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Sermons

September 14,15, 2019

Only Jesus - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 pm; Sunday 8 and 10 am)

Oh, if only people would accuse Jesus' Church of welcoming sinners and eating with them. Because nobody does that. Except Jesus, and those who follow him.

September 7,8, 2019

Committed sacrificial discipleship - by Pastor Steve (Saturday 4:30 pm; Sunday 8 and 10 am)

Our task is to open our hearts and lives to God's gift through the path to discipleship through following the oftentimes challenging and demanding way of Jesus. Jesus teaches us today in no uncertain terms the importance of that path that leads us to the gift and here's some good news. When you consider that Jesus considers it that important, then we can trust that the spirit is powerfully at work openly inviting us as we walk that challenging path to committed sacrificial discipleship. that leads to life and then move the seemingly very harsh and difficult words of Jesus form unreasonable demands 2 gracious invitation so it turns out that this is a Jesus loves his fan switch story .

September 1, 2019

The worst thing we can do is act normal - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

If Jesus had wanted to observe normal understanding of the meal in today's gospel as an opportunity to claim honor and solidify social status, then I suppose he would have followed the normal rules of etiquette for that time and place. He would have conformed to the ways of the world and saved himself social embarrassment, not to mention crucifixion. But of course for Jesus, a meal was a Kingdom moment and still is. It is a chance to reveal God's Kingdom which had come here in him and therefore a meal shaped by different rules of etiquette, Kingdom etiquette. As disciples of Jesus we are not called to conform ourselves to the ways of the world, to always do what the world considers normal. As disciples of Jesus we are called to conform ourselves to the ways of the Kingdom, the ways of Jesus. For example as disciples of Jesus we are called to choose humility instead of status and that's not normal in a world in which the designations gold, silver, and bronze are not just for the Olympics. As disciples of Jesus we are called to invite those without, those who have nothing, into our life, to our table by giving, by sharing, by welcoming, by showing hospitality and that's not normal in a world that says our invitations should be guided by the principle of "we take care of our own and those who can take care of us in return" A principle that we see pretty clearly in today's gospel, Jesus didn't think much of. As disciples of Jesus we are called to understand that some of what we have received from God is actually meant for others and then to generously give that share away and that's not normal in a world that tells us that we never have enough for ourselves. As disciples of Jesus we are called to understand our weekly offerings and our congregational mission support to synod; not as duties, not as burdens; but as opportunities. Opportunities to practice Kingdom etiquette and that's not normal in a world that tells us that we should be in the business of building bigger barns so that we can accumulate more and more. As disciples of Jesus we tell the world that we have good news. We tell the world that the time is fulfilled and in Jesus God's reign has come near. We tell the world that God's gracious love has broken into the world for all people and that we are the bearers of that love. And so as disciples of Jesus the world is watching us closely. If it is our hope to show forth God's Kingdom and to proclaim God's grace and glory revealed in Jesus through what we say and through what we do, if that is our hope, then today's lessons in Kingdom etiquette teach us that the worst thing we can do is to act normal.

August 31, 2019

Serving - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM)

Jesus wants us to serve others. So open our hearts, open our minds and serve as we do in this church as we feed 160 People from SOS, as we feed the children in our schools that aren't eating over the weekend. Also as we go visit people in the hospital, when we go visit people in the nursing homes, and some of us; I haven't but there are some people; that go visit in the prisons. That's what we do, we serve. And when we serve other people, when we serve our neighbors, we are serving Christ. We are bringing the love of Christ and the forgiveness of their sins because we have to let them know that Christ accepted the cross, not for just us in this church, not for just believers, but also unbelievers. We are all sinful people of God. God loves us. God forgives us. God went to the cross for us.

August 24/25, 2019

Jesus "works" on the sabbath - by Pastor Steve (Saturday 4:30 pm; Sunday 8 and 10 am)

I don't know what sort of spirit crippled the woman in today's gospel for 18 years. I do know that crippling spirits abound - all those physical or emotional or spiritual or cultural afflictions, forces, and circumstances that move into people's lives and become crippling; sometimes just a little. sometimes quite a lot. This day says Jesus is a day for healing and renewal to touch those crippling spirits, a holy day set apart for resting in holy relationship with God and each other so that God in Christ can touch us with healing and renewal just as he touched the woman in today's gospel 2000 years ago. On this day we can extend to each other in various ways that same healing and renewal so that we can learn through this day of Sabbath how to find moments of Sabbath as we move through the coming week. This is something that is especially important to those who oftentimes do have to work on the Sabbath. It is kind of ironic, it seems to me, that we are told not to work on the Sabbath; because for us Americans with our incredibly busy hectic lifestyle; it's actually work for us to not work for any length of time. It doesn't come naturally to us. It's countercultural yet Jesus tells us that it is also healing. It is renewing. It is God's gift to us and so may the healing hand of God in Christ in who's gracious presence we are now gathered touch us, guide us, renew us, and may we join with the woman of today's gospel in lifting our hearts up to praise ourgood and gracious Lord. Amen.

August 18, 2019

Call for commitment - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

God could have chosen to abandon us many times, but instead has promised to save us over and over again. And today that saving news has come to us in the form of fiery words from Jesus that reminds us that what truly saves during these difficult times that we live in, words that call us to commit to those things no matter what, because only that commitment is truly love of God and love of neighbor. For that commitment we ask God to help and guide us. Amen

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August 17, 2018

Division? - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 PM)

The Gospel good news does indeed cause division. Proclaim to the world that God, in the cross, says that there a nonnegotiable consequence for us in our sin. But, in God's eternal love consequences isn't death, isn't eternal damnation or the unquenchable fires of hell. The consequences of our sin is forgiveness. It seems so irresponsible. So opulent. So potent. So dangerous. But then again love always is.

August 11, 2019

Christian Disciplines - by Deacon Diane (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

Worship, study, fellowship and prayer are Christian disciplines that enable us to be persistent in our task. We are challenged to be creative disciples of Jesus Christ.

August 10, 2019

Transforming love - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM)

We have to love others. We have to relate to others. We have to know their needs, because we know that faithful persistent discipleship will not only transform our lives, but it will also transform our community and it will also transform our world. All that we need to do is to go out there and tell them that Christ loves you.

August 4, 2019

Open out hearts - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

We have to make changes in our life to be richer toward God and to the extent we have to make changes in our life to be richer toward God. It's not that we have to change all on our own instead we open our hearts and lives to be coming change as Jesus enters into that openness with his love, teaches us his way of gratitude and generosity fills are God shape space with himself and releases us from whatever possesses us. It's not that we have to change all on our own but it is that we open our hearts to Jesus presence, work and love. Open your hearts. Open them to the Lord.

August 3, 2018

How do you get rich with God? - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 PM)

#1 Surely it must mean being thankful to God for our blessings. #2 It must mean stewardship that returns God's portion to God. #3 It must mean generosity to the neighbor that Jesus has charged us to love and to our enemy whom Jesus has also 3 charged us to love. Now the question is, are we right with God? If we can't answer that question, perhaps it's time we re-evaluate our lives.

July 28, 2019

Ask and You Will Receive - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

Prayer is a powerful source of peace in our life. There is a deep peace that comes with handing our concerns, our needs, our fears, our frustrations, our hopes. Handing all of those things over to God in prayer. Placing those things, praying those things into hands that love us so much that they have been pierced. Placing those things, praying those things into hands and then trusting in that love. Paul summed it up, "Ask and you will receive."

July 21, 2019

Why is Jesus sad? - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

The worries and distractions are keeping Martha (and us) from experiencing the joy and the peace and the purpose that are meant to come along with living as a disciple of Jesus. What is seen by us as an obligation or burden should be a delight for us. The worries and distractions of life can blind us to the presence and possibilities of God's reign which is all around us, among us and within us.

July 20, 2019

We need both Mary and Martha - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 PM)

We need Marys who can learn from Marthas and Marthas who can learn from the Marys of the world. We need a delicate balance between work and prayer, between service and the spiritual, between busyness and attentiveness. We need the Marthas to keep the world running and the Marys to remind us to sit at Jesus' feet and listen.

July 13, 2019

Let us do what the Samaritan did - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM)

Jesus says go out into the world and feed the hungry and clothe the poor; help your neighbor. Go out into the world and feed the hungry, clothe the poor, take care of the sick, take care of the elderly. Be the good Samaritan to all the world.

July 7, 2019

Turning over to God - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

It is a turning over to God – our time, our talent, our treasure, our self purely as an act of praise and trust and thanksgiving; in living out in a very concrete way our love of God. We willingly offer ourselves to God because of the strong connection between love and giving.

July 6, 2019

God's work, our hands - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 PM)

St. Teresa of Avila's said reminding us that now we carry on the ministry that Jesus gave us:
Christ has no body on earth but yours; no hands but yours; no feet but yours.
Yours are the eyes through which the compassion of Christ looks out to the world.
Yours are the feet with which he is to go about doing good.
Yours are the hands with which he is to bless others now.

SERMONS

Daily Reflection

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Saturday Service

Spoken Holy Communion: 4:30 pm

Sunday Services

Spoken Holy Communion: 8:00 am

Sung Holy Communion: 10:00 am

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9425 North Citrus Springs BLVD
Citrus Springs, FL 34433
(352) 489-5511