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Archive for July, 2013

Luke 11:1-13 “Teach us to Ask, Search and Knock” JUMC first FaceTime Sermon from 30k FT

11:1 He was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.” He said to them, “When you pray, say: Father, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us. And do not bring us to the time of trial.”

11:5 And he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; for a friend of mine has arrived, and I have nothing to set before him.’ And he answers from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door has already been locked, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot get up and give you anything.’ I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, at least because of his persistence he will get up and give him whatever he needs.

“So I say to you, Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. Is there anyone among you who, if your child asks for a fish, will give a snake instead of a fish? Or if the child asks for an egg, will give a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” [NRVS]

The disciple ask for a lesson on prayer.

To be like the other disciples who have three simple truths
Because they saw Jesus pray and the witness of a life of prayer is impressive and persuasive.
They were not developing the depth of prayer relationship own their own.

The parable of persistence

In response to asking for a prayer lesson Jesus teaches about not giving up on prayer
Prayer is not about uttering magical words, but developing a relationship.
Prayer is taught and learned
Prayer is practiced not plastered throughout life
Bottom line: don’t give up.

The second lesson on prayer is learning how to ask AND search AND knock

Ask
Search
Knock
Together the lesson of prayer is to be persistent in asking, searching and putting your hand on the the unknown and trusting Christ will be at the door.

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Luke 10:38-42 Distracted Driving JUMC 20130721

distracted-drivingNow as they went on their way, he entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying. But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to him and asked, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.” But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her.” [NRSV]

The statistics for driving while distracted are incredibly alarming. The issues of distracted driving are three fold, (St Farm site)

1. Visual – removes a driver’s eyes off the road

2. Manual – removes a driver’s hands off the steering wheel

3. Cognitive – removes a driver’s mind off the driving task

2013 National Safety council counts over half million accidents related to distracted driving this year.

How big is the problem? (CDC site)

 

In 2011, 3,331 people were killed in crashes involving a distracted driver, compared to 3,267 in 2010. An additional, 387,000 people were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving a distracted driver in 2011, compared to 416,000 people injured in 2010.1

In 2010, nearly one in five crashes (18%) in which someone was injured involved distracted driving.1

In June 2011, more than 196 billion text messages were sent or received in the US, up nearly 50% from June 2009.1 CDC Distracted Driving Study Talking on a cell phone while driving • 69% of drivers in the United States ages 18-64 reported that they had talked on their cell phone while driving within the 30 days Texting or emailing while driving • 31% of U.S. drivers ages 18-64 reported that they had read or sent text messages or email messages while driving at least once within the 30 days before they were surveyed. What are the risk factors? • Some activities—such as texting—take the driver’s attention away from driving more frequently and for longer periods than other distractions.4 • Younger, inexperienced drivers under the age of 20 may be at increased risk; they have the highest proportion of distraction-related fatal crashes.4 • Texting while driving is linked with drinking and driving or riding with someone who has been drinking among high school students in the United States, according to a CDC study that analyzed self-report data from the 2011 national Youth Risk Behavior Survey. Students who reported engaging in risky driving behaviors said that they did so at least once in the 30 days prior to the survey.5

Key findings from the study revealed that:

Nearly half of all U.S. high school students aged 16 years or older text or email while driving. o Students who text while driving are nearly twice as likely to ride with a driver who has been drinking and five times as likely to drink and drive than students who don’t text while driving.

Students who frequently text while driving are more likely to ride with a drinking driver or drink and drive than students who text while driving less frequently.5

We are not fussing at our Young Drivers alone… No one is qualified to be a distracted driver.

Our text today is about Martha, who is a distracted Disciple.

She is busy. She is hospitable. She is working, hard. She is doing everything she can, except listen to Jesus. There are many ways that our being good disciples can get in the way of being attentive to the presence of Christ.

Here are some of the Risk Factors

Serving without praying

Speaking without listening to God

Planning without studying the Word

Attending while assuming I’ve prayed, listened and studied enough..

Helping without making the connection with those served why we are serving Christ in serving them.

What about Mary? (Martha’s assumptions)

She is doing nothing helpful

She is does not care for the burden that Martha has assumed

She is not running around even looking busy

Mary is wasting her time.

The So What!

Who is driving your Discipleship? Are you so busy with Work that you cannot find Christ is as close as your home and family? Are you so divided from your family because agendas are in different directions? Are you so consumed that you know what is best that even Christ in your own home could not break through? The Good News Jesus is with us here Christ is with us at home God meets us on the road and wants to come into our hearts The Holy Spirit longs for our attention Stop. Look and Listen… Christ is with us, pay attention while Christ is near..

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Luke 10:25-37 How Radical is My Hospitality? JUMC 20130714

street violence

10:25 Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he said, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”  26 He said to him, “What is written in the law? What do you read there?” 27 He answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” 28 And he said to him, “You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live.” 29 But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30 Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell into the hands of robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. 31 Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32 So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan while traveling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, having poured oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said, ‘Take care of him; and when I come back, I will repay you whatever more you spend.’ 36 Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?” 37 He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.” [NRSV]

How Radical is My Hospitality?

Our first practice is to be a good neighbor. What does it mean to be a ‘good’ neighbor. Sometime we want our neighbors to be quiet, private and not bother us. I happen to live in a neighborhood where neighbors genuinely look out for one another. But these are not my only neighbors.

There are neighbor that live less then a mile from my house that I have never met, but may know and see my witness.

We are neighbors with those who we work and interact in our daily living. People we know well and those we simply cross paths.

All my life I have heard some one say, “I’m not good a telling about my faith, I just try to live my life as a witness.” I suggest that is very dangerous. What if someone sees us on a bad day? What is the measure if they come in the room when we hear our frustration and fears without the rest of the story?

This story is about the part of neighborhood life that gets messy and involved.

If we are avoiding looking at the poverty, racism, crime, or other uncomfortable things, we are like those who keep their eyes on their own task and missed the neighbor in trouble. The jury is out on a case where the idea of neighbor has broken, badly. <comments on response based on trial outcome>

Just as that story is not in our neighborhood, neither is the Jericho story.

There is part of us that wants to applaud the neighbor who stayed out of the controversy and didn’t get involved in the politics

There is a part of us that wants to exclude the community folks who have important work that

There is a part of us that is afraid that trouble, danger and evil will come upon us if we get involved.

There is apart of us that knows being a neighbor will cost our time, energy, money and heart.

Jesus’s question is on who receives the title of GOOD.

Everyone’s work was important, one was Good.

Everyone’s was involved in some part of the community, one was Good.

Everyone was spending money, time, energy and heart, one was called Good.

Jesus’s definition of Good Neighbor is modeled by the person who got involved, got their hands dirty, got their heart mixed up with dangers and strangers,…

and responding in the way we would want someone to respond if we were in there victims situation.

So Aren’t we Good Neighbors?

The story does not point to how we are in relationship to the people most like us, or near us, our in our own circle, rather

How do we treat people who are different, injured, rejected, in trouble, and difficult.

Good neighboring is not convient, east, comfortable, affordable nor safe.

As the person near you, “Am I a Good Neighbor?”

Encouragement: We need to recognize, teach, model and celebrate when we see Good Neighbor are revealing Christ,

Not for ego’s sake, but that the world might know when Christ has come near in our hearts and lives.

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Luke 10:1-11, 16-20 Peace to this House JUMC 20130702

Everywhere Missionary

Everywhere Missionary

10:1 After this the Lord appointed seventy others and sent them on ahead of him in pairs to every town and place where he himself intended to go. 2 He said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore ask the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. 3 Go on your way. See, I am sending you out like lambs into the midst of wolves. 4 Carry no purse, no bag, no sandals; and greet no one on the road. 5 Whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this house!’ 6 And if anyone is there who shares in peace, your peace will rest on that person; but if not, it will return to you. 7 Remain in the same house, eating and drinking whatever they provide, for the laborer deserves to be paid. Do not move about from house to house. 8 Whenever you enter a town and its people welcome you, eat what is set before you; 9 cure the sick who are there, and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ 10 But whenever you enter a town and they do not welcome you, go out into its streets and say, 11 ‘Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet, we wipe off in protest against you. Yet know this: the kingdom of God has come near.’ 16 “Whoever listens to you listens to me, and whoever rejects you rejects me, and whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me.” 17 The seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, in your name even the demons submit to us!” 18 He said to them, “I watched Satan fall from heaven like a flash of lightning. 19 See, I have given you authority to tread on snakes and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy; and nothing will hurt you. 20 Nevertheless, do not rejoice at this, that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”

[NRSV]

First this passage is an encouragement to the three mission teams we are supporting this month and the team of folks working at CERF and Smart Kids, Smart Lunch.

The number of folks willing to be available to take on a personal mission is limited. This is the heart of our Everywhere Missionary program.

The instruction is given the book-ends of encouragement and inspiration.

  • On one hand there is the encouragement to know that we are going where Christ is preparing to go.
  • Not everyone will be ready nor receptive
  • The measure of successful mission is not in the number of people served, but in the willingness to go out to where the people are rather than wait for them to come to us.
  • And instructions are given for both the open hearts and the closed minds.

I enjoy baseball and one of things I like about the game is that the successful players are celebrated for getting a hit thirty percent of the time.

  • Jesus knows the six dozen folks that are going on this mission will not always see great things.
  • But the reports that return are the success stories.

Think about the Braves, the end of the game wrap up is not how many times Freddy, Simpson, and McCain struck out. They talk about the hits, doubles and home runs.

But with the successes come plenty of strike outs and errors.

We come to the table of Christ, where disciples gather for encouragement and inspiration

Not because we are successful but rather because we have sinned, failed and find ourselves striking out.

 Challenge:

Each of us have the opportunity to be on Christ’s mission..

Will go Go where Christ is preparing to be or sit this one out?

 

Everywhere Missionary EverywhereBrochure_20130501

  • Pray Daily
  • Do at least 1 item from the Mission Calendar* Weekly
  • Read and Write Monthly
  • Give or Volunteer Annually

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