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Hope From Heartbreak

Juliane Poirier Sermon

Today is the second Sunday of Advent, and during these four weeks leading up to Christmas, we’re waiting for Jesus to be born again… into the world, and into our hearts. And we’re waiting with hope. (Read more)

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The Redemption of Scrooge

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The Gospel: Luke 1:46-47, 52-55

Eugene Peterson, the author of the bible translation, The Message, wrote, “Every year Christmas comes around again and forces us to deal with God in the context of demanding and inconvenient children; gatherings of family members, many of whom we spend the rest of the year avoiding…(Read more)

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One Thousand Gifts: Thanks and Giving

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The Gospel: Luke 11:1-13 The Passion Translation

It’s been a crazy-busy two weeks in my new hometown of Napa, California. I always loved hearing Garrison Keillor tell a story about his hometown of Lake Woebegone (Read More)

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Esther Week 4: The Spiritual Practice of Celebrating

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Today is the first day of our Finance Campaign, One Thousand Gifts. This is the title of a book that started as a challenge to author Ann Voskamp, to keep a list of a thousand things she was grateful for, and that turned into…(read more)

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Esther – Week 3: The Spiritual Practice of Holy Boldness

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Marylee: The king and Haman came in for the banquet with Queen Esther, and the king said to her, “This is the second day we’ve met for wine. What is your wish, Queen Esther? I’ll give it to you. And what do you want? I’ll do anything—even…(read more)

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Esther, Week 1: Where is God in all of This?

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Overview of Esther Chapters 1-3

Marylee: This is the story of something that happened in the time of King Ahasuerus, who ruled from India to Ethiopia—127 provinces in all. He ruled from his royal throne in the palace complex of Susa. In the third year of his reign he…(read more)

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Grace, Memory, and Mathematical Hyperbole

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21Then Peter came up and said to him, "Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?" 22Jesus said to him, "I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven. 23"Therefore the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his servants. 24When he began to settle, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents. 25And since he could not pay, his master ordered him to be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and payment to be made. 26So the servant fell on his knees, imploring him, 'Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.' 27And out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt. 28But when that same servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii, and seizing him, he began to choke him, saying, 'Pay what you owe.' 29So his fellow servant fell down and pleaded with him, 'Have patience with me, and I will pay you.' 30He refused and went and put him in prison until he should pay the debt. 31When his fellow servants saw what had taken place, they were greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their master all that had taken place. 32Then his master summoned him and said to him, 'You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. 33And should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?' 34And in anger his master delivered him to the jailers, until he should pay all his debt. 35So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart."

matthew 18 21-35 (ESV)

This last week we’ve had a spiritual exercise to do from Ho’oponopono [ho.o.po.no.po.no] the Hawaiian practice of reconciliation and forgiveness. The practice was to…(read more)