April 19, 2020

Second Sunday of Easter, Year A
(First Sunday After Easter)
Deacon Cindy Roehl

Well, this is my first sermon where there are a lot of empty seats here, and I’m looking out at this camera and I know you’re all out there! If I could see you, I’m sure some of you are probably in your robes or pajamas. Some are sitting in your favorite chair, some at the dining table. Maybe sipping on a cup of tea or coffee. But, in effect, you are still here. Watching. Listening. Participating.

One thing about starting something new, have you noticed some things you may have taken for granted before? Like little things. Do you find yourself grateful for little things? I know I have. And there may be a lot of us who are getting in touch with some things inside of ourselves, maybe more than we want, like maybe I just don’t want to be alone with myself anymore. One of the things you have to get used to is the contrast, right?

I will say, emails & comments from the services over the last few weeks tell us that, even though we don’t see you physically, God is still at work. And in some cases, God is doing the most when we are seeing the least. God’s hand is still moving, God is working in your lives. We — here in this sanctuary — may not see the expressions on your faces, the smiles, the nods, the body language that says, “Yes, Lord!” But there’s a song that says, “Even when I don’t see it, you’re working. Even when I don’t feel it, you’re working.” We can know that, even when I see the least, feel the least, know the least, He’s working! These are the spaces that God creates for revelation of who he is.

How would I know He’s a way maker, if I never needed a way made? How would I know He’s a provider if I never had a need? How would I know He is resurrection, if I didn’t experience death? So, I’m learning how sometimes we have to see in our spirit what we cannot sense.

We read this morning about two disciples who were walking to Emmaus three days after Jesus was crucified. And, without allowing them to recognize him, Jesus started walking alongside of them and he asked them what they were discussing together as they walked along? They stood still, with their faces downcast, and said “About Jesus of Nazareth.” They explained that “He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed – before God and all the people. We had hoped he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. But the chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him!!!”

Can’t you hear it? They’re saying, “Oh, No!” “No!” This can’t be! No, No, NO! This is NOT how it was supposed to go!! This is terrible! …And, yes, it was… How many moms, dads and grandparents, when you heard they were cancelling school said, “Oh, No!” “No, No, No!” “This is NOTs how it was supposed to go!! How many of you when you met with your financial advisor or clicked on your account said, “Oh, No!” “This can’t be!!!

And then the disciples tell this man who is walking along with them, “And now some of our women went to the tomb early this morning but didn’t find his body. They came and told US that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was ALIVE. Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but THEY didn’t see Jesus either!”

What does all this mean? This is crazy!!…

Read the full sermon text HERE.

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