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 on Hope

The Stories We Tell

While they were in captivity in a foreign land, this is the story the Jewish people told about their history. Passover was foundational to their identity. This is how they were to remember the fundamental nature of who they were—God’s own people, a freed people. The Passover story prompts us to think about the various stories we tell.

The New Jerusalem

There are people who, like John of Patmos, have such bold visions of hope in the midst of despairing circumstances. They catch a glimpse of the New Jerusalem and they share it with the rest of us, and it changes us forever. They see a hint of what the world will look like at the culmination of history, the redemption and renewal of all things.

“I will fear no evil”

“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me.” I’m convinced that’s the word we need to hear this morning. We need to hear it on a personal level and we definitely need to hear it on a social level. It’s worth reflecting on where (or in whom) we put our trust because we live in especially anxious times.

We Had Hoped

We know all too well that the road to Emmaus is the road we walk when our hopes are dashed and our dreams are crushed and our hearts are filled with despair. The Emmaus Road is any place where we find ourselves seven miles from certainty, as we lament the things didn’t turn out how we had hoped.

Idle Tales

The people (the women and men) telling idle tales today are those who—like Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others—dare to look for life in seemingly dead places, or better yet, people who work for life in places that have only known death. These are people who aren’t visionaries, necessarily, but who are still willing, in the grunt work of daily life, to keep telling stories of what is possible.

O Antiphons – O Emmanuel

God is indeed with us, and there is hope, but the sign of that promise doesn’t look like our normal conceptions of power. The sign God sends is of a different kind of power, one that is patient and enduring and willing to play the long-game. A mother will give birth to a child who will grow up and “learn to reject evil and choose good.”

O Antiphons – O Radiant Dawn

Advent reminds us that his is the sort of “dawn” that comes to us in Jesus Christ. Like the sun, that light is life-giving, but it also uncovers injustice. It gives hope and offers the promise of a new future. A new beginning emerges so faintly that it’s almost undetectable… at first.

O Antiphons – O Root of Jesse

It’s so, so tempting to only see stumps. But the season of Advent takes us back to the hope that Christ brings, the light shining into the darkness of this world. And Christ’s is not a passive hope, but an active one that enlists us in its service as partners, as co-creators.

Don’t hold back

I’m not sure what you’d call Hannah’s type of prayer. Maybe a “paper plate,” everyday type of prayer. The kind when we don’t have it all together, or are even a little desperate. The time when we’re at our wits end. The times when we need the presence of the Holy One the most.