Editorial

The big sermon

How small is our faith?

How fast is our time? We are broken into days – places to go, roads to take there, bites of sandwich to choke down at stoplights. Inside, each moment shatters into a million despairs, panics, triumphs, hopes, confusions. How small are the pieces of God that flicker through the cracks? In our days, how small is our faith?

How small are our minds? How closed are our politics? How many articles and clauses and subclauses do we draw up to delineate exactly where we stand? How closely do we measure the degrees that separate our way from our opponent’s? In our world, how small is our faith?

How few words do we have that say holy? How cramped are the boxes we build to keep God in? How sharp are the divisions within congregations, within communities, within denominations, within the Church? How small is our truth? In the great big Church, how small is our faith?

Our faith is small.

But God is bigger.

God is bigger than our state of mind, our static understanding. God is bigger than our small hearts and big doubts. God is bigger than this life. So, grab a mustard seed and keep the faith. Keep the faith.

God is bigger than every good and every bad thing we’ve done. God is bigger than every good and every bad thing that’s been done to us. God is bigger than the poor decisions we made three, five, ten years ago, and bigger still than the consequences we face now. God is bigger than our disobedience and lies, bigger than our addictions – to pornography, to drugs, to media, to television, to sugar. God is bigger than our words and behaviour. God is bigger than our sin. God is bigger than our pain. God is bigger than our happiness too. God is bigger than our right to success and wealth. God is bigger than the things we deserve. So keep the faith.

God is bigger than the people we love. God is bigger than all the conditional, unforgiving, unrequited love of every relationship that has hurt us. God is bigger than our social awkwardness, our need for acceptance, our need to be right, our need to blend in, our need to be loved. God is bigger than our parents’ mistakes and undue expectations. God is bigger than our imperfections, and definitely bigger than the imperfections of those around us. So keep the faith.

God is bigger than our dying soldiers, grieving mothers, fatherless and motherless children. God is bigger than our victimization and vengeance. God is bigger than nationalism and politics. God is bigger than victory, which is already won. So keep the faith.

God is bigger than our voice. God is bigger than our opinions. God is bigger than our hatred of people we don’t understand. God is bigger than our moral authority. God is bigger than sexuality. God is bigger than abortion, and better yet, bigger than the pro-life agenda. God is bigger than any propaganda condemning those who need God most. God is bigger than any human attempt to claim divine authority. God is bigger than all the things we think we’re called to do. We’re probably wrong, but God will get it done anyway. So keep the faith.

God is bigger than all the spirituality in the world, every religion, every faith, every church, including ours. Especially ours. God is bigger than our stagnation. God is bigger than our doubt. God is bigger than our intentional disregard of our brokenness. God is still bigger than our sin. God is bigger than poverty. God is bigger than AIDS. God is bigger than injustice. God is bigger than our inactivity and apathy. God is bigger than all the efforts we waste on things that do not matter because God’s love extends past our feeble, flawed, human hearts. God is love, will be love, will love, no matter what we do.

So keep the faith. God is bigger than this. Do your best. I’ll do mine. And God will still be bigger.

Heather Matsune is a professional word nerd and amateur baker in Calgary, Alberta.

Jo Neufeld is a chiropractor and barista who lives with her husband and a dog in Calgary, Alberta.

Kari Olson is a Hansardian and trivia nut in Regina, Saskatchewan. She is glad her husband isn’t like all the other pastors.

Issue 10

This article first appeared in Geez magazine Issue 10, Summer 2008, 30 Sermons You'd Never Hear in Church.

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Issue 10, Summer 2008

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