isn't this a beautiful world? i'm from minnesota, spent a few years in alaska. two similar, yet different worlds. let's engage in some sharing together, shall we?
i'm ian. elca youth director. music lover. film director wannabe. walking junk drawer. pleased to meet you.
Here is the sermon I preached this week to 600+ people at the Youth Ministry Network Extravaganza. The texts it’s based on are Deuteronomy 11:18-21 and John 5:2-9a.
Good morning. God’s grace and peace be with you all.
I have this experience probably once a week: I’m sitting in my office at church, or I’m at home in the living room, and I get up to go find something in another room. Only when I walk into the sanctuary, or into the kitchen, suddenly I have no idea what I was doing or what I was looking for, and I stand there, confused.
How many of you have ever done that? And you probably have to go back to where you were before and look at what you were doing to figure out what you got up for in the first place, and then you can go get it.
Liminal Spaces… this idea is stuck in my head right now. What are the liminal spaces I’ve entered? What do I need to say as I walk through them? How have they impacted my life? What the hell. This is too good.
Anyone Else But You - Moldy Peaches
We all know the movie “Juno” was set in Minnesota, and I have posted this before, but I am just feeling this song tonight. Why? I don’t know. I just have a lot of love for you guys right now.
You are always tryin’ to keep it real,
I’m in love with how you feel.
I don’t see what anyone can see in anyone else but you.
Many of us are tempted to think that if we suffer, the only important thing is to be relieved of our pain. We want to flee it at all costs. But when we learn to move through suffering, rather than avoid it, then we greet it differently. We become willing to let it teach us.
God’s grace and peace be with all of you.
Does God answer prayers? This is one of the hard questions of faith. Does God answer prayers?
Sometimes, we feel confident that God hears and answers our prayers. When a loved one recovers from an illness, we feel God’s presence. When a situation that’s been causing us anxiety is resolved, we believe that God has intervened. At times like these, it’s easy to believe in the power of prayer.
But other times aren’t so easy. Other times, we pray with all our hearts, but nothing changes. A bad situation grows worse. Illness claims a life. And at those times, we wonder if God is even listening. Does God even care? Or how could God hear our prayers, our pleas, and ignore them?
Such a great sermon from one of my “online pastors” :)