This sermon series intends to ponder divinity. To be clear, the point of this series isn’t to boil divinity down to fifteen points, or one hundred points, or one thousand points – as if we can exhaust definition for the ineffable. Nor is this series an attempt at explaining God in systematic theology categories such as communicable and incommunicable attributes. That’s been done before and it’s often onerous, which ironically, doesn’t feel very divine. Instead, this series seeks to delight in pondering crazy, confusing, beautiful, and textured attempts at understanding and appreciating ultimate reality, by considering ancient stories and thoughts about God in the Hebrew scriptures and in the New Testament.
Sermons at Pearl seek to engage the ancient stories, poems, and letters in the Bible through imaginative oration that rouses our wholeness as human beings. The act of the sermon at Pearl is space to ponder the sacred, opportunity to consider the mystery and love of God, and provocation to slow down, to think deeply, and to be stirred and inspired to bountifully live.
Five times, Jesus is quoted as telling his followers to take up their cross. But what exactly does that mean? Is cross carrying a metaphor for suffering? If so, how does one carry suffering? Is cross carrying a path that leads to crucifixion? If so, what does that look like today, when people aren’t being crucified? Throughout Lent we are encouraged to participate in Jesus’ passion, which includes suffering, cross carrying, and death on a cross, but what does it mean for us to carry a cross, today? What does it look like for us to be the kind of Jesus followers who do what Jesus exhorts, which is to pick up their cross and follow him?
This sermon series seeks to explore the meaning of cross carrying. Then, in the midst of this exploration, it intends to offer practical ways of carrying crosses that align our lives with Jesus’ way of being in the world. Finally, this series hopes to cast a vision for cross carrying that extends beyond just suffering and death, to the glory and new life that Jesus says is the result of following him.