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As Advent begins Sunday, remember God does what we cannot do. When today is barren and tomorrow is bleak, God draws near with surprising grace to bring new life and fresh beauty. […] Read More

The events and experiences portrayed in the biblical testimony have a way of becoming metaphors for life. Even when times are distressing, the message of hope is clear: Keep singing the Lord’s song, even in a strange land. […] Read More

Optics can speak more clearly and thunderously than words. Such was the case when President Donald Trump delivered his State of the Union address this week. The scene was familiar for those who have watched past presidents give the annual address to Congress. The president makes a statement; his party stands to enthusiastic applause while […] Read More

We desperately need Advent this year, more than any time I can remember. This season of waiting with expectation and preparing for the coming of Christmas offers a time for Christians to reflect upon our lives and the world around us. It is a season for understanding that our need for the Immanuel persists. Disciples […] Read More

Every weekday morning I walked through the same neighborhood. I watched and listened, trying to see as God sees in that place. As I walked, I became aware of a place where it appeared the odds were stacked against you. Where you didn’t necessarily achieve your academic potential. Where getting a job that paid enough […] Read More

Hope perches in the soul of every human. Thank you, Emily Dickinson, for the lovely imagery. Like breathing itself, hope is an intrinsic practice that sustains life. When reflecting on Paul’s trilogy of faith, hope and love, hope usually gets negligible attention, for it seems more ephemeral, less practical. Thankfully, one theologian in particular, Jürgen […] Read More

How can you not like the story of the Pilgrims? They came to America to find religious freedom. They were “separatists,” believing that the true church must separate itself from the corruptions of the world, in particular the Anglican Church and its state-supported status as an established church. They were known as “nonconformists,” as in […] Read More

I can’t bear to listen to the news. A friend shared this sentiment with me recently, reflecting an experience that I am beginning to hear with some regularity. The feeling with which she spoke exposed a vulnerability and anxiety that is becoming increasingly common. I knew exactly what she meant; I’ve felt much the same […] Read More

Recent events in the news have a lot of people upset and wondering, “What is this world coming to?” The massacre in Orlando, in particular, causes one to question the sanity of humankind. How could anyone do such a horrible thing? Of course, the Orlando tragedy is just one of many mass killings we’ve witnessed […] Read More

A sermon by Jim Somerville, Pastor, First Baptist Church, Richmond, Va. May 4, 2014 The Third Sunday of Easter Luke 24:13-35 Now on that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they […] Read More