Mountain View-Week 2 // We Know the Future // Pastor Kate Murphy

Scripture: Matthew 5:17-48 (NIV), John 1:1-4, 14, Ezekiel 36:25-28, Jeremiah 31: 31-34

Dear Church,

There is a lot of frantic speculation going on these days about whether the U.S. economy will enter into recession.  People are desperate to know if it will happen, when it will happen, how long it will last and how bad it will be.  We feel like we need this information to know how to plan for the future–and there is no shortage of experts willing to provide advice and prognostication.  Most people agree that knowing what’s coming is a distinct advantage.  We choose differently, we plan differently, we live differently based on what we think is happening next.

Obviously, I don’t know whether we are headed into a recession.  But I know that, for us, it doesn’t matter.  Because we know the future.  The Kingdom of God, already here in the midst of us, is coming to renew, restore and reconcile all of creation.  Our hope does not lie in an expanding economy.  It is not dimmed or threatened by a recessing one.   Either way the Kingdom of God is coming.  And knowing that future means we choose differently, we plan differently, we live differently.

The trouble is–most of us, me most definitely included–have a better idea of the implications of a coming recession than the coming Kingdom.  That’s why we are spending these weeks on the mountain with Jesus, listening deeply as he teaches us about the Kingdom–letting his revelation shape the way we see reality, creation, our lives and the future.  I hope you’ll join me for worship this Sunday at 10am, in the sanctuary or on the livestream. 


Pastor Kate

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Spirit School-Week 6 // We’ll Get Over It // Pastor Kate Murphy

Scripture: Colossians 1:1-15

We are called to rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn.  Some days, some seasons it seems as though there is nothing but morning–as though the whole world is nothing but woe and even the church of Jesus Christ has nothing to offer.   Who am I kidding?  Even the church of Jesus Christ, sometimes it seems like the church is a major source of pain and trauma.  It certainly doesn’t feel like we are lifting very many burdens.

The temptation to give up in despair is almost irresistible.

I’ve found a strange comfort this week in one of the ancient letters preserved in our scripture.  It was written by the Apostle Paul to a small church in a town called Colossae.  Like us, they were struggling to be church in a season of great turmoil and stress.  The community around them misunderstood what they believed and why and perceived them as a threat.  Experts were coming through all the time to tell them what they were doing wrong and how they needed to urgently and dramatically change.  They were under enormous pressure and beginning to slowly and sadly drift away.  In desperation, their pastor Epaphras wrote to his mentor for help.  Paul sent back a beautiful letter of encouragement and hope telling them, in the nicest possible way, to calm down.  Because–Jesus.  Because the pain and suffering and brokenness in the world is real and urgent and it would be a sin to harden our hearts and become indifferent to it.  And still–Jesus is risen, the first fruits of all creation.

Freedom School is filling our campus with love and joy and chaos and art work.  Every day, as I scurry around this place trying to hold it all together, I pass a sign one of our scholars designed and hung on the wall.  It says, ‘you’ll get over it.’  It makes me laugh, and then it makes my shoulders drop.  I don’t know what this young artist was trying to say, but I think he’s captured the essence of Paul’s message to the Colossians.

Yes, what is against us is tremendous, but we do not need to lose heart.  Because–Jesus.  By grace, we are part of the body of Christ.  Jesus is Lord and he has defeated the powers of sin and death, destruction and violence, enmity and lies.   We can’t face all of the evil around us, but what is in us is not of us.  In Christ, we’ll get over it.  In Christ, we’ll get through it.  In Christ, we’ll get by.

I think we all need to hear Paul tell us why–in the midst of everything–we are going to be okay.


Pastor Kate

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