1030am Sunday 5-17-20
Thank you so much for our vocalists and singers and Tacony and the team who makes this happen every day. I'm blessed to serve alongside you guys love you guys. Thank you. I invite you wherever you are. We going to enter into our scripture reading for is this Sunday? As I said last week? We're going to start getting back into some semblance of routine. I don't want you getting too comfortable in that lazy chair or couch so I can invite you as we enter into a Gospel reading to please stand for the reading of the Holy gospel as you are able. We could be meeting at the Gospel of John the 14th chapter picking up right where we left off last week our text today picks up right where he finished off last week as Jesus continues in his discourse with his disciples. beginning at verse 15 of John chapter 14 Jesus says to his disciples if you love me you will keep my Commandments and I will ask the father and he will give you another Advocate to be with you forever. This is the spirit of Truth whom the world cannot receive because it neither sees him that no one knows him, you know him because he abides with you. And he will be in you. I will not leave you orphans. I will not leave you orphans Church. I am coming to you in a little while. The world will no longer see me, but you will see me because I live. You also will live. On that day, you will know that I am in my father and you are in me and I in you. They who have my Commandments and keep them. Are those who love me? And those who love me will be loved by my father and I will love them and reveal myself to them. This is the gospel of Our Lord. I invite you to be seated.
Please play with me.
Chains be broken lives be healed In This Moment Christ be revealed in the name of the father and the Son and the Holy Spirit of it. Well, it's been 8 weeks. This is week number eight. We closed down in person worship back in mid-march. And this is a week number eight. It's my account that we have been forced by necessity and in love for each and every one of you to gather for worship in this way.
It starts. If you can't see that but I'm just saying what everybody's thinking it really really sucks, but it's wonderful because we are invited to be Innovative and creative had to find and reconnect with people that maybe we've lost touch with and and God today reminds us that even when it sucks. Even when we can't be together, even when we aren't able to to be the church as we have always been. Even then. He is with us.
He is with us. Play Jesus in his sisters his Farewell discourse to his disciples preparing to enter in to a crucifixion and trial and and eventual death. And then finally Resurrection Jesus leaves these parting words for his disciples giving them a words of comfort and encouragement for they who are about to watch an awful awful Injustice an awful. An awful acting awful loss occur there about to feel grief and and disconnected in a way that they've never felt before. and for them and at that moment Jesus decides in his wisdom It is right to remind them that even through. Time. You can do that trial even do that tribulation. There will not be a time that he that God the father that the spirit of Truth is not with him. The same is true for us today. the same is true for you, and I Jesus today was talking to his disciples and his back through the entire Gospel of John and and all of scripture God is talking to us. And he's talking to us and he's coming alongside us and and the the Bible that the library of God story is a story of how God accompanies is a story of how God comes alongside us walks next to us. And in many different forms write The Advocate the Good Shepherd the comforter that the Prince of Peace all of these different images of who God is to walk along side his people to to comfort. The correct fit to lead to guide to shape to fold fold 222 form and nurture. all of Who We Are in Jesus in in this time of great suffering that is about to unfold for his disciples. He brings words of encouragement and hope words of of a one who is coming. Who who will complete the work that Jesus had started the advocate that the fire as I talked about with our children with our s'mores this thing that cannot be controlled maybe even understood fully, you know, as as lutherans and is known as the liturgical denomination. We we have a term we pastors have a term for for us and that is that we are the chosen Frozen meaning we're not animated. Right? We don't we don't move much. We don't do Hallelujah. If you don't do any meds, maybe we should I mean have you tried it recently? It's kind of fun. And I find that they in a time when I'm at my worst God is at his best the spirit when. When I am so lethargic. And when I am so apathetic and I I just lack the energy that is when I need something someone the spirit to step in and get me going again to remind me of that. There's Beauty out there that there is life happening in the midst of my darkness in the midst of my home that feels very much like my grave right now that there is life. There is resurrection that is happening every single day that that we can't do church right now in the way we've done it, but that doesn't mean we can't worship because worship happens. In a building, but it happens in the heart. You know, we've done all these wonderful tools and and we got the zoom and we've got the email. We got text message. You've got cell phones without wireless connections. and those are tools for for so many things but one of the things that their tools for is proclaiming the good news of Jesus Christ, so that where we are or what we have or what resources we have at our disposal. We are always in a place always never without a spirit encouraging urging strengthening leading guiding shepherding. Hallelujah
you want to do that with me? I kind of like to do that tomorrow. So wherever you are, let's let's living in this Advocate that Jesus talks about this one who is always with us the spirit of Truth creates from nothing ex nihilo. If you want to get some fancy light in there this one who created us a spirit that no matter what the world throws at us. We will overcome. Can I get a amen. Chosen Frozen today? Are we? All right?
So today I lost my place. So today. We hear from Jesus. bed in the middle about Darkness in the middle of our deaths physical and otherwise Jesus is with us. I grew up when I from time was 4 years old my grandparents. I was placed under the ward of the Court my parents weren't able to take care of me and I've always read the scripture went when you always strikes me very very powerfully when Jesus says disciples. I will not leave you orphans. I give thanks to God that he was through In his promise for me, but he provided me in the midst of things that my parents were able to provide. He provided me this compassionate wonderful loving family. I was very lucky incredibly lucky probably the luckiest I could have ever gotten but there are many people who are not and it is for them that these words. I will not leave you orphans have such residents for a deep. Hope that that will be true. At the church. We are never alone. As people of God it as a resurrection people is people of the empty tomb. We are never alone. We are always accompanied by the spirit. We are always accompanied by unseen often unheard energy that is moving within us through US above us and around us. And we're also met with that spirit in others. Fort the spirit lives within us as Jesus told us that that we will be with him in the spirit will be inside of us and we'll all be this one unified entity this one unified Humanity. The spirit of truth that comes to us and boy do we need a spirit of truth right now the spirit of truth that comes to us. It transforms the way in which we see the world that transforms who we are transforms what we do it transforms how we make decisions. Transform how we speak transforms all of these different aspects and it's it's not some switch that happens. It's a process. It's a process that God created and started in Jesus and then gave to us to continue in The Advocate the holy spirit that Spirit lives within you it lives within me and lives within the actions that we take. Jesus says to his disciples, you know, the way that you'll know that the spirit is within you is if you if you obey my Commandments That's how you'll know that there is a spirit at work in someone bite by their works, right? You'll see the outpouring of the spirit and that you'll see the manifestation the evidence of their Their spirit and of whom who they serve who they are and whom they serve at by their works is Lutheran's we don't believe that we are saved by works. There's nothing but don't work that we could possibly do to save us but we do works because we have been saved thought thought of working up toward an earning Merit sand and end credits to get to a Pinnacle Point where suddenly all I've made enough. No, It's simply given to you in love and grace. She is it extends this Advocate even unto Judas who will betray him. Jesus knows all this he tells his disciples if you if you disobey my Commandments, you will be my disciples. The spirit will be within you a 10 Jesus doesn't just tell and encourage. He shows them. What does it mean to have obey my Commandments? Well first he says love one another that's simple and then he shows them with that love looks like he gets down on his knees. He ties a towel around his waist and washes their feet.
Do you have the kit does that? The map of the human human human arrogance human Pride will not allow us any of us to get down on our knees and wash the feet the dirtiest part of the body.
But the spirit Spurs us and encourages. I didn't take sorry goes down and build the spirit up and in that went God is creating in you and through you a new kingdom. Can I get a amen?
Amen, thank you. Are y'all going to start got some stuff over here to God is creating in you he is at work in you even when it feels like you're alone and you're isolated. There's things you can be there's things that you can know and there's things that you can do to be one with this Creator who who is always with you who love you to death and back who Clause his ways with with dirt caked fingernails back to you.
We are Resurrection people not because of what we've done but because of who we serve and who is within us. If you are feeling rough. You feel like this sucks. You're not alone. And not feeling it's hard. But I want you to something else. You Are Not Alone You are always accompanied by the one who comes alongside you. Who walks with you who Shepherds and guide you through these and every time and in every season of your life. I guess they had got tanks today that he has reminded me that the spirit paraclete to the the comforter the advocate is with us. And where the spirit is there can be no fear. There must be responsibility there must be truth. MSP courage But not fear. The church wherever you are today, I pray that the spirit of truth will cast fear aside. I pray that the spirit of truth that is within you and with you. Will Empower you to live in that truth to speak in that truth to Hope in that truth? I give you thanks for being with me today as we share in this gospel is good news of Our Lord who is with us even now and will be with us into every tomorrow that we can imagine. Thanks be to God. I invite you to pray with me.
Gracious God we thank you for the advocate for the one who accompanies and walks alongside. The one who comforts gives compassion. Thanks God that you have sent your son into our world to show us what it means to love and then in his dying sends to us the Holy Spirit. David asked you to be our encourager. Our cheerleader the power behind our very power. The one who presses us on when we cannot go any further help us to know that it is not all up to us for you are in control. That where two or more are gathered you are there also be at physically or virtually God we pray that you will help us to know that in the midst of community and away from it. You are at work within each of us. Not for our own sink, although you do love us, but for the sake of the world that you are creating and the kingdom that you are bringing for the justice and peace of the whole world. We give you. Thanks God for your spirit of truth and life and hope today you pray this in your son's name on it.