March 8, 2014 Sermon for the First Sabbath of Lent
Once our happy-go-lucky lives are derailed by a traumatic event, terminal illness or relationship breakdown, we as humans do what we always do: go into survival mode.
Survival mode is a good, short-term response to overwhelming suffering, but long-term survival mode, rather than preserving life, becomes a slow death unto itself.
If you have been in a state of coping for an extended period of time, the spirit of God calls to you to wake up and live again. The story, in Matthew 4, of Jesus fighting off the devil’s temptations to merely survive and remaining steadfast in his trust of God give the assurance that being fully alive in the messy joys and sorrows of life is better than muddling through in a numbed state of survival.
In Romans 5.17 (NRSV) it says, “If, because of the one man’s trespass, death exercised dominion through that one, much more surely will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness exercise dominion in life through the one man, Jesus Christ.” The sin and harm that sent you reeling into the state of survival are not as powerful as the eternal life, already present, already here, that was revealed through the person of Jesus Christ. Death only has dominion over you if you let it. But the life of God can reign in you if you will accept it.
Receive the healing, life-restoring salvation of Jesus today