Sunday, May 22, 2016

THERE COMES A TIME TO BEND A KNEE: SCS 85


Sunday, May 22, 2016, Stoney Creek Sermonette: Number 85

PRAYER for Today:
Heavenly Father,
We know we are all broken and in need of your grace. Only You are able to heal the hearts and souls of all of us who are full of sin and bring light to the darkness in our lives. Help us Father to accept your freely given gift of grace that we might be reconciled to You. I pray my fellow sojourners will find a church which embraces them with open arms and shows them not just tells them about God’s love in Christ Jesus.
It is in Your Resurrected Living Son’s name we pray.
Amen.

SCRIPTURE LESSON for Today:  

Luke 2:22-38 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

Jesus Is Presented in the Temple

22 When the time came for their purification according to the law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord 23 (as it is written in the law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male shall be designated as holy to the Lord”), 24 and they offered a sacrifice according to what is stated in the law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.”
25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; this man was righteous and devout, looking forward to the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit rested on him. 26 It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. 27 Guided by the Spirit, Simeon came into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him what was customary under the law, 28 Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying,
29 “Master, now you are dismissing your servant in peace,
   according to your word;
30 for my eyes have seen your salvation,
31     which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples,
32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles
   and for glory to your people Israel.”
33 And the child’s father and mother were amazed at what was being said about him. 34 Then Simeon blessed them and said to his mother Mary, “This child is destined for the falling and the rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be opposed 35 so that the inner thoughts of many will be revealed—and a sword will pierce your own soul too.”
36 There was also a prophet, Anna the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was of a great age, having lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, 37 then as a widow to the age of eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped there with fasting and prayer night and day. 38 At that moment she came, and began to praise God and to speak about the child to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem.


SERMON for Today:

I am not going to add much to the Scripture Lesson today.   There is really only a single point I want to make sure everyone does not miss.  The point is faithfulness.  Simeon, lead by the Holy Spirit, was faithful in doing his appointed mission.  Anna ( in some translations there is a footnote calling her Hannah) was in perpetual fasting and prayer while spreading the message about Jesus.  What would the world be like if we were just a fraction as faithful to Jesus as the prophet Anna?

There comes a time to bend a knee a pray for the humbleness to surrender to the will of our Father rather than to our own desires and greedy hearts.  On bended knee to ask Him to guide us to do the work He wants us to do.  To serve Him His way.  To become a servant of the Savior means giving up self and looking to building the Kingdom by embracing God’s creation.

There comes a time to bend a knee and ask the Lord to help you learn how to love even your enemies. How to serve rather than demand to be served.  How to give yourself away as Jesus did.  

Our goal must become to learn how to bend a knee and answer His plea to become one with Him and one another.  



© Ed Cooper, May 22, 2016, Stoney Creek, Tennessee
  All rights reserved
(Ed Cooper is a retired minister and mental health advocate. He lives with his wife Patty in the mountains of East Tennessee.)

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