Theme: God calls us to have the law of God written on our hearts through openness, love, and forgiveness.
Purpose: The congregation will seek to learn understanding and forgiveness.
Scriptures: John 12:20-33 Unless a grain dies, it will not bear fruit, but out of suffering comes our gift of salvation for the world.
Jeremiah 31:31-34 The Law of God, written upon the people’s hearts.
Practice: Learning to be less anxious and reduce defensive reactions.
What does it mean to us to “Know the Lord?” How should the knowledge of God and love of Jesus Christ be reflected in our words and actions? In what ways is the covenant of practicing God’s love a challenge for our life every day? What can we choose as our current area to focus on practicing Jesus’ love in our relationships? What are some of the relationships in which that practice is most needed today? What difference will this practice make in our lives?
Sermon: “The Covenant of Peace”
Theme: Real peace is found through developing strength of humility and mercy that comes from the full knowledge of the love of God.
Purpose: The congregation will embrace the love and compassion of Jesus so as to know the fullness of God’s presence.
Scriptures: Philippians 2:5-11 Have the same mind that was in Christ Jesus that he humbled himself.
Mark 11:1-11 Jesus enters Jerusalem riding a colt.
What does it mean to us to have the mind of Jesus Christ and his humility? How do we learn to practice humility when we are fearful of being abused or taken advantage of? What is the difference between humility and being weak? How do we use our own personal power and authority in gentleness and compassion? What practices enable us to think more highly of others? How do we put Christ first in our lives so that we are able to be raised by God rather than fighting for our own status or position?
Sermon: “The Covenant of Christ’s Sacrifice”
Theme: Jesus shows us the way to fullness of love and peace through setting aside our selfish nature and taking on the love and nature of caring for others.
Purpose: The congregation will embrace Jesus’ invitation to be servants of others.
Scriptures: Exodus 12:1-14 The commandment of the Exodus.
1 Corinthians 11:32-26 Paul relates the words of Jesus at communion.
John 13:1-17, 31b-35 Jesus washes the disciples’ feet.
What does it mean to us practically to show the same attitude that lead Jesus to wash the disciples’ feet? Who should we be showing compassion and serving? What does it mean to us to see the needs and struggles of others more than our own insecurity or struggles? What is God calling us to separate from in our culture and community? In what ways is God inviting us to transform our world through our own gifts of love and service?
Sermon: “This is Our Good News!”
Theme: The resurrection is the message of God’s love and justice overcoming everything, including death so that we live in confidence and unending joy.
Purpose: The congregation will embrace the meaning of the resurrection for their own life.
Scriptures: 1 Corinthians 15:1-11 The testimony of witnesses to the resurrection.
John 20:1-18 The story of the resurrection
What does the resurrection mean to us today? How can we live as those whose confidence comes from God’s victory over death and suffering? How do we put the challenges and problems that we and those whom we love face into a perspective that is shaped by the promise of the resurrection? What is God seeking to teach us in and through the resurrection in practical terms? What can we do to face the challenges we experience of death and suffering with confidence and peace?