A Testimony, and Following His Voice: An Easter Season sermon

Grace and Peace to you,

My sisters



Siblings in Christ

When will we

Put down our weapons,

The tools in which humanity

Has so crudely fashioned

Whether its through words of hatred

Or through our unending arsenal of suffering,

Against fragile bodies

When will we,

Follow the One,

Who we proclaim to be

The Good Shepherd

But was so much more,

Jesus Christ,

The Risen Son of God,

Who defeats death

And gives us,




“The Lord is my shepherd,

I shall not want.”


“But the judgment of God

is upon the church as never before.

If today’s church does not recapture the sacrificial spirit of the early church,

it will lose its authenticity,

forfeit the loyalty of millions,

and be dismissed

as an irrelevant social club with no meaning

for the twentieth century.

Every day I meet young people

whose disappointment with the church

has turned into outright disgust.”

King voiced that

In his Letter from Jail,

People are still

Echoing this same sentiment

All over social media,

In conversations

That the Church,

Does not reflect

Or care

Unless there is

An economic investment

Or securing

The damaging

And ever present

Status quo.


We claim,

As Christians

We are sheep,

Obedient to the Shepherd

That we will follow His voice


We mock Jesus

When we don’t follow His commands

To love one another.

We don’t show love,

When teenagers growing up on the streets of Ferguson,

Fed up with the racial violence that has been legally sanctioned

Upon their bodies,

Decide to link arms,

And chant over,

And again,

That they refuse to allow this to happen anymore

That they demand justice

That they are not animals

That they will fight for their freedom,

Because in this country,

They aren’t free.

We forget,

That the Lord,

That Jesus

Is linking arms with them

Staring in the face of that maliciousness

Daring the police to arrest Him,


“God, my shepherd!

I don’t need anything!”

But we misconstrue His Word,

His covenant with us,

Because its not just with you,

Or with just you

Or just with me,

This radicalness,

Through the Cross

Is as, Dr. Featherstone states

“A clarion call to the community of faith”

And all of humanity,

To be with,


And in community with God,

With each other,

Wherever there is weakness,




The cross,

Is that recommitment

To God’s people

Of God’s care,


Newness of life!

We ignore this promise,

By ignoring His Voice,

When He calls us

To carry our neighbor,

When they can’t stand on their own


Why then,

Would anyone

Not see the reflection of Christ,

In bodies,

In a young Black man’s body

Laying in his grandmother’s front yard

Riddled with bullet holes

Because someone has passed judgement

Made assumptions

I wonder would they still have shot them,

If Jesus was standing with Him,

If they claim to be the sheep,

That follow the Shepherd


“Because the Lord is my shepherd,

I have everything I need!”


Well, if that is true,

Then in turn

We should give to others,

Who perhaps

Because of the ugliness of the world,

Don’t have enough

Regardless of who they are

We should not barter food

In return for their conversion,

All the while claiming

That we are pro-life.

If we sing Psalm 23,

If we clutch our Bibles and proclaim Psalm 23 publicly,

Then why do we switch the channels

And scoff

When Puerto Rico is without resources,

And their people so desperate,

That they are giving up living

Because no one thinks that their bodies are worthy!

When Flint does not have any access to clean water,

And they weep

And want to give up living

When an activist fighting and resisting

Against the oppression


Their life,

Because they don’t think that they will ever make any difference,

That the system will always be corrupt

And that they are finally broken


But they hear Jesus’s voice,

They are not alone,










Psalm 23,

is not passiveness.


Psalm 23,

Invites us into a space,

Of serenity

Invites us into that space,

Where regardless of what chaos


There is that moment,

We can be

Be before God,

Allowed to be vulnerable



Before the Creator

So that we can be



Be before the Holy Spirit,

Allowed to expose our wounds,

So that She,

Can quench our hurts


And in turn,

Empower us

Free us,




Be before the feet,

Of the One

Who causes us,



That regardless of our faults

Or our sins






If we are going to cling to Psalm 23,

We in turn have to LISTEN

And adhere


Because Jesus is leading us,

Not into inaction

But forward

To actively live out our faith,


Brings us close,

Gives us a glimpse

That everything is going to be alright


So that our spirits are energized,

And can’t stay still

And we can’t help ourselves,

And we see that reflection of Jesus Christ,

In our neighbors,

In the stranger

And no matter what the world attempts to dissuade

Or discourage

Or threaten us with,

God has marked us,

With the sign of the Cross

With cleansing waters of Creation

With His WORD,

And God has the last say,



“Even though I walk through the darkest valley,

I fear nothing,

For you are with me.”

I embody this now,

A couple of weeks ago,

I should have been going about my usual,


Morning routine.


I experience what I now know,

As an event,

Involving a seizure.

My doctors have told me I can’t drive

For 6 months

That I must take meds

To prevent a full blown seizure,

That I’ll have to stay in the hospital

So that they can monitor me for a whole week,

That my life must change,

So that I am intentional about how I continue my journey,

And my ministry,

But I am not afraid,

None of us are afraid,

Even when we face medical difficulties

Because we hear the Shepherd’s voice,

Because we are marked and protected and covered

By the sacrifice of the Shepherd,

So we








Thanks Be to God.



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Trybal Pastor

Child of Creator=Purpose; Guided by Ancestors = Revolution; Empowered by Holy Spirit = Transformation; Liberated through Ancient Spirituality and Ritual =Love.