Day1 Weekly Program Archive

The Man with the Withered Hand

The Rev. Dr. Ellen Richardson
Organization: Episcopal Church of the Advent, Williamston, NC
Denomination: The Episcopal Church

In her sermon, Dr. Ellen Richardson says Jesus broke the rules to heal people, to restore them to a fullness of life denied by their afflictions, you told us. His healing was a way of entering into the suffering of others, a response not of pity, but of empathy. This is how the man with the withered hand was healed--and he came out of the shadows and into the light.

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The Banana Slug, the Leaves, and the Triune God

The Rev. Dr. Greg Cootsona
Organization: Science for the Church
Denomination: Presbyterian Church (USA)

In his Trinity Sunday sermon, Dr. Greg Cootsona says that realizing that our Triune God is with us might be as simple as pausing and taking in the beauty that’s around us. So let's pay attention.

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Understood

The Rev. Juan Carlos Huertas
Organization: First-Plymouth Congregational Church, Lincoln, Nebraska
Denomination: United Methodist Church

The Rev. Juan Carlos Huertas says Ascension Sunday moved us from the long narrative of Jesus’ life, which culminated with his death and resurrection, and now lands us at this moment--and as Jesus ascends to the heavens, we like the disciples are left wondering--what now?

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Why Are You Looking Up?

The Rev. Juan Carlos Huertas
Organization: First-Plymouth Congregational Church, Lincoln, Nebraska
Denomination: United Methodist Church

The Rev. Juan Carlos Huertas says Ascension Sunday moves us from the long narrative of Jesus’ life that culminated with his death and resurrection and now lands us at this moment--and as Jesus ascends to the heavens, we, like his disciples, are left wondering--what now?

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Bring Love to Your Neighborhood

The Rev. Chelsea D. Waite
Organization: Ebenezer Baptist Church, Atlanta, GA
Denomination: Other

The Rev. Chelsea Waite encourages us to inhale the love that flows from God to Christ, to the Holy Spirit, to us. Society still seems to refuse to accept the call of Jesus in John 15 to “love one another as I have loved you,” period. Simply love—without trying to figure out what we can get out of the deal.

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Justice Denied—Except from the God of Love

The Rev. Dr. David Gushee
Organization: McAfee School of Theology, Mercer University, Atlanta, GA
Denomination: Cooperative Baptist Fellowship

In this world, the poor, the ravaged, the humiliated ones are left on the outside. But in the justice of God, the poor and afflicted, the ravaged and humiliated shall be welcomed. In their pride and in their prejudice, human beings (even religious people; perhaps especially religious people) devote so very much energy to judging and excluding people like dark-skinned Ethiopians, the disabled and the different, the poor and the homeless. But God does not see people the way that we do, and so, the psalmist is sure that all those who seek shall praise God and find God's welcome.

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Just Keep Walking

The Rev. Susan Sparks
Organization: Madison Avenue Baptist Church, New York, NY
Denomination: American Baptist Churches USA

When we focus on the word “walk” in Psalm 23, we realize that any time we find ourselves in the shadow of the valley of death or the shadow of a huge obstacle or the shadow of change and transition, the best and only thing we can do is keep walking. Just keep walking. You want to obsess over finding cause and effect. Fine. But just keep walking. You want to rail at God about your pain or misfortunes. Fine. Just keep walking. You want to ask why all the time. Fine. Just keep walking. Why? Because with movement comes meaning.

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Witness for the Resurrection

The Rev. Dr. Micah T. J. Jackson
Organization: Bexley Seabury Seminary, Chicago, IL
Denomination: The Episcopal Church

History abounds with stories about what can happen when people hear the Good News shared by a believer. You’ve probably heard one. Maybe you are one of these stories of lives changed by an encounter with the resurrected Christ though the witness of someone else. Sometimes it’s as simple as a foster parent I know who regularly says to those she cares for, “God loves you, and I do, too.” Other times it’s the answer to a question. A person may ask you, “How are you able to...

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Believing Is Seeing

The Rev. Peter W. Marty
Organization: St. Paul Lutheran Church, Davenport, IA
Denomination: Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

I don't know many people who would buy a used car sight unseen. No, they go and they check it out. They drive the thing. This is the doctrine we live by: "Seeing is believing." But here is a truth with which we must come to terms today. The church of the resurrected Jesus Christ is founded on a complete reversal of this doctrine. Now, it is "believing is seeing," and not the other way around.

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God Says, "Nevertheless!"

The Rev. Marek Zabriskie
Organization: Christ Church Episcopal, Greenwich, CT
Denomination: The Episcopal Church

In his Easter message, the Rev. Marek Zabriskie says God's answer to whatever threatens, imperils, or ails us is to write "nevertheless" over our lives, and to move the immovable stones that are blocking us from living the kind of life that God is calling us to lead.

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Embodying the Realm of God

The Reverend Canon Ranjit K. Mathews
Organization: Episcopal Church, USA
Denomination: The Episcopal Church

On this Palm Sunday, I wonder about the opportunity we have to confess the fact that in a deep way, maybe somatically, maybe through the structures of empire, we are complicit in worshipping the machinations of empire rather than living from the sacrament of our baptism, following the vulnerable, truth-telling ways of Jesus of Nazareth. Confession, letting go, untethering from the ways of empire are the ways in which we walk into salvation through Jesus Christ. But it also means that we have to be intentional with how we live and yes, the reflective time that we have every day.

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Revolution or Revelation?

The Rev. Matthew Ian Fleming
Organization: Church Anew - A Ministry of St. Andrew Lutheran Church, Eden Prairie, MN
Denomination: Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

The inimitable Elizabeth Schuyler chides Alexander Hamilton in Lin Manuel-Miranda’s fabulous couplet: “You want a revolution? I want a revelation.” The crowd may have gathered expecting a revolution, a king who would topple the government, flip the script, and change their lot. But what they received was a revelation. Jesus is absolutely revealed in our sanctuaries, whether they swell to pre-pandemic participation, or whether they tenderly care for a remnant few. We can indeed catch a glimpse of Jesus in moments of transcendence witnessing art and song and dance and spectacle. But Jesus’ reminders in this final discourse are ordinary, mundane, and simple. A seed in the ground. A grain of wheat. And a final blessing, as Jesus reminds the crowd and his beloved followers, “The light is in you.”

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The Remedy: Look, Lift Up, and Live

The Rev. Dr. William E. Flippin, Jr.
Organization: Southeastern Pennsylvania Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Denomination: Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

Throughout the Christian journey, looking to God’s Son in one thing required. But the good news is that God provided a remedy, a ram in the bush if you will, and is still providing remedies for the curse that plagued us. Just as the snake-bitten people aren’t able to save themselves and were dying rapidly. Therefore, God had to provide a way for them to be saved. When they confessed their sins and requested Moses to intercede, God provided a unique remedy: They had to make a bronze snake and put it on a pole. Whoever looked at the bronze snake would be healed and saved.

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Strategies for Staying Emancipated

The Rev. Dr. Walter Brueggemann
Organization: Columbia Theological Seminary, Decatur, GA
Denomination: United Church of Christ

The Ten Commandments are strategies for staying emancipated once you get away from Pharaoh. This new strategy, first of all, says you have to honor God - that's the first three commandments - to the exclusion of every idol, every "ism" such as racism, or sexism, or nationalism, or the worship of stuff that is rare or precious or attractive or beautiful or empowering. The new strategy means in the Ten Commandments to take the neighbor with utmost seriousness. So, the last five commandments are all about the neighbor and treating neighbors with legitimacy and dignity and viability and especially disadvantaged neighbors - not to violate the neighbor for the sake of greed.

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Expectations

The Rev. Dr. Christopher Thomas
Organization: First Baptist Church of Wilson, NC
Denomination: Cooperative Baptist Fellowship

Of course, Jesus (as he so often does) shattered my self-centered ambitions and expectations with…well, with the words he says in these verses to the crowd after calling Peter, Satan, for rebuking him. He said, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it.” Wait! If I want to be a follower of Jesus, a Christian, I have to *deny* myself…lose my life? Does Jesus mean I’ll have to be willing to die? I thought I just had to agree to a few fundamental bullet points, pray this prayer about confessing my sins, repenting, and accepting Jesus into my heart. I thought I was supposed to get baptized (all the way under, you know, the right way), come to church most Sundays, read my Bible, drink sweet tea instead of Bud Light, and stay out of trouble. I thought all I had to do to be a Christian, to get into heaven, was simple, but now – now, Jesus tells me I have to...

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The Call and Challenge Of the Wilderness

The Rev. Nontombi Naomi Tutu
Organization: All Saints' Episcopal Church, Atlanta, GA
Denomination: The Episcopal Church

I invite you to think of the ways and places that you are tempted – tempted by Satan to ignore God’s love in your heart, God’s call on your life – and to recognize that God stands ready in those places of temptation to be with you. That when we are not strong enough to withstand temptation, God says, “I am here. Turn to me. Cry to me. Pray to me and I will give you the strength, the humility you need to face temptation.” I like to think of wilderness time as fallow time, from the time when our societies were agricultural and we would leave a field after it had been harvested for a year or so to recover and leave it fallow so that it could rest, it could receive the blessing of rain and of God’s nature. And I like to think of us as fields that sometimes need that fallow time, that wilderness time.

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To See Ourselves as Others See Us

The Rev. Dr. Michael Brown
Organization: Marble Collegiate Church, New York, NY
Denomination: Other

Sometimes we take ourselves too seriously, and that’s always to our detriment, failing to see the humorous parts of our own lives. And if we cannot laugh at ourselves from time to time, our lives become shallow and painful. Other times, however, we fail to see the tragic aspects of our lives. I knew a man who was a textbook workaholic. He spent ten hours a day, five days a week, on the job and often went back in on weekends. He rarely spent quality time with his wife or kids, almost never seeing his children’s ballet recitals or little league ball games. The man said to me following his divorce, “I never realized how much time I was absent from them until they decided to be permanently absent from me.” “Oh, would some Power the gift give us to see ourselves as others see us!”

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Losing and Finding Jesus

The Rev. Dr. Audrey Warren
Organization: First United Methodist Church, Miami, FL
Denomination: United Methodist Church

Today Paul invites us to find Jesus again. Paul’s argument for the incarnation is that we too become human, we sympathize with the doubter, we contemplate with the questioner, we listen deeply to the needs of our unhoused brother and we cry and spend time with our single mother sister. We make dramatic and fun plans with the seven-year-old lemonade entrepreneur and help him understand economics and the way of Jesus. We take the time to learn another language and culture. We read the story of someone whose life has been different than our own. We get involved in a life that is not our own. We get lost in the life, the worries, the hopes and the dreams of others, knowing that it is there that together we will all find Jesus again.

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The Liberating Power of Christ

The Rev. Caroline Smith
Organization: Parkway Baptist Church - Duluth/John’s Creek, GA
Denomination: Cooperative Baptist Fellowship

What has power over you? Not all power is equal. Power can be negative. It can motivate poorly. It can come from places that are self-serving. We all know of people and things that have power over us, that aren’t beneficial. The power of physical illness, as in the case of this little boy. The power of an unkind word. The power of fear. The power of insecurity. We all know these powers. Power can be adverse. In our gospel text, we read about power that is adverse...

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Anybody But Me

The Rev. Brandon Harris
Organization: University of Southern California (USC)
Denomination: American Baptist Churches USA

Audre Lorde reminds us that anger does not destroy; hate does. Anger provides energy so we may engage in analysis and protest, survival and justice. In today’s text Jonah marches through the city proclaiming repentance. Could it be that Jonah stands in a long prophetic tradition? That anger, when it is not rage but righteousness, can be a creative harness to declare a vision of what God intends for the world. That God’s call to the most unlikely of places is both for our transformation and the transformation of the world. God often uses those on the margins to speak truth to power. God has sent Jonah right into the midst of the empire to declare a word from the Lord. God has used prophets throughout history to speak God’s words of truth in the midst of

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