November 14, 2021 – Trusting in God

Posted on November 15, 2021

Home Sermon November 14, 2021 – Trusting in God

November 14, 2021 – Trusting in God

Jesus comes out of the temple.

One of his disciples says to him, “Look, teacher, what large stones and what large buildings!”

Then Jesus says to him,

“Do you see these great buildings?  Not one stone will be left here upon another for all will be thrown down.”

In this Bible reading Jesus warns his disciples not to put their trust in the temple.

The temple is only made of stone.

Even though the temple served as the primary place for animal sacrifices and for worship

– Jesus comes with a new teaching.

He will be the new temple.

He will be the sacrifice, he will save all of God’s people.

He will be the one we turn to in prayer and in worship.

And when trials and tribulations come, he will be the One who we will go to and we will trust in him.

As beautiful as this space is that we worship in each and every week – this place means nothing were it not for Jesus.

One thing that we have all thought a lot about during this challenging time of COVID is what it means to put our trust in God in the face of great uncertainty.

Jesus said in today’s gospel reading that when trials come our way to not be alarmed for this is only the beginning.

What does it mean to put our trust in God when we are going through great challenges?

And this question will be the focus of my sermon for today.

What does it mean to put our trust in God when we are going through great challenges?

To answer that question, I would like to talk further about three things today:  anxiety, peace, and laughter.

Anxiety – Now trusting in God does not mean that we will never have anxiety.

Trusting in God means that we have a way to handle our anxiety.

Trusting in God means that we can go from being very anxious to being less-anxious.

There is never a point in life where we can be completely free of anxiety.

But I do believe that there may be a point in life where we can be less anxious and to have a less-anxious presence.

When we put our trust and faith in God, the Holy Spirit helps to be less filled with worry.

To trust in God brings about a calm to our lives.

It only takes a moment to realize how much better the calmness feels versus the anxiety.

God brings about the calm.

Again, this does not mean that we will not face trials and tribulations what it means is that when they come, we will have a way to handle the trials and the tribulations.

In Christ we will be led to that place where there will be quiet waters and refreshment for the soul.

That is the promise that we hear in Psalm 23.

Which then leads me to talk about peace.

In another Psalm, Psalm 16 we hear the Psalmist saying – protect me, O God, for I take my refuge in you.

In the trials and storms of life God is our protector – in God we find refuge.

To have refuge means to have shelter from the storm.

In God’s refuge we find the peace that only he can bring.

Which leads me to my last point – when we are experiencing the challenges of life then we need to lean into our faith and trust in Jesus even more.

During this time of COVID, when our world was turned upside down, I worked hard here to encourage all of us to keep the faith, to not give up on our trust in Jesus, and to even keep a light-hearted spirit to our worship – that is one reason why I did not stop using my puppet Marty during COVID.

Laughter –

We still needed to laugh and to not take ourselves too seriously even when things got very difficult for our congregation because by faith, we always knew that God was and is still with us.

It is at such a time as this when we need our faith the most when we need to laugh the most.

Laughter brings us back to the realization that the work of God is not dependent upon us but rather it is dependent upon Jesus.

All of the stones can be thrown down and yet Jesus still stands with and for us.

Finally, this just may be the most important time in our lives for us to share and to preach the Gospel.

When else has there been such a time in your lives?

More and more I am seeing how important it is to speak about our hope in Jesus.

It is precisely when we are going through difficult times to remember that the stones that hold up all of our foundations can be thrown down but our faith in Jesus remains.

And to take this point a little further now… we all have very important work to do.

We need to carry on with the hope that is inside us.

Let us be together as the Body of Christ in this particular congregation.

You all have said, “Yes,” to the work of God in this place!

We are still an active and vibrant congregation – we are still a people living by faith and trust.

Let us continue to carry the light of Christ.

The best sermons right now are not preached from this pulpit.

The best sermons right now are lived out in our day to day lives in word and in deed.

Recall the message that I recently told in a sermon that sometimes we preach the best when we live the Gospel message with our lives – even if we do not speak one word.

Living in life-giving ways, living honestly, living faithfully.

When we trust in God – we cultivate a less-anxious presence, we receive the peace of Jesus, and we find hope and strength for the days to come.

Today if you are finding yourself in need of healing and in need of God’s peace then come to the table.

Come, to the altar.

Here you will receive the bread and the wine as spiritual nourishment.

And may the peace of God which transcends all understanding guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Amen.

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  • 11:00 a.m. Bible Study

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