"Unity with a center in God"

Sermon by Pastor Patrick Fish

July 7-8, 2018

Pentecost 7

2 Samuel 5:1-5, 9-10


My best friend is Jerod. We have lots in common. He's also a pastor serving in Shakopee, Minnesota. He loves sports. I love sports. We both have a passion for seeing love experienced not just in the home but in every home. We both are addicted to similar shows on Netflix. And both of us have always bonded over being the oldest in our families. Or, as I state it, being the guinea pigs who pave the way for what works and doesn't work.


And Jerod has the best story of when he became an older brother.


Jerod was adopted from South Korea. And for three years, he was the king of the Freeberg home. His parents showered him with so much love. He was the center of the world. Everything revolved around Jerod. Aunts, uncles, grandparents, mom and dad. They all adored that little cute kid.


Then came the news that his mom and dad were going to have another child.


Everyone was thrilled for the new addition. Everyone, that is, except my buddy Jerod. His parents tried to pull out all the stops. They got books explaining how fun it would be to be a big brother. They explained how this was going to be his baby, too. But, Jerod liked the attention. He liked this set up. He liked being king of the house. Why change it with some drooling baby?


The day came when Kory was born. And Jerod stayed back with his grandparents for those few days. When his mom and dad brought baby Kory home, now four-year-old Jerod locked himself in his room. He refused to come out. He pouted for a few hours. Finally, Jerod emerged from his room.


He went to his new baby brother and parents and said, "Fine, I will love the baby. But I'm not calling him Kory. I'm calling him Blueberry."


Little Jerod was willing to give up some of his power. But, to do so, he had terms.


It's funny now because Jerod and Kory are super close. After Easter, I took a vacation to see Jerod and Kory because all three of us are good buddies now. But, for a while there, things were a little dicey in the Freeberg home.


For the Fish family, battles and arguments between my younger brother and me always seemed to center on one thing: Legos.


Specifically, my younger brother messing and playing with my Legos instead of his own. My parents understood there was no such thing as community chest of Legos. I had mine. My brother had his. Well, that was the agreement. Those were the terms.


Yet, constantly, when we were little, we were fighting because my brother stole pieces from my Legos sets. Or, if I'm being completely fair, when I would steal pieces from his sets.


One of our biggest fights happened when I assembled a Star Wars ship that was actually my brother's set, but it had just been sitting there for weeks. I knew it was his, but I justified building the ship because if Joe really wanted to assemble it he would have already.


Power grabs. Power struggles. That was much of my childhood. Trying to be king of the house and not be bullied by the king on the playground at school or on the bus.


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