Noise

Preached at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church – Tifton, Georgia Isaiah 50:4-9a    James 3:1-12    Mark 8:27-38 If there is a common theme across all of today’s readings, it’s that words matter. In Isaiah, we hear him say, “The Lord God has given me the tongue of a teacher, that I may sustain the weary with a word.”…

Tribalism

Preached at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church – Tifton, Georgia James 2:1-17    Mark 7:24-37 Those of you who know me well know I’ve never really been that much into college football. There’s nothing wrong with it, and there’s nothing wrong with me. I just wasn’t raised on it, and I didn’t go to a big SEC school….

Justified

Preached at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church – Tifton, Georgia Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23 There we were on our first day of seminary: a brand new class of future priests, all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, all ready for this big, new adventure, all, presumably, called by God. And on that first day, the Dean of Students stood and…

Onward Christian Soldiers?

Preached at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church – Tifton, Georgia Ephesians 6:10-20 Toward the back of our hymnal is a section of hymns that fall under the heading “Christian Vocation and Pilgrimage.” That label sounds pleasant enough, but take one look at what’s collected there and you quickly understand why we don’t use them very often. “Stand up,…

We Don’t Have Time for This $#!+

Preached at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church – Tifton, Georgia Ephesians 5:15-20 When I was in seminary, something happened that became instant legend. I was not in the room, but one day during homiletics (the class where you learn the art of preaching), a student was giving yet another mundane, lackluster sermon when the professor— a crusty…

Why We Still Need Miracles

Back in the days of the early Church, if you wanted to convince someone that Jesus is Lord, that Jesus was more than just a man, that Jesus was who he said he was, one of the things you would do is tell the stories of his miracles. [1] All four Gospel writers— Matthew, Mark, Luke,…

An Extended Family of Love (Feast of St. Anne)

St. Anne’s Feast Day If you’ve ever paid attention to the signs in front of Episcopal churches, you may have noticed that almost every Episcopal church is named after someone or something on the Christian calendar. Rarely do you ever see a “First” Episcopal Church, or an “Eastside” Episcopal Church, or a “Greater Morningstar Holiness Congregation of…

Gift Shop Jesus

Preached at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church – Tifton, Georgia Mark 6:1-13 Over the last few weeks we’ve been reading through the first few chapters of Mark’s gospel. As you may have noticed, Mark does not waste time. He wants to introduce you to Jesus, and he wants to do it quickly. And from the get-go, part…

Grab Hold

Preached at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church – Tifton, Georgia Mark 5:21-43 When Mark wrote his Gospel, he loved to take a story of something that happened to Jesus and insert another story within it: a kind of Markan sandwich, as some have come to call it. If this were a TV show, it would be like…