Rev. Norm Seli wonders about the whole "Good" part of Good Friday - applying three of the classic understandings of the redemptive and salvific action of the cross, he still wonders is any of that is good enough... and if not, what is?
Palm Sunday at Jubilee United Church, Rev. Norm Seli and Jason Meyers celebrated the story (Luke 19:28-40) and between exuberant verses of "When the Saints Go Marching In" wonder about several of the elements of the story, as well as the practice at Jubilee of celebrating Communion on Palm Sunday. The audio is 4 different exchanges roughly edited together - you have been spared hearing Rev. Seli play trumpet, but you have also missed the first exchanged being prefaced by Rev. Seli producing a large stuffed donkey and putting it in front of the Communion Table, the second exchange being heralded by a variety of Hockey Jersey's being strewn across the chancel steps and the third exchange being introduced by rocks being placed on the Communion Table. With that knowledge, you should be able to appreciate the context and recognize the 4 separate exchanges.
Jason Meyers engages with a story in Judges (1:8-15), the promise of a "New Thing" in Isaiah (43:16-21) and Mary at the foot of Jesus (John 12:1-8) and wonders about the two springs of our faith- not only the need for both personal and community transformation - faith and works - but also the promise that it can be achieved in and through Jesus.
Come, hear a "New Thing".
Rev. Seli acknowledges Paul's promise in 2 Corinthians 5:16-21 that we are made new in Christ and wishes that it could happen for him. As he engages with the story of Balaam, his donkey and an invisible angel (Numbers 22:21-39), he recognizes a kinship... and suspects that he might be a little more like Balaam than Paul. He invites you to consider if you are more like Balaam or Paul...
Jason Meyers engages with a story that is often kept out of our pulpits - the story of the Witch of Endor. (1 Samuel 28:3-25). The King no longer enjoys the advice and support of God, so he seeks wisdom from a dead prophet. Jason invites us to wonder about what it means when people are "othered", how we treat those who do not comply with our expectations of "normal"... and what lose when we isolate people who may have another experience of the holy, but are also children of God, part of the same creation that defines us. Jason invites us to do what we can for those isolated by context... by our actions... to wrap our arms around creation.
Rev. Seli spends time on the second Sunday in Lent to share a peculiar story of Gideon and the miracle of the fleece (Judges 6:28-40) -is this meant to be a children's story or is there something in here for us, as well? Norm wanders through the story with a few detours in the his family life (and maybe yours).
Rev. Seli felt like dusting off an old sermon, after all, this has got to be his 30th time preaching the Temptation of Jesus in the Wilderness. But after an almost Spring walk and a talk with Jesus in an orange toque, he might have made another choice. Some imaginative wondering about privilege, temptation and Lent. (Luke 4: 1-13)
Rev. Norm Seli and Jason Meyers preach together and consider the story of "glowing" Moses (Exodus 34:29-35), Paul's admonishing to set aside our veils and reveal our hope (2Corinthians 3:12 - 4:2) as well as Luke's telling of the Transfiguration of Jesus (Luke 9:28-36), as they wonder what this story means and how it might help us see the world.
Jason Meyers shares some of the journey of his life and faith as he engages with Jesus' command that we should love our enemies (Luke 6:27 ff). Who are our enemies and how are we supposed to engage with them? Why are they our enemies and what is Jesus hoping for? A wonderful and vulnerable look into one person's faith that just might have an impact on yours.
Rev. Norm Seli spends some time wondering about Luke's version of Jesus' beatitudes (Luke 6:17-26). How come "Blessed are the poor" needs to be followed by "Woe to you who are rich"? -is it a threat? Is it doom and gloom? The picture will make sense, once you get into the sermon. Probably.