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Pembroke Pines, FL 33024
The SE corner of Pines Blvd and 72nd Ave
Across the street from Broward college South Campus lake
(954) 989-1903
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Join Us For Worship!

Join Us For Worship!
Sundays at 8:30AM, 9:45AM, and 11AM

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Advent Meditation on Joseph

The reading for Sunday, December 17, 2017: Matthew 1:18-25 This Sunday we read about an angel appearing to Joseph in a dream. We've no...

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

ASH WEDNESDAY SERMON 2011


Blow the trumpet in Zion; Sanctify a fast; call a solemn assembly; gather the people.


And so we have
Gathered here tonight,
The young and the old, the married and single
Children, young people, those aging and aged, twilight-yeared and nearing the sunset of their lives. The whole and the broken,
People of many languages and origins
Of many different stages on their journey of faith, believers, probably some doubters, too.

This is not a night of celebration, but we will be gathered into celebration.
This is not a night of joy but we will surrender to it certainly.
This is not a night of gladness but we will discover our hearts lifted to it.

Blow the trumpet in Zion; Sanctify a fast; call a solemn assembly; gather the people.

And so we have and here we are –
Ready to rend our hearts before our God, to hearken to the invitation in humble acknowledgement and receive the mark of our own limitation, of our own finiteness: we are dust and to dust we shall return.
Let the ashes humble us -
See the magnificent cities, buildings scraping the skies, housing millions and art collections and universities, commerce and symphonies; the awesome machines that make and create , perform surgery and win on Jeopardy; the unraveled genome whispering tantalizing possibilities of who we are and might someday be; the atom split into parts of parts of parts, smashed into the boundaries of knowledge. See our view beyond solar system and galaxy into the dark corners of the edge of light.

But let the ashes humble us – the badge of humility, a sign of our own mortality.
We are dust and to dust we shall return.
And we can do nothing.

We who partake in the global financial markets and the 24/7 economy; who can download ten thousand songs into an ipod smaller than a month old bar of soap or Skype a person and video chat whether they be next door or ten time zones away all at the touch of a button.

We are dust and to dust we shall return.
And we can do nothing.

All the probiotics in the world, drink our selves silly with sippable yogurt infused with such things, eschew red meat and all meat and gouge ourselves on whole grains and root vegetables and drink Pomegranate juice and sip our red wine for our hearts.

Run, walk, treadmill, spin, yoga and jumping ourselves and find some blessing of fitness and a fuller life today and tomorrow, but still in the march of time we still become food for worms, ash and dust.

Blow the trumpet in Zion; Sanctify a fast; call a solemn assembly; gather the people.

And so we have
Gathered here tonight,
An assembly.
Will we accept the invitation to rend our hearts, lay them bear, in humility
Before our God?
Asking for forgiveness?
Asking for forgiveness
Knowing that we have fallen so far short of all that God hopes and intends for us to be?
And that somehow that truth on our knees before our God allows us to gather more fully in the shadow of the cross and behold the one who has gone before us
In our likeness, in full humility giving himself up for us.
To behold more fully the one who did not become ash for all finality, who did not become dust for all eternity, in rising on that third and sanctified day, in power and promise breaking the cycle of death for you, for me, for the world,
Jesus our Savior and Redeemer.

Let the ashes humble us – the badge of humility, a sign of our own mortality.
We are dust and to dust we shall return.
And we can do nothing.
But there is one who can do something, who had done something, who broke the power of sin and death. Who humbled himself and in his own willful submission to God saved us all.
There is one, signed in the ashes, in the cross, in the dust. Behold the mark we leave with this evening, but we will we bear that mark within our hearts where it dwells more deeply, affixed and permanent calling us, especially these 40 days, to lives of turning to Jesus, of turning to Jesus, of turning to Jesus in repentance, humility, and more an everlasting hope, and enduring promise and a future that cannot be taken away – affixed in our very souls. Will we leave this night with that mark, the deeper mark, the one that cannot be seen, yet will be seen in every word, every action, every relationship, ever waking hour of our lives?

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