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…

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…

About Those ‘Biblical Family Values’

Preached at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church – Tifton, Georgia Genesis 3:8-15    Mark 3:20-35 A friend of mine always used to say, “If it’s ‘family values’ you’re looking for, do not go looking in the Bible!” I know that sounds odd. It’s definitely incongruous with everything you hear in the modern-day culture wars about “Biblical family values.”…

When Jesus Prays for You

Not only is it Mothers Day, but graduation is also in the air. In just a bit we will give thanks and ask God’s blessing on our 2018 graduates: Griffin Collier, Gracie Day, John Pittman, Emily Robertson, Will Rowland, and McKenzie Stevenson. We are so proud of each of you, and we’re excited to see what…

The One About Mr. Rogers

Preached at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church – Tifton, Georgia John 15:9-17   Love is the thing. What you and I come here week after week to do— what we come to talk about, to bask in, to bathe in, to breath in, to receive, and handle, and give— is love. Love is the nature of the…

Our Good, Grizzled Shepherd

“Jesus is the Good Shepherd.” When you hear those words, what images come to your mind? What are the paintings, the drawings, the stained glass windows from your childhood that all make up the Good Shepherd in your brain? If you grew up with the same images I did, chances are what you see is…

Giving Up for Lent

Preached at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church – Tifton, Georgia Matthew 6:1-6,16-21   Lutheran pastor Nadia Bolz-Weber writes, “Ash Wednesday is my favorite day of the church year, and Lent is my favorite season. “Our culture has quite ruined Christmas and Easter with Santa and the Easter Bunny and all the grotesque consumerism and made-for-TV specials behind it…