Exploring Nature: Seeing the World Through God’s Eyes

So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new! (2 Corinthians 5:17)

Seeing the beauty of creation, including ourselves, from God’s eyes opens us up to the new and wonderful things God is doing in God’s world.

Exploring Nature: Do Not Lose Heart – June 10, 1018

So we do not lose heart. Even though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed day by day. For this slight momentary affliction is preparing us for an eternal weight of glory beyond all measure, because we look not at what can be seen but at what cannot be seen; for what can be seen is temporary, but what cannot be seen is eternal. (2 Corinthains 4: 16-18)

All around us things are changing…like the seasons, the waves on the sand, a mountain stream. All the changes in nature, as in life, prepare us for what is to come.

Exploring Nature: God’s Presence Everywhere – June 3, 2018

Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there. If I take the wings of the morning and settle at the farthest limits of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me fast.  (Psalm 139:7-10)

Wherever we look, God’s presence can be seen. God creates each of us with love and care, and we are uniquely wonderful.

Traveling Together: Exploring Nature: Earthly Things – May 27, 2018

If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you about heavenly things? (John 3:12)

We begin to understand God’s will for our lives with earthly things, with the beauty of nature as a revelation of God… We learn about God from God’s creation.

Pentecost: Spirit Poured Out: Dare to Dance Again – May 20,2018

“I prophesied [to the bones] as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood on their feet, a vast multitude.” — Ezekiel 37:10

Ezekiel has a vision of a valley full of bones receiving life, breath, sinew and flesh after encountering the word of God. When they arise, they receive Spirit and they dance! As Easter people we celebrate the Spirit that continues to give life and breath to our dry bones. We dare to dance in the face of fear, in the face of cynicism, in the face of despair. We dare to dance “as long as we live” for we, like the early Christians, are the recipients of the Spirit of God which intercedes even when we think we can’t make it to the dance floor. In hope we are saved!

Dare to Dance Again: Gone Up with a Shout: Clap Your Hands – May 13, 2018

“Clap your hands, all you peoples; shout to God with loud songs of joy.” — Psalm 47:1

As Jesus prepares to leave the disciples, he opens their minds and blesses them. The result after he ascends is their return to Jerusalem with great joy and a desire for “continually” worshiping and blessing God in the temple. What happens when the “eyes of our hearts are enlightened?” We know the hope that we have been called to. As we wait for the Spirit with hope, we celebrate with abandon because we have no other ruler than the One who reigns with love and justice.

Dare to Dance Again: Who Can Withhold? Break Forth! – May 6, 2016

“For you shall go out in joy, and be led back in peace…” — Isaiah 55:12a

The scriptures for this Sunday describe everything in creation offering joyful noises to God. Our joy is complete because the joy of Christ resides within us. We cannot help but break forth. This joy is available to all, realizes the community in Acts. The Holy Spirit finds its way even and especially in what feels like unlikely people and places. Where do we see the Spirit at work and who can withhold the living water and our living praise? No one!

Dare to Dance Again: From You Comes My Praise: Guide My Steps – April 29, 2018

“How can I [understand], unless someone guides me?” — Acts 8:31

The Ethiopian says “How can I [understand], unless someone guides me?” So Philip begins to proclaim the good news of Jesus and the eunuch commands his chariot to stop so that he can go down to the water and be baptized. How has the testimony of the people in our lives and through the generations guided our steps into dances of praise at the good news that we are loved and blessed? What transformation is possible as we abide with God and “find our groove” of praise with the congregation?

Dare to Dance Again: By This We Will Know: The Dance of Love – April 22, 2018

“…that they may all be one.” — John 17:21

How do we know the rhythm and dance of our lives is faithful? Drummer of the Grateful Dead, Mickey Hart wrote “To fall in love is to fall in rhythm.” It is love for each other by which we know we are followers of Jesus, the ever-attentive shepherd. In the face of societal rules and attitudes that strive to foster “everyone for themselves,” they will know we are Christians by our love. How can we listen to the music that draws us together, “falling in rhythm” with neighbor in order to build up the whole? Our dance leads us to the table this day and our cup overflows.

Dare to Dance Again: While in their Joy: Dancing Sure – April 15, 2018

“While in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering…” — Luke 24:41a

This Sunday acknowledges that sometimes we are unsure about our steps in this world. For the disciples, even “while in their joy” at seeing Jesus post-resurrection, they were still “disbelieving and wondering.” But 1 John reminds us that even though we may not know our next steps, we can be sure in them because we are “beloved,” God’s children and “we will be like” the one in whose steps we can surely follow–the resurrected Jesus.