God bless you this wonderful morning and welcome to Easter, the most joyous of all Christian holy days. Join this festive occasion as we celebrate the magnificence of the resurrection. Easter emphasizes life over death and hope over despair. Jesus’ triumph demonstrates how love and light crush hate and darkness. The good news is that God’s eternal message lives within each believer. Jesus’ flesh and blood have since transformed in heaven yet the principles he demonstrated remain eternally active. Easter reminds us that death is not the final word. Through the power of love, we move from soul-slumber into spiritual awakening. We are God’s childrenRead More →

Today’s message comes from John 9:1-41, a lengthy story about Jesus healing a blind man. What makes this episode strange is how Jesus spat on the ground and made a paste of saliva and dirt, creating some sort of divine muddy salve. Jesus then rubbed the concoction into the blind man’s eyes. Jesus ordered the man to go wash in Jerusalem’s Pool of Siloam, during which his sight was miraculously restored. Just when you’d think that this wonderful healing would be praised, it gets condemned by religious bureaucrats. Rather than accept the healing as a blessing, the critics twisted the healing through cynicism and legalism.Read More →

Today’s message (John 4:5-32) illustrates Jesus’ boldness in speaking with a woman as part of his visit to Sychar, a town in Samaria. Tired from his journey, Jesus sat next to a well and spoke with the Samaritan woman who had come to obtain water. To fully appreciate this situation, it helps to understand that many Jews hated Samaritans. The animosity arose from the Assyrian invasion of Israel in 721 B.C.  The result was that the subjugated Jewish inhabitants had intermarried with the invaders and polluted the pure Jewish bloodline. The second unusual thing about Jesus’ talk was that he was alone with a foreignRead More →

Welcome to Transfiguration Sunday, a time to consider Jesus’ true nature and God’s “fantabulous” transforming power. We’re invited to embrace God’s marvelous Spirit so that none of us remain stuck in life’s pit. The lectionary focuses on Luke 9:28-36, where we find Jesus trekking with three of his closest friends (Peter, James and John). These four were in for a hike up a mountain whose location and name are not certain today. Jesus had taken trips on, around and through all sorts of terrain. On this day, Jesus and his companions would soon be caught-up in something unique. Once on the mountaintop, Jesus did somethingRead More →

Do you have a [spiritual] life? Christmas is the time when we often focus on birth, including the manger scene with the baby Jesus and all the pastoral trappings of that ancient first-family of faith. Even more so in the here-and-now, God wants us to embrace the wonders of spiritual life that Jesus’ birth symbolically represents. Are you ready for a spiritual renewal? What better time than now to embrace the child of rebirth and restoration. We are reminded that Jesus’ birth is not merely some passive, historical event that we indulge with rampant materialism and super-sized holiday dinners. The Christmas Spirit beckons us toRead More →

Today’s narrative combines two key passages from the lectionary readings. These Bible selections cover reconciliation with God (Luke 15:1-3,11b-32) and the newness of life in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:16-21). The story of the prodigal in Luke reveals reassuring truth about four transforming, related “Rs”: repentance, redemption, restoration, and reconciliation. Jesus framed all this within a parable, which is a story designed to illustrate principles. The four Rs are so closely related that any one of which can carry the meaning of reclaiming a healthy spiritual status. As for the prodigal story, the setting is in a family, wherein the father had two sons, one olderRead More →

Cynthia, Sean and Larry Hoxey wish you the most blessed 2016. We pray that you will experience life in a magnificent way, claiming God’s promises that will revitalize your faith.    Read More →

Each person of faith has a mandate to spread love and truth and do wonderful things in the name of the Lord. Whether you call it mission, outreach, or even traditional evangelism, the point is that we are representing God’s love and truth to the world. Mark 9: 38-40 reveals how Jesus’ closest followers (the apostles) complained about outsiders exorcising demons in Jesus’ name. This problem demonstrates how doing things in God’s name can be complicated. We needn’t allow our views about demonic possession to distract. Jesus’ closest followers felt special and the resulting smugness made them feel as though they were God’s exclusive agents.Read More →

Today’s message pertains to one of Jesus’ post-resurrection appearances. The apostles are gathered together, minus Thomas, and the air is thick with expectation. Then Jesus arrives. Once the miraculously appearing Jesus says who he is, his friends rejoice. Jesus revealed his physical wounds and convinced those gathered that the situation was real. The biblical text sums-up the situation: “ ‘As the Father has sent me, so I send you.’ When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained’Read More →