Sermons

Building and the Presence of God

Preacher: Nathan Hosler Scripture: 2 Samuel 7:1-14a, Ephesians 2:11-22 In the beginning as God created, a wind –the spirit of God swept— hovered—over the face of the deep. The first people—Eve and Adam– “heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden at the time of the evening breeze…” A swoosh of grass?…

The Politics of Dancing

Preacher: Jeff Davidson Scripture: 2 Samuel 6: 1-5, 12b-21 and Mark 6:14-29 For most of the month of July the fellowship hall in the basement of the church building is being used by Tippi Toes for their summer program. For those of you who don’t know about them, Tippi Toes is a nationally franchised company…

Waiting Watching

Preacher: Nathan Hosler Scripture: Lamentations 3: 22-33 Waiting, watching Yearning Patience—waiting—biding time? Impatience—urgency—struggle. Struggle for justice, for survival, for joy. Nostalgia—what once was. Regret. Hopefulness—imagining what might be. There is a trail along the west bank of the Potomac River. It starts across the river from Georgetown at Roosevelt Island. What, in the Avengers movie,…

Not an Underdog

Preacher: Jessie Houff Scripture: 1 Samuel 17: 1-54 The story of David and Goliath. Very dramatic story. I hope that all of you were able to listen to this story with fresh ears, unencumbered by past interpretations of the story. For centuries this story has been used as an “underdog” story. Children are told the…

Telling the Truth Slant

Pastor: Jeff Davidson Scripture: Mark 4:26-34 Most of you have heard of Aesop, right? Sometimes it’s pronounced EE-sop, and sometimes it’s pronounced A-sop, with a long A sound. That uncertainty of what might be the correct pronunciation is kind of a symbol for everything we know, or don’t know, about Aesop. We don’t know for…

A Memorial Day Paradox

Preacher: Jeff Davidson Scripture: Romans 8:12-17 We all have different memories that we associate with different holidays. A couple of my Memorial Day memories are set back in Ohio, one of them when I was a kid and the other just a few years ago. The one when I was a kid isn’t a real…

The Why Game

Preacher: Jessie Houff Scripture: Acts 2:1-21 and Romans 8:22-27 Today is Pentecost Sunday. As I think back to my childhood, I very vaguely remember Pentecost. To me it was just another Sunday. As a child growing up in the church, I couldn’t comprehend The Holy Spirit or what it meant. I do remember one random…

What does Love do?

Preacher: Jeff Davidson Scripture: 1 John 5:1-6 When I was a kid I don’t remember a whole lot about Mother’s Day Sunday at church. I remember Mother’s Day, of course. Along with everyone else we would go out to eat so Mom didn’t have to cook, and we would buy her a card and Dad…

Like a Good Neighbor…

Preacher: Jessie Houff Scripture: 1 John 4: 7-21 and Acts 8: 26-40 Today it’s all about love, y’all. God’s love for us and love we show for others. The word “LOVE” shows up in the entire bible anywhere from 300-800 times depending on the translation. In the John passage I read today, the word “LOVE”…

Sheep and Justice

Preacher: Jeff Davidson Scripture: Psalm 23 Earth Day was a couple of days ago, and it was a day where a lot of people on Facebook posted sayings or pictures about the beauty of nature and the importance of taking care of the Earth. If you checked out the Google Doodle for that day, it…

Finding Joy

Preacher: Jeff Davidson Scripture: John 20:1-18  Easter is a time of incredible joy. Just in the secular world, it’s a joyful time. I mean, there’s the Easter Bunny and little baby chickens and dioramas in the Washington Post made out of marshmallow Peeps. There’s springtime and bright flowers and blue, sunny skies – at least,…

Fifth Sunday

Preacher: Nate Hosler Scripture: Jeremiah 31:31-34, John 12:20-33, Hebrews 5:5-10 In the 4th century at a time when the church began to align with the empire, certain people began withdrawing from the world to secluded places—often the desert. Monastic communities were formed around orders of strict discipline to foster greater focus on God (Encyclopedia of…

Up and Down

Preacher: Jeff Davidson Scripture: Numbers 21:4-9 John 3:14-21 When I read these passages, my mind went back to a board game that I used to like to play when I was a kid. I haven’t played it or seen it in a long time, but I know it’s still out there. Our version of the…

Artist of Souls

Preacher: Jessie Houff Scripture: Exodus 20:1-17 and John 2:13-22 As I was preparing the worship earlier this week, I was looking for opening prayers. I found one that began with addressing God as, “Artist of Souls”. It was the one I opened our service with today. There are countless names for God that we’ve heard…

TAKEN FOR GRANTED

Preacher: Jeff Davidson Scripture: Genesis 9:8-17, Mark 1:9-15, 1 Peter 3:18-22 It’s amazing what we take for granted. Julia and I have lived within a half hour of Washington DC for over 25 years. I love theater and musical performance. Before the pandemic, the Kennedy Center offered some sort of free musical or theatrical performance…

Glowing Heart(s)

Preacher: Nathan Hosler Scripture: 2 Kings 2:1-11, Mark 9:2-9 The prophet Elijah, after a life of ministry, is swooped up in a chariot of fire. Where did he go? What is he doing? Like a movie (Avengers? Back to the Future?) when the person disappears and then is plunked down in the future or past,…

EPIPHANY

Preacher: Jeff Davidson, Scripture: Matthew 2:1-12  I sat in front of my computer screen for over an hour thinking about what I wanted to write for this morning. Judging from the Facebook posts from some of my pastoral colleagues and friends, I’m not alone. Ideally, sermons are contextual. They exist in a particular time and…

Fulfilled

Fulfilled (4th Sunday in Advent) Preacher: Jeff Davidson Scriptures: 2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16    Luke 1:26-38 When you watch an entire series of some TV show, or when you read an entire series of some book or other, sometimes there are events early on that kind of foreshadow or hint at things that will happen later….

Adorn

Adorn (3rd Sunday of Advent)Preacher: Jessie Houff Scriptures: Isaiah 61:1-4…8-11 and Psalm 126 Now we are going to go back in time…for most of us at least. This section of the service isn’t just for Ayuba. It’s for all of us and the children we used to be. There’s something about Christmas that turns me…

Rise up, Fall down

Rise Up, Fall Down (1st Sunday in Advent) Preacher: Nathan Hosler Scriptures: Isaiah 64:1-9, Luke 1:46-55 There is a certainty, and inevitability about it. The planets spin. In the night sky. Seen from the playground in the early evening, before the stars and bright enough to be seen even in the city. In a pair…

Give Thanks. Give Back. Give Joy.

Preacher: Jessie Houff Scripture: Ephesians 1:15-23. Matthew 25: 31-46. Psalm 100 Today, we are focusing on three scriptures, each with a different theme and what each message means. We’re going to reflect on giving thanks, giving back, and giving joy. As I read, an artwork will be next to the message. I invite everyone to…

Becoming the Dregs

Preacher: Jeff Davidson Scripture: Zephaniah 1:7, 12-18; Matthew 25:14-30 Sometimes you’re reading something and there’s a phrase or an expression that jumps out at you or raises a question of some kind. That’s what happened to me with our reading this morning from the prophet Zephaniah. It’s there in verse 12, where God, speaking through…

All Saints Day

Preacher: Nathan Hosler Scripture: Revelation 7:9-17, 1 John 3:1-3, Matthew 5:1-12 If you open it, you see. If you don’t open it, you don’t see it. The development of toddler language, reasoning, and observation is endlessly fascinating as well as regularly humorous. If you open it, you see. If you don’t open it, you don’t…

WWJND?

Preacher: Jeff Davidson Scripture: Isaiah 45:1-7; Matthew 22:15-22 Some of you will remember the slogan from back in the 1990s.WWJD – What Would Jesus Do? There were WWJD bracelets, there was aWWJD book that was an update of the original WWJD book from the 1800sby Charles Sheldon, there were lots and lots of WWJD sermons,…

The Peace of God: The God of Peace

Preacher: Nathan Hosler Scripture: Exodus 32:1-14, Psalm 23, Philippians 4:1-9 And the peace of God And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is…

You have only to be still

Preacher: Nathan Hosler Scripture: Exodus 14:19-31 & Matthew 18:21-35 Themes of liberation and forgiveness; questions of suffering and divine violence. Theodicy as well as the question of God’s use of violence appear in some form in both these passages. These questions have also taken main stage in some of our recent church discussions, sometimes in…

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