Sermon: Jesus Wept
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Sermon: Jesus Wept
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Good morning First Christian friends and family.
Good morning from South Carolina
Good morning FCC family
Thank you Courtney for the message
Pastor's Pondering By Brad McDowell
A week ago Friday, I got to participate in our church’s work project with WARM (Wilmington Area Rebuilding Ministries). You can tell a lot about the graciousness and faith in humanity of WARM simply by the fact that they asked me to come in and lay flooring at a neighbor’s house. Bold move. Fortunately, we had the patient guidance of Tim who works for WARM and has forgotten more about building and fixing homes than I’ll ever know.
The truly gracious party was the neighbor who had courageously welcomed strangers into their home and with a generous spirit accepted the help of unskilled laborers. As we worked to clear the flooring that needed to be taken out, we had to move furniture that probably hadn’t shifted for over a decade. There was dust everywhere, on everything.
That is an incredibly intimate experience. Imagine a stranger looking behind your refrigerator or that china cabinet that hasn’t budged for 30 years. God knows I wouldn’t want anyone looking behind my washer and dryer. We had to clear out their makeshift pantry. I immediately felt a huge responsibility to be a good steward of this position I had seeing the most vulnerable parts of their home. It was sacred work, and not to be handled lightly. I worked hard not to judge as we saw the dust…
If anyone would have had an urge to judge, our host took care of that. She went to the store to get us drinks and snacks. And later she told me the story of how she had lost her husband several years ago, and then after that, she had lost her only daughter, and was now raising her two grandkids. They were at school right now, she said. She thanked us very kindly and then tried to stay out of our way. Knowing just some of what she’d been through, and what she was going through now, you better believe I didn’t care about any dust after that.
We all have dust. Truly, we are dust. Just dust. Everything else is an illusion or a facade. Everything shiny and pristine. The smile we put on for the world. The social media photos where we only show our best, idealized side, and hide all the mess just out of the frame. Talking about our great visit with our family, all the while thinking “if you only knew about those other parts of our family.” We hide the dust, even though it is what makes us real. It’s what makes us so wonderfully human. Dust can be so beautiful when we don’t hide it. The rings of Saturn are made of dust. Some of the most beautiful sunsets we see are thanks to dust that has drifted from the Sahara desert to us across the Atlantic.
The people I know who are truly joyful, like down in their bones joyful, are the ones who laugh and smile while showing the world all their dust (well, most of it… no one needs to see all our dust). The ones who don’t pretend, because they have accepted the truth… we are all dust.
And this is why I always say that, as a church, we are the best version of ourselves at the Table. The price of admission at the Table is that we bring our dust. We bring our brokenness and our wounds and our imperfection, and with joy we get to welcome other imperfect fellow travelers. Without pretense, without judgment, and we realize that we’re all equally covered in God’s love and grace. ... See MoreSee Less
What a wonderful story, so much truth!
Beautifully written! Thank you!
Sermon: How To See
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Joanne Stout is watching
Sermon: How To See
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