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Holy Conjunctions, Holy Compounds, Tension of Opposites, and Straining Forward

Dwelling on "what might have been" does not help us get to "what might be."

  • Being born...dying...and being reborn again.

  • "Forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead ..."

  • "When you pass through the waters, I will be with you" (v. 2) ? (Holy Conjunction) You will be caught between a "rock and a hard place...You will find yourself being overwhelmed with the issues of life and faith"...AND when you are, I will be there.

  • Connect to the rhythm of God thru worship, prayer, singing and dancing to the glory of God in our lives of faith in Jesus as our Light to the World...

The words above represent our journey in January. In our January sermon series, Jesus, January, and Jazz, we have delved into the Good News of the "Holy Conjunctions of life." We have heard how we, as people of faith, can hold the "opposites" of this world in tension with each other and still be people of faith. We have looked at the example of the Apostle Paul to help each one of us "strain forward" to live out the previous two mentioned.

This past Sunday I introduced us to the "Holy Compound" that can be found in word and deed when it comes to embracing and sharing God's steadfast love (God's lovingkindness).

This Sunday we will conclude our sermon series by investigating what the Gospel of Luke shares about how Jesus put all of our themes previously together to focus us on the original questions I asked back in the January 6th sermon:

  • What will this year bring forth?

  • What will I be able to achieve?

  • How will my family and I be affected by this force or that force?

  • What will I do to improve my health and wealth?

  • What will happen that will alter my life?

  • What can I reasonably expect?

"Where is God leading me? What can I do better to utilize my gifts in the kingdom of God?"

This Sunday's focus will be on where our efforts can be intentional as we live out what we have been focusing on this past month, and answering the questions above as we "strain forward" pressing on, living with the tensions between our dreams and deeds and looking to Jesus, "the pioneer and perfecter of our faith."

I have an assignment for you prior to this Sunday's worship service. If you have access to YouTube, I would like for you to listen to two songs while reading our scripture for this Sunday — Luke 4:14-21.

14 Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. 15 He was teaching in their synagogues, and everyone praised him.

16 He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, 17 and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:

18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

20 Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. 21 He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

Links to both songs are included here.

Pastor Steve

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