Archives: Podcast

Illuminate: Peace

Luke 1:26-38, 46-55

Christmas can be a time of great joy, but it can also be a time which reminds us that we feel alone or inadequate.  It’s easy to feel that the forces of the world go on and leave us behind.  Yet it is precisely to a very simple girl named Mary that God comes and gives good news.  She would be entrusted to be the mother of God’s savior, Jesus!  Mary did what many do not when they are encountered by God, she said yes.  In this complete dependence upon God we see in Mary’s life, and God invites us in our lives, to experience the peace he gives.  We know that he loves us and will take care of us.

Illuminate: Joy

John 1:6-8, 19-28

What is the secret to Joy?  Christmas, if ever, shows that the world is hungry for it.  We look again to John in the wilderness.  The people coming to him are seeking it, the religious leaders are curious about it for their own motives.  But John does not play into the lure of the crowd or of the leaders.  He is simply honest before God and obedient.  His entire life points to Jesus.  And there lies the challenge and invitation to us.  In Him our lives find the joy we were created for!

Illuminate: Love

Mark 1:1-8

Have you ever felt that all the celebration surrounding Christmas doesn’t deeply satisfy?  It’s great and fun, but it comes and goes, and we’re looking for something that lasts. Mark’s gospel begins not with angels, wise men, and stables but rather John in the wilderness saying that the Messiah is coming and to get ready! People flocked out to him.  They’re not unlike ourselves.  They’re looking for God.  And they are asking, “How do we get ready? We’ve tried so much stuff.”  And John says, come before God honestly, confess, repent, and be baptized.