Christ The Servant Church
homily april 2013
Homily for april 07, 2013. Video
Homily courtesy of Rev. Roberta Fuller. Easter Message of Hope and Equality.
Homily for april 21, 2013
Good Morning CTS. Today I chose 2 readings that are truly my favourites. I hope to show you how each of them are connected and how each can help us in our daily lives.
Why do sheep need a shepherd? Well they aren’t the smartest animals in the barnyard. We live beside a sheep farm and we see them being led by the shepherd, 2 dogs, a 4 wheeler and more. One day when the farmer was leading the sheep up our road to the next field, one of the dogs came into our driveway, you should have seen the mess when all the sheep followed that wayward dog into our yard. But, the sheep do know the voice of the shepherd. And the mother sheep all know exactly which lambs are theirs too. It seems to be a miracle really given the hundreds of sheep. Our God says we can have the same special relationship with our Creator. Now that is some Good News. All we have to do is listen which means pray.
I always start my bible stories with David. First the way God uses Samuel to select David show’s us something very profound. God is not interested in the outer appearances of a person. Our bank account, our hair line, our athletic ability doesn’t really matter to God. What truly matters is our heart where love and faith and eternal life dwell. I am sure even the prophet Samuel as well as David’s father and brothers are as surprised as David is to be anointed as the next King. Especially, when Saul is still King but rejected by God. The real truth here is that Samuel listened to the Voice of God within to select not with his eyes but with his heart the chosen one of God.
On to David’s first big event his battle with the dreaded enemy Philistine Goliath. In my class I would always be sure to act this one out. The students know the story somewhat. But, I like them to see clearly the mismatch and defining moment of the story. First, we have to set the stage. I put a picture on the screen of Shakeel O’neil and Earl Boykins. This gives everyone a sense of the size difference and advantage of Goliath the hardened warrior. Then we set the stage. I explain how all of Goliath’s army are on one hill and all of Saul’s army are on the opposite hill and the valley below is the stage where the very unlikely David takes on the giant. 9 feet tall all muscle and one mean and well trained killer. He has all the gear too. Goliath is so enraged when he sees this boy step up for the Israelites with no armour and no real weapons. He says and I quote, “am I a dog that you come after me with a stick” and then he threatens David and swears by his gods to feed his body to the birds and animals.
Remember, this mismatch was set up by the fact that David is the ONLY person in Saul’s whole army that volunteers. God knew this would happen. And, the main reason David chooses to do this is because he has no fear. The reason he has no fear is that he has complete faith that God the real God of Israel is so strong that God will deliver this heathen into his hands. So, before Goliath really knows the battle is to begin, David runs at him and sends his mighty sling and rock with all his might, making a direct hit causing Goliath to drop like a stone. The rest is history; David becomes the hero of hero’s because Saul’s entire army are totally impressed with his fearless defeat of Goliath. All through David’s life he plays the might is right philosophy and he jumps back and forth between relying on God and relying on his warrior instincts. It is very interesting where this takes him. If you want to take our pastor’s advice and read your bible; read about David. It is a real soap opera. Unfortunately, David forgets about God so many times that he gets himself in and out of trouble all through his life.
Now the David and Goliath story is timeless. We see it quoted whenever some little person or business takes on a giant and wins. But you know the story has another meaning for us today too. Metaphorically the Goliath’s can be cancer, poverty, mental illness or any other negative force. Today God uses other David’s to show us all Giants can be defeated. Take Mother Teresa for instance. Did you know the Pope originally turned her down saying no one would follow her to do such a difficult task? We all know Mother Teresa prevailed and she was undaunted in her vocation to bring peace and dignity to the poor with sisters and brothers all over the world.
Another example is Terry Fox. When he saw children dying of cancer in the hospital he made a decision to follow his heart. Can you imagine what his mom thought when he told her he was going to run across Canada. One marathon a day and raise 1 million dollars to fight cancer. We all know Terry failed to make it all the way. Oh and he didn’t raise 1 million dollars. No he raised well over half a billion dollars. By losing he became a winner as did we. Now everyone gets to run for Terry and to fight cancer. You see God knew how to help Terry meet his goal. God always has a plan and we are always invited to help if we listen to the voice of truth. Now let’s look at Jesus. His Goliath was the crucifixion and instead of taking a violent stance against the wrongful judgement he accepted it. Jesus gave no resistance. In fact, He even forgave those who killed him. In His world no one is the enemy and He wants everyone to go to Heaven. He even said, Father (Mother) forgive them they no not what they do. Jesus would like to convert the misguided Goliath’s and invite them to heaven. God likes to surprise us and it does certainly seem God likes the underdogs.
Isn’t that just what we at CtS are? Didn’t God choose an unlikely and David-like group to start a church out of nothing. His calling of our pastor has been quite something too. God knew before Gary did that he was to lead this flock and do so with shared leadership and passion and laughter. Just like Samuel, God looked at his heart and soul and saw everything that was needed. I sure am glad to a part of this authentic and deeply spiritual community.
We need to remember in all of these examples that we should never underestimate the power and wisdom of our God. Even when we lose we win. We are Resurrection people who can be confident that our Creator has made a wonderful place for us in Heaven where the mansion has so many rooms we can all fit together. I hope we will all listen to voice of our Shepherdess each and every day.
If we are strongly seeking the Truth, God will make sure we hear it. Then all we have to do is use our freewill to make sure we follow the voice of Truth and everything will be alright. Amen