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Gods Call is Always a Fresh Call

- Rev. Matt Reeves

John 21:19-23
1 Samuel 3:1-10
 
October 15, 2017

 

 

 

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The Gift of Uncertainty 

-Rev. Matt Reeves

John 6:41-51
Exodus 16:1-15
 
October 8, 2017
 

After God brought the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt, they were soon in the desert and had nothing to eat. This freedom did not seem glorious. They went to Moses and complained. When God provided manna for them to eat, they said, “What is it?”––God’s work and provision looked like nothing they’d previously known. True freedom is life by God’s provision, and gratitude for God’s daily expected, and unexpected, gifts.

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God's in a World of Hurt

-Rev. Matt Reeves

John 8:54-58
Exodus 2:23-25; 3:1-15; 4:10-17
 
October 1, 2017
 

God Is in a World of Hurt” Exodus begins with people in a world of hurt. The Israelites have been slaves for generations. In their misery they cry out. God responds to their cries by mobilizing Moses who himself has been living in the pain of exile. God’s way in the world is not to flee human trouble, but to move toward it for liberation. God still mobilizes a people, called church, as God’s agents in setting people free.

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The Dream We Don't Have To Chase

-Rev. Matt Reeves

John 1:43-51
Genesis 27:1-4, 15-23, 28:10-17
 
September 24, 2017
 

God shows up to Jacob in the midst of what seems seems like a mess. He’s on the run from his brother whom he just cheated and who wants to kill him. He’s in the middle of the wilderness, on his own for the first time. In pursuit of blessing, his life has become a wreck. But upon waking from a dream, he finds God is present there, giving promises. It’s in “ordinary” life where things can feel a mess that God’s promises matter most, and where they meet us so powerfully.

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Big Faith Is On God's Term

-Rev. Matt Reeves

John 1:29-31
Genesis 21:1-3, 22:1-14
 
September 17, 2017
 

Faith Is on God’s Terms” Being in relationship with God sounds like a great thing. And it is. But it comes with a temptation––to try and use God for the life we want to have. Abraham’s faith is tested to the extreme––he is asked to sacrifice his son, Isaac, whom God provided after decades of waiting. The question under the story is whether Abraham’s faith in God will be on God’s terms or his own? In our faith, are we seeking to use God or for God to use us?

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Beginning and Ending with Blessing

-Rev. Matt Reeves

John 1:1-5
Genesis 1:1-2:2
 
September 10, 2017
 

Seeking God" There are many important and challenging things in life. In the Bible story, nothing is more important and challenging seeking God. Abraham goes to absurd, seemingly mad lengths to seek faithfulness to God. Are we willing to dare such faith? Are we willing to give God a chance to prove God's faithfulness?

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When the Christ Inside Gets Out

- Rev. Matt Reeves

Isaih 51:1-6
Romans 12:9-21
 
September 3, 2017
 

Christ is alive in his people. This is one of the remarkable claims of the New Testament. Romans 12:9-21 is as good a description as you’ll find of what it looks like when the Christ within lives through his people: genuine love, hospitality to others, enemies loved, peace sought, patience in affliction, joyful hope, evil returned with good. This isn’t just morality. It’s taking seriously that the life of Christ takes residence in ours––he would have us “become” himself!

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Help!

-Rev. Matt Reeves

Matthew 16:13-20
Psalm 124
 
August 27, 2017
 
Life contains all kinds of dangers––physical, emotional, spiritual, occupational, relational. One response is to live on the defensive, maximizing our security and minimizing our vulnerability. Sometimes that’s just prudence. But there’s another response: to live open to help from God who made us. God doesn’t make life less hazardous but who promises to never go off and leave us, and to always be for us.

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The Unity We Still Pray For

- Rev. Matt Reeves

Matthew 15:21-28
Psalm 1:33
 
August 20, 2017
 

“The Essential Struggle of Community” Life with others can be good and pleasant. But as experience, including current events, amply show, life with others can be conflicted, even horrifically so. Still, this doesn’t change the truth that God intends community as a means of blessing and refreshment. Which is why, across great divides and difference, God has sought and established community with us in Christ: to bless us. He is a sign of what are meant to be to each other: a means of giving and receiving blessing. That way of being has the quality of eternal life.

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I Am

-Elizabeth Goodin

 
Exodus 3:1-15
Matthew 14:22-33
 
August 13, 2017
 

It is Jesus’ nature to draw near to us providing strength and courage through the presence and power of God. We can rely on this through the turbulent and fearful paths upon which we find ourselves or when we feel called by Jesus toward a bold new direction.

 

 

 

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Worry - The Great Promise Robber

- Rev. Aland Smith

 
Philippians 4:4-7
Matthew 6:25-34
 
August 6, 2017

 

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What Joy Will Dare

-Rev. Matt Reeves

 
1 Kings 3:5-12
Matthew 13:44-45
 
July 30, 2017
 

In Jesus’ stories people that find something so valuable they that sell everything to get it. In receiving it they have everything they desire, yet they’ve also had to lose everything. This, Jesus tells us, is what life is like in the kingdom of God. Life with God really does cost us everything, but it’s the life in which we receive all we desire––so much that we can’t possess anything we’ve gotten.

 

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Living with the Weeds

- Rev. Matt Reeves

 
Psalms 86:11-17
Matthew 13:24-30, 36-42
 
July 23, 2017
 

“God made a good and beautiful world, and people for good and beautiful life. Alas, this same world contains weeds––bullies, tragedies, cruel and ugly things. As we wonder what we can and should do about it––should we just try to get rid of all the weeds?––we can also ask why God doesn’t do something about it? One of the hard practices of faith is to trust that, in the end, it is God’s job to sort out what will happen to the “weeds.” In the meantime we are invited to live like God––with patient, forbearing love.

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God's Ridiculous Persistence

- Rev. Matt Reeves

 
Isaiah 55:10-13
Matthew 13: 1-9, 18-23
 
July 16, 2017
 

Jesus told stories called parables to make people to listen and think. He did this to help them become kingdom people, participants in God’s activity in the world. Once he told a parable about a farmer sowing seed, not only in good soil but also in likely places––paths, thorns, shallow soil with little prospect for a yield. It is story about God’s persistence in coming to us with a life-giving word. God is active everywhere, if we have ears to hear and eyes to see!

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Trading Burdens

- Rev. Matt Reeves

 
Zechariah 9:9-12
Matthew 11:25-30
 
July 9, 2017
 
Jesus says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” To us who can go through life with burdens that give no rest, this is good news. But the rest and “easy yoke” Jesus gives isn’t relief from hardship and challenge, especially those that come from living as his followers. It comes from letting go of the burden of living apart from as though without mercy and love, which God gives endlessly and abundantly to those he receives as his “little children.”
 

God's Mission Happens through Welcomed People

Part of the series "On a Mission with God"

- Rev. Matt Reeves

 
Jerimiah 28:5-9
Matther 10:40-42
 
July 2, 2017

 

In this passage, the disciple’s mission seems backward from how we can conceive it. It isn’t to welcome others, but to be welcomed by them! Disciples gain this welcome by themselves approaching others as “little ones”––as people that have need like anyone else.
 

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God's Mission Turns Fear into Trust

Part of the series, "On A Mission with God"
 

-Rev. Matt Reeves

 
Jeremiah 20:7-13
Matthew 10:24-39
 
June 25, 2017
 

The most oft repeated command in the Bible is, “Don’t be afraid.” God’s mission isn’t grounded in fear but in God’s goodness. The reason not to fear isn’t that there isn’t any danger or that there won’t be any hardship but because Jesus’ life is the one that is finally true––it will prevail. And in spite of struggles, in the end, God’s care will prevail as well.

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God's Mission Begins With God's Heart

Part of the series, "On A Mission with God"

-Rev. Matt Reeves

 
Exodus 19:2-8a
Matthew 9:35- 10:8
 
June 18, 2017
 

The church is a people on a mission with God. And before the mission takes you anywhere or has you do anything, it makes the world’s brokenness pass through the cracks and fissures of your own heart. For that is where you find the love of Christ makes the world new.

 

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Go

- Cory Fetzer

 
Matthew 28:16-20
 
June 11, 2017
 

The Trinity is our God Three-in-One, and its communion with each other shows us how to live in community and also how we’re not finished. Jesus’ command to go and make disciples is an example from the Trinity on how we should live: together.

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The Holy Disrupter

- Rev. Matt Reeves

 
Acts 2: 1-11
 
June 4, 2017
 

Violent wind and fire are elements from which we might be inclined to take shelter. Maybe some in the Jesus-believing community would have tried had they not come so suddenly on the day of Pentecost. When we live open to the Spirit whom we can’t control and comes in ways we don’t expect, we might feel like we’re losing our lives, which is what Jesus said his disciples must do to gain them.

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God's Restoration

Part of the series "Life Without Walls"

- Rev. Matt Reeves
 

Acts: 1:1-11
 
May 28, 2017
 

After Jesus’ resurrection, the disciples essentially ask Jesus, “When are you going to make Israel great again?” Jesus responds, essentially, that his purpose isn’t to restore Israel to a former glory but to bring all the world into the restoration his death and resurrection accomplished. Where the disciples were looking backward, Jesus was looking forward and giving giving his followers a present mission. The church’s present mission isn’t to reclaim some former greatness but, by the Spirit’s power to live as witnesses now, announcing that Jesus is the rightful Lord and healer of the world.

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God Is Not Far

Part of the series "Life Without Walls"

- Rev. Matt Reeves

 
Acts 17:22-31
May 21, 2017
 

“God Loves to Be Found” In Athens, Paul converses in the marketplace, with the philosophers of the day, and finally before the city council, seeking a hearing for the gospel of Jesus risen from the dead. He urges them to receive a God that so loves to be found that God has come as close as where “we live and move and have our being.” God is not far from anyone, and yearns to be found by this generation of people with seeking hearts.

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The God Question

Part of the series "Life Without Walls"

-Rev. Matt Reeves
 

John 14:1-14
May 14, 2017
 

Many people believe in God. But which "God" do they believe in? Jesus tells his disciples something remarkable: when they see him, they see what the true God is really like! If we understand God through Jesus, we know that God really wants us with Him, will love us unto deep suffering, and claims the entirety of our being for the way, truth and life Jesus reveals.

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Life to the Full

Part of the series "Life Without Walls"

- Rev. Matt Reeves

 
John 10:1-10
May 7, 2017
 

What makes for abundant life? And how much of our day-to-day life do we spend either longing or knocking ourselves out for it (i.e. trying to “take” it for ourselves)? Jesus says that abundant life has to do with passing through a Gate that is himself. Jesus invites us to take daily life and make it an experience of entrance into him who is the abundance we cannot take but can always receive.

 

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On the Road with (not only to) Resurrection

Part of the series "Life Without Walls" 

- Rev. Matt Reeves

 
Luke 24: 13-35
April 30, 2017

 

The risen Christ meets two confused, discouraged people on their road. He leads them to understand that the Messiah was to be one that would save by suffering with us through the cross. How do we look at the world and our lives differently––not to mention, God––if we understand that Jesus meets us in our confusion to suffer with us?

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You Can't Lock Out Resurrection

- Rev. Matt Reeves

 
John 20:19-23
April 23, 2017

 

The first place the risen Christ shows up (other than at the tomb) is the home of a disciple. Everyone is afraid. But Jesus speaks peace in their midst, gives them the Spirit, and announces forgiveness. What a welcome word for homes in which there is fear, need to breathe, and need to know we can forgive and be forgiven! within us.

 

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Don't Run from the Tomb:
Life Lurks There

- Rev. Matt Reeves

 
John 20:1-18
April 16, 2017 - Easter Sunday

 

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Nothing Less Than Everything

- Rev. Matt Reeves

 
Mark 11:1-10
April 9, 2017

 

“Hosanna!

“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”

“Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David!”

“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”

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God Is in the House
And the House Is You

- Rev. Matt Reeves
Romans 8:5-11
April 2, 2017

 

It’s easy to fall into ego-driven life––the life that’s focused on counting, judging, being “better than,” and building up self. That’s what Paul means by “flesh.” But for those that live graced, the heart of their life isn’t their ego but the Spirit of Christ. The miracle of the gospel is that, purely by grace, we come to house God. The life and peace we desire is about finding God within us.

 

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You've Died.
Now You Can Really Live.

- Rev. Matt Reeves
Romans 6:1-11
March 26, 2017
 

Perhaps we are programmed to think of death as a bad thing. In a way, it is––Paul calls death the “enemy.” But here’s the gospel: our death with Christ is the beginning of life, and is truly the pattern of our life. Living graced is all about letting go of ourselves––”dying”––in this life, to welcome the life that comes from Jesus’ resurrection.

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Grace Has Won.

You're Stuck With It.

- Rev. Matt Reeves
Romans 5:12-19
March 19, 2017
 

It’s easy to fall into negativity about our lives and world. Brokenness and “mess” can seem to reign. But this is not God’s way with us. Sin comes into the world, but what does God do? God makes the world and human beings even more magnificent through the Messiah. Living graced is about accepting life as truly defined by God’s gift in Christ, not by what feels to drag us down.

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From the Inside Out, 
You Are Loved. 
You Just Are.

- Rev. Matt Reeves

Romans 5:1-8
March 12, 2017
 

Life trains to live with a strong sense of deserving. We get raises on performance, college admission on grades, and earn our living. But with God, none of this applies. God pours love into us by pouring out the life of the Messiah--not because we deserve it but simply because God wants to.

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You Belong, You Just Do

- Rev. Matt Reeves

Romans 4:1-5, 13-17
March 5, 2017


In Abraham God sets out to make a family, but it is wider and more easily accessible than any you could imagine. With God, one belongs not by rights but by grace and faith through the creative power of God.

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Meditation on Psalm 90:
Ash Wednesday

 - Rev. Matt Reeves

March 1, 2017

Psalm 90 leads us to wisdom and profound satisfaction with life as human beings, but the path to this wisdom is acceptance of that which we might wish to escape. It’s the way of moans and troubles, sorrow and affliction, and dryness of soul. According to Franciscan monk and writer Richard Rohr there are five hard truths that are paths to wisdom in life. They may well have come straight from Psalm 90. They are: • Life is hard. • You are not that important. • Your life is not about you. • You are not in control. • You are going to die.

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The Power of a Touch

-Rev. Matt Reeves
Matthew 17:1-9
February 26, 2017
 

Peter, James and John see Jesus transfigured in overwhelming beauty and glory. God’s voice speaks from a cloud, adoring Jesus as God’s Son and urging the disciples to listen to him. But perhaps the moment’s power is best contained in a gesture we might miss: Jesus reaches out and touches the terrified disciples, telling them, “Get up” and “don’t be afraid.” If the divine glory can reach us in Jesus, it means that at no time are we cut off from God.

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What To Do With Your Neighbor

- Rev. Matt Reeves
Leviticus 19:1-2, 9-18
February 19, 2017


Sometimes life can feel like “neighbor management.” At work, with family, in marriage, as volunteers, or in our opinions as we look at our world, we can get caught up in “what to do with our neighbor” (who might be driving us crazy). Leviticus 19, verses 9-18, is the heart of God’s instruction on how to live with others. What you do with neighbors is to love them, especially those that are vulnerable in the world. After all, that’s what we’d want. And it’s God’s way with us.  

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Life's One Big Choice

- Rev. Matt Reeves
Deuteronomy 30:15-20
February 12, 2017

 

As Israel prepares to enter the Promised Land, God, through Moses, sets a stark choice before them: life and prosperity or death and destruction. It sounds like a simple choice, only it isn’t because the choice is about whether to serve God with all one’s heart. God never forces anyone to look to God above all for life. Life’s one big choice is with to live close with God as the goal of our life.

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Life in the Fast Lane

- Rev. Matt Reeves
Isaiah 58:1-9a
February 5, 2017


Isaiah speaks to busy people––busy with worship and, quite imaginably, busy in their everyday lives. Though they engage in religious fasting and observing, their “fast lane” life isn’t the one that God would choose for them. He’d prefer a fast that requires a slower approach to life––one that notices the needs and struggles, exploitation and oppression, of those around them and attends to their needs.

 

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Living the Good Life

- Rev. Matt Reeves
Micah 6:1-8
January 29, 2017
 

The good life isn't about what we can get for ourselves. It's about doing justice, loving kindness, and walking humbly with God. This isn't circumstantial but purpose and attitude-driven "good life," and it's available from God for us all.

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