Collective Podcast Sermons for threshold faith communities.

This week we'll explore the cry for justice. We'll join the Psalmist in lamenting the reality that justice does not exist... even as we celebrate the fact that we know what justice is. Even without existence, we know the unconditional call of justice in our gut and in our bones. So, how can it not be a thing, and yet so powerfully move us and shape us?

This week we begin a season of plundering the treasure of the biblical songbook. The Psalms invite us, by song and prayer, poetry, ecstasy, and tragedy - to feel, to think and re-think, to touch the depths of our inner light and darkness, and to listen as our inner songs harmonize with the songs of light and darkness among our community. It draws not on intellectual theology, but the experience of life held in the suspension of a dynamic faith. Psalm 88 invites us, maybe more than any other Psalm, to apologetically unfiltered, and even offensively honest, expression.

This week we round out our exploration of the prodigal son with a practical reading that meets us where we live, in the complex world of relational dynamics, family history, conflicting values, and a sincere hope in the power of reconciliation. We'll see what happens when we free the story for the Divine-Human allegory connected with father and sons. Then we'll see what has really been lost, how people come to realize, and where God might be in the story, if not as the father.

In this second week of our Prodigal series, we'll flip the traditional light reading of the story, and look from the dark underside of tragedy. We'll come to know the prodigal as a failed attempt to change an unjust system, and differentiate from his controlling father. We'll read the Christ narrative in light of this radical-prodigal invitation to critique and transform oppressive, inhuman systems.

This week we begin a journey through the story of the prodigal son from three different approaches. Owen Stricklin, pastor of our sponsoring congregation, FUMC, will be delivering the first part of the series, offering a more traditional reading. In addition to the wisdom we'll gain from each reading, we'll keep in mind the larger truth that there is always more than one way to read and engage a story, to hear and receive truth, to bring ourselves to the text as it seeks to bring us into the story. We can all relate to feeling lost, to bottoming out, to feeling the emptiness and failure of extravagance to truly satisfy. And we also can relate to being surprised by a fresh perspective on a tired old narrative.

This week our Primary series will move us through the story of the Red Sea, toward baptism and Eucharist. We'll celebrate the baptism of Jackson Ballenger and make connections to the ways the uncertain journey of life and faith draw us into a profound belonging.


Play this podcast on Podbean App