Homily-19 JAN 14 2nd Sunday Ordinary Time
John 1: 29-34
“who takes away the sin of the world!”
I did an experiment this week. I took one hour of prime time to be intensely aware of everything I heard and read and watched in just that one hour.
It was amazing what the world told me about me that I never knew, or maybe unconsciously I had succumbed to without realizing it!
Here is just a brief summary of just one hour:
=I learned that nearly none of my personal information stored on the little magnetic stripes of my insurance cards, my charge cards, my debit cards, my cell phone or my computer are anywhere near being safe….but there are companies that will safe guard that information for a price!
=I learned that in just one hour, there are four different companies who if I just commit my time and money to them, they will guarantee me that I will loose weight, because it must be a proven fact that everyone in the world is over weight!
=I learned that since I am over 50 and male I must suffer from ED and BPH and that there are at least three different medications which will resolve those issues as long as my heart is healthy enough.
=I also learned that there are medications for things and conditions that I never knew existed in the world and that if I just ask my Dr. I could probably get at least one free 30day sample and probably even more long term assistance with the cost!
=I learned that lasers will remove any and all unwanted hair any where on my body and that everyone wants and needs laser hair removal, but that I will most likely have to pay for it out of my pocket because most insurance companies don’t cover it.
=I also learned that evidently every man alive and even some women needs hair restoration of some type, which was especially ironic as I learned this immediately after hearing about my need for laser hair removal. Which ended up causing me alot of confusion and angst?
=I learned that if I would only have the right cell phone and cell phone plan my life would be seamlessly organized, every bill would be paid on time with just the swipe of my finger on the screen, that every one of my friends and family would know where I was at, what I was thinking and what I was doing so that I would be constantly connected as every good housewife, child, teenager, young adult, executive and parent should be!
=I learned that generally I must be dis-satisfied with at least one aspect of my life, my job or my family, my savings, my retirement, my hair color, or my lack of hair or I must be abnormal!
=I guess I learned in one hour that I am just one rather large mess but that for price I can be poked, prodded, primped, and tweaked, and electrified, connected and reinstated back into the human race!!!!
That my friends, in a brief summary is the sin of the world……the sin of the world that Jesus came to destroy!
Can you recall what Rev. Corein said last week….she left us with the words of the Gospel…you are my beloved and with you I am well pleased!
The message of Jesus…it was simple…it was clear…it was without conditions, boundaries, qualifications or exclusions….
We are loved, treasured and adored….just for who we are….not for how much hair we have had removed or transplanted….not because we are extremely organized connected and cutting edge…not because parts of our body work or don’t work….not because we are sick or healthy…not because we are or are not any of those things that just one hour of prime time tells us we are…..
We are loved, treasured and adored….just because we are a child of an amazing God who wants nothing more than to love us into being our best selves!
“I will make you a light to the nations” the prophet Isaiah said! “That my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth!”
That understanding is precisely the belief that gave birth to this community six years ago today….
This point was driven home to me this past week in an extremely powerful experience….I was in my Chapel at the Prison….56 murderers, rapists, child molesters, theives and thugs…and in walked a tall thin beautiful African American woman….who smiled so kindly….who walked right up in front of all these guys….and said….I want you all to stand up and stand up NOW! Don’t mess around…I am serious…and I am honest…now!
Now…she said….with a voice of a drill sgt….I want you to repeat after me…and I want to hear it from each and every one of you…..
I am valuable, I am loveable, I am powerful and I am important!
You see as those words were spoken….off of the lips of guys who I know do not believe it about themselves or anyone else….it took on a life….a life of transformation….speaking those words gave birth to the Spirit of living God and nothing was going to stop it then!
I believe what my friend Joel Osteen once said: We need to stop speaking to our God about our mountains, and we need to start speaking to our mountains about our God!
This night, six years ago we gathered and spoke words very similar….tonight I want to invite us to speak them again to each other….lets give birth again to the Spirit of the Living God..right here, right now….
I’d like to invite you to stand if you are able….or remain seated if you must….but look at someone else, someone who will hold you accountable for your words….move if you must…..and I invite you to repeat these words….
I am valuable
I am loveable,
I am powerful,
and I am important.
God loves me and God loves you!
Lets give ourselves a hand….we just spoke the Good News….I hope we never stop speaking it!
For we believe in One God….