Tuesday, December 30, 2014

After Christmas We Still Can Seek Christ

Well, we have come through yet another Christmas celebration and once again we proclaim the Good News of God With Us.

So what next?
Usually it seems that the 'next' is waiting until Easter for the next big church celebration.  Not that there is anything wrong with celebrating Easter - it is the day for the Christian faith.  But between Christmas and Easter there was quite a bit more to the story of Jesus.

In particular Jesus came to bear witness to the kind of person God would have us to be.  He was the model - the example for all of us.  So I think it would behoove us to pay particular attention to the character of Jesus.  After all, we are proclaiming that we are disciples of Christ.  Therefore, the more we take time to learn about Jesus' teachings, actions, and messages the more fully we become stronger disciples.

So in the month of January, I want to focus on the person of Christ.  Who was he?  What did he say?  What were his larger examples to the world and what does that mean for us?
To that end I will be focusing on the following topics.

1.  Starting Over With Scars.
It is the first of a new year, and for many there is something symbolic about January 1st.  We often talk about it as a clean slate for a new year.  There is something to that, I think.  But I think as Christians, we have to think seriously about what it means to start a new year in Christ.  And we have to acknowledge that as many 'new' years as we have, we all have our histories to deal with.  So on our first Sunday in the new year, I want to focus on the idea of starting over with Christ.

2.  Christ Beginnings
The first story in the Gospel of Mark is the story of Jesus' baptism.  It is a tremendously powerful story that tells us quite a bit about both Mark's understanding of Jesus as well as what Jesus proclaimed as his mission.  As we begin to look at the person of Jesus, this story is the best place for us to begin to examine who it is we claim to follow.

3.  Christ Revealed
One of the greatest stories about the character of Jesus is found in the Gospel of John - the story of the woman caught in adultery.  It provides quite a window on the nature, demeanor, and disposition of Jesus.

4.  Christ's Words
Looking particularly at the Gospel of Luke and one of the more famous of Jesus' parables, the story of the prodigal son, we will listen closely to what Jesus has to say to those who hear about God, the Kingdom, and how they relate to you and me.  I know it is one of the most often preached passages in the Gospel of Luke, and you may have heard it to death, but I invite you to listen with new ears to what Jesus has to say to those who would seek to be disciples.

Come and join us as we continue to seek the one whose birth we just celebrated.
- Grace and Peace,
Pastor Charles

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