Wednesday, March 27, 2013

A Simple Sermon On Moving Mountains

I am not much for giving sermons or evangelizing, but, every so often, my status as an ordained minister is discovered by a religious friend and I am invited to speak to a small congregation. I don't take those opportunities unless I have something inspiring to say. Here's something I came up with recently.  

I woke up one Monday morning after a particularly bad nightmare (I need to stop watching "The Walking Dead" before bedtime). In my startled state, I slammed my right hand against my nightstand hard enough to knock the jewel out of the ring I always wear. The ring is made from titanium and featured a small jewel suspended by two little prongs. Since I destroyed the prongs and there was no way to set new ones into titanium, the ring could not be fixed.

I was pretty upset. I've worn that ring for years and it carries a lot of sentimental value since it was a Father's Day gift from my former step-daughter. It was considered a pre-divorce "you're still my dad"gift. I simply couldn't believe that we as a society were technologically advanced enough to put a man on the moon but we could not cheaply manipulate titanium in such a way as to allow it to have two new prongs inserted into it so that I could have the jewel re-set. Then I turned to the last refuge for a scoundrel like myself: Prayer.

Matthew 21:21 says

If you have faith, and do not doubt...if you shall say unto this mountain, "Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea"; it shall be done.

And why is this? Why not simply reach down and throw the mountain into the sea? An episode of Futurama put it best: 

God Entity: Bender, being God isn't easy. If you do too much, people get dependent on you. And if you do nothing, they lose hope. You have to use a light touch, like a safecracker or a pickpocket.

Bender: Or a guy who burns down a bar for the insurance money.

God Entity: Yes, if you make it look like an electrical thing. When you do things right, people won't be sure you've done anything at all.
The day after ruining my ring, my girlfriend presented me with a new one. It's a gorgeous tungsten ring that carries with it all new sentimental value that is similar to what the old ring brought. Both are thoughtful gifts from someone whom I love. In both cases, though, the physical ring isn't nearly as important as the emotion attached to them or the emotion that inspired the gift in the first place. So, as far as I am concerned, the giving of the new ring and the remembrance of what the old ring was given for has moved this mountain of a problem into the sea.

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