2018 Annual Theme “The Inner Pilgrimage”
Explored in “Angels of Annunciation” Sermon
Sunday Service Video February 4th, 2018—“Angels of Annunciation”—Here is the link and player to Rev. Karen Lindvig’s sermon of 02-04-2018. Every year, Rev. Karen Lindvig develops an annual theme for framing the sermon lessons for the year. The annual theme aims to achieve a number of things: it addresses the times, the context, and the zeitgeist of the outer world around us, in our community and locally, nationally and globally; it helps to align and prepare our inner worlds with that outer world; and it expands and builds on the previous themes.
In her “Angels of Annunciation” sermon, Karen describes how every pilgrimage, every search for meaning, begins with some kind of an event, experience or encounter that leads us to be called higher. We sometimes lose touch with God, with Divine Presence, with our Essence. That often happens because… (see more below)
Rev. Karen Lindvig’s Sermon “Angels of Annunciation”
Elaborates on the 2018 Annual Theme “The Inner Pilgrimage”
Title: “Angels of Annunciation“
http://seattleunity.org—Rev. Karen Lindvig’s sermon titled “Angels of Annunciation” is the third sermon in 2018 that explores our Annual Theme “The Inner Pilgrimage.” Last week Karen talked about the idea that you can always start over in her sermon titled “Starting Over.” In this week’s “Angels of Annunciation” sermon, Karen describes how every pilgrimage, every search for meaning, begins with some kind of an event, experience or encounter that leads us to be called higher. We sometimes lose touch with God, with Divine Presence, with our Essence. That often happens because we put other things before our relationship with God. These sometimes include the many roles we play and masks we wear.
Karen illustrates the process of being inspired by various angels of annunciation with the story of dancer and actress Thandi Newton; the story in scripture of the Angel Gabriel visiting Mary, the mother of Jesus; the story of Jacob in Genesis and Hosea wrestling with an angel; writer Andrew Solomon; and our own member of our community Mertiss Jay Thompson, who was influenced by the tragedy of the murder of 14 year-old Emmett Till in 1955. As part of this exploration, Karen interviewed Mertiss “Jay” Thompson about his experience being influenced and inspired by the tragedy of Emmett Till’s death. Karen concludes with a message about how we can let problems bless us to rediscover our authenticity, our essence by reconnecting with our Creator through the Angels of Annunciation we encounter in our lives.
Key quotations related to this sermon:
“If we pay attention to our inner life, when the angel finally arrives (and she may be wearing an multitude of disguises because angels are tricky that way) we might suddenly recognize that the invitation they are offering meets us exactly where we are.
“Consider the angels of annunciation in your own lifetime. When have they arrived? What form did they take? Are they human, animal, tree, ocean wave, crow, spirit voice? Allow some space to honor all the ways you’ve been asked to give your consent to being filled with possibility. Hold to the times you’ve said yes and no. Be gentle with both and trust each response contains its own kind of grace.”
After he got them and brought them across the wadi and brought over what belonged to him, Jacob was left there alone. Then a man wrestled with him until the break of dawn. When the man saw that he could not prevail over him, he struck Jacob’s hip at its socket, so that Jacob’s socket was dislocated as he wrestled with him. The man then said, “Let me go, for it is daybreak.” But Jacob said, “I will not let you go until you bless me.” “What is your name?” the man asked. He answered, “Jacob.” Then the man said, “You shall no longer be named Jacob, but Israel, because you have contended with divine and human beings and have prevailed.” Jacob then asked him, “Please tell me your name.” He answered, “Why do you ask for my name?” With that, he blessed him.
The Lord has a dispute with Judah, and will punish Jacob[d] for his conduct, and repay him for his deeds. In the womb he supplanted his brother, and in his vigor he contended with a divine being. He contended with an angel and prevailed, he wept and entreated him. At Bethel he met with him, and there he spoke with him.
Mertiss Jay Thompson:
“Emmett Till’s life affected me as a teenager. After his death, I was frustrated and very angry. I joined the Navy with the intent of being a journalist apprentice, but when I reported to my superiors they informed me that this position was no longer available and that the only alternative was to be a steward. Because of Emmett Till’s death I refused to accept a lesser position in the Navy. I informed my superiors that they could send me home or put me in the brig, but I was not going to be a servant to the officers.The editor of a civilian newspaper invited me to be a contributing writer for his paper and I interviewed enlisted men about their lives in the navy. I attribute my being a writer to taking a stand against injustice. Emmett’s life motivated me to make contributions that I would never would have thought of making, and his death was the catalyst for the civil rights movement.”