Sunday, March 16, 2014

Sun. Mar. 16, 2014 (Kevin Hiebert)

Kevin Hiebert moved past the labels we’re all identified by to describe himself in terms of the paths we follow.  Launching from a blog post by “Abnormal Anabaptist’ Robert Martin (found on the MennoNerds network of Anabaptist bloggers and social gladiators), Kevin focused not on his own characteristics nor his own accomplishments, but on his journey with Jesus.  Kevin reminded us of Troy Terpstra’s comments the previous week on choosing a spiritual director by seeking out masters in the Christian virtues who gained that standing not through anointing, but through effort, learning and practice - ‘the fruit of craft’.  Kevin gave examples of such modeling from his own life in neighbourhood friends who blessed those around them when tragedy struck, to fellow students / residents at the Menno Simons Centre, whose valuable friendship taught Kevin many important lessons not found in the curriculum at UBC.  Kevin’s appreciation for poetry, choral music and the joys of rural land, arose not out of his desires to learn about them, but from the journey with others who were inspired to teach and lead, just as Peter did, despite his imperfections. Importantly, Kevin pointed out the pitfall of being a “consumer” of church as noted by Christopher Smith on which requires no active participation, and this lesson, taken to heart, provided the motivation for Kevin to teach others in Lithuania at a Christian college there, with the support from others in the Christian community.  As God gathered the tribes of Israel to make them a people and turned them into a “demonstration plot for what God intends for all humanity and all creation (Slow Church: Cultivating Community in the Patient Way of Jesus - Christopher Smith), Kevin allowed God to lead him to a people who help light his path, despite his preference for ‘singing choruses off the wall’.  Kevin is inspired by the example of the most recent Pope whose “examples of simplicity, austerity and humility” reflect a lifetime of “observing the values of the... gospel” rather than those of the world.  Kevin ended with Robert Martin’s words:; “I aim to BE a Christian.... I am a disciple, a sojourner, a man on a mission....  I am not a Christian.  But by the grace of God, I will be more like Christ every day.”  So may we all.   [AP]

Listen to the sermon audio MP3 recording from Sunday, March 16th, 2014 using your browser's preferred media player.



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