Showing posts from May, 2015

"The Holy Spirit Awakens" - A Sermon for Pentecost

Please note: This is the manuscript; for the video version click here. The sermon begins at the 23:00 mark.
So… let’s get this out of the way from the very beginning: the cover art on the bulletin and the sermon title were inspired by StarWars. The original Star Wars came out in 1977, when I was six years old. Since then I have been a major Star Wars geek. My favorite of the original trilogy of movies is The EmpireStrikes Back (1980), as any true Star Wars fan would say. I do my best to pretend the recent prequels, and especially Jar Jar Binks, do not exist, although I did like most of Revenge of the Sith. That being said, a new series of Star Wars movies will be released over the next few years, the first of which is called The Force Awakens. It comes out December 18, 208 days from today.
Today is the Day of Pentecost, the day we commemorate the gift of the Holy Spirit to Jesus’ disciples. Jesus promised the Spirit’s coming before his death and resurrection. The Spirit would be their A…

LECTIO: A Teaching Service at Custer Road UMC

Since I came to Custer Road two years ago I have been heavily involved in the teaching ministry of the church: leading Bible studies, preaching in worship, writing curriculum and Study Guides to accompany sermon series. My two most prominent spiritual gifts are Teaching and Knowledge, and it has been my joy to share them with so many people in various ways. After several months of prayer and preparation, I am very excited to announce a new extension of that teaching ministry: Lectio, a teaching service (Lectio is the Latin word for "reading"). This will be a new worshiping community offered for those who seek to further their spiritual growth and learning through worship.The service will meet weekly in the Chapel at 9:00 beginning Sunday June 14. I will be the principal worship leader and preacher for the service, although I will continue to preach regularly throughout the year in the Sanctuary, as well as participate in worship at the 10:30 hour.

The format for Lectio will …

Acts of the Apostles Bible Study

I  love to travel (nevermind that I hate flying-- that's another issue). I also love to read travel itineraries-- even if I am not actually going to the place I am reading about. Lately I have been on a sort of Paris kick, although I have never been there and have no plans to visit in the near future. Still, I find myself reading France itineraries:

If you have nine days, do this: ________________________________________________.

If you have seven days, do this: _______________________________________________.

If you have twelve days (now you're talking!), do this: _____________________________.

Well, the Book of Acts is sort of like that. It's a narrative, gospel-like format, but it's not restricted to a narrow geographic region like Matthew, Mark, Luke and John (Matthew does work in a tour of Egypt in Jesus' toddler years). Acts is all over the place: Jerusalem, Damascus, Lydda, Joppa, Antioch, Cyprus, Iconium, Thessalonica, Athens, Corinth, Ephesus, Rome, and m…