Kevin Riley: Sin is Easy / God is Hard

Kevin Riley is a Pastoral Advocate here at Tierra Nueva. He’s also the pastor at Mount Baker Presbyterian Church out in Concrete. He’s working with the local municipality, organizations like Community Action, and area ministries to better serve the people on the margins. 

His piece in Tierra Nueva’s Fall 2018 newsletter is adapted from his sermon on the the morning of his commissioning. This podcast is the full recording of that sermon.

Mike Neelley: Forgiveness Sets the Captives Free

Mike Neelley is the Executive Director of Tierra Nueva. He’s here reading his piece about forgiveness in Tierra Nueva’s Fall 2018 newsletter. In our context as a ministry for God’s people on the margins, we often find ourselves in overlapping territories with the justice system, addiction, poverty, immigration, trauma, abuse, etc.

After Mike reads his piece, he and Alvin discuss some larger mechanics of forgiveness and reconciliation. 

Matt Malyon: The Enjambed Captive

Matt Malyon is a chaplain at Tierra Nueva, visiting men’s jail and juvenile detention. He’s also the director of Underground Writing, which began at Tierra Nueva and will soon launch as an independent arts non-profit. In his contribution to Tierra Nueva’s Fall 2018 newsletter, he talks about the possibility of breaking free and how he sees that happening in the at-risk communities where Underground Writing operates. 

Gracie Ekblad: Jesus Walking on Water

Pastor Gracie Ekblad brings us the message, exploring hard/soft hearts, and how we postured to God’s work in our world.

Mark 6:45-50 (ESV)

Jesus Walks on the Water

45 Immediately he made his disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd. 46 And after he had taken leave of them, he went up on the mountain to pray. 47 And when evening came, the boat was out on the sea, and he was alone on the land. 48 And he saw that they were making headway painfully, for the wind was against them. And about the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea. He meant to pass by them, 49 but when they saw him walking on the sea they thought it was a ghost, and cried out, 50 for they all saw him and were terrified. But immediately he spoke to them and said, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.”

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Bob Ekblad: When Jesus is Your Highest Power

The Ekblads are back from their travels with The People’s Seminary—British Columbia to Tanzania to Morocco. Pastor Bob Ekblad brings us the message from Psalm 16 and Matthew 6:19-24.

Psalm 16 (ESV)

You Will Not Abandon My Soul

A Miktam of David.

Preserve me, O God, for in you I take refuge.
I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord;
    I have no good apart from you.”

As for the saints in the land, they are the excellent ones,
    in whom is all my delight.

The sorrows of those who run after another god shall multiply;
    their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out
    or take their names on my lips.

The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup;
    you hold my lot.
The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
    indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.

I bless the Lord who gives me counsel;
    in the night also my heart instructs me.
I have set the Lord always before me;
    because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.

Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;
    my flesh also dwells secure.
10 For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol,
    or let your holy one see corruption.

11 You make known to me the path of life;
    in your presence there is fullness of joy;
    at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Matthew 6:19-24 (ESV)

Lay Up Treasures in Heaven

19 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, 23 but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!

24 “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.

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Mike Neelley: Space for God

Pastor Mike Neelley leads us through an evaluation of what we keep in front of God, ending with a communal breath prayer. We look at John 15:4-5 and Matthew 6:6.

John 15:4-5 (ESV)

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.

Matthew 6:6 (NIV)

But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.

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