Getting Ready for Sunday | 05/19/2019
Alleluia! Christ is risen!
It's the season of Easter and we will gather together again on Sunday, May 19th at 4pm for the Holy Eucharist.
Our Eastertide sermons focus on discipleship: Carrying the Cross in the Light of the Resurrection. You can hear the first sermon in the series at this link.
The following observation is from Dallas Willard. It is a challenging diagnosis of a problem in our churches and Christian organizations.
"It is rare to find a church or parachurch staff that is practically oriented around Jesus' instruction: 'Love one another, even as I have loved you.' (John 13:34) You might think this would be their primary explicit goal, but it usually turns out otherwise.
"It is remarkable how little doctrine relates to love. I read a lot of doctrinal statements by this or that organization. They rarely say anything about love. It would seem that love has nothing essentially to do with doctrine or correct teachings, nor doctrine with love. And one also notes how little is done in practice to help professors of Christianity, even faithful Church members, become genuinely loving persons. We do not, in any effectual way, 'make love our aim.' (1 Cor. 14:1, compare 1 Tim. 1:5).
"This all stands in glaring contrast to the biblical sources of our faith and practice, and to the lives and testimonies of many of the 'Great Ones' in the Way of Christ. . . . The New Testament writers, certainly, make clear the indispensable centrality of agape love.
―Dallas Willard, Getting Love Right (emphases in the original manuscript)
I do not delight to share Dr. Willard's observation. I share it to clarify why we ask, at Incarnation, How would life be different if we truly loved Jesus and all that he loves? That is one way we are trying to "make love our aim" and "become genuinely loving persons."
This Sunday, in the context of a Baptismal worship service, we'll hear from Jesus in John's gospel and look for practical help in learning to love.
(Click on the links below to read Sunday's passages)
First Reading: Acts 13:44-52
Second Reading: Revelation 19:1-9
Gospel Reading: John 13:31-35