Sunday, July 22, 2007

Sun. July 22 (Rosie Perera)

Rosie Perera titled her message from 2Cor 2:14-3:11 The Aroma of Christ and All that Jazz. From a triumphal procession, not as slaves but as those set free, we smell the fragrance of Christ in our lives, and become a fragrance of life to God. This is no smell of incense to cover up the stench of burning flesh, either as an offering on the altar or immolation in the arena. Through Christ’s sacrifice, we are known to God and need no letter of introduction as was common for travellers in the ancient days. Paul makes no attempt to dismiss the Law of Moses, but instead uses its former glory to contrast with the superior and all-forgiving glory of the fragrance of Christ. Rosie then focussed on two points - (1) the aroma of Christ and (2) the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. She notes it will be up to us whether those who do not know God find the aroma of Christ malodorous as with brash “hit-&-run evangelists”. Rosie prefers to see Christians as co-labouring to bring people to the spirit of the Kingdom, and uses the metaphor of the spirit being like garlic or cilantro, which when crushed, releases its aromas. Similarly, the aroma of Christ is released when we are crushed, so in Christ, suffering is a given. Rosie attended a class at Carey on Jazz as a Metaphor for Spiritual Life which gave her new insight into the second point. At the class, spirituality was enhanced by those who were encouraged to bring their instruments ot the class and jam at the breaks. Rosie’s trumpet skills conformed to the letter of the law, but she found herself stretched when encouraged to improvise as the spirit of the music moved her. Her early inhibitions against making discordant sounds, coming in at the wrong time, paralleled life, and she found that listening to each other helped, but ultimately one needed to be willing to take a risk of coming in at the wrong time with the wrong note. Just so in life, we need to be willing to take a risk in the security Christ offers us and step beyond the rules to listen to the rhythm of the spirit, and let ‘er rip! [AP] Listen to the sermon audio MP3 recording from Sunday July 22nd using your browser's preferred media player.



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