Sunday, July 15, 2018

David, the political strategist and mastermind

    Picture taken by Rev. Karen Bridges at The Banksy Exhibit in Toronto June 2018.

    2 Samuel 5: 1-6; 7:11-17

Though David may not at first have seemed destined for Kingship, he was the man! He has been described as faithful, courageous, smart, sincere and competent. He was a good warrior and he had a presence that was infectious. He had it all and people loved him. But like all humans, he made some questionable choices. The question is, did he operate out of self-interest or did he work for the common good? What can we learn from his leadership?
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Sunday, July 8, 2018

Saul, the King who did not want to lead a nation

Talk about a set up! Imagine being offered a job you have not trained for, no one has held before in a time and land never having experienced this type of leadership! Oh, did I say offered? Saul was not given a choice but rather an anointing and a throne. Then people seem surprised when he could not fulfill the job as invented by his supposed mentor (who keeps showing up late for meetings!) How did Saul try to succeed in this new job and how did he spectacularly fail at being King? listen view

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Samuel, the cleric who wanted to lead a nation

    Francis Cleyn’s Samuel’s Reproach to Saul, c. 1630-1635.  Copyright and used with permission from CC-BY-NC-ND 3.0 Unported

    1 Samuel 12:1-25

When one is set aside to lead others it is both a frightening and empowering thing. When people seek our guidance, our hearts can swell and we can be humbled. However, if we do not continually connect with community, service and worship opportunities, our heads can swell. Samuel’s life was deeply rooted in prayer and his leadership respected by most. However, his parenting and his role as King’s advisor were weakened by his self-reliance. How can we humbly listen and act while always keeping our feet grounded in our community and human limitations?
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Sunday, June 24, 2018

Knit together by our common thread

    Ephesians 4: 1-16 The Gifts of the Spirit

    Psalm 100

We are called by God to share our gifts of the Spirit to build up the body of Christ. Paul explains to the Ephesians that we do this by leading a life worthy of the calling, with humility, gentleness, patience and love, thus bonding us in peace and unifying us in the Spirit. Let us celebrate what we have learned, share are questions, affirm our gifts and witness to the fact that our faith in God is the common thread that causes us to rise all together, growing side by side.

This was a Whole Family Worship which was very interactive which is why there is no sermon this week. 

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Let us not be a hindrance or stumbling block!

    Romans 14: 1-23 Do not judge another

    Psalm 15

Paul spent a lot of his ministry reminding people of the new commandment that we are to love one another as I would love you. Jesus served God and not himself. In this passage from Romans, Paul reminds the people who are weak in faith that they are welcome, but not so that they can place their agenda on others. Jesus calls us to advocate and care for those who are oppressed in our midst. We are called to stand with the oppressed, to be their allies, but not in the way that suits our purposes. What does it mean to be an ally?
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Sunday, June 10, 2018

Evangelism: what does that even mean?

Acts 8: 26-40 and Psalm 145 Evangelism: what does that even mean? (and celebrating 93 years of the United Church of Canada) How can we share our experience of God’s love without negating others’ experiences? The debate about how to “do” evangelism is almost as fiery as what the word even means! Let us explore and ponder how Jesus and Paul shared their experiences of God with others. listen view

Sunday, June 3, 2018

In Christ, there is no East or West…or is there?

    Galatians 3:23-29 and Psalm 148

In Christ, there is no East or West…or is there?
Paul’s teaching was focused on the amazing Grace of God to unite all – no matter what religious traditions they followed…or did not follow! After he died though his message was watered down or contradicted by others’ writing in his name. How can we live and proclaim the gift of Faith and Unity through the Holy Spirit when our tradition holds both that and other messages?
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