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Sermon--A Simple Plan?

Here's a sermon on the Sermon on the Mount (yet another one; this is week three of us overhearing Jesus preaching).

But first, a prayer of invocation:

Gathering God, as we come together this evening, let us do so with the high aim of your new realm--a gathered people who won’t rest content at coexistence, even peaceful coexistence,  but who aim to love.

Help us to enact love.

We will listen to Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount and be reminded once again of all this entails. We are not simply to live by the most fundamental commandments and prohibitions, but are more so to live by a spirit of self-giving, a look to the other for gauge as to what’s right, a sensing between the I and the Thou an encounter that brings forth something new.

Grant us a reverence for what this requires of us. Often longing for control, we must now open ourselves to the possibility of surprise. Often aiming to manage things, we’ll need to allow for the movement of your Holy Spirit, a spontaneous taking place of your way in our midst. Often more nostalgic than hopeful, we pray you kindle our imaginations for what next is possible.

Having devoted ourselves to the continuing life of this congregation, we pray also that our devotion meets some felt need. Bless this congregation with joyful purpose, for those gathered here now and for those yet to arrive. In Christ, amen.

Here's the sermon.

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