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Proper 14a 2014
10  Aug.
Gen.37:1-4, 12-28; Ps. 105:1-6, 16-22, 45b
Rom. 10:5-15; Matt. 14:22-33
Jack Hardaway
                        DREAMER

All families are dysfunctional.
Especially God’s family.
I have always found comfort and encouragement in this biblical truth.

Today and next Sunday we hear some of the story of Joseph, the dreamer, his family, his angry brothers and the beginnings of God bringing good news to a world full of bad news.
This story is ultimately about the dream of God and those who would kill the dream, and the surprise that God’s dream persists and redeems despite everything.

Joseph was a spoiled child, a favored child and a tattle tale.  He also was gifted by powerful dreams of divine import, giving glimpses into the future, not so much predicting the future as seeing that the future belongs to God and that God can be trusted.

Joseph was part of a large and eccentric family.  His father, Jacob, was a scoundrel, cheating his slow witted brother, Esau, out of everything. He out-cheated his cheating father in law.
Jacob even wrestled with God, and walked with a limp ever since then.  He never knew when to quit.  
Joseph’s many brothers were much older and very jealous of the favoritism showed toward Joseph and angry with how Joseph treated them. 
They ambushed him and sold him into slavery- to their second cousins of all people, the children of great uncle Ishmael.  Get the crazy cousins to do the dirty work!
The brothers then lied to their father saying that Joseph had been slain and torn to pieces by a wild animal.  We see Biblical Family Values at work.
So the dream supposedly died with the dreamer.

But the dream persists and redeems despite all else.  Joseph ends up in Egypt and saves the world including his family from famine.  They thought they killed the dreamer but instead they made the dream come true.  Salvation is full of irony.

Dreams.
Dreams have historically enduring interest.   How we have thought of dreams over the millennia has changed again and again, but interest, even infatuation with dreams has persisted.

Dreams are a mysterious part of our lives that defy definition and understanding. 
Dreams are beyond our control, they intrude when we are most vulnerable, and they elude us when we grasp at them. 
They have the aura of the holy-of exposing us-of disturbing perception-from which we can hide nothing-from whom no secrets are hid.

Sometimes dreams are the only place left where God can be heard.  The rest of our lives can become so closed off, so well defended, that God can no longer be seen or heard, no longer believed in or hoped for.  Dreams then become the only opening left for God to be known, the only way that life can slip back into the valley of the shadow of death.

Some of us long for the mystery of dreams, searching for enchantment to fill a dreary emptiness.  Some of us search and chase dreams hoping for clarity, for a way forward, in the turmoil of existence. 
Some of us simply forget them.
Some of us run away. 
Some of us lash out and destroy.

The dream persists.  With irony it redeems all those who forget, who run, who try to destroy it.
Even Joseph’s family in the end are saved by God’s dream-even though they ambushed, enslaved, lied and connived its demise-they too are given a future by this dream that filled their spoiled brother.

What is this dream?
It carries all of us.  It proclaims the future that belongs to God, that God can be trusted.
The cross tries to destroy the dream, but it makes the dream come true.  Salvation is full of irony.

All families are dysfunctional.
Especially God’s family. 
Especially Joseph’s family- and they end up saving the world.  Go figure.
I find great comfort and encouragement in this biblical truth.
No matter what-the dream persists and redeems.


Sermon Archives

(These are Microsoft Word documents)
 
2014
 
8-10-2014 Proper 14A 2014
7-27-2014 Proper 12A 2014
7-20-2014 Proper 11A 2014
6-08-2014 Pentecost 2014
6-01-2014 Easter 7a 2014
5-25-2014 Easter 6a 2014
5-18-2014 Easter 5a 2014
5-11-2014 Easter 4a 2014
5-4-2014 Easter 3a 2014
4-27-2014 Easter 2a 2014
4-20-2014 Easter 2014
4-18-2014 Good Friday 2014
04-09-2014 Lent 5a 2014
03-30-2014 Lent 4a 2014
03-06-2014 Lent 2a 2014
03-09-2014 Lent 1a 2014
03-05-2014 Ash Wednesday 2014
02-23-2014 Epiphany 7a 2014
02-09-2014 Epiphany 5a 2014
01-26-2014 Epiphany 3a 2014(pdf)
01-19-2014 Epiphany 2a 2014
01-12-2014 Epiphany 1a 2014
01-05-2014 Christmas 2 2014
 
2013
12-25-2013 Christmas 2013
12-24-2013 Christmas Eve 2013
12-22-2013 Advent 4a 2013
12-01-2013 Advent 1a 2013
11-24-2013 Proper 29c 2013
11-17-2013 Proper 28c 2013
11-10-2013 Proper 27c 2013
10-27-2013 Proper 25c 2013
10-20-2013 Proper 24c 2013
10-13-2013 Proper 23c 2013
10-06-2013 Proper 22c 2013
9-29-2013 Proper 21c 2013
9-22-2013 Proper 20c 2013
9-15-2013 Proper 19c 2013
9-08-2013 Proper 18c 2013
9-01-2013 Proper 17c 2013
8-25-2013 Proper 16c 2013
8-18-2013 Proper 15c 2013
8-4-2013 Proper 13c 2013
7-28-2013 Proper 12c 2013
7-14-2013 Proper 10c 2013
7-07-2013 Independence Day 2013
6-09-2013 Proper 5c 2013
6-02-2013 Proper 4c 2013
5-26-2013 Trinity Sunday C 2013
5-19-2013 Penecost C 2013
5-12-2013 Ascension Sunday 2013
5-5-2013 Easter 6c 2013
4-17-2013 Easter 4c 2013
4-14-2013 Easter 3c 2013
3-31-2013 Easter 2013
3-29-2013 Good Friday 2013
3-28-2013 Maundy Thursday 2013
3-17-2013 Lent 5c 2013M
3-13-2013 Christ Church Lenten Sermon
3-10-2013 Lent 4c 2013
3-3-2013 Lent 3c 2013
2-24-2013 Lent 2c 2013
2-17-2013 Lent 1c 2013
2-13-2013 Ash Wednesday 2013
1-27-2013 Epiphany 3c 2013
 
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