Advent in America: Politics and Baptism – A Sermon on Matthew 24:36-44 for Advent 1A

Interrupting the Silence

The First Sunday of Advent – Matthew 24:36-44

Baptism, Politics, Matthew 24:36-44, United States of America, Isaiah 2:1-5, Trump, Romans 13:1-11, Presidential ElectionMany are saying that the world has changed and that it changed on November the 8th with the election of Mr. Trump as our next president. Some are excited and hopeful about this change. They’ve waited a long time for this day. Others are terrified and dismayed about the change. They never wanted to see this day come. Both sides have expressed anger. Most, I suspect, are just worn out by the whole process. And everyone seems to be looking to and trying to predict the future. What will happen? What new policies and legislation will be enacted? What existing policies and legislation will be repealed? Where is America headed? What does the future hold?

Those questions are not just for post-election America. The disciples surely must have thought their world would be changing when Jesus told them the temple would…

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About her

I am  a first generation Taiwanese American. I love  song writing, writing poetry, learning languages, and engaging in social activism in the community.  Currently I lead a Racial Reconciliation class in a White Evangelical Christian church in Santa Cruz, CA. Though luckily my class is made up of diverse people  in terms of gender,  racial and socioeconomic backgrounds, which means that these conversations in my class help me to see how multifaceted racial conversations can be. My writing seeks to decolonize the aspects of Taiwanese ethnicity, unveil indigenous austronesian heritage behind Taiwanese culture, and to build a chain of solidarity with people of color.

…I feel like (race) it’s the intersection to a lot of things in American culture. It’d be a shame to change  whatever color skin you’ve been born with, so how do you live with it? The tensions with race and ethnicity is that people can feel like they are either, the oppressed, the oppressor, seen or unseen in so many different ways. My work here will be in dialogue with these tensions of race amongst people of color, Asian Americans,  and being Taiwanese as well…

-Esther

A Few Quick Things About Forgiveness: What It Is and What It’s Not

J.S. Park

A few quick things about forgiveness.

– Forgiveness is not a one-shot deal, but a daily lifelong process that might take a hundred times a day. This is partially what Jesus meant when he said forgive seventy times seven.

– It’s okay to be mad. It’s okay to grieve about what happened. You don’t have to stuff these feelings. In fact, it’s better to feel them down to the bottom if you want to make it back out.

– Forgiveness does not mean friendship. Boundaries are necessary and you’re not required to hang out with the people who hurt you. It’s possible to be kind, but that doesn’t require becoming best buddies.

– Forgiveness does not mean that the hurt should be forgotten or dismissed. In fact, true forgiveness actually confronts the very real hurt that was done to you and says, “This is not okay. This is something terrible…

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