Saturday, February 03, 2007

Sermon from Last Sunday (Jeremiah 1)

Trinity Church, Princeton, NJ
One of our VTS graduates, the Rev. Anne Marie Richards, now serving at Trinity Church in Princeton, NJ has emailed me a link to her sermon on Jeremiah 1 from last Sunday. Thanks Anne Marie; Well Done! And thanks also just for preaching on the OT/HB! Give it a look, by clicking here.

Here are some brief excerpts:

... “I appoint you…to pluck up and to pull down, to destroy and to overthrow.” Jeremiah is told that he will witness the bringing low of his people. All that they have known in life—their comforts, their homes, their way of being—all of this will be torn up, toppled, trashed. Keep in mind that this applied to Jeremiah as well—he is one of the people, he too will endure the pain and suffering that go along with bringing a people to their knees.

...But Jeremiah is not left comfortless. “To build and to plant,” these are the last of his tasks. To re-create, to make new again the people beloved by the Lord. Jeremiah speaks harsh words of truth—that reform is needed, that God requires change and submission—and he also speaks of the hope that is found in doing God’s will. That we are from time to time driven to our knees in desperation, but that we are not left there. We are raised up. God will build and God will plant. And what grows will be beautiful.

...I said that I wasn’t going to preach on love this morning, but that’s not really true. Because love is what I have been talking about right along. Not a syrupy, sentimental love, but the kind of love that helps us to understand difficult times like the ones we are in now. Not a hearts-and-flowers love, but a searing love. Not a temporal love, but an eternal love. Love that is, yes, patient and kind, but love that is also demanding and insistent. And, ultimately, love that transforms and renews us. My friends, broken we kneel, and healed, redeemed, renewed, transformed, loved-completely we shall rise to God’s glory.


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