Freedom from what ails you

Grace and Peace to you

My sisters and brothers in Christ

We struggle with the reality

That the Word of God

Cures Us

From those tangible, twisted things

That makes our hearts sick

That our very being sometime refuses to release

Because the Truth sets us free

And places us in bondage

With the One who freed us from Death,

Jesus Christ, our Risen Lord

Amen

When did prosperity Gospel

Replace the Gospel of Mercy

Of Forgiveness

Of Giving of oneself

For others?

When did humanity deem it alright

To form words about wealth and status

That this is what Jesus Christ died for?

There is something fundamentally missing from who we are

Where not even the radical love from God

Cures us!

Perhaps I will sound like a broken record,

But the Good News needs to be repeated

Each and every moment

That it is only the Creator God

That can bring us healing

Wiping out any bug

Eliminating any virus

Terminating any malady

That keeps us from being connected to the ONE

If we would only let go

Of the toxicity of this world,

Even when, sometimes

We’ve become accustomed to the bitter taste

(pause)

Someone shared with me a tweet from the notorious

Creflo Dollar

He shared from his Twitter account this statement-

That Jesus died on the cross,

So we could be financially prosperous.

(pause)

Using social media to spread bad theology

Using one’s position to wrench from those

God has called us to care for and love and steward

Their gifts

Not for the common good

But for one’s own good

Saddens my heart and stirs up anger in my blood!

Misusing this gift of living into the servanthood

God calls us to

The answer to this myth of a prosperity gospel

Calls out to us from Acts-

 “ of those who believed

were of one heart and soul,

no one claimed private ownership

but everything they owned was held in common

There was not a needy person among them”

(pause)

Throughout these Scriptures

The command to be good stewards, here!

Because everything which has been given to us

Comes from the Creator God!

But many will question-

Life is hard, and unpredictable

What’s wrong with being successful

And having access to unlimited resources

Is there something wrong with living comfortably,

Following the rules and the laws,

This is the reward,

To be able to do whatever we wish

To our heart’s content.

You can’t tell me that Jesus wouldn’t want us to be happy,

Right?

(pause)

The echoes of this unnamed man

In our Gospel text

Percolate within our own selves, beloved

It is clear what idol he subconsciously clings to

As perhaps we all cling to idols

Especially as the Gospel rubs us raw

Trying to rid us of persistent scabs

That dwell on the surface of our souls

(pause)

We know what is missing, beloved

Even as perhaps,

We have our place in the inner circle

A part of the in crowd

And still,

Just like this fellow brother who is questing

We find our soul is restless,

Wandering

“Good Teacher what must I do

To inherent eternal life?”

(pause)

And yet,

We resist coming to grips with what ails us

Publicly acknowledging those idols which pull us back

Just as this unnamed man stammered this question to Jesus

Throughout the Gospel of Mark,

Those who are weary,

Ache,

Ill

Find themselves kneeling at Jesus’s feet

And each time

Without question,

Jesus heals

Without question,

Jesus loves this child of God

Just as He loves all of us

(pause)

Jesus also throws this man in our Gospel lesson

A curve.

Yes, beloved

You are faithful,

But now,

Be radical,

Unpredictable,

Give up all of these tangible,

Physical

Comfortable things

Follow me into the unknown,

into the ghettos, broken places, nursing homes, lonely spaces

to be a listening ear to those who are suffering

Searching for a healing

Follow me down to the borders to pray with immigrants

who have names and families and dreams;

into the prisons to see the youth who landed there

because no one gave them a job

or gave a damn about their lives;

Follow me into the streets

To share close space with a vet

who gave up of himself for this country

And now no one will give of themselves for them, for peace

Follow me into the church,

where there are people gathered who love the Lord

but society counts them out

because they refuse to judge one another.

Take a risk,

actually live into the commandment I give you

Without question,

Which pours God’s healing love into us.

(pause)

But this man turns away, saddened!

Why?

Seriously if Jesus stood in the middle of this aisle

and said,

forget your attachments,

your loyalties,

forget what you have been told by the status quo,

forget chasing the almighty dollar

because of the access it seemingly gives you

Follow me

COULD WE DO THAT, beloved?

Could we give up the comforts of where we live and live simply? Live without regrets,

live in intentional community,

live as God wanted us

and calls us to live?

(pause)

But couldn’t we?

Because the Good News is that-

God Loves us without question

That is why Jesus was among us

That is why Jesus gave up His life

Because we are not perfect,

Because the things in this life that make us struggle

That make our hearts wracked with so much hurt,

Worry,

Sickness.

What weighs on your own heart, beloved?

What burdens did you come in here with?

What methods have you tried already

To cure yourself,

And have failed?

(Share with the congregation about we all need healing and it is only the One who loves us regardless, who can heal us, guiding us to be One with that person next to you, and the person across the pews, and neighbors, etc, etc. Come to the throne of Grace and Mercy-kneel at Jesus’s feet-be healed, encouraged, empowered, loved!)

Thanks Be To God.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s