Americans are mired in idolatry. This is perhaps at no time more evident than during the Christmas season.
What idols do we worship? We often point out the consumerism that eclipses the meaning of the holiday, but as Mary Austin points out, there are others that might escape our notice. Perfectionism, that belief that if we can host the perfect holiday party or keep a perfect house, for example;thesefalse gods, we often believe will offer us wholeness. Busy-ness, too, can give us a false sense of worth.
These sermons use the words and actions of Paul to call out these false gods, to reveal our idolatry and its cause: our longing for the true source of peace. Once we have determined the cause of our love/hate relationship with the Christmas season, we can begin to pursue the counter-cultural cure.
Meeting God at the Mallting God at the Mall shows us there is no obstacle too great to prevent us from finding our way back to the peace we can find only in our loving Savior.
Sermons herein include: "Joy on an Elephant" - The story of how Caroline Casey learned to rejoice in disability (Philippians 4:4-7) "The Holy Spirt Brings Everyone to the Party" - The story of a WWII soldier who delivered an enemy flag back to its home (Acts 8:14-17) "Nose Hairs and Disney" - The story of an adopted girl who found belonging in her new family (1 Corinthians 12:12-31a)
Mary Austin is Pastor and Head of Staff at Westminster Church of Detroit, her most recent position in more than two decades of professional ministry with a focus on bereavement. She holds a Master of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary. Austin's previous work can be found in several blogs, and previous publications such asCall to Worship, a publication of the Presbyterian Church (USA), and Bereavement Magazine. Austin is also a regular contributor for The Immediate Word, an online sermon site from CSS Publishing Company. She lives with her husband Carl Smith. They have one adult daughter, Lucy.