Wednesday, August 24, 2011

What is the word on the street?

Jesus asks this question to his disciples, he wants to know what people on the street are saying about him, their response in Matthew's gospel is "some say John the Baptist, but others Eljiah, and still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets." Which sounds impressive, however they are all dead. So the word on the street is that Jesus is just like those other guys, those great leaders from the distant past and not so long ago past.
So Jesus turns the question to the disciples and Peter says this is who I think you are Jesus, "you are the Messiah, the Son of the Living God." This is huge, Peter can see that Jesus is doing something new, something exciting and earth shaking. It is upon this confession of faith that Jesus builds this new community of believers, this gathering, otherwise known as the church. Reminding us that in the beginning the church was not a building (as so many come to think of it today), it is a gathering of people brought together by a common confession that God through Jesus Christ is doing something new and exciting among us!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


During my vacation time and my time spent at the General Assembly I was able to visit other churches and worship with them. In order to protect the innocent I will not name the congregations I visited, but wanted to share the different experience I had.

One Sunday my family and I attended a church and found that our expectations were not met. The only person that greeted us when we were in church was the pastor. No one else took the time to say hello, let alone make eye contact with us. I think it was because of that, that worship just felt off. Rather than feeling that we were worshiping with a community of faith, I felt more like a spectator watching a community of faith worship.

Another Sunday, Dan and I attended church with some friends. Now this congregation exceeded our expectations. We were warmly greeted when we entered, as we were waiting for service to begin and during the time we all get up and shake hands. We felt part of this faith community and because of that worship was so meaningful, the spirit of God was thick and tangible that morning. After worship we felt like we had worshiped God and our faith family had expanded.

Which has got me thinking of how important it is that we come together to worship as a community. It is not like going to the movies, where you may be with a bunch of people but you do not have to talk to them. The way we greet one another speaks volumes about our purpose of coming together. I feel so blessed to be part of a faith community that is welcoming, where I receive messages upon returning from guests about how welcomed they were here at First Christian Church. Keep it up! I look forward to seeing you on Sunday!

Easter ... ready ... set ... go!

Matthew 28:1-10 About three years ago I committed to the Narrative Lectionary.   It is a four-year cycle that takes the congregation t...