The Very Rev. Ed McNeill
Luke 15:1-10
8 mins 51 secs
Views: 136
This Sunday we move into Luke 15! This chapter is sometimes called the "mini gospel" as it contains three wonderful parables that reveal God's heart for those who have turned away and the great joy in heaven when even one person returns. Sometimes the Christian life can feel wearisome in its repetitiveness. Where is the progress? Why aren't our prayers answered immediately and why do I still stumble over the same sins? At moments like this, a little perspective helps. God is more patient and persistent than we are. Every time we truly humble our hearts and seek forgiveness, Angels rejoice. Every time. Further, the gospel teaches us there are no acceptable losses in the Divine economy. Every repentant heart matters.
The Rev. Cindy Stansbury
Luke 14:25-33
17 mins 56 secs
Views: 57
What does it mean to be a disciple of Christ? What is the cost? Do we get to set boundaries between what parts of our lives and selves we are willing to offer to God and other parts we keep to ourselves? In our Old Testament and Psalm this week, the overwhelming divinity and sovereignty of God is balanced by the profound intimacy of His love and knowledge of us. In our New Testament and Gospel readings we are asked to be willing to give up anything and everything else to be a disciple of Jesus, and to let the ethics and priorities of God shape our own. Living in the presence of God means being open to a life of transformation.
The Rev. Cindy Stansbury
Luke 14:1 & Luke 14:7-14
15 mins 38 secs
Views: 70
This week’s readings begin with an Apocrypha reading from Sirach: “The beginning of human pride is to forsake the Lord; the heart has withdrawn from its Maker.” Then a reading from Hebrews: “Let mutual love continue.” And in Luke, Jesus tells the dinner party guests to stop jostling for seats of status, instead to humble themselves, and tells the dinner party host to stop inviting his equals, but to invite the poor, the lame, and the blind. When we lose sight of who we are in the face of God, we slip into the pettiness of politics with each other; striving and competing to be more important than our neighbors, but when we remember ourselves, we can see all people with the eyes of God.
The Very Rev. Ed McNeill
Luke 13:10-17
18 mins 8 secs
Views: 90
It's hard to be jealous of someone who is utterly above one in skill or talent. Jealousy seems to be reserved for those we perceive as competitors or peers. We tend to admire those whose ability is clearly beyond our own. In this week's Gospel Jesus encounters jealousy as he heals a woman of an 18 year ailment. He did it on the Sabbath and that upset some folks. This Sunday I'll be reflecting on this amazing healing, the responses Jesus experienced, and the subtle impact of jealousy on our spiritual life. - Fr. Ed
The Rev. Cindy Stansbury
Luke 12:49-46
10 mins 54 secs
Views: 72
This week’s readings are not for the faint of heart, but are a reminder that following Christ is not fluffy and soft. In Jeremiah, God calls false prophets onto the carpet. In Psalms, God puts false gods on notice. In Hebrews, the author lists the hardships and faith of the heroes of Israel, and calls on the current generation to live up to that standard. In Luke, Jesus speaks of his crucifixion in terms of fire and baptism, and says he came not to bring peace, but division. So we are called to wake up and realize what times we live in, and what we are called to do.
In this week’s Gospel, we are called to live lives of expectation and peace. We rest in the knowledge of God’s love for us, but also are asked to live with our sandals on and our gas tanks full. Life as we know it is not static; neither locally nor cosmically, and what we see here and now is a small part of our whole life. Likewise, this physical Earth is a small part of the spiritual reality around us, and is not our homeland. So what does it look like to live with that type of expectant, hopeful, faith?
The Rev. Cindy Stansbury
Luke 12:13-21
11 mins 32 secs
Views: 80
In this week’s gospel Jesus warns that our lives are not to be about gathering wealth. Life is so much more than the abundance of possessions. Jesus tell the Parable of the Rich Fool, a man who who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God. We are not to devote our lives to the gathering and accumulation of wealth. if money is our master, that means God is not (Matthew 6:24). When God is our master, we are blessed to be a blessing in the lives of others, and we are blessed to build the kingdom of God.
The Very Rev. Ed McNeill
Luke 11:1-13
17 mins 49 secs
Views: 77
In this week’s gospel, the disciples ask Jesus to teach them to pray. What they are really asking, as they already knew how to pray, was how they were to pray as his disciples. He teaches them the Lord’s prayer but then teaches them some important lessons about prayer. These lessons together with the Lord’s Prayer give us direction on how to pray as a faithful follower of Jesus. This Sunday we’ll reflect on how to pray faithfully, what faithful prayer is, and aligning ourselves to Jesus.
The Rev. Cindy Stansbury
Luke 10:38-42
14 mins 58 secs
Views: 81
This week’s Gospel and Epistle readings are continuations of last week’s readings and are both fascinating. Our Gospel is the story of Martha, Mary, the problem of overwhelming distractions and anxiety, and the solution of singular focus, in contrast to last week’s gospel of being ready to be of service at any time to those in need. It is a Gospel for all who would be disciples of Jesus. In Colossians we read : “For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.” Here also we have Paul’s statement that his sufferings are making up for what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions. How do we know when we are called to difficult and sacrificial service for the sake of the Gospel, and when we have stressed and panicked ourselves by trying to give too much? The world proclaims the need for balance, but is sometimes just a way to feel guilty no matter what we do or don't do. Scripture encourages both contemplation and vigorous activity but provides a path of peace through each.
The Very Rev. Ed McNeill
Luke 10:25-37
13 mins 33 secs
Views: 87
This Sunday's Gospel includes the parable of the Good Samaritan. It's an amazing parable that challenges the listener to re-imagine community and glimpse the world through Jesus' eyes. It also touches on the question of faith and works. What is expected of the faithful disciple? Then there is the question of how we deal with the overwhelming needs we encounter in this world. Instant worldwide communication has expanded our understanding of our community from a simple village to the entire world. How can we be faithful in the face of such overwhelming need?