I want to thank you for showing up today.
Thank you for getting out of bed
and making the effort to be here.
I wonder if you know how important it is...
that you are here... each one of you!
There is a collective, holy power...
when people gather.
Especially when people gather expecting God to be here.
God... the Holy, Spirit, something More... or beyond us... Mystery.
There is a collective, holy power
when people gather with expectation.
What are you expecting?
What are you looking for?
I thought we could play a game this morning.
It is a game I am sure you have played,
although for some it might have been awhile.
I spy with my little eye,
something that is blue...
Who has a guess... shout it out!
I spy with my little eye, something that is yellow...
I spy with my little eye, something that is red...
I spy with my little eye, Jesus the Christ... the Heart of the cosmos.
“...all things have been created through the Christ and for the Christ. Before anything was created, Christ existed, and in the Christ all things hold together.” Colossians 1:17
Where do you see the Christ?
Paul spoke of the Christ to the people in Colosse,
to help them develop new attitudes and actions that honoured
the teachings of Jesus... love, compassion, inclusion, justice.
Paul never met Jesus in the flesh...
his conversion on the road to Damascus was an encounter
with Jesus the Christ... in a flash of light.
Paul understood the power of the Spiritual presence of Jesus,
and lived into the presence of the Christ ...
- in whom all things have been created through
and all things hold together.”
It is easy to confuse Jesus... born in Bethlehem,
with the cosmic Christ through whom the world was made.
Jesus’ last name is not Christ... as I have said before.
In the Gospel account we name as John’s...
we hear –
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him, nothing was made that has been made.” John 1:1
Perhaps we can say it like this....
In the Christ, God was and is and always shall be just like Jesus;
but humankind could not experience that truth, until Jesus was born human ...
AND we will experience God, always like Jesus...
because the Christ... is the heart of the cosmos.
This is not confusion... but Mystery.
The Cosmic Christ is among us... and the kin-dom of God is near.
Perhaps we are wise not to paint God with any characteristics,
other than those we see in Jesus.
This would mean that the vengeful, violent God of the Hebrew scriptures is based only on human attributes and understandings.
So we can know God... and see God as loving and present,
because Jesus came among us.
And so I return to our game:
I spy with my little eye, Jesus the Christ...
Can you see the Christ?
There... in our dedicated, trained Stephen Ministers,
I see the Christ.
And there... in those of you who serve by preparing tea and live out your ministry as kitchen angels... I see the Christ.
And there... I see the Christ...
in those of you who sit each Sunday, with others who need your support.
And the Christ is here, as you place in the offering plates
what you can, for the work of this church.
I see the Christ in those that care for the physical building.
I see the Christ as our children and youth move downstairs.
I see the heart of the cosmos... here in you, among you, between you.
I spy with my little eye...
compassion, love for others, service, hope, justice seeking...
honour and inclusion.
I see the Cosmic Christ... everywhere.
Jesus was born, lived among humankind,
and died.... not because of an obligation
to sooth an angry Abba God...
but to demonstrate... to make obvious,
the loving heart of God.
A loving God, seeking a relationship with all creatures;
whose love was always present and would remain forever constant.
The Cosmic Christ... Heart of the Cosmos.
Before anything was created, Christ existed,
and in the Christ, all things hold together.”
May we expand our awareness of the eternal presence
and loving work of the universal... cosmic Christ...
whom Jesus embodies.
The loving, present, mysterious Christ,
who is both the Alpha and the Omega instant.
The one who gives the whole universe meaning,
direction, wonder and purpose...
and in whom we live and move and have our being.
As we gather around Jesus the Christ,
may we live together as Spirit blown people...
building the land that God has planned.
May it be so.