Sermons

The Beloved

You know how it works when someone asks you if something is a threat or a promise, right?  Like if you get really mad at someone and you snap at them, “If you don’t knock it off, I will leave right now” and they snark right back, “Is that a threat or a promise?”  Oh, the days are surely coming when my children will use such a line against me, just as I used it against my mother before me.

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Two Men and the Magi

Dear friends in Christ, grace and peace. Amen

We are three weeks into the gospel of Matthew and Joseph, husband of Mary keeps showing up.

Two weeks ago, on December 23rd Pastor Torgerson preached about the birth of Jesus told from the perspective of Joseph. Pastor Torgerson spoke about Joseph as a righteous man and how by doing the right thing, Joseph expressed righteousness in a new way.

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God WITH Us

Dear friends in Christ, grace and peace to you and merry Christmas! Wow… that was a long list of names. Did you stay awake?
At times I’ve been tempted to skip over these genealogy sections, but there is something rich there. This is how Matthew introduces Jesus to the readers and there is rich history. Other stories from Star Wars to Lord of the Rings look to family histories.

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When Love Leads

Dear friends in Christ, grace and peace. Amen

God’s action in this world can be difficult to see. There are other forces at work in and around us that command our attention and they have a lot of power over us. They create fear, mistrust and they feed that part of our heart and soul that wants to tell us that this world is out of control and we are powerless to do anything about it.

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A Righteous Man

           There’s hardly a part of the Christmas story that I don’t like.  Angels and shepherds, magi and stables, words of wisdom and stories of wonder – it all plays out in this powerful cosmic story that we get to hear again and again every year.

Even the stories that lead up to the Christmas story fill me with joy and amazement.  I’m always especially drawn to the story from Luke 1 about how Mary finds out she’s pregnant with Jesus. 

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Such A Time As This

This story takes place in a particularly dark time for God’s people.  About a hundred years before, the Israelites were conquered and taken from Judah into exile.  The temple in Jerusalem was demolished.  While the Persian king had recently started allowing Jews to return to their homeland, there was very little to return home to.  Many Jews remained in Persia as strangers in a strange land, trying to obey God and live their lives in exile.

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A Prayer, a Promise and Praise

Dear friends in Christ, grace and peace. Amen

At what point in your life have you prayed these words or some other version of these words?

O Lord, how long shall I cry for help,
    and you will not listen?
Or cry to you “Violence!”
    and you will not save?

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Dwell With You

I’ve heard more and more from people about a series of articles the Star Tribune has been running since this summer called “Test of Faith: The Unchurching of America”[1].  It focuses on the stories behind the trends that church professionals and religious writers have been raising alarm bells about for probably thirty years: the church is shrinking

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Do Not Worry

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, grace and peace to you from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Do not worry… Man, that is a tough one for me. How about you?

There is seemingly so much to worry about, isn’t there? Usually, being told NOT to worry doesn’t seem to help much either.

It is helpful for me to look at this reading and being told NOT to worry in the same way parents are instructed to navigate behaviors with toddlers. (Yes, I am comparing myself to a toddler.)

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Tell us what to do

Dear friends in Christ, grace and peace. Amen

With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before God on high?

What is your answer to this question?

What is it you think you should bring before the Lord as an offering?

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