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Showing posts from May, 2015

Experiencing The Spirit: Dove and Comforter - John 14:25-27

The warehouse loudspeaker rings with the voice of the office secretary.  Her voice summons you to the manager’s office.  He begins with, “You have been a very dedicated employ, but we are having to make some hard decisions….” The phone rings.  You answer.  From the other end you hear, “Hello.  This is Dr. Smith’s office.  The test results are in.  The doctor would like you to come in this afternoon.” There is a knock at the door.  You open the door to be greeted by two police officers.  You barely remember hearing them say, “We’re sorry sir.  There’s been an accident.” The storm warning had come over the television.  You have taken refuge in the bathtub and pulled a mattress over you and your infant granddaughter.  You hear the winds picking up and the creaking of wood. It is Pentecost.  It is the day that as the Church universal that we celebrate God’s outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon the world, giving birth to the Church. It also happens to be Aldersgate Sunday, the day we remember th…

Experiencing The Spirit: Unifier - Ephesians 4:1-6

The commercial was from the 1980’s and opened with a guy gluing his helmet to a steel girder and hanging there swinging with it holding all his weight.  The pitch following that stunt that I don’t know as I would try, the pitch was, “…it bonds almost anything...a plastic knob, a plastic plug, a rubber boot, a metal broach, a fishing rod, a cycle grip, model planes and model trains, a door knob screw, a flashlight case, broken trim on any car….”  What was the product?  That’s right…Krazy Glue…or, thanks to The Lego Movie, “Kra..gl….” We have experienced the Holy Spirit as the “wind of God” or the “breath of God,” bringing new life wherever it is found…with it is the birth of our world, the birth of humanity, the birth of Jesus’ ministry, the birth of the disciples’ mission, and the birth of the church…new life erupting anywhere it is present. We have experienced the Holy Spirit as water and fire…the water of our baptism binding us to Christ, removing our sin, and placing Christ’s righteo…

Experiencing The Spirit: Light - John 14:26; 16:4b-15

Who in here likes walking in an unfamiliar dark room?  We stumble through the room running into the furniture bruising our shins, stepping on toys breaking them, tripping and falling, or, worse yet, as happened to me visiting a friend during my college years, have your toes land in something a sick family pet left behind.  Nothing really good happens when we choose to walk in the dark. We’ve spending time for several weeks now considering the variety of ways we experience God’s Holy Spirit.  Today we move into the second half of our reflections leading up to Pentecost and the celebration of the outpouring of God’s Spirit and the birth of the Church. We’ve considered how we might experience the Holy Spirit as life-giving wind or breath—from the wind of God blowing over the earth at is creation, to the Breath of God being blown into the lungs of the first of humanity to Jesus breathing out His Spirit upon the disciples after the resurrection as He sent them out into a new age of ministry. …

Experiencing The Spirit: Oil - Isaiah 61:1-4

It’s not something that Anita and I use or even own. Anita and I didn’t even register for a set or request any when we became engaged and married.  We were moving into a mobile home and didn’t really know where we would put any.  For those of you who were here eleven years ago on my first Sunday, y’all probably already know this, remembering that I told you that if you came to the parsonage you would most likely be eating on the finest china that you can purchase at Walmart and dispose of afterwards.  I don’t know when the last time my parents used their china (they didn’t remember either).  What I do remember about china, other than so many couples registering for sets when they get married, is from my grandmother’s house.  That’s where I learned there was something special about the china.  It was not kept in the same cabinets as the other dishes.  The china was a special set of dishes, along with the special set of silverware, and the special set of glasses.  The only time that I c…