The resurrection doesn’t need us to do anything. But we most certainly need the resurrection. And the resurrection is the most relentless force in creation. And that, my friends, is joyful news. And while that may not do away with our fear, it certainly gives us something beautifully potent to hold in tension with it.
So today, I’m curious. What would today’s passage have looked like if the community around this man had responded with curiosity and celebration instead of fear and anger?
You see, God couldn’t wait for “better” circumstances. For some reason, it was important to God to birth God’s son into a messy reality by a poor, marginalized couple from the Middle East during the regime of a cruel ruler named Herod. For some reason, it was important to God that God’s son not be born at the Brown Hotel in downtown Louisville but in a poverty stricken county in Eastern Kentucky. For some reason, it was important to God to introduce Jesus to us in the same birthing process as you and I entered this world.
2019.12.15 Sermon (PDF Manuscript)
Sarah’s laughter is the laughter that is laughed when we discover that nothing is too wonderful for the Lord.
Let us not think only about what brings us joy in this Advent season, but let us meditate on what brings God joy.
Prayer is the natural result of all the behaviors James has been lifting up to us this past month. Righteousness, gentleness, impartiality, benevolence, mercy, faithfulness, generosity. When these behaviors are exhibited, prayer is the inevitable outcome.