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Showing posts from September, 2009

Sermon for Sept. 20, 2009

I Doubt, Therefore I Am
September 20, 2009

You turn on me ruthlessly; with the might of your hand you attack me. You snatch me up and drive me before the wind; you toss me about in the storm. I know you will bring me down to death, to the place appointed for all the living. "Surely no one lays a hand on a broken man when he cries for help in his distress. Have I not wept for those in trouble? Has not my soul grieved for the poor? Yet when I hoped for good, evil came; when I looked for light, then came darkness. The churning inside me never stops; days of suffering confront me. I go about blackened, but not by the sun; I stand up in the assembly and cry for help. I have become a brother of jackals, a companion of owls. My skin grows black and peels; my body burns with fever. — Job 30:21-30

Today’s reading comes from one of the oldest stories in existence. The central character named is named Job. His children are dead. His wealth has been obliterated. His wife walked out on him. He…

Sermon for Sunday, Sept. 13, 2009

The Science and Art of Forgiveness

Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?”Matthew 18:21

Is forgiveness a choice, or a biological necessity? Jesus asks us to forgive, but why? Is there a spiritual befit only? Can forgiveness change us, body and soul?

Imagine being in your car, peacefully driving, when suddenly something rock-hard shatters your windshield, hits you and breaks nearly every bone in your face. Imagine that the “weapon” is a frozen turkey, hurled from the rear window of a speeding car by a teenage college student out for a joyride with friends. That’s what happened in November 2005 to 44 year old Victoria Ruvolo, on a road in the town of Riverhead on Long Island. She could have been killed, and she could have had brain damage. Surgeons had to rebuild her face, using metal plates and screws. But remarkably, she recovered. Within a few months, Victoria was back on her own and working again.

But that’s not the re…

Sermon for Sept. 6, 2009

Surviving the Torrents of the Times

“Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter. On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’ But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws.’ Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.” When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, for he taught with r…