August 31, 2014
Matthew 16:21-28
Romans 12:9-21
Exodus 3:1-15


Coming Off the Sidelines
Proper 17 | OT 22

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David Coffin
A certain congregation has many problems as they survey the community where they exist grows more secular and obsessed with school sports. Fewer volunteers want to do ministry work in the church and several building projects need to be completed before the year's end. The finances are tight, the pastor is spread out thin in terms of what is expected of him or her and many people wonder, "Why not just stay home and watch church on TV?" One group within the church believes they have some great ideas as to what should be in this church to improve things (as they remember them in times past). However, this group wants other people to carry out their ideas because they believe they have "done their time." Another group in the congregation believes they have some solutions to the church's problems but believes if they had the right pastor or if the current pastor would follow their directives, there would be much improvement. Still another group thinks hiring a consultant group may be of assistance. So when the weary pastor comes to the office after another hard week of work, he or she is greeted with a bulletin from another church that an anonymous person has placed on their desk with a note attached saying, "We visited this church, why not have some of the activities and worship order this church uses." In all of these situations, people who remain on the sidelines of the main activity of the congregational life have new ideas, but nobody is planning on coming off the sidelines. Each of the three texts for this Sunday is an invitation to come off the sidelines and get into the action of doing ministry in this season of the church called "Pentecost."...

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August 31, 2014
Proper 17 | OT 22
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