The Lighthouse Keeper

Greetings from Pastor Kerry, former pastor of Spring City UMC. This blog contains my sermon outlines and/or manuscripts from my pastorate among the people of Spring City PA, from 2006 to 2011. Pastor Dennis is now the lighthouse keeper. Come and worship on Sundays at 10:00 a.m.!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Faith for the Future

January 18, 2009
Second Sunday after the Epiphany

Human Relations Sunday / MLK Jr. weekend / inauguration in two days

Faith for the Future

1 Samuel 3:1-10 and John 1:43-51

My sermon outline:

• John Maxwell, pastor and business leadership author and guru, once told about a small town in Maine that was the selected site for a new hydro-electric dam that was going to be built. The electric company announced months ahead of time when the project would get underway, which would require the desertion of the entire town (because it would be underwater!).

During those months, a curious thing happened: All improvements ceased. No painting was done. No repairs were made on the buildings, roads, or sidewalks. Day by day the whole town got shabbier and shabbier. A long time before the waters came, the town looked uncared for and abandoned, even though the people had not yet moved away. One citizen explained, “Where there is no faith for the future, there is no power in the present.” That town was cursed with hopelessness because it had no future. (overwhelmed future = no present)

“Where there is no faith for the future,
there is no power in the present.”

(opposite is also true)

• Such faith is demonstrated by Philip, who at Jesus’ command “Follow me” went and found Nathanael and told him they’d found the Messiah. Philip had faith for the future, that the savior they’d been seeking, the one who would deliver them, had been found. Philip had faith for the future, and it influenced his actions in the present.

• Nathanael raised a little skepticism – perhaps his study of Torah and the prophets had led him to look not to Nazareth but to Bethlehem for the Messiah.... “What good is someone from Naz? That’s not where we’re looking.”

(what Jesus said) carried enough power for Nat to confess Jesus as teacher, King of Israel and Son of God.

• & Jesus gives to Nathanael and to the church HOPE. A vision of the future. Where there is faith for the future there is power in the present. Jesus says you will see greater things than these.

• The faith they had for the future... discipleship (tell others)... Witness (to the resurrected Lord)... take the gospel to NSEW even as far as India, and 11 disciples were martyred for their faith.

• Martyred for the power in the present from the faith in the future: MLKjr. (I have a dream) his hope for the future led him to powerful action in the present.

• Barack Obama: I don’t know whether you voted for him or not, whether he’ll be good or not. I celebrate with many the fact that this country has elected a minority as its Commander in Chief and I pray that he will be a faithful and effective leader

• One other thing: Eli received vision of the future that wasn’t good for him or family, & he blessed God, trusted in God’s righteousness.

• What future do we see here at SCUMC: the future of Maxwell’s soon-to-be-flooded town, or of the church of Philip and Nathanael? and how will it influence our present power?

We can see, we can do, we are invited to be a part of great things by the power of Christ.

• Hymn Come Let Us Dream (a hymn written especially to honor MLK Jr)

- Pastor Kerry

This Sunday: 64 in worship.


Post a Comment

<< Home