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Dressed and Ready (2): For Discomfort

. 2 min read

Note: The final section (message body) was missed in the recording.

Dressed
and Ready (2): For Discomfort
 
2014/12/07
Christ Church, Mountain Top, Advent 2
Message,
Isaiah 40.1-11, Mark 1.1-8
Opening
theme:
Change
in title (not “for forgiveness”)
Peas
Princess
& the Pea
      Cute or gold-digger?
      Discomfort – reveals who we are
      Discomfort – irritates or frightens
      Discomfort – sensitizes
New
title: Dressed and Ready … For Discomfort
Children:
Crickets
Honey
Deer skin
Getting
ready for Christmas
      Special clothes?
      Special meals or foods?
John
the Baptizer’s food and clothes
      “You shall know the truth and the truth
shall make you odd”
            Flannery O’Connor
Message
body:
Race
in America, and the power of police
      Discomfort, that leads to fear – assumption and prejudice
            “Black folks” behaving the way we
expect – looting and rioting
            Police, the way we expect – abusing
power, racial profiling
      Discomfort, that leads to sensitivity
            The daily frustration and injustice
experienced by persons of color
            The peril of policing (to the soul)
– exercise power, witness to evil
      Pray
            Reconciliation
            Souls
            Ramah march in Walltown (Durham)

John
the Baptizer, Isaiah, the Scripture – the pea
      Discomfort – reveals who we are
      Discomfort – irritates or frightens
      Discomfort – sensitizes
Isaiah
40:7
The
grass withers, the flower fades, when the breath of the LORD blows upon it;
surely the people are grass.
      Death
      Grief – we lose those we love
      Limits – we are mortal, we have aches and
pains, things we can’t do
Isaiah
40:1-2 
Comfort,
O comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her
that she has served her term, that her penalty is paid, that she has received
from the LORD’s hand double for all her sins.
      Comfort my people – you have received
double for all your sins!
      The universe, and justice, is not in
balance
Mark
1:4
John
the baptizer appeared in the wilderness, proclaiming a baptism of repentance
for the forgiveness of sins.
      Religious people are not necessarily good
      A baptism of repentance – for good Jews
But
there is one coming, whose coming changes all of this.
      Race
      Power
Jesus “abolished the dividing wall of hostility” (Ephesians, on race)
      Death
      Sin, Punishment, Forgiveness
The
Communion feast.
Blessing: 2 Peter 3:13-15 

But, in accordance
with his promise, we wait for new heavens and a new earth, where righteousness
is at home. Therefore, beloved, while you are waiting for these things, strive
to be found by him at peace, without spot or blemish; and regard the patience
of our Lord as salvation.