Welcome home

What is home? Is home simply a country or perhaps even just a house with which we associate sentimental memories? According to Psalm 91:9, the presence of God makes a place a home: "With the LORD I am safe! Yes, with God Most High you have found a home." In this sermon series, we will discover together how to come home inside, find a fulfilled life and help others discover that home.

Get your feet wet

29 December 2019
God miraculously led Joshua and the Israelites through the Jordan River into the Promised Land. With the crossing of the Jordan, something new began and the promises of God began to be fulfilled. What can we learn from this moment so that we too can dare something new and thereby experience more of God's promises in our lives? It takes a new focus, a cleansing and, in the end, wet feet. In a few days a new year begins. Something new...
In the parable in Luke 15, when the son returned home after a long time, his father presented him with a splendid dress, a finger ring and shoes. In addition, he slaughtered the fatted calf and threw a feast. All this means that the returnee was granted the identity of a son. Fathers and mothers also have the task of speaking identity to their children and this also in their gender. "In the home must begin what is to shine in the fatherland." This series of topics deals with...
God created marriage as a gift for us humans. What are the challenges of marriage? And what do man and woman do to make a marriage last - until death do us part? What is the position of husband and wife in the Christian community? There are marriage courses lasting several weeks. A couple is prepared for marriage in several meetings. And now I am supposed to present a sermon in 25 minutes that appeals to as many as possible and enriches and changes marriages?! To the...
On the fifth commandment ("You shall honour your father and mother.") lies a huge promise. The implementation of this demand looks different in every phase of life. But it is always about respecting, honouring and strengthening the position of father and mother. The condition for adult children is that they have left father and mother. The goal is not independence, but hearts turned towards each other in freedom. "In the home must begin what is to shine in the fatherland." This sentence by Jeremias Gotthelf,...
The fact that God presents Himself as Father in the Bible gives a huge dignity to the topics of parenting, upbringing and filiation. We may first enjoy God's fatherly qualities personally and then also apply them in parenting. God's parenting model describes itself with the words freedom, consistency and relationship. God's first priority is a heart relationship. Psychology says that what you experience in the first six years of life is your "normal". In other words, what you perceive as normal in life is what...
A diametrically different personality type from Mary is Peter. He is a strongly extroverted person. When the community of Jesus' disciples was challenged, he was usually the quickest to react. He is an innovative, loud person, but he fails time and again because of his unsteadiness. Jesus takes care of him, changes him and gives him the great responsibility of being the rock on which Jesus builds his church. After the last sermon, I was asked the following question by email: What is Jesus? Intro?...
The church needs both introverts and extroverts so that it can act thoughtfully! Two sermons deal with the interaction of people with these two personality orientations. Mary, the mother of Jesus, shows some clearly introverted characteristics. Today the focus is on introverts. They are challenged to grow into spiritually-emotionally mature people. Four weeks ago Debora Sommer was with us and preached on the topic "Curtain up for quiet Christians". I have been working on this topic for about a year and have...

What is a name?

13 October 2019
In the Bible, the story of David and Mefi-Bosheth gives a powerful picture of how God deals with us. God reveals his own restorative nature in the way David restores the son of his friend Jonathan. What is a name? The thing we call a rose would smell just as lovely under any other name. This is the famous question that Juliet asks in William Shakespeare's tragic masterpiece. The names Capulet and Montague were for Romeo and Juliet...

Do good

06 October 2019
Doing good deeds that Jesus has prepared for us! What does that mean? How do we access these deeds? How active are we in doing good and how active is God? "For we are God's creation. He created us anew in Christ Jesus to carry out the good deeds he prepared for our lives" (Ephesians 2:10 NL). This text is a firm ground on which we can approach this morning's theme: Good...
Those who turn to Jesus Christ are given a dwelling in the heavenly home! Unfortunately, the images of heaven are often so colourless and boring that many do not even look forward to the eternal home. This sermon provides motivating images of heaven. What we believe about the future affects our lives in the here and now. There is almost nothing more beautiful than roaming through the woods on a bike on a late summer day and looking down on Lake Hallwil from a high trail. This...
Ungefähr die Hälfte aller Menschen sind introvertiert. Dennoch werden häufig Persönlichkeitsmerkmale von Extrovertierten als positiver dargestellt – auch und gerade im christlichen Kontext. Als Folge fühlen sich Introvertierte oft unzulänglich und ziehen sich noch stärker zurück. Dabei übersehen nicht nur sie selbst, sondern auch andere, welche bedeutenden Stärken und Fähigkeiten sie einbringen können. Debora Sommer zeigt, wie Introvertierte ticken und welchen Beitrag sie in dieser Welt und ihren Gemeinden leisten können. Ihrem Wesen entsprechend, können Introvertierte viel im Reich Gottes…

Home in heaven

15 September 2019
People who see themselves as guests on earth and have their home in heaven live refreshingly differently. The example of Paul from Philippians explicitly supports this thesis. Despite imprisonment with an open outcome, the basic melody of his life is joy, freedom from worries, serenity and freedom. We want to learn something from this inspiring example. How would you like to be? I make you a suggestion: Your heart is full of joy, even when life gets pretty tight. You are a...
Why is it so difficult for us to talk about Jesus and our faith in a secular environment? What is the best way to do that? What could help me? Not a lecture, but a motivational injection! "But whoever is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when he comes in his glory and that of the Father and the holy angels" (Luke 9:26 Lu). When our straggler Benjamin had to go to the dentist at the age of 12, he said: "Mum,...
What makes the Father in heaven the best host? Based on the well-known Psalm 23, we draw conclusions about our own hospitality. And we will once again be amazed at how generous and good God is. Our theme for the year, "Welcome Home", means that each of us personally finds a home with the heavenly Father, but also that we offer hospitality to one another in this world. The Catholic priest Romano Guardini links these two strands together: "But if we are to be able to practise hospitality, we must offer hospitality to the...
"Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for in this way some have sheltered angels without realising it!" (Hebrews 13:2). The Greek word used in the Bible for hospitality literally means love for the stranger. Such hospitality is not only gastronomy, but also a spiritual event. Rabbi Shmuel of Brysow was one of the most respected men of his Hasidic faith. And he was rich. One day a large group of merchants came to Brysow, and shortly...
Jesus calls on his followers to "make disciples of the nations". A disciple then was like an apprentice with us 70 years ago. Back then, an apprentice became part of the Master's family, watching him and learning how to do a thing, then doing it himself. To carry out this great commission, Christians are to go, baptise and teach. In the Ostschweizer Tagblatt, a man named Konrad Bösch reported: "Soon the time will come again when the apprenticeships will be filled anew....
Are frustrations just as much a part of life as moments of happiness? How do we cope with moments of frustration in life? Welcome home - to all those who are back from their holidays. Hopefully you have many happy things to tell. Hopefully everything was just right: the weather, the food, the excursions, the bed, the togetherness as a family, as a couple, or among friends! After the best holidays, coming home is also something very nice for many: the familiar four walls again, the familiar bed again, the familiar...
Wir haben in der letzten Zeit viel gehört, über Heimat, heimisch werden und daheim sein bei Gott. Heute will ich die Frage stellen: Wo wohnt eigentlich Gott? Der Lehrer fragte in der Schule: Wo wohnt Gott? Ein Schüler hebt sofort die Hand und sagte: «Gott wohnt im Badezimmer.» «Wie kommst du darauf?» fragte der Lehrer. Der Schüler erwiderte: «Immer am Morgen, wenn mein Vater vor der geschlossenen Badezimmertüre steht poltert er an die Türe und ruft: «Mein Gott, bist du…
"There are friends, there is family - and there are friends who become family "Welcome home! Real friends are wanted - because good relationships are worth their weight in gold. Helpful tips for developing friendships. I remember a programme on ARD called "Erlebnis Erde" (Experience Earth) which showed that there are 10 million animal and plant species on earth, none of which can survive on their own. Whether for food or reproduction or other requirements: they are essential for each other's survival....
Ein Gelähmter erfährt durch Jesus Heilung und Vergebung seiner Sünden. Er kommt zu dieser Erfahrung, weil er Freunde und Nächste hat, die ihm dazu verhelfen. Sie haben ein Herz für ihn. Sie tragen ihn zu Jesus und geben trotz Hindernissen nicht auf. Sie glauben fest daran, dass Jesus helfen wird und werden so für den Gelähmten zum Segen. Wir wollen heute Morgen miteinander über eine Geschichte nachdenken, die Sie wahrscheinlich alle sehr gut kennen. Es ist die Geschichte von der…
The Book of Ruth speaks of the exodus from home as well as the return. In order for the widow Ruth to make her home in Israel, she needed a redeemer. Boaz took over this function. This gave her a livelihood and eternal hope. Jesus is our redeemer; he too enables us to have a home in the house of God. Today's blessing of Noemi G. is reason enough to look at the Noomi of the Bible in the Book of Ruth. It is a story of coming home. For the time being, however, it was off to...
We do not find true rest through a method, but through a person. Jesus wants to give us his rest. The summer holidays are just around the corner. A time when we wish to come to rest, recharge our batteries and escape the stress of everyday life. And with that comes the question of how exactly that works. In any case, I ask myself this question again and again. "How do I find peace? How can I switch off and recharge my batteries?
What do others learn from you? What do they hear from you? What do they see in you? Paul is a perfect role model! What do people see in your Christianity? Welcome home! Yes, what does it look like at home? Mum and dad sometimes say "The apple doesn't fall far from the tree"! "That's what he or she gets from me" both mum and dad say when they discover something positive about their children, and if it's something that's not so good, they also both say:....

More of life

16 June 2019
First we must live ourselves, and then help others to live. This order is illustrated to us by a story of lepers who first filled their own bellies and then shared the good news. We are invited to the table in the house of God. There we are fed with delicacies. We are then challenged to invite others. Before each flight, we are told how to use the oxygen mask in an emergency. Pull the mask down towards you. Place the oxygen mask over your...
Pentecost originated from the Jewish festival of Shavuot, which is also called the "festival of the harvest". It is therefore obvious that Pentecost in turn heralds a time of harvest. By receiving the Holy Spirit, the followers of Jesus are equipped with a power through which they can be witnesses for the cause of Jesus to the furthest corners of the earth. Through this, people become at home with God. Welcome home! When the Israelites left captivity, it took exactly seven weeks for them to...
How different we are! Welcome home! That sounds like a pleasant home. It sounds like family. Let's be honest! Aren't we a bit too full of words when we really realise how different we are? Back then, when Jesus was with us on this earth, he also looked into the churches. Again and again. It wasn't in churches, it was in the temple, where the service took place. I warmly welcome you to our service!...
Jesus challenges his companions to repent and become like children (Matthew 18:3). To become truly at home with the heavenly Father requires a childlike faith. Someone finds such a faith when he has left behind the previous phases of "naïve faith" and "complex faith". Four weeks ago a woman here in the service told how she had found childlike faith through severe visitations. Childlike faith is a sign of maturity in the relationship with the heavenly Father....
The Bible repeatedly presents God as a father with many good qualities. We want to be challenged by these to also live a good fatherhood in our families. Despite all our efforts, we miss some things and do not even meet our own requirements. This leaves its mark on the children. But God as Father takes care of us and gives healing. A congregation organised a faith course on "Breathing into God's Presence". One course participant listened to everything patiently, but remained...
God not only has a father's heart, but also a mother's heart. In order to become completely at home with Him, we need a great closeness to both hearts. Our relationship with our biological mother has a great influence on our closeness to the mother heart of God. Mother wounds suffered must therefore be cared for and need healing. Emperor Frederick II made experiments with children. He wanted to find out the primordial language common to all human beings. He believed that he would be able to discover it by observing the language in which children speak....
By the term "visitation" we understand a stroke of fate that is perceived as a test or punishment from God. In Luke 19:44 we encounter the word in the Bible and it refers to Jesus' visit to Jerusalem, with which he wanted to call people home to the heavenly Father. Based on personal stories, we want to show the potential of visitations and how they can bring us closer to God. According to Wikipedia, the term "visitation" means a stroke of fate that acts as a test or punishment....
On Easter we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Death and resurrection are part of the normal spiritual rhythm of every follower of Jesus. Spiritual growth cannot be had without the minor or major deaths that occur in every life. Easter clearly shows us that the resurrection power of God is greater than death. It is equally clear to us that life emerges from death. A beautiful example of this is the Jericho Rose, where from seemingly dead undergrowth, through...
Today we think of Jesus' last journey to the cross and death. The Passion story is always impressive and gets under the skin. What did Jesus take upon himself to open the way back to God for us? Alone, without help? Who stood by him and helped him? I'm not sure if you already know that there are last aid courses in addition to first aid courses. The Sunday newspaper titled its report on these courses "The...
What do you do before you move into a new home? What do you do before you move into a new home? What do a whole people do when they move into a new home? Today's Bible text deals with aspects of this question. We are dealing with a text from the 5th book of Moses. The Israelite people are on the east bank of the Jordan River preparing to enter their new homeland. The prophet Moses, who for over 40 years...
Gott legt uns immer wieder Lasten und Schwierigkeiten auf. Es ist wichtig dass wir Lasten oder Schwierigkeiten nicht einfach ausmerzen, und erst recht nicht, wenn es einen etwas kostet. Wenn wir damit leben und sie annehmen, können Lasten und Schwierigkeiten eine Quelle des Reichtums, der Tiefe, des Wachstums und der Erfüllung - ja, sogar des Glücks werden. Eine Legende aus der Sahara erzählt, dass ein missgünstiger Mann in einer Oase eine besonders schöne junge Palme heranwachsen sah. Da er von…
The goal in life with Jesus Christ is to become more at home with the heavenly Father. Companions help us to achieve this. Aaron and Miriam were Moses' companions. Thanks to them, Moses became the capable and mature man we know from the Bible. My best colleague during my 'tech time' was an Engadine and mountain guide. When we looked out of the window during lectures in Buchs in the Rhine Valley, we looked directly at the Kreuzberge on the edge of the Alpstein. For him, that was often...
Many people believe that everything will be fine as soon as they have found the perfect partner. Those who put the whole burden of their hopes and longings on their partner will crush them with their expectations. The story of Jacob, Rachel and Leah illustrates this point and shows us the way to freedom. People's longing for true love has always been sung about and described, but in our present culture this longing is increased to almost immeasurable proportions. The stages of our world...
For decades Abraham waited for the promised son and when he finally came, he was to sacrifice him on a mountain. Isaac's sacrifice taught Abraham to love God more than his son. It is also our problem that fulfilled dreams like to elevate themselves to idols. That is why we must always put them on the altar. Only those things can safely remain part of our lives that really no longer have an idol function.... Exactly twenty years ago, I was writing the final thesis of my...

Become more native

24 February 2019
Our vocation is to grow spiritually. Growing in faith is synonymous with "becoming at home" in the house of God. In this sermon, the different stages of growth are shown and you will be motivated to reach out for the next one. Intensive reflection and living with the Bible is the most powerful factor in spiritual growth. Albert Einstein's young neighbour was talking to him at a party. The woman asked him, "What exactly do you do for a living?" Einstein looked at her and said, "I devote...
God is a God for all generations. Jesus met people of different generations. And what about us? Don't we prefer to meet people of our own generation? But since we are usually surrounded by people from different generations, we should somehow be able to deal with it. How do we manage that? How do we manage that in the seetal chile? "One day the prophet's disciples said to Elisha, 'As you see, the place where we meet with you is not big enough. Let's go to the...
In the parable of the two prodigal sons, the question arises, who then is to do the work on the farm? Obviously, the older brother made a mistake by toiling in the fields like a slave. But just sitting in the banquet hall doesn't work either. Every human being reaches out for love, acceptance and appreciation. If we try to earn these things by our actions, it comes out badly. But if we act on the foundation of love, acceptance and appreciation,...

Stranger at home

03 February 2019
The elder son in the parable is a stranger in his own home and lives a bitter "orphan mentality". All the wealth of the father would be available to him, but he does not use it. How can the change from such a lifestyle to a son or daughter mentality and thus to a liberated Christianity happen? Home is the place where I am unconditionally accepted and can give myself as I am. There I can also sometimes show off a "scolding" and...

Search peace

27 January 2019
Seek peace and pursue it! Peace is the fruit of the Spirit that is in our hearts. What is there to seek and chase?! On the other hand, we are aware that peaceful coexistence does not fall into our laps. But for a cosy home, peace is! Welcome home to our search for peace! Peace is not so easy to define. Many people spontaneously say: Peace is the opposite of war. But is that what war is in...
This sermon connects the annual theme "Welcome Home" with a current challenge in congregational life that we are facing. We ask ourselves how we can derive a comprehensive culture of welcome for seetal chile, inspired by the hospitality in God's house. In this endeavour we find strong impulses in the parable of the father with the two lost sons. Every January we hold a so-called vision service. These services are meant to open our eyes to the future. We talk about what spiritual significance...

Welcome home

06 January 2019
What is home? Is home simply a country or perhaps even just a house with which we associate sentimental memories? According to Psalm 91:9, the presence of God makes a place a home: "With the LORD I am safe! Yes, with God Most High you have found a home." In this sermon series, we will discover together how to come home inside, find a fulfilled life and help others discover that home. On Sunday mornings, when I was a child or teenager, I was still in...