Different Gifts

A couple of weeks ago I preached a sermon on different gifts given to us by God.

Today, I clicked on a video that has been making it’s way around the internet, and I thought this man’s story is a perfect illustration to say that God gives different gifts to different people.

And, it’s a great pick me up if you’re in need this semi-dreary Monday.

Click here to watch a piece done by the San Francisco Globe entitled “Man With Cerebral Palsy Paints Masterpieces Using Only A Typewriter”.

 

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Important read from The HuffPost

A friend of mine shared this letter/article from the Huffington Post. It’s a very important read for all of us. You may notice it was published a year ago, but it’s message stands the same.

Make sure you pass it on to someone who needs to hear this message.

Dear parents with young children in Church.

By Jamie Bruesehoff.

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Abraham and Sarah

I’m getting ready to preach this Sunday for our second week in the Narrative Lectionary.  Part of the duties that come along with preaching at CPC are planning many of the other details of worship as well.

So this afternoon I found myself on Google searching for “Hymns about Abraham and Sarah”.

This song popped up, and it’s actually pretty nice.  It’s definitely filed under the genre of classic Christian pop/rock music which is not always my favorite, but the message is PERFECT for my sermon this week from Genesis 12:1-9.

So listen up and get ahead of the rest of the class (haha)!

Enjoy.

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Sacred in the Secular: the Last Day… 31!

Half way through this journey, I started wondering which song I would use on the last day.  It had to be something everybody knows, something with a positive message, something secular, something sacred, something… classic.

I found it.

My friends on this, our last day (for now) finding sacred messages in secular music, I leave you with the sacred message that we are all family.

Enjoy, and keep looking for the sacred in the secular.

“We Are Family”, by Sister Sledge

We are family
I got all my sisters with me
We are family
Get up everybody and sing [2x]

Everyone can see we’re together
As we walk on by
And we fly just like birds of a feather
I’m not telling no lie
All of the people around us to say
Can we be that close
Just let me state for the record
We’re giving love in a family dose, yeah

We are family
I got all my sisters with me
We are family
Get up everybody and sing [2x]

Living life is fun and we’ve just begun
To get our share of the world’s delights
High hopes we have for the future
And our goal’s in sight
No we don’t get depressed
Here’s what we call our golden rule
Have faith in you and the things you do
You won’t go wrong, oh no
This is our family Jewel, yeah

We are family
I got all my sisters with me
We are family
Get up everybody and sing [4x]

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Sacred in the Secular: Day 30

Ever heard of the social gospel?

Here is a short explanation from Wikipedia:

The Social Gospel movement is a Protestant Christian intellectual movement that was most prominent in the early 20th century United States and Canada. The movement applied Christian ethics to social problems, especially issues of social justice such as economic inequality, poverty, alcoholism, crime, racial tensions, slums, unclean environment, child labor, inadequate labor unions, poor schools, and the danger of war.

Our song for today is a social gospel song:  “Be the Change”, by Kat Edmonson.

In her music video, different people wrote the changes they would like to see in the world on cardboard.  I would venture to say every message they wrote falls under the sacred message of the social gospel.

As you watch the video and listen to the lyrics (especially this lyric: As you sow so shall you reap), think about the changes you want to see in the world.  Also, I encourage you to think about what kind of changes God would like to see in the world.

Then, be the change you want to see.  Be the change that God is asking for.

Everywhere you look, you can write a book on what’s going on
Everyone you know has got to reap what they sow, be it right or wrong
Ghettos flood, there’s a hole up in the sky
Oil and blood, tell me why oh why
Terror struck
Look at us
This isn’t what we planned
You gotta take a stand

Don’t forget that pride always goes before the fall
And nobody is free till there’s freedom for all
As you sow so shall you reap
Be the change you want to see
Be the change you want to see

Every now and then, you’ve gotta bend to the way it is
Far it be that as it may, it’s not the way just ’cause they say it is
On TV, there’s just no reality
All I hear is “Me me me”
What they sold, I’m not buying any more
No, no, no more

Don’t forget that pride always goes before the fall
And nobody is free till there’s freedom for all
As you sow so shall you reap
Be the change you want to see
Be the change you want to see

Yesterday heard you say that there’s nothing you can do
Wonder if you would feel the same if it was happening to you

Don’t forget that pride always goes before the fall
And nobody is free till there’s freedom for all
As you sow so shall you reap
Be the change you want to see
Be the change you want to see
Right now
Be the change you want to
See the changes start with you
Be the change you want to see

Be the change you want to see
The change you want to see

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Sacred in the Secular: Day 29

Today, a love song.

A love song that we should all sing about our faith, or our relationship with the holy.

“If I Ain’t Got You” by Alicia Keys.

As you listen to the song and read through the lyrics, think about all the things you seek in your life that aren’t God.  I have a long list.  LONNNGGGGGG.

So hopefully when you hear this song it can serve as a sacred reminder that God is the most important thing in our lives, and that we don’t need three dozen roses or fame or diamond rings or power or the fountain of youth… even if we want them.

Some people live for the fortune
Some people live just for the fame
Some people live for the power, yeah
Some people live just to play the game
Some people think that the physical things
Define what’s within
And I’ve been there before
But that life’s a bore
So full of the superficial

Some people want it all
But I don’t want nothing at all
If it ain’t you baby
If I ain’t got you baby
Some people want diamond rings
Some just want everything
But everything means nothing
If I ain’t got you, Yeah

Some people search for a fountain
That promises forever young
Some people need three dozen roses
And that’s the only way to prove you love them
Hand me the world on a silver platter
And what good would it be
With no one to share
With no one who truly cares for me

Some people want it all
But I don’t want nothing at all
If it ain’t you baby
If I ain’t got you baby
Some people want diamond rings
Some just want everything
But everything means nothing
If I ain’t got you, you, you
Some people want it all
But I don’t want nothing at all
If it ain’t you baby
If I ain’t got you baby
Some people want diamond rings
Some just want everything
But everything means nothing
If I ain’t got you, yeah

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Sacred in the Secular: Day 28

I just couldn’t stay away from Katy Perry.  Maybe because her dad was a pastor, or maybe because she got her start in gospel music… She just has so much sacred stuff in her songs.

Today we listen to “Unconditionally”.

It should be no surprise that I picture Jesus/God singing this song.  The main lyric, “I will love you unconditionally”, is an incredibly important and sacred message to remember.  No matter what we do, we are loved by God.

Other favorite lines include but are not limited too…

  • “All the dirty laundry never made me blink one time”
  • “Come just as you are to me”
  • “Know that you are worthy”
  • “I’ll take your bad days with your good”
  • “Open up your heart and just let it begin”

Basically the whole song, really.

There is, however, one line in particular that makes me think a little more deeply:  “Acceptance is the key to be, to be truly free.  Will you do the same for me?”  If Jesus/God is singing this song to us, this is an interesting lyric.

God/Jesus says in order to be truly free you must accept God.  That’s something we’ve heard before: Galatians 5:13 reads “For you were called to freedom, brothers and sisters; only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for self-indulgence, but through love become slaves to one another.”

But then God/Jesus (in the song) says “Will you do the same for me?”  Do we love God unconditionally?  Do we love and accept Jesus unconditionally?  It’s an interesting question to ask ourselves.

I will let you decide the answers for yourself, and then enjoy listening to Katy Perry.

Oh no, did I get too close?
Oh, did I almost see what’s really on the inside?
All your insecurities
All the dirty laundry
Never made me blink one time

Unconditional, unconditionally
I will love you unconditionally
There is no fear now
Let go and just be free
I will love you unconditionally

Come just as you are to me
Don’t need apologies
Know that you are worthy
I’ll take your bad days with your good
Walk through the storm I would
I do it all because I love you, I love you

Unconditional, unconditionally
I will love you unconditionally
There is no fear now
Let go and just be free
I will love you unconditionally

So open up your heart and just let it begin
Open up your heart and just let it begin
Open up your heart and just let it begin
Open up your heart

Acceptance is the key to be
To be truly free
Will you do the same for me?

Unconditional, unconditionally
I will love you unconditionally
And there is no fear now
Let go and just be free
‘Cause I will love you unconditionally (oh yeah)
I will love you (unconditionally)
I will love you
I will love you unconditionally

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