January 21,2018- In Sunday’s Sermon, Pastor Mike Carlson reminds us that we are the body of Christ. A body that is centered in Christ and called to go into the community and Proclaim the Good News.
A SENSE OF IMMEDIACY
This year, we study the Gospel of Mark, the first Gospel that was written. This is the oldest, the shortest and more of a sprint than a marathon. We sprint with the writers from place to place and then Mark introduces us to Jesus Christ, the One who is here to do battle against darkness each and every day.
And despite the time that has passed since the Gospel was penned, we can relate to this immediacy of which they speak. It’s the urgency with which you respond when a child is sick and needs to be picked up. It’s the urgency we feel when notified a loved one is in the hospital or needs us.
WHEN IT WAS STILL DARK
The Gospel of Mark, Chapter 1, verse 35, states “in the morning, while it was still very dark” and we are reminded that is not just a time of day, but a time of chaos and brokenness. It is a feeling that many have experienced or know of people who have experienced this feeling. The feeling of chaos. The feeling of brokenness.
And in those times, especially, we hold on to a hope that does not disappoint. It is a hope that moves us forward. It is a hope that brings us places and the ability to believe that something good can come, EVEN in the darkest moments.
WE NEVER GIVE UP HOPE
The story was shared of the recent NFC playoff game in which the Vikings played the Saints. And, just when it seemed as if it was all going to be lost- just when it seemed there was no hope; in the final play, the ball was thrown and a last second touchdown was made. It was the kind of play that is dreamed about on football fields across the country, the last second “game changer,” the 61-yard touchdown that advanced the Vikings to the NFC Championships.
And, while our hope does not rest in any sports figure or outcome of a game or situation, it is a good reminder that we are not to give up hope.
Pastor Carlson reminded us of the more than 350 homeless children in White Bear Lake that wake up hungry each morning in our backyard, and hope that today will be better. We were reminded of the young teen who lost her life to addiction, her young friends who gathered around the casket and the message of hope that needs to be heard for all ages.
Our immediacy, our urgency, our light is needed in this world. We were asked how St. Andrew’s can make a display of hope so powerful, the Good News of Jesus is explained to all people?
Our Capital Campaign is a vision from God through the people of God. It is a vision to build hope in the midst of darkness and transform lives in the community around us. “We know,” said Pastor Carlson, “without a shadow of a doubt, that just outside these walls, these windows, there is a world desperately asking what difference does Jesus make?” “There is a loneliness that people experience that can only be met through community” he said “even in our so –called connected world.”
We are called to be that community, which is centered on Christ. A community that Christ not only lives in, but flows out from, so that our community, our world, will know of Christ’s healing love.”
Join us in church this weekend when we talk about Building Hope: Chosen
Listen to Pastor Carlson’s most recent sermon