Sermon for the Funeral of Lois Goebel

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					Sixth Sunday of Easter/Mother’s Day/Memorial of Lois Goebel

“All it takes is love, hope and trust….. and pixie dust!”   (Peter Pan in Disney Dreams)

During the sixth week of Easter we are continuing reading the visions of John as they
show us what the life to come is like, and read the words of Jesus to his disciples during
that last meal they shared.

We want to say the important things at those last opportunities, about life and God –
you know, the basics that are really important and Jesus was no different.

We will come to them and make our home with them ---- those who love Jesus and
keep my word – that is the commandment to love one another as we have been
loved by God – provided for in all ways: “house and home, means of living, beautiful
things, healthy foods, clean water, health care.” In other words, for those who trust the
Heavenly Parent to keep providing we have the opportunity act just like a Mother or
Father and provide for others. And this is not just for the offspring of our bodies, but for
fostered ones, and friends, and complete strangers.

How will we learn all we need to learn – and be directed each day? That too is
provided by our heavenly Parent. I will send the advocate – the Holy Spirit to teach
you. For centuries the people of God have been directed step by step to walk away
from trying to earn their own salvation, be rewarded for their good works, and seeing
worship as a way to bribe God into blessing us. It is totally against human nature to let
go and let God. But the Christian life is just that – to take chances – move away from
home, learn and try out new things as directed by God and in accordance with his
basic command to us.

But how can we do that? What about salvations? Peace I leave with you my peace I
give to you” Jesus blessed us. All of that has been taken care of already. We could
never be good enough on our own, and in thinking we had to there would be no
peace, no risk taking for God’s sake, no loving others as we have been love.

But the world is not at peace – it is full of fear that it will lose something. But in the end
we will all lose everything. But being afraid to lose means we never have a chance to
really LIVE! And that is when FAITH takes root, and grows.

Do you have this kind of faith – trust? It is what dreams – futures are made from. Henry
David Thoreau wrote in his reflections “Walden” that people lead lives of quiet
desperation. But not so the saints – they know their destination, the home that Lois
talked of going to these last days. The faith-filled enjoy the journey, and look forward to
going home. In the lives of those who have confidence in the love and mercy of the
Divine Mother/Father there is room to grow. Lydia learned that peace from Paul, and
she brought her whole family to be baptized, she opened her home to all those who
were seeking and found peace in Christ. She became a mother of the church and
gave it a home.
Where is your home? WHO IS YOUR MOMMA?

Jesus talked about a mansion with many rooms. The metaphor of a big family house
might be very pleasing for us to hear. Loved ones will be there, everyone whose name
is written In the Lamb’s blood – the ones he died for like the Passover lamb in Egypt.
And that is EVERYONE. To believe it means you will know that you have a home to go
to – and see the open door waiting for you so you can enjoy your journey – and have
the peace Jesus’ promised. To not believe means you will struggle – be lost and tired;
lonely and distressed. When I have been in times of greatest distress, alone in college
hundreds of mile from home in the midst of a storm in the politics of the church – I felt
the presence of Christ comforting me, I knew I had a home no matter what happened
around me.

I do not need to shun those who are different from me, or hate someone in order to fell
powerful. I do not need enemies in order to identify as a family with other. I can
identify with one person only, a man of sorrows, and teacher of love. In him I have the
key to a door, arms to hold me and a home in which to rest.

John say the heavenly home – the city of God that dwells with humanity will have many
gates and foundations that are the traditions – but the city itself goes much farther than
that. The Holy Spirit has guided the church for centuries way beyond the understanding
of Peter or Paul or Lydia. And all along the way those who have brought us back
again and again to the basics have brought us farther along the road of true peace.

Because it doesn’t take out doing or not doing –
All it takes – “faith, hope and trust ---- and Jesus! And we are headed home. Amen.