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No Rest For The Good

**What you hear in whispers, proclaim from the housetops** (Matthew 10:27).
Jeremiah 20:10-13; Psalms 69:8-10,14,17,33-35; Romans 5:12-15; Matthew 10:26-33

Sermon Topic Discipleship

Sermon Week Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle A

Scripture Summary Matthew 10:27


Centuries ago, an ancient "father of the Church" named Cyprian, who lived in North Africa, sent a letter to a friend. In it he said,

This seems a cheerful world when I view it from the fair garden, here in the shadow of these vines. But if I climb some great mountain and look out over the wide land, you know exactly what I see: murderers on the high roads; pirates on the seas; under every roof, misery and selfishness. It's really a bad world, my friend. It is a very bad world.

Often in mysterious ways, God is forever establishing His rule in this "world of misery and selfishness," as Cyprian described it. At the very points at which many people are giving up on this "bad, bad world," God's Spirit is present, God's Spirit is reconciling, God's Spirit is healing, God's Spirit is reestablishing lost hope.

We don't need to mention all the world's defects right now (just go home and turn on your TV or read your newspaper). What we are saying is that right there, in the midst of those situations, God is present, God is acting. What we are saying is that God is in the world, defects and all.

Now, to continue the ancient letter from Cyprian to a friend that we began earlier,

... in the midst of this, I have found a quiet and holy people. They have a joy and a strength which is a thousand times better than any pleasure or happiness. They are often despised and persecuted, but they have overcome the world. These people, dear friend, are the Christians -- and I am one of them.

We people, are the Christians. I am one of them and you are one of them. And our Christian mission is to be with the Christ Spirit of God in the midst of all the defects and the turmoil; to witness to the Christ-content in what is going on. We shouldn't fight this Christian duty. We shouldn't turn away from it. Rather, we should rejoice in it. For in ways that may be very unfamiliar to some [...]

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