“Being Christ’s Disciple-The Cross walk”
St. Mark cuts to the chase today, he is very upfront about what it means to be a follower of Christ. It involves taking up your cross, it means choosing to be obedient to Christ, and it involves lots of courage amidst a life of vulnerability. This is the path Jesus chose, and it is the path He calls us to take. Let’s be honest, it certainly isn’t the path we would choose to be #1 in our lives. Because living out God’s call in contemporary society is certainly counter cultural, and it can often be lonely. It’s not an easy path, the way of the cross often looks like losing to the world. But for us, it means dying with Jesus to our own will and our own priorities, but it also means being filled with God’s own life and love-it means real life that, ironically and amazingly, turns out to be exactly what God had in mind when He first made each of us. That is where we discover the gift of real life where we serve God and neighbour with joy! During this season of Lent, we are invited to spend time reflecting upon our own calling and our own journey thus far. Are there any places in our lives where we need to re-evaluate and readjust our priorities? Perhaps it’s time to take that step of faith, of vulnerability, of being loved by God, of living and sharing the Good News; to take that step of becoming the person God lovingly created you to be.
QUESTION: Where is Jesus asking you to follow Him in your life right now?
ANSWER:………………in the February 25, 2018 Sermon
February 14, 2018
Reading: based on Mark 1:9-15
Most people in the church, and even some without, know about the season of Lent. At the very least they have heard about it and may know that it comes before Easter. The season of Lent is a somber, penitential season where we look squarely upon those unpleasant parts of life like, stress, anxiety, fear, grief and even death. We don’t hide from these things during Lent; instead we gaze squarely upon them. Lent is not about being cheerful and happy. It is a time to be realistic and remember that much of our lives are spent dealing with things we would rather not be dealing with.
QUESTION: Why would the church design a season like this? Isn’t being cheerful and happy more in line with what God wants us to experience?
ANSWER:………………in the February 18, 2018 Sermon
Many people in the world have no use for the church or religion. They feel that they have had a good life and they owe it all to hard work and good planning. They feel that the church and organized religion is just something for the perfect and the pious. But when the struggles of life come calling, as they do for all of us…..those in the church and those outside of the church, the glory of Christ in their midst becomes something that is very powerful…..whether they realize it or not.
QUESTION: Where exactly is the glory of Christ revealed in our lives? How can we relate to a mountain-top experience like the one we read about today?
ANSWER:………………in the February 11 2018 Sermon
Receiving strength from Christ”
Mark’s Gospel draws an interesting picture today. Jesus has been busy, no doubt about that, and the demands of the crowds were beginning to take their toll on Him. So many needs to be met, and the more He healed, the more His reputation spread. The reality is, there are many needs awaiting to be met both in our own lives, and in the life of the world. Today, we are called to pause and ask ourselves..where do we go to have our needs met? Where do we go to get our joy? With so many demands, so much business, we tend to go into a state of lethargy. But is that God’s desire of us? No, and that is the Good News for today. That in the midst of our business, it is God’s desire to call us up from the mire/state of lethargy that has robbed us of our vitality. God wants to give us life, so we may soar as on eagle’s wings because life, as we know it, is not what it was designed to be. Our readings for today help us to take a step back, during this pre Lenten season, to examine where do we draw our strength from?
QUESTION: Where do we get our strength?
ANSWER:………………in the February 4, 2018 Sermon
The gospel of Mark doesn’t wait very long to get to the action. We get to see what Jesus is all about just half way through the first chapter where we hear about Jesus’ first miracle. And what a miracle it was…..a good, old fashioned exorcism! Except, it may be difficult for us to really relate to the banishing of an unclean spirit because the most experience people have with them is through movies.
QUESTION: How can we find any good news in today’s gospel reading when it contains something that we have no experience with?
ANSWER:………………in the January 28, 2018 Sermon
What are we searching for?
Today, we hear another story of Jesus calling the first disciples, this time in Mark. Jesus calls us to be fishers of people-but what exactly does that mean? It means that we are called to make Jesus the centre of our lives. Sometimes that means we need to re-align things, sometimes it mean that we need to do things differently, whatever it looks like for you. And not only does Jesus call us to be His disciples, but He also calls us to an active role. Disciples are not to be merely spectators, but active participants. We do that by casting our nets, using our gifts as beacons to show others the way. We also invite people to come and see who Jesus is. Discipleship is an all in thing. We can’t be just catching and releasing here. It’s a lifelong ministry, that you, I, and the first Disciples are a part of. Go and be fishers of people!
QUESTION: What does Jesus call us to do?
ANSWER:………………in the January 21, 2018 Sermon
What are we searching for?
Today we celebrate the great Feast of Epiphany-or, the manifestation of Christ to the Gentiles. We hear of the wise men, Gentiles, from afar bearing gifts for a King. But, I have always wondered what types of gift is one supposed to get for someone who has everything? We all have that one family member, or friend. But in this case, what type of gift is one supposed to give to the One who has created all things, including life? Talk about a difficult situation! But the wise men had gifts-gold frankincense and myrrh. These three gifts tell a story about this young child. The wise men also have another gift –the gift of themselves. They offered themselves as they worshiped Jesus (Matt 2:11). The best gift to offer our Lord, is the gift of ourselves! Of our whole selves, our time, our gifts, and all the blessings that we have received. And so, as we gather on this first Sunday of 2018, let us ask ourselves… How well have we given ourselves to God in response to his wonderful gift to us?
QUESTION: what is the best gift we can offer the Christ child?
ANSWER:………………in the January 7, 2018 Sermon