Jesus Christ calls us to be a joyful community that celebrates God's love, transforms lives, and is a force for justice in the world.

Sermons by Bart Smith (Page 3)

Casting out Demons

A stronger sense of community is how Jesus, whose Spirit is still alive among us, casts those “demons”‘ out. When people are seen, heard, valued, listened to—in a word, loved—that’s when those spirits that speak self-doubt, isolation, and hopelessness are cast out.

Have it your way

Looking back over our personal histories, how many of our lives have changed because of those moments when we followed the tug of the Spirit and took the riskier, less convenient, or more truthful route? It’s often in the opposite direction of having it our usual way that was Jesus said comes into full view: “The kingdom of God has come near.”

Beloved

If we are to pursue the beloved community, in which love is the “law of the land,” or the law of our neighborhoods, our schools, our churches, or even our own families and friend circles, we have to be grounded in our own belovedness.

The Boston Declaration

As we begin the year 2018, how will we choose between the ways of Herod and the ways of God? How will we seek Jesus, where will we look for him, and how, when we encounter him, will we respond? As a guide, as our own “star from the east,” if you will, we have the Boston Declaration…

Small Things

This, to the world-at-large, wasn’t big news at all. It was a small, insignificant thing, not even a blip on the radar to anybody who was somebody. Status quo, at best… and yet, the One who hung the stars was born of a woman and swaddled in cloth.

Reclaiming Mary – Rejoice

Then I remembered Mary. Mary who was frightened facing the unknown, who despite that and any reservations she had about partnering with God in bringing Christ into the world, as a co-creator with God of a more beautiful world, dared to hope and dared to sing, “My spirit rejoices.”

Reclaiming Mary – Favor

As someone who was young, poor, and illiterate, Mary was not among the affluent or at the center of power, but lived in a village in the backwaters of the Roman Empire. This is who God honors—the least, the marginalized, the vulnerable. This is where God locates God’s self.

Reclaiming Mary – Yes

If we need to reclaim anything in Mary’s story—if we can reclaim anything in a story that is not ours in the first place, but the story of a young, poor woman living in occupied territory long ago—if we can reclaim anything for Mary and for ourselves it is the freedom of her yes, the courage in her yes.