Sermons

Painting of Prodigal Son by Jorge Cocco

Breaking Free

Breaking free and aligning your life with Jesus is the most gravity-defying thing you can do. To break free is to allow God’s priorities to shape ours.
Defying Gravity

Breaking Free Now

It's time we break free. The Apostle Paul says the movement from the kingdom of self to the kingdom of God is the greatest gravity-defying moment of life. It is…
woman happily holding $100 dollar bills

Discovering Gravity

There are forces in the world that pull us in many different directions, and not all of them are in the direction of God. Often, there’s a gap between the…
Defying Gravity

Discovering Financial Gravity

“It has been the Lord’s intention from the beginning of creation that we live in the kingdom of God. Jesus is the force that leads us there.” -- Tom Berlin…
Painting by Sara Beth Baca depicting Lydia of Thyatira.

Live Like Lydia

Lydia welcomed Paul, Silas, and Timothy into her home, an example of extending hospitality beyond the superficial into relationship. We are all called to hospitality.
Photo of 'Thank You' written in the ocean sand.

It’s A Gift

What's the best gift you've ever received? How did you express your thanks?

Who Are You Callin’ “Wee?”

The story of Zacchaeus shows how hospitality can change the host. As Zacchaeus welcomed Jesus into his home, he himself was transformed.
Homeless person on the street

The Company We Keep

How many of your close relationships are with those who look different, speak different, act different or believe different than you do?  Rev. Jim Peich explores what Jesus shows us…
Circle of people with hands joined.

There Is Still Room

Invitation and hospitality are ongoing practices of discipleship; the church is never “full” – there is still room at the table.
Crowd of people exiting a stairway in slow motion.

Spread Thin? Or All In?

Folks are in all stages of their faith journey. It’s not a race or a competition, IT'S A RELATIONSHIP. Are you in it for the long haul? Are you spread…
Painting of a jazz ensemble 'in the grove.'

Give

Followers of Jesus give with extravagant generosity in order to express gratitude and joy for all God has given to them.
Painting by Bansky

Know Your Place

Jesus describes the reign of God as an open table. All people are invited. In setting an open table, Christ invites all people to experience a life shaped by God’s…
light bulb with planet earth inside

Grow

One generation may not share Christ like the previous one did, and sometimes older generations have to get out of the way in order to allow the church to grow.
Adult hand holding child's hand.

Extraordinary Love

Compassion shared is to fill and be filled. Compassion withheld is to suffocate. Jesus is Compassion. Jesus is “Extraordinary Love.”
Doctor checking patient's posture.

What’s Your Posture?

Our physical posture has a huge impact on our health. Similarly, our spiritual posture strongly shapes our faith journey. Explore the importance of practicing a posture of love, humility, and…
Children holding hands in a circle.

Live Like You Believe

If you were to genuinely LIVE LIKE YOU BELIEVE, how would your life look different that it currently does? To be a Christian requires courage and community.

And We Weep

“O God, what has happened to your creation? What kind of world is this that the innocent die? Where is your hand that it does not stop the killing?...” (From…
Colorful hues to depict the variety of worship

Worship

The core practice of Christian discipleship is worship, centering everything else that we do on God. Worship is the heartbeat of the church.
Photo of beautiful new day with green grass, trees and blue sky.

Embrace A New Day

Every morning we have the opportunity to awaken and embrace a new day, and regardless of what happened the day before, good or bad, the new day gives an opportunity…
Road leading into the horizon to illustrate we are free to do any way we like, God is not compelling us.

Where To?

Christ has made us free, but he doesn't insist that we follow him, he invites us to. We are free to go where God is calling us … or not.
Image showing a woman praying outside with outstreached arms to the sky.

Teach Us To Pray

What if prayer is more about relationship than about any specific outcome? Loving God and loving neighbor…what if?
Image of blue shy with 'change' written in the clouds.

Living a New Life

"There is a new life available to us, a better life, our true life, a resurrection life that we were created to live in the first place. In order to…
Painting for a woman with a worried, confused look.

The Choice is Yours

The choice is yours. My sister is calling me to the kitchen. But, Jesus is in the dining room telling stories! Fuss in the kitchen? Or listen to Jesus’ stories?…
Pedestrians at rush hour; all in motion except one.

Eyes on the Prize

A compelling vision for the future motivates us to action as the church moves, changes, and grows together toward God's vision for the world.
Obstinate young boy looking as if he's challenging you.

Can’t Make Me

Tell the truth, if loving our neighbors as ourselves were easy the world would look very different. We feel compassion to the point of being drained, but it’s not enough.…
Photo of dirt road going off into infinity in the early morning mist.

Get Up and Go

Living faithfully requires motion, growth, change. The Bible is full of stories of change and new beginnings. What is their relevance and can we learn from them today?
Photo of a butterfly full and beautiful.

Christian Life and Transitions

Inevitably life brings changes and transitions. They can be scary, but they don't have to be. These can also be times of reassurance and discovery. Find out how.
Photo depicting famous Michaelangelo painting of God's finger touching man's.

Not Yet

Sometimes scripture, and the disciples, and Jesus don’t sound the way we want them to. We want what we want. We want to be in control, to be coddled, comforted,…
Photo of a chain link fence representing a barrier.

Serving Life

Problems don't always have to derail life. If we move to re-frame them, we can discover how to "serve life."
Photo of a child buried under couch pillows in fear.

When You’re Afraid

When fear grips your life, there are three things you can do. Pastor Greg shares each in this message filled with hope.
Photo of angel statue.

Love and Suffering

“For Christians, hope is ultimately hope in Christ. The hope that he really is what for centuries we have been claiming he is. The hope that despite the fact that…
Photo of sculpture showing two people seated speaking with one another.

A New Language of Love

There is a language of love that fills the yearning in every human heart for sacred space with God. Jesus recognized this and gave us ths ‘language'on Pentecost.
Painting of disciples listening to Jesus around a table.

Who Is This?

Who is this Jesus Christ whom we confess to be our Savior and Lord? This message by Rev. Steve Harbaugh explains why it is important to know, especially during this…
Photo of Isalamic children being give new pairs of shoes for the first day of school by the Snearkes with Soul volunteers.

Their God Is My God

As Christians, we can’t get tangled up in doctrine. Instead, our focus needs to be on real people. Compassion the common thread that makes us one.
Handrawn heart in pink.

The Love That Unites Us

Jesus first prays for himself, then for his present disciples, then for believers yet to be -- that is, you and me. Jesus wants us all around the table. What…
Photo of a person outside facing a stormy sky with hands raised.

Writing Your Own Doxology

You can write your own doxology! We get so caught up in worries and problems that we forget that God loves us. Every day we can praise God regardless of…
Photo of kids in a row with arms draped around each others shoulder in friendship.

Do Not Be Afraid

We don't have to be afraid. We are heading toward a big change here at Manchester UMC… here's how we can face change without fear.
Photo of children playing with adults in a water fight.

Playfulness

Playfulness puts a smile on God' face. Worries lessen. We connect with friends. We make new friends. Playfulness is an obligation of faith. Here's why.
Photo of a canary in an open cage.

Sing A New Song

What does it mean to sing a new song? Such a song can bring you joy, bring you to life. But what if you lose your song, your joy? Here's…
Two small girls hugging each other, not holding back.

Intimacy

The 'vulnerability of intimacy' is something we need to develop. Children have no problem naturally hugging others. We shouldn’t either. Jesus didn’t.
Photo of a lamb in a green pasture facing the viewer.

Enough for Today

Do you have enough? How often are you in “want” mode? How often are you desiring, hoping, wishing for a thing, or an opportunity, or a relationship, you don’t have?…
Close up photo of a little girl smiling in open trust.

Toughness

Children display a resilience and hope that is much stronger than adults who’ve felt despair and defeat. But, God calls us to act on faith and believe something can happen.
Photo of a person standing on land looking out into the distance of the ocean.

Blessed, Loving Gaze

How to let go? When all you want is to hold on tight? How to be still & trust that what you’ve taught them is enough? How to allow mistakes…
Visual of child's stick figure art of a family, trees, and sky.

Tenderness

We can learn a lot about God if we return to experiencing life through the eyes of a child.
Artwork depicting a deep wound or scar.

Known By My Scars

After the resurrection, Jesus was recognized by his scars. We too, are often known by what has marked us. Our wounds matter; they are a witness to the redeeming power…
Photo of risen Christ facing the light of day after emerging from the tomb.

The Big Empty

We encounter emptiness throughout life. If that's you, put your trust in God's power to break open the empty tomb and fill it with light, angels, and the Good News.
Photo of a sunrise with beautiful hues of orange and light.

Holy Time

Holy Time. It's limited and precious time, often spent in despair, not knowing what to do. It can be a time when we hold our breath and hope against hope.…
Photo of giant skyscrapers representing those in power.

Threatening the Powerful

Jesus got angry at those who were threatened by the message of love and forgiveness. What can we learn about anger from his reaction?
Photo of a hand reaching out toward the sunset.

Give Up: Part 4

The Lenten Season is meant to shake us, awaken us from lethargy, bring us back to center, bring us back to ourselves, bring us back to God. Even Jesus “emptied…

Social Order

Jesus was a carpenter’s kid without education. He wasn't among the socially elite. Some were offended by him because he acted above his place in society. Who offends us if…