Message, Deuteronomy 26.1-11 and Mark 5.1-20
Personal Intro & thanks to Tom and Stephanie, to God for bringing us here
So many things we could talk about today:wholistic understanding of person & healing – exorcism & healing
political statement – Legion, boar
generosity – first fruit, tithe ... in the context of the generosity of God
But the focus today is on Story Telling as Worship & Witness
Worship: A Larger StoryChurch - Eucharistic feast, Holy Communion – on the night ...
“A wandering Aramean was my ancestor” (Deuteronomy 26.5)
Our ancestors, family story:Wilson the orphan and coal miner, standing at his son’s baptism
Sandbank the smuggler and pirate?
because of him, the family “came into the land” of the
The family story, like most, also includes alcoholism, secrecy, abuse, mental illness. There are many ways in which the telling of the story is not pretty. And, there are many ways in which the telling of the story is absolutely glorious. It’s human, through and through, and touched by God.
And what of our “wandering Aramean”, our faith ancestor Abraham? When Abe and his wife Sarah are in
Pharoah takes an interest in Sarah, so Abe says, “No, she’s not my wife, just
my sister”. When he and Sarah struggle
with infertility, he sleeps with one of the servants to produce an heir. (This is what you call “biblical marriage”!) It’s not pretty, and it is absolutely glorious. It is completely human and touched by
God. If you think you’re life, your
family history, is crazy messed up, full of potholes, flaws, and bold sin ...
join the club. You’ll fit in just fine
with Abraham. You’ll fit in just fine
with the grace of God in our Lord Jesus Christ. Egypt
When we gather and tell these stories, we don’t ignore the warts. We don’t hide the uncomfortable details. Our focus, however, is on our God. This is story telling as WORSHIP. The story is not the storyof human evil, but the story of divine grace.
of our failure, but our forgiveness.
In worship, we learn to take our stories and fit them into God’s larger one.
Witness: Understanding by RememberingChildren learning to tell stories, alter them, play with them
Jesse: Labyrinth and Minotaur
PTSD, practice of telling the story gives us power over it, like the manipulation of a dream – remember/dismember
Philemon 6, NIV, “I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ” – the way to understanding is sharing, retelling, remembering
The man from Gerasa wants to join Jesus’ disciple band, proclaims himself a follower of Jesus. Jesus offers an unexpected discipleship path: “Go home to your friends, and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and what mercy he has shown you” (Mark 5.19)
My story:lost in
far from God (God not far from me)
Practicing our Story-Telling