April 12, 2010

Looking Ahead to April 18, 2010 -- 3rd Sunday of Easter

The Scripture Readings this week are:
  • From the Gospel: John 21:15-17
  • Psalm 30 (VU p.757)
  • From the Life of the Early Church: Acts 9:1-20

The Hymns this week are:
  • #409 Morning Has Broken
  • #183 We Meet You, O Christ
  • #626 I Heard the Voice of Jesus Say
  • #232 Joyful, Joyful We Adore You

The Sermon Title is 180°

Early Thoughts: What does it take to make us turn and go in a new direction? Can we turn our backs on where we were and go the other way?

Paul was, by his own account, a persecuter of the early church. In Acts Luke makes it clear that this persecution was potentially fatal. And yet when he experiences the Risen Christ, when he runs into the reality of Easter, Paul's life and perspective are wholly changed.

Peter was afraid. In the chaos after the arrest of Jesus and the fear that Jesus' followers would be the next to be put into chains Peter vehemently denies that he even knew the man -- much less was one of the most trusted and favoured followers. And yet out of his experience of the Risen Christ he becomes the first leader of the movement that becomes known as the Christian church.

There is something about the resurrection experience that leads people to turn and go in the opposite direction. But maybe that is less than surprising after all. In resurrection we are reminded that anything is possible. In meeting the resurrection truth we are pushed to let go of death.

Many of us find ourelves going the wrong way at times. What would it take for us to be convinced that we need to turn around? More importantly, what would it take for us to actually do it?

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