“Questions, Numbness and Anger: My Holy Trinity for Today”

Grace and peace to you as we people of faith, struggle with the mysteries of the Triune God
And how the Creator is calling us to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.
Amen.

I am angry

This world has left my spirit angry.

I found myself this week asking questions

 Where is the Good News?

How can we follow Christ’s commandment

Of going and making disciples,

Baptizing them in the name of the Triune God

When we as children of God

Refuse to simply adhere

To what Christ has called for us to do?

(pause)
Perhaps you too, beloved

Have found yourself with the same frustrations

Humanity seems to be locked in the throes

Of a violent tantrum

Shutting their ears

To the Living Word

of the Creator God

(Pause)

In a Time article I read this week about the upset in the Virginia primary

Dave Brat, seems to have a twisted idea about what the Great Commissioning means

Jesus Christ commands us to “Go and Make Disciples”

Mr. Brat has reworked this to read-

Go and Make Disciples…and become Materially Wealthy
(pause)
“Capitalism is here to stay, and we need a Church Model that corresponds to that reality!”

He claims he is a Scripture reading, Jesus following Christian

But in his vision, today’s Christians are weak and passive

That we should get into the capitalistic fray and hire lobbyists

I wonder what mountain Mr. Brat recently has traveled to

To receive this “divine” word

Because according to Mr. Brat

IF we, as followers of Christ

Are seriously are about being inclusive and diverse

Jesus wants us to reach out to the capitalists

Apparently they are the missing link in our congregations

And

Jesus wants us to help out our neighbors, Mr. Brat says…

But only as a last resort.

(Pause)

“When they saw Him, they worshiped Him but some doubted.”

(pause)

Our spirits are weary and wounded

Because there are many other “Christians” just like Mr. Brat here

Who doubt the commandments that Jesus Christ has given to us

“Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,”

(pause)

                                     Jesus’s call in our Gospel lesson this morning is a missional one

A mission that was in the midst of transformation then

As it begins to turn the tide and shake the foundation of the Church, Now

Although its roots are the same

Because God’s Word has always had the power

God’s Word disturbed these ancient followers

Jesus Christ’s presence challenged who they thought they were

And what they thought they were called to do

Shattering those places,

Where they had once hidden, bowing their heads in shame

Away from the world

This is where we find the disciples and followers

Of the Risen Christ

God’s Word had been so transparent

So present

It called them from those places

Facing a world in shambles

The temple had been destroyed

Division was apparent between the traditional Jews

And those who were the followers of “The Way”

And the Roman Empire was still in charge
                                                                                                                                  Unfazed by Jesus Christ’s ministry

                                                                                                              Teachings

                                                                                 Death

  And Resurrection

Things haven’t changed, have they?

“When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted.”

Do we count ourselves too, as

Disciples committed to spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ

Beyond our comfort zones?

God’s Word is still the same as it has ever been

God’s Word disturbs us from inactivity

The Risen Christ challenges us from where we have been

On the sidelines

Shattering the empty shells

Exposing the Light of God

That burns within us

Because

                                                                                            Our world is in shambles

There is division all over our global community

Of Who God is, Who truly are God’s sacred people

And Which Religion has bragging rights

And the Capitalistic, Militaristic Empire is still in charge

                                                                   Unfazed by what Christ’s presence, ministry and sacrifice

Meant to this World

(pause)

“But some doubted”

(pause)

Jesus Christ’s commandment is clear

That we are to go out into this world

Beyond our personal, safe boundaries

And share the Good News of Jesus Christ

That Christ, in everything we do
                                                                                                                                                    In our breathing,
                                                                                       In our living,
                                In our loving
                                                                                                   In our working

“Remember, I am with you always

To the end of this age!”

Christ has ascended

The Holy Spirit has descended

The Creator is everywhere

In everything we touch

So with this Eternal, Unconditional Love infused into who we are

As Disciples of the Risen Christ

                                                                 Our mission to be mission minded
                                                                                                                                                                 Is Clear

“But Some Doubted.”

Some of our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ

Still Doubt

Just as there were disciples doubting before Christ’s presence that morning

How could they doubt, we ask?

Were they doubting their abilities?

“Jesus, what if they don’t listen to us?”

“What if they still don’t believe?”

“What if we forget what to say?”

“Is this even the right way?”

We have some of those same questions

We as children of God just want to cling to Jesus

Behind Jesus

Because we doubt our own abilities

“Jesus, I can’t give a testimony”

Or don’t want to face our own inequities

Of not wanting to welcome all nations

“How can I relate to them?”

OF not wanting to begin to change things

“Why do we need to have a website

Or change our worship time

Or use that hymnal?”

We want to keep them the way they have always been

“Our church has always been here.

We should be patient

People will come.”

(pause)

We are fearful of having to actually GO OUT

                                                                              AND MAKE DISCIPLES
OUTSIDE OF OUR PEWS

                                                              AND OF THE CHURCH WALLS

(pause)

So we stubbornly disregard how the Church is changing, moving and blossoming

And claim by delving into the Gospel of Jesus Christ in different

Inclusive and diverse ways

We are somehow abandoning Jesus Christ and the core of God’s Message for All of This World

BUT

(pause)

IF we READ this Scripture

“Go and therefore and make disciples

OF ALL NATIONS

Baptizing them in the name..”

Of the TRIUNE GOD

(pause)

THAT IS THE MISSION THAT CHRIST

                                                                          HAS BEEN GIVING US FOR THE AGES!

                                                                                                                      THE Church MUST TRANSFORM

                                                                                   THIS WORLD IS HURTING

WE MUST GO-

(pause)

And answer the CRY

THAT HAS BEEN POURING OUT

From the cracks in this Life

We must GO-
RAISE OUR VOICES

Against the violence of 117 shootings
And for sacredness of places everywhere for our neighbors and the strangers
To live and breathe and exist in harmony

(pause)

Against the harmful, damaging bureaucracy
And for those 50,000 veterans who have more than earned the right
For holistic and healing care

(pause)

Against the RACISM that continues to eat at the hearts of the people
And for the memory of 5,000 men, women and children who were lynched during Jim Crow

(pause)

Against Classism that separated and turns neighbor against neighbor
And For the thousands of undocumented children who are denied basic human rights

(pause)

We must GO, Singing, Sharing, Exclaiming the Good News!!

TEACHING that the LOVE OF CHRIST is for ALL CREATION

DROWNING their fears, hurts, pain, suffering

IN THE WATERS OF BAPTISM

Bringing them into the Community of God, Our Creator

As DISCIPLES

TRANSFORMING this WORLD

PROCLAIMING that this world will be WHOLE AND HEALED

IN THE BELOVED NAME

(pause)

OF THE FATHER, Our Creator who LOVES US, Period.

(pause)

AND OF THE RISEN SON, Jesus Christ our REDEEMER

(pause)

AND OF THE HOLY SPIRIT, Guiding us to Live in Peace.

(pause)

Thanks Be to God

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