: “When Becky Bell shapes her pottery she expresses how she felt as a girl walking through a Kansas cornfield with her father, or standing in a swirling snow storm, or feeling warm candle wax collapse in her hands. Although as a blind woman, she can’t see the art she creates; Bell draws from a rich interior world built on life experiences.” Becky and other blind artists are showcasing their work at the Washington Talking Book and Braille Library in Seattle this past week. It was interesting to run into this story just before writing a sermon about the story of Bartimaeus, a blind beggar, told in the Gospel of Mark.

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