SERMON TITLE: “A Biblical Road Trip: A Highway to God”
SERMON TEXT: John 14:1-14
PREACHER: Rev. Kim James
OCCASION: August 30, 2020, at First UMC
Hurricane Laura did some pretty intense wind damage to Louisiana on Thursday night. In the days and hours prior to landfall, authorities along the Gulf Coast were sounding the alarm and trying to get people to move out of harm’s way. Those residents who took the warnings seriously clogged highways and interstates. Due to COVID-19 requirements for more social distance, storm refugees had to spread out farther than normal, causing some to ride on buses for as many as four hours to find emergency shelter.
If people didn’t evacuate in time, their pathways could have been impeded by traffic, fallen trees, or water. In advance of the storm, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards warned that “flooding could close parts of Interstate 10, which is about 30 miles north of the coastline.” It turned out that Texas wasn’t hit nearly as hard as Louisiana, but before that was a sure thing, the mayor of Port Arthur, Texas, put the need for evacuation in clear terms. He warned his city’s residents, “‘If you decide to stay, you are on your own. I will not put my [emergency rescue] people in harm’s way. If you stay,’” he said, “‘it is you and God.’”1
Hit the highway now, or pray to God for your safety. Or preferably both.
During this month of August, we here at Ogden First United Methodist Church have mostly been staying safe by remaining close to home. But, because home can get a little bit boring, we’ve also been adventuring out on some biblical road trips. Many of you will recall that we have traveled along Isaiah’s scenic highway to hope, tagged along with Ruth and Naomi on a highway to home, observed the Good Samaritan on a highway to service, and caught up with Philip and the Ethiopian eunuch on a highway to understanding. Today, we have one final road to travel. Using John 14 as our guide, I invite you to explore with me “A Highway to God.”