Scripture: John 13:34-35; Leviticus 26:9-18
As we enter into the New Year, we are going to be doing a short six-week sermon series called, The Ripple Effect. If you’ve never heard of the ripple effect, it is based on the visualization of the ripples that occur in water. I’m sure you’ve seen it before. You drop a pebble into still water and it forms concentric circles that expand outward until they run out of energy.
This visualization led to the creation of the phrase “the ripple effect” when referring to an event that begins in one place and then ends up affecting other situations that are not connected to the initial event. Our goal is to understand how the forces that shape our lives (genetics, socioeconomics, psychology, culture, our life experiences) affect us personally and then ripple out beyond us to impact our friends, our neighbors, and the world at large.
For instance, humans are blank slates when they are born in terms of their cultural identity. A baby has no idea what their culture is or where it fits into the larger context of society. All of these things are taught to them as they grow. They are fed a particular narrative of their history, where they came from, their future, and where they’re going. The question is how do you break a negative narrative that has defined your life for generations? Can you stop the negative ripples from creating the same cycle over and over again?
What I plan to show you through this series is that Jesus and the gospel have the ability to disrupt the influences that have shaped your life and reshape us into completely different people. This Sunday, we will begin with the ripple effect of our life narrative and how the gospel has the ability to change that narrative for the better. I hope you have a wonderful weekend as we begin another year of fantastic worship at First Pres!