The Home of God is Among Mortals

This sermon was originally preached at First Congregational Church in Kalamazoo on November 4, 2018. You can listen here. Revelation 21:1-6 Yesterday would have been my grandfather’s 90th birthday. He died almost 14 years ago—a few months after my wedding, which was the last time I saw him. Bob Ingram was the child of two…

Following Home

This sermon was first preached at the First Congregational Church in Kalamazoo, MI on October 28, 2018. You can listen to the recording here. Mark 10:46-52 When I moved to Vancouver to attend seminary, I began what I assumed would be a long process of finding a church to attend regularly. I did research and…

Give Me Jesus

This sermon was first preached on October 21, 2018 at First Congregational Church, Kalamazoo MI. Listen here Mark 10:35-45 One of my pet peeves is when Christians use Jesus to try to control or manipulate other people. This is a trap that preachers especially can fall into, and it’s one of the reasons I fully…

Rehumanizing Ethics

This sermon was first preached on October 23rd, 2017 at the First Congregational Church in Kalamazoo. (catching up on some old material, folks!) Listen here Matthew 22:23-33 There are not many things I hate in this world. There’s plenty I don’t like, but I tend to have a pretty positive outlook and be patient and…

Dig In

Preached on August 12, 2018 at First Congregational Church, Kalamazoo Listen here Text: John 6:35, 41-51 If you’re one of those faithful who have been attending church every week through these summer months, you might have noticed that there has been a lot of bread lately. And we’re not done, yet! There’s are two more…

Meeting God in the Real World

Preached at First Congregational Church in Kalamazoo on July 18, 2018. Text: Mark 6:14-29 My spouse and I began dating almost 15 years ago. We were young! But we were pretty solidly embedded in an evangelical Christian culture that discouraged casual dating and put some pressure on young adults to figure out quickly whether or…

Biblical Families

Text: Ruth 1:1-17 Preached at the First Congregational Church in Kalamazoo, Michigan on May 13th, 2018. You can listen to the recording here As some of you know, I grew up in Japan where my parents were missionaries with the Presbyterian church. Because we only visited the U.S. about every other year, there were certain developments…

Biblical Womanhood

Preached at First Congregational Church, Kalamazoo on April 29, 2018. You can listen to the recording here. Text: John 20:11-18 My nine year old daughter attends many Sundays at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, since my spouse attends there. Her Faith Formation director there is a good friend of mine and has shared with me a…

Do We Believe It is Good News?

A sermon delivered to the Presbytery of Lake Michigan on March 11, 2017 by the Rev. Sarah Schmidt-Lee Scripture: John 3:1-17 Good morning all! It’s good to be with you today. I’ve had a friend from college visiting with me this week, and it’s been delightful to catch up with her–to find out what has…

Blessed are You

A few weeks ago my spouse went to get a haircut at one of the chains in town that welcomes walk-in customers. His stylist was a woman wearing a headcovering, which he assumed indicated she was Muslim, but when she saw his clergy collar, she shared that she was a member of the Armenian Orthodox…

Free From Shame; Free to Love (A Sermon for June 16th, 2013)

Luke 7:36-8:3 It’s a beautiful dinner party. Simon is known for these. Everything always comes off perfectly. The table settings sparkle. The flowers are fresh. The cocktails are classy. The food is presented in beautiful courses with garnishes. The guest list is small and select: all people who are model citizens—well-respected leaders—scandal-free. And it’s all…

Walking Forward in Freedom

Here’s a narrative sermon from 2010–the last time Luke 7:36-8:3 came up in the lectionary. I knew exactly how she felt—this woman at Jesus’ feet. She felt free—free to love and be loved; free to care and be cared for. She felt the same way we all did—all we women disciples of Jesus. Women did…