It's continually a joy for me to come together with Christians on Sundays to encounter Jesus in Word and Sacrament, and today was no exception. This Feast of Our Lord, like all Sundays, is the 11th Sunday after Pentecost. We've settled in to Genesis, Romans, and Matthew for the summer. I like the opportunity to skip back and forth between texts; if I don't hit a good point in one Sunday, I can refer to it in another one, because of the continuity we get (more or less) from the assigned readings. I'm not usually one to attempt tying together all the lessons, especially since in this season after Pentecost they aren't designed to do so, but today was a bit of an exception. (Once again, my sermon is in bullet form; I guess I'm taking a little time off this summer, too. I've been told people like it better when I don't preach from a text, but I still prefer it. I'll keep up this experiement for a bit and see how it goes.)
(The pictures are a triptych by James B. Janknegt called Treasurefield #1: Find the Treasure; Treasurefield #2: Sell Everything; and Treasurefield #3: Buy the Field.
St. Thomas’ Episcopal Church, Vernon
Proper 12A RCL 2008
Gen 29:15-28; Ps 105:1-11,45B; Rom 8:26-39; Matt 13:31-33; 44-52
The Rev. R. F. Solon, Jr., Vicar
In the Name of the Holy and Undivided Trinity, Amen.
1. Went to Cross Roads Summer Camp this week as Visiting Chaplain
a. Saw kids, opportunity to proclaim Good News – Mary M as example of the 1st to proclaim the GN
b. Example of both Mustard Seed and Yeast
i. Doubled because it’s very important
c. Nothing can separate us from the Love of God in CJ
2. First Lesson – story of how Laban got Jacob to marry twice
a. [tell story]
b. Might have been because Laban thought Leah would be married before Rachel was
c. Kinda turns the tables on Jacob – remember he tricked Esau out of his birthright
d. Parable of the Net and of the Weeds and the Wheat
i. Righteous and unrighteous will get thiers, in God’s good time, not ours
ii. Doubled because its’ very important
iii. All sorts of people are instrumental in God’s Economy – God uses the most obnoxious, even despicable, to do God’s will
iv. Not for us to judge
v. Nothing can separate us from the Love of God in CJ
3. Visiting NYC on Friday and Saturday
a. Got my car window bashed in
i. Oddly, pretty calm about it
ii. Always checked on it in the past, never expected
iii. Going for my GPS or satellite radio, didn’t get either
iv. Probably won’t drive in to NYC any more, although the train is a bit more expensive and time consuming
v. Already got quote, too – not terribly expensive, thank God
vi. Would have had to figure out a way to pay pretty much no matter what
vii. Lot’s of things in this economy that we have to pay for
1. Health Care
3. Food - Gas
viii. Parable of the Really Expensive Pearl and the Treasure in the Field
ix. What would you be willing to sell for salvation? What price would you be willing to pay?
x. Paradox in God’s Economy is that although salvation is more valuable than anything, it’s completely free
xi. Doesn’t mean there isn’t a cost – God expects us to live out our salvation by emnulating Jesus - teaching, healing, and reconciling.
xii. We live in this economy and and in God’s economy. Because we live in both, we cannot ignore the costs of this economy. We will need to take wise counsel for the financial future of this community so we can continue to be a teach, heal, and reconcile as Jesus did.
xiii. Even so, Nothing can separate us from the love of God in JC!
4. We’ve gotten glimpses over the past three weeks of God’ economy – K of Heaven in Matthew’s words. Always a lot to digest and think about. But although Mattew describes the K – God’s economy – obliquely, St. Paul in the Letter to the Romans doesn’t:
5. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor annoying family members, nor things present, nor things to come, nor bashed in windows, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor financial challenges, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord!
O God, the protector of all who trust in you, without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy: Increase and multiply upon us your mercy; that, with you as our ruler and guide, we may so pass through things temporal, that we lose not the things eternal; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.