New Series!

Earlier in the year, as I was thinking about preaching plans for the summer I kept asking myself what could serve as a theme for the summer that would address being more fully alive to God.  I admit that this is a personal question.  I want to be more fully attentive to God, to live joyfully and vibrantly in His presence.

And although it is a personal question—a question that frames much of my thinking—I am also convinced that I am not alone.  I think that most everyone that I know wants to live with joy, work with meaning, and feel the comfort of living in relationship with God.  So why not find a way to preach about this?

My solution may seem odd.  But I decided to take a path that is already well marked by other Christians.  Through the years, Christian people have recognized that there are certain things—deadly things—that hamper and even destroy joyful life.  And through the years those deadly things came to be known as the Seven Deadly Sins.

Of course, such conversation may seem a little dated—especially if you buy into what popular culture has to say on this.  Pride is now a good thing; we have Black Pride, Gay Pride, Southern Pride, or just fill in the blank.  Lust is used to sell everything from tee shirts to beer.  Sloth is favored as a preferred way of life.  And envy is an accepted way to get ahead of somebody else!

But could it be that ancient Christians were on to something as this list of seven deadly sins developed?  Could it be that pride, envy, lust, gluttony, greed, sloth (don’t care), and anger can be a character trait or habit that can drain away the life that God desires for us to possess?

That is what these vices are really.  When we allow for these deadly traits to take up residence within us, they work like a cancer mutating living cells into a destructive force.  And often, unknowingly, we can “host” anger or lust within us.  And as carriers, we infect others.

One way that Christians dealt with these deadly sins was to be able to define and to name them.  They worked with the premise that before you can rid yourself of something harmful you must be able to accurately diagnose the problem.  So this summer, week by week, we will go to school on these deadly sins.  I want to be able to name them, define them, explore what to look for, and then, offer an antidote.  Please join me in this path of learning—so that we can discover anew what it means to live fully and freely before God.

We begin Sunday, July 10. See you in our assembly!



7.10            Pride and the antidote (humility)

7.17            Greed and the antidote (generosity)

7.24            Lust and the antidote (chastity)

7.31             Anger and the antidote (patience)

8.7            Gluttony and the antidote (temperance)

8.14            Envy and the antidote (brotherly love)

8.21            Acedia (or Sloth) and the antidote (Stability)



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