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Showing posts from November, 2014

A War Cry: Mary - Luke 1:26-40

In two weeks several of us will journey downtown to The Paramount to see The Best Christmas Pageant Ever.It has long been one of my favorite Christmas stories, first having read the book by Barbara Robinson back when I was in high school.I loved the story so much, that when I found out that it was playing at the Fayetteville Little Theater twenty-two years ago, there was no question as to where I was going to take Anita on our first date.I can’t remember if it works its way into the dialogue, but in the book Robinson writes (from the perspective of a young teenage girl):
…The script is standard (the inn, the stable, the shepherds, the star), and so are the costumes, and so is the casting.
Primary kids are angels; intermediate kids are shepherds; big boys are Wise Men; Elmer Hopkins, the minister’s son, has been Joseph for as long as I can remember; and my friend Alice Wendleken is Mary because she’s so smart, so neat and clean, and, most of all, so holy looking.
Isn’t that how we always…

A Batlle Cry: Bethlehem - Micah 5:2-5a

What is your favorite thing about Christmas? Yes, I am talking about Christmas in a sermon and it’s not even Thanksgiving.No, this is the same old pastor that y’all have had for eleven years who doesn’t like doing a lot of Christmas carols until Christmas Day.With that confusion over, let me ask again, what is your favorite thing about Christmas?
The lights?The trees?The candles?The scents of pine, cedar, and a plethora of baked goods?The presents? The decorations? The cantatas? The children’s programs? The worship? The carols? The parades? The family gatherings? The movies?The stories? The legends? Have I hit on it yet?
I love the lights—as a kid it was the colored lights, now I just love the places lit up with all white lights.I’ve shared with y’all before that has been a point of contention in our household over the years—at least until last year when we found strands of lights that will actually alternate between white and colored.
Many folks have their favorite extra-Biblical Christ…

Are Saints A Thing of the Past - Ephesians 1:11-23

What or who do we think of when we first hear the word “saint”?Some of us may first think of the New Orleans football team.Some folks may think of the holidays of “St. Patrick’s Day” or “St. Valentine’s Day.” Some may think of the gospel hymn, “When the Saints Go Marching In.”Others may think of the stories of Saint Peter standing at the pearly gates deciding whether or not folks are able to enter heaven.We may think of some of Jesus’s followers such as the authors of the Gospels, St. Mathew, St. Luke, St. Mark, or St. John.We may think of other more well known saints such as Saint Francis, Saint Christopher, or Saint Augustine.It may even cross our minds to think of folks from our own lives who were godly, but have now passed from our lives to be with God—that is very appropriate thinking, as we recognized earlier in the service.However, how often do we think in terms of “Saint Bessie,” “Saint Lloyd,” “Saint Delaney,” or “Saint Carl.”
“Whoa, wait a minute, Preacher.”Some of you may be…