Sermons by Mission Co-workers
Global Ministries is excited to share mission co-workers’ sermons from around the world. Please feel free to watch or to share. If you would like to use one of these sermons in your worship service or would like to invite a mission co-worker to join your church live, please contact Cathy Nichols.
For presentations from mission co-workers about their work in specific countries, please click here.
Tom Liddle – “East Timor through lens of the call of Moses”
Mission co-worker, East Timor
00:50 – Scripture reading: Exodus 3:1-12
03:02 to 17:36 – Sermon
The 2002 liberation of the people of East Timor is a testament to God’s Word being alive and active in and through history. If you question your call to be about God’s work of liberation, remember that Moses was a reluctant and flawed individual. Amos reminds us that there are many exoduses that happen over and over as part of God’s liberating activity, the ongoing divine mission revealed most clearly in the vocational commitment of Jesus. We celebrate whenever the oppressed go free as we join in God’s mission to bring life, liberation and healing to a hurting world.
Monica Liddle – “Reflection on ministry in East Timor”
Mission co-worker, East Timor
14:32 minutes in length
As partners of the Protestant Church of East Timor, Monica has served as a doctor in rural health clinics and Tom as a carpenter and pastor for seven years. They admire the remarkable hospitality and resiliency of locals reflecting a faith that believes, come what may, God is with us. Quoting Romans 1:12, Monica acknowledges that life is full of uncertainties, but we can be mutually encouraged by each other, admitting our vulnerability and learning from the East Timorese in this precarious time how to live with adversity. We can encourage each other’s faith and not live in fear despite what overwhelms us.
Danielle Murry-Knowles and Mark Knowles – “The Challenge of Grace”
Mission co-workers, Lesotho
00:01 – Video of Lesotho Christians singing and dancing
01:38 – Prayer of illumination
04:29 – Scripture reading: Jeremiah 20:7-13
06:35 to 17:45 – Sermon
Grace in the Old Testament is based on people setting up a protected camp where peace is found within. Jeremiah decries disgrace within Judah’s camp that will bring destruction to Judah, but also encourages people to find grace in their exiled community in Babylon. Eventually God through unfailing love will restore people to their land. Grace also comes in unexpected places: Mark and Danielle have found it in Lesotho through people they have met who believe God’s grace is still alive in the world.
This sermon and prayer was recorded on June 24, 2020, at First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) Bloomington, IN.
Rosalind Gnatt – “Healing through our abilities and dis-abilities”
Global service worker, Germany
01:05 – Scripture reading: John 9:1-7
02:30 to 13:11 – Sermon
Rosalind had brain damage because of a birth injury and was mocked as a child, but meeting other children with physical challenges taught her we all are both abled and dis-abled; our disabilities teach us how to be with each other and heal each other in this beautiful and imperfect world.
Andrew Larsen – “Daring to confess our sinfulness and vulnerability”
Mission co-worker, The Philippines
00:01 to 15:57 – Sermon
16:11 – Prayer of Confession
17:18 – Assurance of Pardon
Community is difficult to build in this time of lockdown. Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote extensively about sin and confession, emphasizing the importance of bringing our confessions to the shared table of God. We are connected as a church through our flawed humanity, and to bypass confession to one another is to bypass God. Instead, to dare to be a sinner and confess to our neighbor is to go to God. Bonhoeffer invites us to a raw vulnerability, a moment in which we feel Christ’s presence and experience true grace.
Andrew Larsen – “What are Human Rights?”
Mission co-worker, The Philippines
00:01 – Introduction about Global Ministries
00:32 – Scripture reading: Isaiah 43:1-7
02:04 to 14:58 – Sermon
Reflection on human rights requires multi-dimensional approaches, deep understanding of context, and nuanced solutions that don’t ignore the tangled, interwoven nature of human beings. We live in an uneven world, as land, business and politics lie in the hands of a select few, an inequality magnified by the current pandemic. The politically marginalized struggle to find their voice. Isaiah emphasizes God’s presence in the struggle, giving us space not to accept shallow solutions but instead to demand nothing less than God’s abounding love for the entire planet.
Nishan Bakalian – “The Rulers of This Age: Doomed to Pass Away”
Mission co-worker, Lebanon
Scripture (not read during video): Isaiah 65:21-25, I Corinthians 2:6-10a
00:01 to 14:39 – Sermon
14:40 – Prayer of Intercession
Our world is swamped with knowledge but lacking sufficient wisdom. God’s wisdom is most clearly seen in the cross and based on the lasting truth and authority of self-sacrifice and love that is not seen in worldly leaders. Paul states that in the cross God rescues us from the futility of our lives, making us truly human. Isaiah prophesies that God’s people will live in peace, justice and equality with each other. In Lebanon, a popular petition (after the tragic explosion at a port this past August) asked that the government return to French rule. As believers we must resist the temptation to turn away from divine wisdom or bow before any earthly power except God. Rulers of this world with their limited wisdom are doomed to pass away. Our sacrificial service to our neighbors, in stark contrast to worldly leaders, will provide example and winsome encouragement to those most in need of a breath of hope.
Elena Huegel – “Hummingbirds as divine messengers of peace, hope and joy”
Mission co-worker, Mexico
00:01 – Introduction to Roots & Ruins Program
01:04 – Description of labyrinth for processing traumatic experiences
02:57 to 09:09 – Reflections based on Mayan spirituality
09:10 – Introduction to story about hummingbirds
10:13 – Scripture reading: Psalm 85:8-11
10:49 – Story about hummingbirds based on Mayan culture
In the local culture, the hummingbird as a liminal messenger represents the place of peace where heaven caresses and kisses the earth. Its flight is a reminder of a land without evils where we will all live someday. It can be experienced in the here and now when everyone experiences plentiful food, dignity, and a vision of hope for the present and the future. As an example, a diverse group of people gathered around a circle of flowers and candles to pray for an awakening to peace, courage, justice, perseverance, dignity, and the strength to stand under oppression without breaking.
Judy Chan “My Peace”
Mission Co-worker, Hong Kong
Scripture: John 14:15-31
Christ promised his peace to the disciples in his Farewell Address in the Gospel of John. How is that peace different from the peace that the world gives? How do we get the peace of Christ today? The sermon looks at the meaning of Jesus’ peace through a renewed understanding of the Cross and applies it to the tense social situation in current Hong Kong.
There is reference to the song “My Peace” in the sermon. If the worship service can include that song sometime before the sermon, here is a link to listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NVXAGqltPnM
For access to this sermon, please email Cathy Nichols.