Proper 14C

Day: Proper 14C

Lectionary Passage: Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16

Scripture Focus: Hebrews 11:1

Object: An Electric Fan

I’ve got with me this morning a pretty simple fan. I’m not so interested in the fan, but in what it makes: wind. Let me turn it on. Can everyone feel that wind? Good! Now, can you see the wind (squint and look around)? I can’t either. Can you touch it (try to grab the wind like in a big hug)? I guess not. I have an idea! Can you taste the wind (stick out your tongue like you’re trying to get it in your mouth)? I couldn’t taste it either. If we can only feel the wind but can’t see it or touch it or taste it, does that mean the wind isn’t real? Of course not! There’s no doubt the wind is blowing in here.

And that reminds me of our Bible story for today. It’s talking about faith. And faith is a lot like the wind. You can’t see it or touch it or taste it, but you can feel it! Faith is believing in something even when you can’t see it or touch it or taste it. Like having faith in God. We can’t see God. We can’t touch God. We can’t taste God. But, we can feel God! And that’s faith. With faith we can feel God, especially God’s love in our life. So, if someone tries to tell you faith isn’t real because you can’t see it or touch it or taste it, I want you to remind them that you can feel faith just like you can feel the wind even though you can’t see the wind or touch it or taste it.

Let’s pray: God, thanks for always being with us. Help us be strong in our faith even if we can see you or touch you or taste you. Amen.

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Pentecost 4C

Day: Pentecost 4C

Lectionary Passage: Galatians 2:15-21

Scripture Focus: Galatians 2:16

Object: A cross (the altar cross would be prefect!), a piece of paper with a wavy edge and “Us” written on it, and a piece of paper with “God” written on it

Today, I’ve got a few things with me. The first one is a kind of picture of us before we become friends with Jesus. See how it’s all wavy? Now, this is kind of a picture of God. When I put the two together, they don’t really match up. See, we have all those gaps. That’s because we’ve done some bad stuff that messes us up. That stuff is called sin. And sin keeps us from lining up with God.

But thankfully, God worked out a plan to help us. God decided to send Jesus to help us get connected again. You see when we’re friends with Jesus, that wavy, messy side gets covered up by his amazing love (tuck the wavy edge behind the cross). Because of his help, we have a smooth path to God (put the God paper on the other side of the cross).

And that’s what our Bible story is about today. It’s about the amazing work of Jesus who helps us get lined up with God. Do you want to know the big fancy word for that? It’s called Justification. Let’s say that together: Justification. But, I really just like to think of it as Jesus smoothing over the mess we made so that we can be lined up with God.

Let’s pray: God, thank you for sending your son Jesus to help us. We are so grateful to know you and that’s all because he helped smooth over the messy bad stuff in our lives. Amen.