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Deeper: Miracles

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SO WHAT: There's so much unsaid and left to do - let's go deeper.

  • What is the story we tell about our lives?
    • When you are at a dinner party and you find yourself meeting someone new, what is it you exchange with each other? Do you talk about what you had for breakfast? What car you drive? Maybe, but at least not at first
    • Most of the time, the first things we talk about are the things that shape our identity - they give someone new to us a contoured sense of how we're different than other people in the room.
    • So, we might talk about our jobs, or families, our important experience that we think make us who we are.
    • And sure, if you're defined by your breakfast choice (I'm Mr. Rice Krispie or something), or what car you drive, then maybe you mention that at the beginning, but if you do, you will probably be defined by it by the others around for awhile.
    • We're also ideally talking more about what we're for, than what we're against. As I was reminded recently by a good friend of mine, often times when we try to shine a light on what we're against, we're often just tracking a long shadow over ourselves, and we become defined by the very thing we're trying to avoid.
    • Then, as time progresses, we're hearing about things other people identify with, and what they're for... over time, those connections weave a fabric of community that is strong and long-lasting. I find that the relationships that have lasted the longest in my life were ones of mutual appreciation of our identities, and being defined by lots of things we agree we're for. I have friends who have faded in particular because it seemed like we built our relationship over what we were against.
  • This single verse
    • The writers of John has spent the better part of 21 chapters telling us about this person Jesus - so many spectacular things, and then leaves us this final statement at the end of all of it: that it seems like we hardly know Jesus at all.
    • It makes me wonder what else was there about Jesus? What were the things that everyone talking about this fascinating dinner guest that they didn't talk about? Because it's apparently a lot.
    • And here we are, creating whole buildings and lifestyles on the bare basics of this Jesus person. If the first dinner party conversation was this persuasive, what goes unwritten?
    • It begs the question: what miracles have yet to be spoken of? What resurrections stay unwritten? What good words will stay out of sight?
      • It may mean that there was way, way, way, way more to this life of faithful living that we have in front of us.
      • Reminds me of the line from ee cumming's poem "since feeling is first": for life’s not a paragraph And death i think is no parenthesis
        • The more we live together, the more we experience shared identifying moments, the more that the fabric of our shared life together strengthens.
        • They may not be the things we share at our next dinner party, but they count for something with those we already love and care for.
        • And, in the midst of it, if we believe in resurrection, Jesus is still doing more than can be written or spoken of - overflowing our libraries.
    • In this single verse lies infinite moments, infinite miracles, but just under the surface; just a little deeper.
  • The story we offer here.
    • We come today to an inflection moment.
    • At the beginning of our stewardship season, we had just a pile of bricks. Those told a story - of what we weren't, of what we were against... and, it cast a long shadow.
    • But steadily, brick upon brick, we started to tell the stories that we do identify with - of growth, new life, of a vision. Of commitment, of hope. We spoke of what we were for, and all the miracles that are still unwritten.
    • Now, we no longer have a pile of bricks, but a well that brings holds the waters of baptism - flowing from the font to a reservoir.
    • As we bring our gifts forward today and in the months ahead, we're telling the deeper stories, and believing in the deeper miracles. We're speaking of what we're for, of resurrection, of a Christ that has done and is doing much more than we can ever tell totally.
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