August 6, 2017
Rev. Steve DeNeff - Mark 12:28-34; James 1:26-2:4, 8-9, 12-13. Favoritism is one of the hardest things to get over because most of us prefer the company of others like us. It is our very sense of "belonging" that makes "including" so difficult. But to love others as much as we love ourselves is at the core of our religion even more important than our worship ("burnt offerings and sacrifices"). What would it look like - what would WE look like - if we put our preferences down and love others as much as we love ourselves? How might it affected the very religion we practice? How might "including" affect our sense of "belonging"?
July 30, 2017
Emily Vermilya - Luke 5:17-26. Perhaps one of the most astounding things about the miracles was the way Jesus involved others—ordinary people. In the story of the healing of the paralytic man, we see, once again, how Jesus allows others to be involved in his life-transforming work. He allows our faith, our creativity and selfless nature to play a significant role in this inexplicable healing and reminds us that Christ still seeks to employ a community of ordinary people to help accomplish his miraculous Kingdom work on earth.
July 25, 2017
Steve DeNeff - Matthew 14:22-33. To “walk on water” has become a popular idiom describing someone who can do anything, someone bigger than life. Yet the real miracle that day, when Jesus “walked on water,” was that he walked into a storm. He saw his disciples “buffeted by the waves because the wind was against (them)… and he went out to them, walking on the water,” (v.24-25). Many times, when we are in a crisis, Jesus walks into it with us and says, “Take courage; it is I,” then he calls us, like Peter, to walk into the storm with him. This sermon will speak of ways to recognize Jesus in the storm, and challenge us to walk out there with him.