Rev. Liz Goodman, Lenox & Monterey UCC

Advent present us with the challenge of hope--a full recogntion of what's dreadful about the world while also fully assured that God is coming, while also here, to restore, renew, and reign in love. 

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Free_Cow.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:38am EST

We've reached the end of the church year, Christ the King Sunday, a tricky feast day.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Round_to_the_End.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:04am EST

Jesus warns that the world won't go easy on us. Isaiah envisions a new reality that will have worked all that out. Ours is to persevere toward this point.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC) 

Direct download: Reality_Will_Save_Us.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:19am EST

God is still speaking. 

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Comma.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:19am EST

Prayer is a moemnt alone with your God, and sometimes that's as hard a things as there is.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Being_with_Being.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:33am EST

Jacob made progress, leaving Esau behind. Are we okay with that?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Progress.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:29am EST

God's presence shows up in places least expected and places where we perhaps we least want to be. 

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: No_Thanks_but_Thanks.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:31am EST

Where there is, turns out, either nothing or everything.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Liminal_Spaces.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:02am EST

Look for hopeless causes for the right of redemption might be yours.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Right_of_Redemption.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:11am EST

The church has squandered our wealth. What now to do?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Mismanagement.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:24am EST

Freedom is a terrible bruned. No wonder so many seek a cage.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Captive_Minds.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:12am EST

The old ship of Zion moves slowly, but there's room for everyone.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Unassorted_Jib_Jabs.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:37am EST

Keeping the sabbath is as much about liberation as it is about rest.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: And_Twice_on_Sundays.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:55am EST

Jesus is tough to match moods with in August. Let's see if we can try,.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

 

Direct download: Lit_of_Fire.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:32am EST

A moment arrives, and all your readying must be done. Now you just receive.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: You_Might_Miss_This.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:18pm EST

Teach us to pray, the disciples said. Not how, or why, what to pray. Instead simply, Teach us to pray.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Unashamed.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:03pm EST

Be the Good Samaritan. Be the man who set out. There will come opporutnities for you be one or the other, and both make for good.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Most_People.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:25am EST

...and the what is the why. Sharing Jesus' love isn't a means to an end, it's the manifestation of the end. You don't get a rpize for doing it, it is itself the prize. Love. Love in action.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: The_How_Is_the_What.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:15am EST

The end is decided but how you get there is another question.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Where_You_Going.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:27pm EST

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Juneteenth.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:41am EST

The church is more weed than wheat, as if right.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Clean_Up_This_Mess.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:19am EST

Not all who wander are lost. But some are. 

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Wandering_But_Not_Lost.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:25am EST

Peter is pulling a thread that could unravel the whole garment...

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Thanks_for_Nothing_Peter.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:04am EST

Tabitha--she who was raised.

Montery Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Hysterics.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:39am EST

You aren't that. So listen in peace and reassurance.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: The_Worst_Thing_Youve_Ever_Done.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:52am EST

If nothing else, respond: words to live by.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Call_and_Response.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:28am EST

Remember your way back into hope.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Resurrection_2022.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:58am EST

Palm Sunday is supposed to be a plesant celebration. I'm sorry to say, however...

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Sorry_to_Say.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:23am EST

Embarrassing, intimate, smelling is indiscrimate--but also exclusive. With its insistence on the body, smelling demands, "You had to be there."

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: You_Smell.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:02am EST

I wonder where you are in this familiar story.

Montery Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Fool_for_Love.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:18am EST

Time to get serious. No more Airbnb for us. Time to plant roots and bear fruit.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Nows_the_Time.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:48am EST

What do you want? 

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Left_Wanting_2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:16am EST

Bread and circus, please! But we don't live by bread alone.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Here_We_Are_Now_Entertain_Us.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:31am EST

Jesus and the twelve were hardly the gods they were enacting to be--and this is very much the point.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Extra_Ordinary.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:12am EST

A close encounter with the holy can really leave us feeling ugly. Best to avoid it  then?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Ashamed_of_Ourselves.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:20am EST

It would come to be called the "fullness of time." More coloquially, it's the 1st century AD. So, why now for God to act so radically in Christ? What made it the right time?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Why_Now.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:57am EST

It might be a tough thing to manage these days, but moments of joy will find us, enlighten us. Look for these moments and treasure them in your hearts.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Joy.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:14am EST

The magi were expecting probably something quite different...?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: This_Is_All.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:47pm EST

The 2nd Sunday after Christmas is maybe the worst Sunday to find ourselves back online for worship. But here we are...

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Excarnation.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 9:12am EST

Christmas isn't a holiday for nostalgia, it's a holiday to press us more deeply into today and the future that how live now will bring.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Its_Coming.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:25am EST

John was great at being a herald. He fell short of being the messiah.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Unquenchable_Fire.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:31am EST

Remember to hope.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Ready_or_Not.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 2:51pm EST

The coming of the son of man coincides with a lot of trouble. So, is it good news that we've got a lot of trouble these days?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Good_Trouble.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:11am EST

The last Sunday of the church year is a good time to wonder whether we're up for another trip around the calendar.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: A_Few_Options.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 1:26pm EST

Numbers are down in congregations across the county, maybe across the country. Endurance is the name of the game for the faithful. So, who's with me?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: The_Skin_of_Our_Teeth.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:10am EST

The widow might have been happy to give her last penny to the Temple. Jesus wasn't happy for her.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Tide_Up.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:53am EST

Jesus urges us to be as children. So what's stopping us from doing that?

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Monterey Church, UCC

Direct download: Hey_Kiddo.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:37am EST

Revolution? Resignation? Some mysterious third way?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: You_Say_You_Want_a_Revolution.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:39am EST

Hell is other people--or maybe that's the kingdom of heaven. 

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Enter_At_Your_Own_Risk.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:08am EST

Pay attention to the things that make your stumble on your way to God, and the things that help you get close.

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Monterey Church, UCC

Direct download: Hot_and_Cold.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:30am EST

The church isn't designed for efficiency. That said, there's no better time for manifesting the reign of God than now.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Asking_for_Trouble.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:37am EST

Power is meant to serve the good.

Beware when power is put to serving power.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Power.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:33am EST

Repentance, which is a change of mind, comes with repetition. 

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: To_Change_Your_Mind.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:58am EST

The moment when Jesus learned he was Christ for the world is an ugly one. Brace yourself for a moment when Jesus was't "the good guy."

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Monterey Church, UCC

Direct download: Far_Away.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EST

Empires rise and fall, but the word of the Lord speaks as ever.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Bare_Necessities.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:18am EST

Jesus invites us to bring our worst--and our worst is pretty bad.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Sorry_About_This.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:01am EST

Remember that old summer camp song, "They'll Know We Are Christians By Our Love (by our Love)"? Turns out that was pretty good stuff.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: What_Do_We_Do_Now.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 2:59pm EST

In this age of kitsch, where can we can find what's true, authentic, bearing an aura as almost halo?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Mechanical_Reproduction.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:57am EST

Which will it be, couch or cross? 

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Couch_Potato.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:57am EST

In Jesus we meet someone worthy of our essential followership.

Monterey Church (UCC)

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Following_Up.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:32am EST

It is in any vent final word on the subject.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Be_Cause.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:22am EST

Langston Hughes got it right. Nearly a century ago, he knew America is aim and aspiration. He was right: it was then, and is still.  America dies when our aspiration to be America dies.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Interdependence_Day.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:05am EST

To have and to hold: the church asks a lot.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Holding_Pattern.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:22am EST

Course correction: we've gotten God wrong.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Together_We_Sail.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:21am EST

What if God really is at work in all things for good?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: All_Shall_Be_Well.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:35am EST

As we set off into ordinary time, we've got quite a challenge to live out.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Let_Loose_2.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 5:58pm EST

Pentecost, the event, comes after a protracted period of waiting for apostles. Sound familiar?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Pandemic_Pentecost.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:40am EST

This is a weird Sunday for celebrating. On the other hand, it might really speak to our moment.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

With thanks to Nappy Roots' for their song, Good Day.

Direct download: Bated_Breath.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:26am EST

Pull up a chair, it's story time.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Story_Time_2.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 6:02pm EST

The church is a humanizing project. 

Monterey Church,  UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Re-Centering.m4a
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 8:02am EST

When you lay down your life for your friends, you're dangerous to the status quo, but you're close to the kingdom of God.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Thanks to Nahkane's "New Brighton" for inspiring the mantra that is the title of this sermon. 

Direct download: Never_Live_in_Fear_Again.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:31am EST

When astonishing truth claims is all you've got--that and a Resurrecting God.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Durable_Good.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:09am EST

Are we hoping God will turn back time, or are we good with God redeeming time?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Shout out to The Call for use of their song, "I Still Believe."

Direct download: I_Still_Believe.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:14am EST

Resurrection Day! Or might we prefer Insurrection? There's a lot these days to rise up against...

Alleluia!

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Easter_Sunday_2021.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:32am EST

Palm Sunday reminds us of the two choices we grace, and encourages us to take the way of Jesus.

Thanks to Thievery Corporation for their terrific song Forgotten People.


Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Which_Way.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:28am EST

Considering last week's Godly Play story in the light of this week's terrible events.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Christian_Mass_Murder.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 2:26pm EST

What the ancient way of sanctifying time might mean for us in the age of Zoom worship.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: For_Now.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 11:18am EST

The rainbow signals a shift, if not in God then at least our perception of God. Jesus' coming confirms it.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

This features Guster's great song Two At a Time.

Direct download: Ruin__Repair.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:56am EST

Here we take a big breath before diving into the depths of Lent.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

This episode features Regina Spektor's great song "Laughing With."

Direct download: Skip_to_the_End.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:24am EST

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Pandemic_and_Pandemonium.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 12:34pm EST

Ours isn't to fight. It's to wirthstand. We're not amidst a battle. We're amidst an arrival and an occupation of good and true.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: With_Stand.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:18am EST

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Show_Up.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 9:50am EST

Storming the Capitol is a bad idea. Can we say that? Can we say there are bad ideas?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Symbolic__Diabolic.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 4:26pm EST

Words describe and create, so be let's be careful with them--careful with what you say, careful about to whom you listen.

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Monterey Church (UCC)

Direct download: Speech-Act.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 11:03am EST

Logos became flesh and lived among us? Really? Why?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Merry_Christmas.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 12:38pm EST

Here's the homily from Christmas Eve 2020.

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Monterey Church, UCC

Direct download: Christmas_Eve_2020.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:56am EST

The gift of the say after Christmas is sometimes the simple blessing of getting back to ordinary life. This year, even that simple blessing was a bit much to hope for. 

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

 

Direct download: Keep_On_Keeping_On.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:54am EST

Do we need to worry about Mary? Or can we take her at her word?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: When_Yes_Is_Yes.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 1:01pm EST

Advent is waiting, preparing, and waiting. What gives?

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Past_Waiting.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:59am EST

Preparing for Christmas might cause us to recognize there's no getting ready for what's actually to come. 

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

 

Direct download: Just_Wait.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 12:42pm EST

COVID makes hospitality for all practical purposes impossible. But the guest we await in the world is coming anyway, and coming to take over. Before you know it he'll be the host. So get ready.

Monterey Church (UCC)

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Guest_Room.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:52am EST

Where Christ is king, the rule is love.

Monterey Church (UCC)

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Christ_the_King_2020.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:18am EST

We're nearing the end of the church year, and we're heading into a dark season dominated by the pandemic. Maybe these are labor pains...?

Direct download: In_Between_Days.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:06am EST

This one goes out to all you saints in thanks and praise.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Thanks to Alchemy for their music!

Direct download: For_All_the_Saints.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:50am EST

Take your time with this one--shorter than usual, but longer than it needed to be if this were simply a matter of information and not inspiration.

Monterey Church, UCC

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Thanks to Alchemy for their music!

Direct download: Taking_Time.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:45am EST

The children's library has hidden among its shelves a great theological text on the sovereignty of God.

Monterey Church (UCC)

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Runaway.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 9:14am EST

These are days of longing. For this, we find ourselves in good company, if though from a social distance.

Monterey Church (UCC)

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Short_Days_of_Longing.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 9:35am EST

If God is sustainer, and God is free, could it be that God would withdraw the sustaining spirit? And if that happens, then now what?

Monterey Church (UCC)

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Now_What.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:53am EST

When all falls away,

this remnant of what’s real: Church.

Seek, hold its frayed hem.

 

Monterey Church (UCC)         Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: A_Remnant_of_Reality.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:08am EST

It isn't often that the Bible strikes a wrong tone because it's just too silly to go with our lived difficulties. But mood-matching has never been easy among otherwise devoted partners.

Monterey Church (UCC)

Church on the Hill, Lenox (UCC)

Direct download: Not_in_a_Laughing_Mood.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:33am EST