116 N Academy St, Murfreesboro, TN 37130  615-893-3780

Sermons by “The Rev. Dr. Kristine Blaess”

Love that Gives Us a Direction to Face and a Way to Be

Jesus’ double command to us comes to us as a gift. “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and with all your mind, and Love your neighbor as yourself.” This double command gives us a direction to focus – toward God who is OUR love, who loves us already. And it gives us a way to be – we are meant to be people who live as God’s image-bearers, as people who love their neighbors in a world that is hurting.

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Changing into the Wedding Garment

God’s invitation is wide open, even to the tax collector, prostitutes, those who are blind, those who are lame, even us. But God’s love is not content to leave us where we are. God’s love is transformative. God’s love heals. God’s love makes us new.

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Come Work in the Vineyard

God’s invitation to you today is, Come work in the vineyard. The harvest is plentiful. There are people out there who are waiting precisely for YOU to show up in their lives and share with them the Word of life.

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What makes the Church the Church?

As the Church, we have the enormous privilege of sharing Peter’s confession that gives hope to those who are lost in darkness: “Jesus, you are the answer, the point, the last word, the meaning. You are it!”

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Great Is Your Faith

What do we do when God is silent? What do we do when Jesus’ followers are unloving and hostile? What do we do when Jesus himself seems to be against us? Perhaps we could follow in the footsteps of a remarkable person, a Canaanite woman whose extraordinary, persistent faith shines forth through the ages.

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How God moves us through desolation

When we have been with Jesus in a desolate place, he sends us forward.  Probably before we are ready, he sends us forward.  But like Jacob who walked forward with a limp and like the disciples who went forward in a boat into a dangerous storm, being sent forward is not being sent into ease. Rather it is being sent to engage again with challenge and danger. All the while, as we take those first steps, Jesus is praying for us, interceding on our behalf to his Father.

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Being blessed through the struggle

This is the grace of it: It is exactly to the empty-hearted, the empty-handed, the desolate, that God comes. It is exactly into our exhausted, depleted selves, that he comes. In the half-light of morning, Jesus comes to us – his own face wrecked and his own feet limping from the suffering of his crucifixion, but bearing in his love the power of the resurrection, for us.

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A Lesson about Soil from the Master Gardener

Jesus invites us into introspection about the soil of our lives. Where do we receive his Word, and where do we not? The good news is that Jesus never tires of tending the soil of our lives and preparing us to put forth the harvest of his Kingdom.

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On reciprocal wounds and the call to wholeness

Without all of us being whole, none of us are whole. When we are disconnected from ourselves or from other people, there is a wound. Writer Wendell Berry gives the insight that actually it is two wounds, reciprocal wounds that are the record of how the severed parts once fit together. This is true of our personal lives, of our family lives, of our community life, and of our national life.

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Nativity on fire

The scorch marks in our lives remind us why we need and why we trust in a savior who is more than a babe lying in a manger. The fires in our lives and the fires in our cities remind us why we need and why we trust in a savior who, at the end of his life, came to us through fire of the cross.

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