Tuesday, January 5, 2010

your are amazing sweet pea!!

Hello -- I happened across your blog called Dear Emma Rose the other day and it inspired me as I was struggling to write a sermon for Christmas Sunday. I wanted you to know that Emma Rose touched not just my heart this Christmas but the heart of an entire United Methodist congregation. So I am sending you a copy of the message I gave this morning. Thank you for sharing her story and your journey ... I lit a candle for Emma Rose and for your family today as I held you in prayer. Peace for your Journey, Cindy

12/27/09 John 1:1-14 (Christmas Day Reading) by Rev. Cindy Serio

was a remarkable baby girl who was born on April 2 of last year with Trisomy 18, which is chromosomal abnormality that brings almost certain death. Emma Rose lived for 32 days. Her aunt created a beautiful blog in her memory. This blog is filled with messages of love from family and friends. I was drawn to the way her story unfolded, and I was touched by the faith of her family, their deep sense of God’s presence with them and the transforming LOVE she brought into their lives ... like her Great Aunt Laurie who wrote to her on Easter Sunday when she was just over a week old … Happy Easter Little one. Today I thought of a story my bishop likes to tell. It is about a family welcoming a second child, a little girl home to join her 3 year old big brother. They wondered how he would respond to her. Soon after they found him in the nursery, on his tiptoes looking into the bassinet and saying, "Tell me about God, I keep forgetting." I bet you can tell us so much about God, Emma Rose, you all ready have by showing us how much God loves us all. Love Great Aunt Laurie

As I prepared to deliver this Christmas message to you today, I couldn’t get Emma Rose out of my mind. I am sure that God sent her gentle presence to me … to help me understand the Christmas story in a new and different and deeper way. The Word became a human being and lived among us … This is the Christmas story according to John! Jesus … Emmanuel … This “God with us” is what Christians refer to as the "Incarnation." The Christmas Gospel is that God in Christ showers Grace and Love on all of us, on the whole earth, on the whole universe. Yet this is not only the Christmas story … The incarnation is the core mystery of Christianity. The incarnation is what gives the cross its power. “Yes, God so loved the world – that is you and me and everyone else – as to send sweet baby Jesus, Emmanuel, God with us, the only begotten One, that whoever believes may not die, but have eternal life.”
We all love Christmas. We love the Christmas stories that we can easily visualize in our minds: Mary and Joseph and the baby Jesus, the straw and the manger, the sheep and the shepherds, the angels and the angelic choir, the three wise men, their gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. But in John’s gospel, we hear none of this. There are no paintings of John’s Christmas gospel. None … Not one!

Instead we hear John’s poetry of the Christmas Incarnation echoing in our hearts …
“In the beginning was the Word
And the Word was with God
And the Word was God …
And the Word became flesh
And dwelled with us
And we have seen the Glory of God!”

Rev. Cindy Foster Serio
Minister of Spiritual Formation/ Ashford United Methodist Church
Website: www.ashfordumc.org
Spiritual Director & Retreat Leader/ Mosaic Spiritual Formation Ministry
Website: www.mosaicspiritualformationministry.org
Blogs: imamosaic.blogspot.com & mosaicbiblestudy.blogspot.com & missionmosaic.blogspot.com