Highlights from the March 22, 2009 service at Mayflower Congregational UCC Church. Rev. Robin Meyers, senior pastor.
Title of Sermon: Who Cares?
Scripture Lesson: I John 4: 7-8
Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.
Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love.
Highlights from the Sermon:
At one time, the Church classified sins according to the danger they presented to the human soul. The worst, termed "The Seven Deadly Sins," are usually listed as being pride, avarice, lust, anger, gluttony, envy, and sloth. (These form the basis for most TV mini-series.)
However, the last on the list doesn't sound so deadly to us. We think of it in terms of being a Couch Potato, Dagwood on the sofa. That is until we realize that the Latin word used for this sin is acedia which literally means "without caring", utter apathy.
In order for us to function, we have to tune out some things in order to concentrate on those things to which we should give our attention. Psychologists call this "negative adaptation." The danger comes from when we tune out everything not immediately important to our desires.
The Seven Deadly Sins were so identified because they were thought to be the source of lesser,venial sins. However, Sloth is itself the source of other Deadly Sins. Greed, for example, gets its marching orders from Sloth since Solth causes us to concentrate on ourselves exclusively. This also engenders the sin of Pride come through tuning out the needs and worth of others.
Sloth also corrupts religious devotion. There are far too many people who have just enough relgion to make them feel guilty, but not enough to make them feel responsible for their guilt, responsible in the sense of being "able to respond" to the needs of others.
John's counsel that we "show we are Christians by our love" is a call for us to become the beloved community. We live in a world that is looking for something real. The church's responsiblity is to become such a community. This we show through our love in action.
Robin said that he thanked God most for having found such a community in Mayflower Chruch.