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"We Are All Treaty People"

Each of us makes manifest a particular aspect of the one life that is in all human beings. That one life is also present in all animals, plants and the whole natural order. Sad to say, somewhere in the past we humans got lost. We wandered away from the influence of God. This has brought all kinds of problems into our world. It is my hope that your imagination is securely grounded in the spirit of God, which is the source and substance of our lives in creation.

My talk this week notices our relationship with indigenous peoples on all continents. We came from Europe and sought to impose our ideas on peoples who had lived in a right relationship with nature from the beginning of time. This agenda has produced much trouble for the earth and for all of its peoples. The remedy for such troubles is found in our determination to cooperate with all persons met along our way.

The texts in which this short service is grounded are:

Ezekiel 34:11-16, Psalm 95:1-7a, Matthew 25:31-40

Looking forward to Advent

Advent is a time of anticipation. We look at our world and realize it is coming apart at the seams. Many persons are anxious and fearful concerning what is to come. There are also many people of faith who trust that God will bring forward a remedy. That remedy is rooted in the Holy Spirit which resides at the very heart of our being. Listening to the voice of the Spirit, we are led forward one day at a time.

The first Sunday of Advent is focused on hope. Hope is the key to walking into the future with confidence. As hopeful persons we look forward to the revelation of God's way in the earth as it is in heaven. Our hope inspires us to caring and compassionate action.

The second Sunday of Advent is focused on peace. Peace is the true treasure of life. Those of us who live in peace are blessed by the grace of God. This makes us signs of God's presence in the world, inspiring others to seek the straight and narrow way that leads to life which is life indeed.

The third Sunday of Advent is focused on Joy. Joy is the expression of our deep trust in the goodness of God. Following the way of God may lead us through hard times. Even so, the grace of God inspires us to celebrate the goodness present at the heart of every day.

The fourth Sunday of Advent is focused on Love. Love flows from the heart of God to fill our human experience. Receiving it as a gift, we are made able to share Love in and through all of our relations. This love is fully accepting of others, no matter what their difference. We love others just as God loves us.

The times are uncertain and we are not able to predict exactly how each of our coming Sundays will take form. Our trust is in the Holy Spirit of God revealed in Jesus Christ. This brings to mind a phrase from the Lord's Prayer - "Give us this day our daily bread." We are confident that God will lead us forward one step at a time, and bring forward blessing beyond measure.

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