Thursday, April 9, 2009

Palm Sunday Sermon 2009

First, let me just say -- Thank you!

My thanks to each of you for your prayers and support throughout my three month sabbatical. It was an enormously helpful time, both for me and my family. And we are very grateful.

Now, stating the obvious…I have to say,

Palm Sunday is truly an amazing experience, isn’t it?

And, especially this year! When Holy Week, impacts our spiritual life in a whole new way. Regardless, it’s been a very long Lent for many folks here in Lower Fairfield County.

We long for a Savior. And not just on Wall Street…”but that would be very nice, thank you.” But, what we long for is the Joy of Easter to shine once more. We need the sudden surprise of good news. We need Easter.

Well, the Mark community understands this…but makes it very clear – that any hope of a Bullish Resurrection has got to run its way through a field of disappointment and even death.

It is…as if Mark is saying to us…from across the ages…we have a lot of ground to cover before that refurbished stone is rolled away.

So, the Passion and Death of Jesus the Christ remains the focus of our Christian faith.

During some of the last three months, I focused on the popular topic of –“Technology and Faith.” Everyone seems to be writing about it today. So, I started a Blog, too.

People who have Blackberry’s, iPhone’s or some other PDA, are becoming more and more fascinated with this new ability to send each other Links… Links to videos, Links to newspapers, Links to photos.

Links are flying all over the place these days… especially on Facebook and Twitter.

Some people are fascinated by Links to the past… Something which might give understanding, even some degree of certainty, as to why things are… as they are. And this is a good thing, I believe.

But whether you are a “techy” or not, I actually believe most folks come to Church, because they are searching for a new Link, if you will, in their life.

A trust when it hurts. A link to something we might even worship, or believe in.

When I send email links to friends, it’s my way of saying: Hey, look at this. It’s important.

Week after week that’s what we do here at Christ Church, isn’t it? We share links which reveal the Bible story… the drama of God’s involvement with this earth, and His people.

So, we hold up these stories and say, Hey, this might change your life. Check it out!

But unfortunately, for many… these God links simply go unopened. Lost in the trash bin of life.

But here on Palm Sunday morning…God’s Link is not discarded. In fact, it opens up very nicely for us, on the big screen. We can see it clearly…experience it, and believe in it – the transforming power of God. But the truth of the matter is…even with this insight, this belief… I can still separate myself from the Goodness of God.

St Paul says, “I don’t know why I do the things I do”…but, whatever the reason, it is still called Sin. So, when Jesus rebukes his friends—for their spiritual A.D.D.—I know how hard it is to stay awake, and follow Him every day.

And then when Judas, turns Jesus in, I am afraid to look around for fear that I can discover how easy we can betray our values, our friends, our family.

The story of Jesus’ life is a Link to the complexities and the failings of the human spirit. This is not a missing link. These failings are always with us. They are all landmarks on the very geography of our souls.

And so, today…just like so long ago, Jesus extends his wounded hands to us, and links his story, God’s Story…to ours – yours and mine.

We are linked to God. Forgiven, and redeemed, in spite of our sin. Easter Morning is coming isn’t it?…I can feel it. I know it. But for now, Good Friday has its strong grip on us…doesn’t it?

So, let us journey this week, all the way to the Cross, stumbling and falling along the way. But when we get up and repent, let us never forget that out there waiting on that lonely Hill is a New Link. A Link to Eternal Life. Amen.

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