Sermon for Matthew 11:2-11   -   Christmas Questions
Advent 3

Why in the world did John the Baptist question if Jesus was the one? Maybe he forgot. Maybe he did recognize Jesus at his baptism, and now, a few months later, he just forgot. You have to wonder, however, what could make a man forget that Jesus was the Christ. That seems pretty unforgettable. The best way to answer that may be to look at what makes us forget who he is. Maybe that will help.

Shelly was a new Christian. She had just gone through a religious experience that totally changed her life, and as a part of her new life she wanted to become a part of the church. She was running on high speed, and had high hopes. She was going to save the world, or at least the part of it she could reach. She watched her language. She pronounced Jesus with seven syllables, and made sure to use the word "blessed" at least once in every sentence. She started attending Bible studies and promptly made everyone there uncomfortable. But she meant well. No one could blame her for her enthusiasm, because she had just recognized who Jesus was, and we could all remember how that felt. Then Shelly came to a church board meeting.

She bowed her head during the opening prayer, and then studied the minutes of the previous meeting like they were holy scripture. She listened intently to the various committee reports, and nodded as though she understood it all. Then came Phil. Everyone knew what happened when Phil opened his mouth, you just never knew what the topic would be. Everyone knew except Shelly. Tonight the topic was the new church budget. Phil started out on the money being wasted on those expensive children's bulletins "that don't do anything anyway!" and ended up reminding everyone of how different it was back when Pastor Ludlan was there. Everyone grinned at each other. "There goes Phil again. He'll get tired in a minute and wind down." Everyone but Shelly that is.

She was amazed. This was the "church." The bubble had been burst, and the air fizzled out all over the room. That was the night Shelly began to wonder....

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