- asking you to imagine losing a sheep, going out searching for it, and upon finding it, hosting a joyful celebration for friends and neighbors;
- asking you to imagine a woman losing a coin, and upon finding it, throwing a celebration for her friends and neighbors;
- asking you to imagine a father who loses two sons, one of whom was prodigal (wastefully extravagant) the other of whom was dutiful, obedient, and hard-working. Upon the return of the prodigal son, the father throws a celebratory party. Again, in the context of religionist grousing and the other two parables, it's the refusal of the dutiful, obedient son to join the celebration-of-generosity-party thrown by the father that is the point of the story; arguably, the prodigal son is only a foil to set up the real point of the story, which is the grousing, anger, resentment, and jealousy of the other, every-bit-as-lost older brother.
(“Dear Lord: Carry your word into the most protected parts of our hearts.”)
Today I don’t have a traditional sermon. I certainly don’t have a sermon about Father’s Day, but now that I’ve mentioned it, happy Father’s Day. Today, instead of a traditional sermon, I feel led to share some things that have been on my heart this past week.
I’ve been your Rector here since August of 2012. Those of you who have been here a long time know that my preaching style is almost always “expository,” a fancy word that simply means you take a passage of scripture, and having studied it during the week, you show – or expose – its meaning and relevance as best you can, and then you sit down, trusting Holy Spirit will be hard at work simultaneously translating for each of you what you need to hear on any given Sunday.
One of the implications of this style of preaching is I tend not to preach “to…