Jesus does not send Mary back to the kitchen, back to the place she belongs, because in his eyes, in his life, death and resurrection that is not where she belongs. In him, walls that divide us are broken down. He comes not just to bring peace, he is peace. The hostility between us and them runs out of gas in the presence of Christ. He Is here to take us back to the garden in a matter of speaking to create a new humanity in place of all the divisions and groupings we’ve created. Because of Christ, there are no longer strangers and aliens but members of the household of God. He is the Cornerstone of whole new way of being human and we are being built into it, a dwelling place for God. In John’s gospel, Jesus sums it all up with a simple prayer, “. . . That they may all be one.” That is his prayer and his mission.
We are living in a world full of beaten people who have been robbed. Of course, not all of them are beaten and left for dead on the side of the road. Some of them are children in families plagued by addiction. Some of them are senior citizens deciding whether to fill a prescription or to pay the rent. Some of them are like the members of the US Women’s Soccer team wondering why they do the same job only better and get paid less than their male counterparts.
And, if we are honest, some of them are us. Perhaps not so severe as our friend on the side of the road in our story this morning, but we have had our moments, we carry the scars. When we are able to see that in ourselves and others, we are free to proceed to the intersection of compassion and brokenness where we can offer all of ourselves, the hurt we have endured and the love we have received. In this way, the Kingdom of God comes near and God’s will is done on earth as it is in heaven.
I am sure that there will be preachers in this country today who will read our text for this morning and wax eloquently about how Paul’s letter to the church at Galatia so handsomely compliments the writings of our Thomas Jefferson. They will make little distinction, if any at all, between the two different understandings […]
Churches and others will join the National Park Service in ringing bells at 3 p.m. EDT Sunday, Aug. 25, to mark 400 years since the first recorded arrival of enslaved Africans in English-occupied North America.
A diverse group of religious leaders in Birmingham, Ala., have forged a commitment to sanctuary for their migrant neighbors, proclaimed their stand publicly and are planning a practical response to possible Immigration and Custom Enforcement action.
The folks at Community Congregational United Church of Christ in Amherst, Ohio, weren't sure their sanctuary, built in 1843, could ever accommodate people with physical disabilities. Now the changes they’ve made to their New England-style building have won a national UCC award.