Redwood Journal

Writings by Harry Martin


Knowing God

With You, Jesus


“Go forth and I will bless you.” God called to Abram. Abram would go with God to find the promised land, to discover his real identity…Abraham, father of the the faithful.
“Jesus led them up a high mountain…” Peter, James and John would go with Jesus to experience the Mount of Transfiguration; a mountain top experience that would help them journey to another mount of even greater promise and power.
“He saves us and calls us to a holy life, not according to our works but according to His design.” We hear St. Paul’s words affirming we each, too, called to be with our Lord. But…

Where are we going? As individuals? As family? As a parish?

With You, Jesus… Called to His Promise “The Lord is true to His sacred promise; He led His people to freedom and joy.” As God called and led Abram and his family, so Jesus calls to each of us to be with Him, to follow, to know, His promises… of mercy, healing freedom. To experience and share the Kingdom of Heaven now and for all eternity, with You, Jesus.

With You, Jesus… Called to His Presence. The Mount of Transfiguration teaches we must never be content with our understanding, relationship, vision of Christ. There is such infinite power and grandeur, beauty and mercy, truth and justice in, with God. And God calls name to be..His. He call us to experience the power of the Almighty in the paradox of His, as John the Beloved, listen to the very heartbeat of God and be led to the Eucharistic, the Real Presence of our Lord. And are brought To be..With You, Jesus.

With You, Jesus…Called to the Cross. It was from the Mount of Transfiguration Jesus would lead the disciples to learn of the other mount they would be called to climb. Well might our plans and works be interrupted by Jesus’s call to us to take up our cross. And beside our own it may be, like Simon to help carry the cross of another in their trials or sorrows. But it is in each step, each station of our cross we discover we are not alone. We find..Jesus with us.

Where are we going?
With You, Jesus… called to Your promise!
With You, Jesus, called to Your Presence!
With You Jesus, called to the cross
and the joy and freedom of Your resurrection Presence!

Homily 2nd Sunday of Lent ~ 12 March 2017

Knowing God

This Sunday marked my first Sunday at my new assignment as Permanent Deacon at St. John the Baptist Church in Healdsburg California. Here is a cyber-version of my homily:

As we worship and serve our Lord with you here at St. John’s we will come to know each other much better. We are grateful and excited at this privilege and opportunity. These simple realities of our human relationships help us to understand the lesson we have this Second Sunday of Lent from God’s Word.

Lent…many see this just as a season of the Church year in which we fast, abstain or perhaps share in extra works of prayer and charity. And that is what Lent is. But while it is a season it is even more so a season in which the Spirit of God seeks to renew our hearts and lives in these acts of ongrowing conversion and grace, throughout all seasons and days of our lives. Lent is a special time to renew our relationship with God. It is a time to know in new and deeper ways, to awaken to Christ in our hearts, homes and Church. Our Bible readings this day help us to understand that this “knowing” comes about as we…

LISTEN to God…with our ears, mind and heart as Abram did on the journey of faith God led him upon. We are invited to be LISTENING & LOOKING upward to Christ and His dream for each of us as individuals and as His Family, the Church. We are called to listen to God with and through His saints. The Mount of Transfiguration is a profound lesson of the Communion of the Saints, in Heaven with God and with each other here on earth. Hearing….heeding the promises of God the Holy Spirit will arouse within our hearts to dream with God and from there to follow to the fulfillment of those plans and promises.

FOLLOWING God we discover that the promises, the plans, the dreams God has for us are the very beginnings of a life of faith and fulfillment, of love and grace. But it is also a path of dedication, at times struggle and suffering. It is a path up the mount of transfiguration. It is the path of Christ’s Cross that may allow the struggles and sorrows we encounter to bring upon us anew His mercy, His strength, His Love as we enter more deeply into the embrace of the Crucified.

This journey then of Listening.. of Following and then KNOWING Christ, is the path of discovering, anew the glory and beauty of Christ crucified and risen. As we allow God to lead us up the mountains of our life we may well face exhaustion, and even fear. But it is in those times and places we discover, we experience His love that brings His courage. It is His holy love that awakens us to see, hear and know anew Christ and hence to know and become that person and the people God has created, called and redeemed us to be.

May we, together, get to know more of each other as together we learn more of God in our work and worship, shared in His Church. And together may we grow on to know the treasure of Christ in His Word, the Holy Eucharist and in the works and worship of His Kingdom.

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