Click on the image above to hear Rev. Ian’s introduction to the November/December sermon series “Packing Our Bag.” A transcript is below.
Packing our bag
This coming Sunday November 5, we’ll close out the four-part sermon series called “We are controlled by what we refuse to confront.” As a series, it was designed to help us discern who we are and how we got to this moment, especially because the unexamined areas of our lives and culture determine our behaviors much more than we often like to admit. If we want to love the hell out of the world, it is important to understand what might be lying beneath the surface of our own lives and getting in the way of our mission.
That sermon series moved from a macro view, which explored ideas like white supremacy and spiritual trauma, to a micro view, which included ideas like our interpersonal relationships at MVUC and, finally, individual attachments. Bringing these ideas out of the shadows and into our shared vocabulary can help reduce the control these ideas have over us and set us on a path to identifying the virtues that can guide us to where we want to go.
The next sermon series, beginning Nov. 12th and taking us through Christmas Eve, is a five-part series I’ve called “Packing Our Bag” and it explores some of the virtues that will help us on the journey. I imagine this series like I am packing a backpack for a camping trip. What will I need for the adventure ahead? What will help me navigate the upcoming journey?
The world can feel like a tough place, especially when we are exploring the shadow areas. So, it’s important to experience a balm that comforts and encourages us. I think of the virtues we’ll explore in this series of sermons as part of that balm. What can we practice? What can we rehearse? What will give us comfort and clarity as we navigate this adventure of living? You may have your own set of virtues that you’d put in your backpack (and I hope to hear what those are), but the five I’ve selected for us to explore in this series are: willingness, gratitude, generosity, agency, and hope.
I look forward to seeing you on Sunday.