Can I Getta “I’m In!”

November 5, 2017

Church of the Servant, Wilmington, NC
All Saints’ Day (transferred), Year A
Revelation 7:9-17; 1 John 3:1-3; Matthew 5:1-12

Listen here:

 

Gospel Text:

When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying:

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
“Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy.
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

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Christ Church Episcopal – Norcross, GA
Given while serving as seminarian.

4th Sunday after the Epiphany – Year A (RCL) – Micah 6:1-8, Psalm 15, 1 Corinthians 1:18-31, Matthew 5:1-12

How did that make you feel? This is the question Ceci often poses to me in our one-on-one sessions when I share an experience that I’ve had.

Working in banking for 20+ years this question didn’t come up much.

As I thought about it more, it didn’t really come up in my family life either. We’re mostly a “Left brain” bunch, where reason and logic jump in and take center stage. We THINK about things a lot, but we don’t probe into how we FEEL about things… or at least we don’t spend much time giving it a voice.

So, the first few times Ceci asked “How did that make you feel?” she had to follow that up with “Glad, Sad, Mad, or Afraid?” Now, there are lots of other feelings, but this at least pointed me in the right direction.

When we look at today’s gospel reading Jesus talks about feeling “blessed,” that is Happy, or even better “Fortunate” about certain situations in our lives, and we might find it a little surprising…

The passage starts with Jesus seeing the crowd, and then going up and sitting down on the mountain-side. The disciples we’ve been hearing about for the last few weeks, having let go of their fishing nets to follow his call, gather around and Jesus begins to teach them.

His words surely caught the disciples off guard as he looked toward the crowd, and then said… Read the rest of this entry »

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