Sermons & Worship from November 2021

The Realm of Hoping

Isaiah 2:1-5; Romans 8:24-25 Today is the beginning of Advent and one of my annual Advent traditions is to read The Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.  There are now enough televised versions of it that in a busy year, I will cheat and watch it instead of reading it but none of the televised versions capture the full liveliness of Dicken’s writing, such as this wonderful passage early in the story when Ebenezer Scrooge expresses his sentiments about the Christmas…

All is Safely Gathered In

Revelation 1:4-9 Every year, as Thanksgiving approaches, the refrain “All is safely gathered in,” runs constantly through my brain.  Beginning in October, I start checking off the items on my winter preparation list: the snowblower must get its tune-up, my car must have snow tires; I have to compost the pond plants and replace them with a small heater to keep my goldfish from freezing solid in January; there are lawn chairs to put away, gardens to tidy up, windows…

Amazing Grace

Romans 8:31-39 On the bookshelf in my living room, taking up nearly an entire shelf, is my twelve volume set of the New Interpreter’s Bible, commentaries on all 66 books of the Bible containing biblical analysis and suggestions for preaching themes and reflections.  Right next to those 12 volumes taking up the rest of the space on that shelf is a three volume set of the Complete Calvin and Hobbes, all of the comics that Bill Watterson wrote over the…

One, Yet Many

I Corinthians 12:12-14, 25-26 When I was growing up, one of the stories we liked to hear my mother tell was the story of how she and my father met.  When he was a senior in high school, my father was the President of the Monroe County American Baptist youth fellowship, and my mother’s older sister (my Aunt Jean) was vice-president of the Youth fellowship.  My Aunt Jean had a terrible crush on my father but my father was oblivious…