Posts from January 2017

“The Be-Attitudes” Matthew 5:1-12

Our society is “hooked on happiness.”  We will do most anything, seek most anything, buy most anything if it will make us happy.  Stepping back and listening to that statement, I find it shallow at best, and somewhat narrow.  Life is not intended to be a quest for happiness.            

“Leaving the Past Behind” Matthew 4:18-22

I love history.  Before moving to Madison, we lived in Hampton, VA, which was founded in 1610, about 200 years before the founding of Madison.  A man named John Smith had spent the night there in 1607 before sailing up the James River where he founded a settlement called Jamestown.  When we had out-of-town guests visit us, I enjoyed going to Colonial Williamsburg, Jamestown, and Yorktown, all of which were within a half-hour drive. 

“What Gifts Can We Bring in 2017?” Matthew 2:1-12

There are many reasons why we give gifts at Christmastime.  Our passage this morning recalled three gifts brought by the wise men.  While we often consider gifts to be tangible, something we can wrap or place in a gift bag, numerous gifts were listed in our litany today.  Those gifts can’t be purchased in a store on Black Friday or procured online on Cyber Monday.  Those gifts simply embody our devotion to the one who gave his life for us.  The greatest gift ever given was the gift of God’s son Jesus Christ. 

“The Purpose of Christmas” Galatians 4:4-7

We never tire of the Christmas story.  This Advent season in worship, we focused on the angelic appearance to Mary; the birth of John the Baptist; the angelic appearance to Joseph in a dream; and the shepherds visiting the baby Jesus in the manger and compared the shepherds to Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.  We have been blessed by our music ministry, both adults and children, in seeing and feeling the Christmas story.  We have enjoyed Christmas gatherings of Sunday School Classes, friends and family; for most, gift exchanges have already occurred to remind us of the magi bringing gold, frankincense and myrrh to Jesus.  Next week, we observe Epiphany and look again at the wise men’s visit to Jesus and family.