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2nd Sunday in Lent

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Our message for the Second Sunday in Lent was written by Pastor Richard Brown and read by Worship Leader Chris Ehrat, based on the Gospel Reading from Luke 13:31-35

Due to a technical difficulty the remainder of the sermon is printed below:

If we are grounded in our faith when we begin our journey, we too trust in the promises of God. If we keep walking on our journey and those promises don’t seem to be any nearer, then we start questioning – our own faith, God’s faithfulness, the possibility of our dreams, the hurt of human suffering, the fear that we were wrong to trust in the first place.
It is a painful place to be, sitting on the ground and staring up at a sky that seems as far away as we can imagine. It is precisely this experience that is a catalyst for our growth in faithfulness, as it was Abram’s.
It is in the questioning that Abram learns to trust again. Question by question, Abram’s heart is being shaped into a more trusting form. Lent, as we know, is a transformation of the heart.
We too, perhaps, might need to learn the same lesson this Lent as we explore our own wildernesses and dreams, as we count the stars. Our hearts are just as pliable (and fragile) as Abram’s.
Abram sets a familiar pattern for Lent and our cycle of faith, doubt, and finally trust.
What the lectionary reading leaves out is the part of Abram’s dream that says before God’s promises will be fulfilled (and they will be because God always keeps God’s promises), there will be a time of struggle and hardship.
Just like the lectionary, we tend to want to skip over that piece. Four hundred years is a long time to keep trusting, keep moving, keep following God through a land that is not our own.
But this is what this long season of Lent is about. We are given time in the wilderness to ask the tough questions and learn to trust our heart to God’s heart, our steps to God’s pathway.
The way may be long and winding, but the God who set the stars in motion will guide us on our journey. And perhaps the next time that we look up at the septillion stars, we might trust that God has put just one there so that we might find our way home. Thanks be to God. Amen.

Blessed Assurance # 638

The Wedding in Cana

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Today’s message written by Interim Pastor Richard Brown and read by Worship leader Brenda Hoerle:

Gospel Reading – John 2:1-11

1 On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. 2 Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. 3 When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to him, “They have no wine.” 4 And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what concern is that to you and to me? My hour has not yet come.” 5 His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” 6 Now standing there were six stone water jars for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. 7 Jesus said to them, “Fill the jars with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. 8 He said to them, “Now draw some out, and take it to the chief steward.” So they took it. 9 When the steward tasted the water that had become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the steward called the bridegroom 10 and said to him, “Everyone serves the good wine first, and then the inferior wine after the guests have become drunk. But you have kept the good wine until now.” 11 Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee, and revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.