David Meriwether
 
David Meriwether

Current Sermons
Through the Christian Year
Leftovers Sampler
About David
A "Cheat-sheet" for
sermon listening

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Permanent Address
14139 Vantage Hill
San Antonio, TX  78231
Stews are everyday cooking, not gourmet fare. They are just part of the meal. Sermons are over-rated when they are heard without knowing the context of the other parts of worship, the people who gather together, and the events and church and world that shape their listening for the Spirit. So, listening here can mean learning and maybe inspiration, but please know that each of these "stews" were stirred up with a particular time and community in my mind and heart.
Most preachers repeat sermons. I never have. But I will be honest with you. I have some recurring sermons, which I try to disguise by art and imagination so that the congregation will hear these themes from different directions. Since seven is the number of perfection, I’ll list seven themes - no perfection implied. They are in no particular order, except #1 is my #1. Let me know which sermons you hear in the recordings.

1.  Grace only comes in the flesh. We did not understand God’s love until Jesus lived among us, serving and sacrificing, dying and rising from the dead. Words lived become grace. God asks us to live the grace we have received in Christ. When we put God’s love into our flesh of being and doing, people see grace and receive it; then they ask and we talk about God’s love they have already seen.

2.  The church is not optional; it is absolutely essential to living the Christian life. The church is the body of Christ in the flesh (see #1 above) and in the present tense. An “independent” Christian is an oxymoron. For all its different creeds and complexions, the church is always a community of followers of Christ. For all its splendor and stupidity, its confusion and compassion, its imagination and ignorance, the real church is the only church, because it is where Christ is at work in the flesh (see #1).

3.  Everyone already has a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, because Christ relates to each one of us in our unique giftedness that only God knows. Our trouble is that we ignore it, run away from it, misuse it, or do not know what to do with this relationship. Presbyterians do evangelism when they announce what God has done in Christ, not what God might do for us. Our glory as Christians is that Christ’s relationship with us is not contingent upon what we do or do not do, and we share his glory by simply living out his love in our relationships with others (see #1).

4.  Jesus came to seek and to serve. That phrase could be a complete mission statement for any church and for every Christian. But we need to remember that seeking The Kingdom first is implicit in the seeking. And the prayer says, “They kingdom come; thy will be done on earth.” So, serving is implicit in the seeking, and seeking the least of God’s people must be explicit in the serving.

5.  Whenever I am forced to choose between doing what is right and doing what is loving, I better do what is loving – because loving is always right. Sometimes being right is easier than being loving. Sometimes “nice” is easy, and gets confused with loving. Love often does not come easily or naturally. Many of our moral, social, and political arguments would turn in positively different directions if people were willing to confess their doubts about their certainties and place the priority on the common core of our commitment to the Great Commandment over the little and lesser commandments.

6.  The Christian life is so deep and real, so meaning-full and wonder-full, that people do not have to wait until they are empty or weakened or down or in crisis to choose Christ. The Christian life makes all the other options look like rubbish by comparison, and we can recommend the Christian life to people before they get to the heap. Jesus did not come just to fix lives that are “broken” or to help us continue to live in ways that are not his ways. Christ came to give us life with all of his very different abundance.

7.   Christ commanded us to follow, so Christ is always one step in front of us. God has always been a step ahead in the future, so there is no point in dwelling on the failures of our past except to learn what God was trying to do with us then. Christ is much more interested in being the Savior of our future than the judge of our past. The commands to obedience for followers are easier when we know that Christ will lead us into all things. He is making all things new – including us, but more importantly the world.