Some of you know the Harvard Business School’s acronym advice for long-range planning. The acronym is BHAG. When you think long-range, think BHAG: Big Hairy Ambitious Goal. Maybe Harvard got this popular acronym by plagiarizing God’s plans. Plagiarizing is bad. Likely it is okay to plagiarize from God as long as you don’t claim you are God when doing so. Maybe that is a challenge for some Harvard folk, but we do pray for God’s will to be done! So, don’t worry, BHAGgy! Continue reading
2nd Sunday of Easter. 4, 11, 2021. Series B.
Vicar Sergio Rodriguez
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and our risen Lord Jesus Christ, who breathes upon us the Spirit. Amen.
Alleluia! Christ is Risen! Christ is Risen Indeed. Alleluia!
“If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”
In the power of the Spirit, Jesus sends forth his disciples with this commission to forgive or to retain the sins of any. Though this commandment is as clear as day, one must ask how does forgiveness relate to the retaining of sins? If you retain the sins of any, they are retained. Such phrase, beyond simplistically interrupting our Easter joy, has a sort of ominous tone; a kind of unforgivable sin lurking in the foreground. When may sins be retained? Why ought we to retain sins? Who ought to forgive or not forgive? Continue reading
Sermon for B Easter 1 Sunday of the Resurrection – April 4, 2021
Based on Mark 16:1-8
Duane H. Larson, Senior Pastor
Christ is Risen! He is Risen Indeed! Greetings to you in the name of the Raised Crucified Lord!
Here we are. It is wonderful that many of us can gather safely together. We do not like that it is another Easter under COVID conditions. But thanks to the promise of faithful lives and good science, we can see the light from here. We must not spike the ball before we cross the goal line (parson the mixed metaphor). We sense a coming freedom that we have not felt in some 14 months. We can see the light from here. And there is a greater light yet. Indeed, we see the light of Easter from here. Continue reading
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, the one who draws all people through his death. Amen.
“But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people”
Jeremiah uttered these words of the new covenant as a word of promise to a people uprooted from their land and their mundane life with God. “I will be their God and they shall be my people,” bespeaks to the people that after this exile, God will once again commit himself to them. Even in Babylon, this word of promise guided the exiles through their own Lenten-style journey towards a return to some semblance of a life with God. “I will their God and they shall be my people,” stresses a type of renewal based off a reciprocal relationship with God in love. Continue reading
Based on Numbers 21:4-9 and John 3:14-21
Good morning! May the blessing of an extra cup of coffee awaken you! Yes, we may be a bit sleepy. With Daylight Savings Time having begun at 2am this morning, we lost an hour of our lives. Every time I think about that, I remember going through two (!) daylight savings times in one eight-day week. There was a year when in London DST happened one early Sunday morning. I came home a couple of days later and then went through our DST the next Sunday. I lost two hours that spring. I got one back when the USA returned to standard time in the fall. But I had not returned to England the week before to get back that other hour. I still wonder. Can I get that hour back? If so, how? I know. I’m confusing quantity with quality. More to the point, I don’t always put the quality of which I am capable into the quantity that is given me. Continue reading