Every sermon should have an introduction and Jesus, ever the masterful homiletician, gave us a gripping preface to the Sermon on the Mount. That introduction is traditionally called the beatitudes, or the blessings. I like to think of them as the blessed attitudes.
These nine, or eight depending on how you look at them, declarative statements are not requirements for entry into the Christian life or objectives of the Christian life but, rather, characteristics of it. These are attitudes Christians have, by virtue of their relationship to Jesus Christ.
Thomas Willadsen Mary Austin Christopher Keating Dean Feldmeyer Ron Love George Reed Bethany Peerbolte
For January 20, 2018:
God Activates by Tom Willadsen — Perhaps God wants us to delight in each other and in the magnitude and depth of divine love. Perhaps the Lord wants to activate our gifts of the Spirit, to use them for the common good.
We are all intimately connected as one body in Jesus. Isaiah celebrates our intimate union with our creator, describing us as the joyful bride of God. Though there had been alienation and rejection from both sides in the past, the prophet describes us as God’s delight. That connection is also emphasized in Paul’s oddly graphic description of church folks as body parts — we need each other because we are not a living, breathing body if we are somehow separated.
When Jesus visited a wedding at Cana in Galilee, he showed that human disappointments matter to him and that he would be prepared to redeem them. This is a story about a young girl's bitter disappointment when she became a bridesmaid.