“Jesus answered him, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.”
Whom Shall I Send?
(click on the title above to listen to the sermon)
You and I were born into a fallen humanity. But in the waters of baptism, we are reborn children of God. We are welcomed into a new community. This is the message that Jesus had for Nicodemus when they had that amazing conversation in the dark. This is the promise God has for us as we are called to follow Jesus.Click on the sermon link above to get the whole story!
Later John tells us that Nicodemus was there when they crucified Jesus. Nicodemus went boldly with Joseph of Aramithea, in the light of day, to help with the burial of Jesus. John says that Nicodemus and Joseph were afraid… So, why would Nicodemus still be bothering with Jesus after the crucifixion, even risking his own safety not to mention that reputation he once cared so much about? I like to believe that Nicodemus stepped out of the darkness and became part of the new community.
I like to believe that Nicodemus came to understand that the Grace of God is more costly than he had ever imagined. That not even keeping his 613 rules could buy a place in the new community. Nicodemus came to understand that Jesus chose him and not the other way around.
Prince of Peace is part of that always new and renewing community of faith in Christ. Together, we have called Natalia to serve among us in a new way, as a called and ordained minister of the church of Christ. Natalia reminded us that through our baptism, each of us has been called and gifted to share the love of Christ. What an exciting time to be part of this always new and renewing community of faith!
Questions to Ponder/Discuss
1. During the ordination service, the bishop and a group of pastors all surrounded Natalia for the “laying on of hands.” Several have asked about the significance of that part of the service so click HERE for a little article providing some background.
2. Lutherans love to talk about the “priesthood of all believers.” What does that phrase mean to you?
3. If you could have a conversation with Jesus like Nicodemus did, what questions might you ask?
This week I will ask you to take some intentional time to pray for your church. Pray for our staff and volunteers. Pray for the mission and ministry we share. Pray for Natalia as she begins living out the wonderful new blessing of being called and ordained into the ministry of Word and Sacrament. And finally, offer prayers of thanks for this amazing community of faith in Christ!
See you in church! Pastor Chad