|Theme:||Carrying the "Good News" to others. First Sunday in Lent, Year B|
|Object:||An assortment of postage stamps|
|Scripture:||After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God. "The time has come," he said. "The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news!" Mark 1:14-15 (NIV)|
What do you do when you have a message that you want to send to someone? Well, you might write the message, fold it, place it in an envelope, seal it up, write the name and address of the person you want to send it to, and drop it in the mail box. Oh my! I think I forgot something, didn't I? There is no way a message is going to be delivered if you don't put a stamp on it. Look at the stamps I have brought with me this morning. They are all shapes, sizes, and colors, but they all have one purpose -- to make sure that the message is delivered. One stamp might be used if you want to send a message to someone who lives nearby. Another stamp might be used to send a message to someone who lives far, far away! Most of us give very little thought to how important these little stamps are until we have an important message to deliver.
Jesus had a very important message to deliver. In the time that Jesus lived, They didn't have a Post Office where you could go and send a message. If you had a message, it was usually delivered in person. That's what Jesus did. The Bible says that Jesus traveled all around Galilee, delivering the good news of God. "The time has come," Jesus said. "The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news!"
The message that Jesus was delivering 2,000 years ago is just important today as it was then. There are still many people who need to hear the good news of God's love for them. How is the message going to be delivered? Jesus has called his disciples to deliver the good news. Who are those disciples? You and me! It is as if you and I are God's postage stamps. Look around you, we are all different shapes, sizes, and colors, but we are called for the same purpose -- to carry the message of God's love. Some may be called to take the message to people in a land far, far away. Others may be called to take the message to a neighbor just down the street. The important thing is to carry the message. If a little postage stamp can take a message to someone on the other side of the world, can't you and I take the message of God's love to our friends and neighbors who live nearby?
Father, we have been given the task of delivering the most important message in the world. Help us to be faithful to carry that message to those who need to hear it. In Jesus' name, Amen.
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