Dear St. Mark’s,

Well, it’s me— The Church Secretary—PREACHING!  Yikes!  I am excited and nervous.  I hope everyone had a joyous Christmas holiday and is keeping the Christmas spirit alive.

It is a thrill to be giving a sermon during the Christmas season.  I have always loved the time between Christmas day and the Epiphany.  The focus is off the Elf-on-the-Shelf and all of the commercial trappings and back on the sacred journeys of the Holy Family and the Magi.  I have a deeply held belief that the celebration of Jesus’s birth and the events surrounding this are God’s call to each of us to return to our innocence, and that the gifts of the Magi are about handing over to the Holy Spirit anything that keeps us from our divine nature of love and light—so very aligned with those New Year’s resolutions!

It is a humbling honor to be giving a sermon at all.  I do not claim to be a biblical scholar; nor do I claim to have anything to teach.  Rather, I am delighted to share how God has carried me as it relates to
Sunday’s readings.  As you will see, God carried me right to St. Mark’s!

Frank Williams will be leading us in a powerful, praise-filled call and response reading of Psalm 148.  Please do join in!  And as we do this, consider that the reason we praise God is not that God requires it of us.  Rather we are called to acknowledge that God’s divinity is in ourselves and each other.  When we see the truth and celebrate it in community, it feels amazing!  This is the little light that cannot be extinguished.  Let’s let it shine as we do this together.

The title of my sermon is the hackneyed expression “The Lord Works in Mysterious Ways.”  I grew up hearing this and you probably did, too.  The Gospel reading is a continuation of the Christmas story from Matthew and finds Jesus, Joseph and Mary on a scary leg of their journey.  I will be sharing the journey that brought me to St. Mark’s.  It was also a journey full of mystery and miracles, along which the Holy Family itself kept me company.

Until Sunday, be gentle with me…. I might be a little distracted thinking about this special opportunity to stand in front of folks I have come to love and respect.