Due to the weather cancellations this weekend, we do not have a recording of our worship service. However, we still have a transcript and study guide below!
There’s an old saying, “Life is what happens while you’re making other plans.” We make our plans, our goals, and our dreams. They give us a sense of direction. They help define who we are. But things happen ... a flood, a fire, a shadow on an X-ray, a reduction in the work force, bad grades, a broken relationship ... and suddenly we realize that whatever control we thought we had has been nothing but an illusion.
Sometimes the interruption comes from within ... a growing sense of dissatisfaction even though everything seems okay on the surface. We feel angry and cheated because our lives are not turning out like we supposed or dreamed they would turn out. Maybe we discover that the dreams of young adulthood are not coming true. Joseph Campbell once observed: “Sometimes people climb the ladder of success only to discover that the ladder is leaning on the wrong wall.” John Claypool added this poignant reality from an interview with a disillusioned TV newscaster who noted: “I am near the top of the mountain that I saw as a young man, but lo and behold, this is not snow up here, it is mostly salt.”
We may discover that when our early dreams of life get bogged down or interrupted, there’s always a loss experienced as disorientation or the death of a previous dream. It can be frightening and in the end we can become rigid and unyielding.
But in the middle of it all, there’s always the chance for rebirth and a deeper experience with God. God is always with us through the reorienting times in our lives and may even be the catalyst behind our reorientation. Someone once wrote: “Sometimes the Lord stills the storm, and sometimes the Lord is the storm itself.” Knowing the difference is a matter of faith and perspective. It is a way of believing that helps to put some sense into our lives. Maybe framing our lives and dreams in this way can be helpful in getting beneath the skin of our gospel story today.
CLICK HERE for a transcript of this week's sermon.
CLICK HERE for this week's Discussion Guide.