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The Seeker

In the last 25 years or so a new word has become very prominent in the American church scene. The word is “seeker.” We are a nation of spiritual seekers. People everywhere are looking for that spiritual lift, that tie to something deeper that will provide some meaning in this crazy world. Many churches have…

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Easter: Enough

Dan Brown’s suspense novel, The DaVinci Code, was a New York Times #1 bestseller for over a year, selling in the end millions of copies.  As some of you may recall from The DaVinci Code, Mary Magdalene occupies a central place in the narrative.  Yes, the same Mary who figures in so importantly in the…

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Lent 5A: Neither Bang Nor Whimper

As Time magazine recently pointed out, two famous twentieth century poets both weighed in on the subject of the universe’s end. Robert Frost wrote, “Some say the world will end in fire / Some say in ice. / I hold with those who favor fire.” On the other side T.S. Eliot wrote, “This is the…

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Lent 4A: The Gift of Sight

Years ago in the weeks following the September 11 attacks, perhaps some of you noticed something that a number of people were detecting during that dark and difficult time: namely, there was a lot of axe-grinding going in many circles. People from both sides of the political spectrum, and from most all points in between,…

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Lent 3A: Welling Up

Some years ago, writer Eugene Peterson found an analogy for modern spiritual quests in, of all things, a Winnie the Pooh story. In one of the many tales from the Hundred-Acre Woods, Christopher Robin and company decide to set out one day in search of the North Pole. At one point along the way, young…

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John 1:29-42

Epiphany 2A

Our text this week is yet another transition story between John and Jesus. This time, John “pushes his disciples out of the nest” by urging them to follow Jesus, the Lamb of God. We are to understand that John has already baptized Jesus, since he’s seen the sign God told him about: the Holy Spirit…

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Christmas: Home

“Are you going home for Christmas?” What question has been more commonplace in recent weeks?  Some while ago in December I was at the grocery store and as I walked through the store, I heard some version of that very question over and over. A cashier glanced over to a bagger, “So, you going home…

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Easter 5B: Fruitfulness or Productivity

Jesus says, “Remain in me as I remain in you.” To my mind, that’s one of the lousiest translations I can think of. It completely ignores the personal and spiritual dimensions of what Jesus is talking about here. In Greek, the word is menein. It’s one of the most important words in this whole gospel,…

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John 16:12-15

Trinity Sunday C

You may have heard it said that the Holy Spirit is the “shy one of the Trinity.” The description is meant to denote how the Spirit of Truth always points us to Jesus Christ—as Jesus seemingly describes in our passage today. It seems to me, though, that an unintended consequence of this descriptor is what…

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Lent 4B: Out of the Night

Few people would dispute the assertion that John 3:16 is the single most well-known verse in the Bible. Children memorize it in Sunday school, the Gideons traditionally have placed this verse on the front page of their Bibles (usually printing it in dozens of languages), missionaries often use it as the starting point for evangelism….

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