It’s rare that I ask our congregation to be sure to listen, or listen again, to a sermon preached at a previous service. This week, however, I ask you to take time to listen, or listen again, to two sermons!
First, give your attention to the words preached by Bishop John Guernsey at the wonderful Consecration of the Mission Outpost and Worship House this past Saturday. He simply and masterfully narrates the movement of God’s glory from Mt. Sinai into the Tabernacle, and then into the Temple, and then its tragic departure from Israel. Then God’s glory returns to the temple, veiled in the flesh of the infant Jesus on his day of dedication! In Jesus, God comes to us as one of us, and now we are called to delight in and reflect his glory by cultivating intimacy with Jesus. “True glory is found in the presence of Jesus among you.” Listen carefully to our Bishop’s final words to us in his Consecration Sermon, beginning at 46.39
Second, please take time to listen my Sunday sermon in which I share the first part of the Lord’s word to Immanuel for 2023. The entire word is this: “You are loved: Abide. Invite. Welcome.” This past week I expounded how knowing, really knowing, that we are loved by God is essential to our life together, to our mission in the world, and even to our individual daily existence. And drawing on 1 John 3, I explained how God’s love is more than radical acceptance—it is the radical rescue accomplished through Jesus. This has implications for how God is at work in our lives, and how we’re called to relate to each other at Immanuel. Hear more about this initiating, vulnerable, sacrificial, life-giving love in my Epiphany II Sermon, beginning at 20.11.
This Sunday, our focus will be on how God’s creation of humanity and the humanity of Jesus together sing of the sanctity of every life, from conception to death to resurrection, and all the time in between. I look forward to being with you, still rejoicing in the newness of our building – for which, by the way, we at last have our full and final Certificate of Occupancy!
Your Pastor in Christ,