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The Immediate Word
Robin Lostetter

Love, Love Is the Answer

John 5:1-9; John 14:23-29
As we wake to news of eight members of an Ohio family murdered, of a shooting outside a Wisconsin high school prom, and of North Korea’s submarine-launched ballistic missile test -- just the latest headlines amid a milieu of national and global reports of suicide bombings, racial conflicts, police brutality, and violence against police -- one might ask of our society the same question Jesus asked in John 5:6: “Do we want to be made well?” In fact, we are so inured to such violence, both personal and international, that one might wonder if we would recognize peace if we were to experience it. And whether it would seem so foreign to us that we might immediately revert to the comfort of discord and violence?
     In John 14:27-29, Jesus describes the peace that he leaves with the disciples, and tells them of his departure “before it occurs, so that when it does occur, [they] may believe.” We have been given the prophets’ descriptions of the peaceable kingdom and the New Testament metaphors for the inbreaking of the Reign of God... but do we still prefer the evil that we’re comfortable with over the peace that we’re promised? Do we want to be made well?...
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Red Light, Green Light

Only in a farming community would it happen ... Leader Dog Dolley and her partner had crossed the street at the corner of First National Bank and the Coast-To-Coast Store in West Point, Nebraska. Half a block later, the dog guide stopped short upon hearing someone huffing behind them.
     It was the fellow from the hardware store. He was not sure she should trust her dog, he said. He had been looking out the window, he said, and wanted to be sure the woman knew her guide had disobeyed. The dog had crossed the street on a red light, he said.
     With the absence of color recognition and the unavailability in most towns of bird chirping, that is, vocal walk signals, neither a dog guide nor its partner can know which light click means red and which indicates green. Instead, both the guide and the handler attend to other clues such as the movement of traffic parallel to their intended route, the absence of traffic sounds, or the pedestrian flow....
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David Coffin

Entrance points into new life

By this time, Resurrection of Our Lord Sunday is way behind in the rearview mirror of many people’s lives. What more can one say about having new life as Pentecost beckons just around the corner? If somebody’s life has been a total trainwreck since Lent, today’s texts allow for other entrance points into the new life that Easter has to offer. There can be new beginnings....
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Keith Hewitt

A Sense of History

Psalm 67

Mark Randall leaned back in his chair and clasped his hands over his stomach, slowly tapped the tips of his thumbs together as he watched Adam Halvorsen pounding out erasers just outside the classroom window.  He did it with grim determination, coughing each time the erasers collided and puffed out another cloud of pale yellow chalk dust.  Every once in awhile he would pause, and look wistfully toward the athletic field, where baseball practice was well underway....
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The Village Shepherd

Janice Scott

There's something about water

There's something about water. Now that audiotapes and CDs for relaxation and healing are quite common, many of them contain the sound of trickling water, or perhaps of waves pounding the beach. And you can even buy table centres with natural woods and plants arranged around a little waterfall which constantly trickles over stones and gives a very pleasant and relaxing feel....
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CSSPlus (Children's Sermon Service...Plus

Cynthia Cowen

The Light of the Holy Spirit

Object: a flashlight, batteries
The Point: in the light of the Holy Spirit we can grow in our understanding of the Jesus teachings
The Lesson: Good morning, boys and girls. Thank you for joining me as we share God's word. What am I holding? (let children respond) A flashlight is an important tool to have around. When could you use a flashlight? (get responses from children) At home when the lights go out....
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Gospel Grams 1 (Ages 5-7)

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Gospel Grams 2 (Ages 8-10)

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