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07.19.09 Ephesians 2:11-22 Building on the Foundation Sermon Start

by on July 13, 2009

This week’s sermon is based on Ephesians 2:11-22 ( Our church is in the beginning stages of a major ministry overhaul. There’s quite a bit of anxiety, and it’s natural that some lines are being drawn. There are lines between older and younger, between past and future, between desires and needs.

We need to hear God’s Word of reconciliation at this time of change, anxiety, and line-drawing. We need to hear that the first major dividing line in the church, the one between Jew and non-Jew (Gentile), was overcome in Christ. “In Christ” if not in practice, which is what this passage addresses, and that is the word I mean to proclaim this week at Faith.

I believe that if we put Christ first, before our preferences, before our habits, before our fears and anxieties, even before our theology, we will find common ground and the lines we draw won’t be allowed to divide us. Instead, we will find that we need one another, we will find our place in the church, we will find that together we are more than what we are by ourselves. And we will find that we want others to join us.

But we have to put Christ first. And that means death to our egos, but the resurrection of Christ in us.

  1. Mary Mardiguian permalink

    This sounds like it will be a great sermon for our church at a time that our congregation is struggling with uncertainty. I hope that many will be at church to hear it with open hearts. Thanks, Mary Mardiguian

  2. Alice Franey permalink

    This thought occurred to me last night after discussing how difficult it has been for many of the 8:15 service attendees to accept changing the time of service to 9:00. Perhaps we need to recognize all of the change they have been forced to accept- loss of loved ones, loss of physical strength, mental strength, maybe the loss of their home. The 8:15 service where they have communion with their friends is familiar and comfortable and a calm in the storm of all of the societal changes they face. We need to honor and respect their feelings as we discuss changes in the schedule and programs.
    We all face a lot of challenges as the church makes a new turn but I think we are up to the challenge.

    • tomtrinidad permalink

      This is really helpful, Alice. Another line that is drawn through change is that between loss and gain. The fact is, every change is both a loss and a gain, but some people feel more of the one than the other. In our congregation, those who are feeling the gain are excited, and those who are experiencing the loss more are in grief.

      During the Session meeting Monday night someone said that we were responsible for leading the church in grieving and in healing. So we’re designing a special worship service just for that. But in this sermon, I’ll include something on the dynamic of change that includes loss, and, as you’ve so sensitively pointed out, the reverberating effect of change now evoking feelings of previous losses. Thanks!

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