From the Pastor

2015 Mid-week Message

Dear Friends,

I want to begin today by saying thank you to all of you who have completed a nominations survey. It is so helpful to see who is ready to do something new, who wants to complete a season and move to a new one, who has interests that we would never have thought about! I don't think we are going to finish the nominations process before charge conference, so the Nominations and Leadership Team will make a motion that will empower the Church Council to elect the slate before the end of the year. Also, there are a number of positions that do not have to wait until January 1, 2016, to take effect, and we will be working with several folks who have already said they will work in those areas and get them started in their ministries sooner rather than later.  

One area that I am particularly excited about is Family Ministries. These ministries have been ably led (as a whole) by Janice Holsonbake for quite some time, with specific activities led by Scott & Linda Stewart, Alice Seohnlein, Dawn & Dan Blake, Laura & Chris Raab and Cathy Kayombo, with the help of several others. Thank you to each and every one of you for all you have done -- and some of you will continue to do in these ministries! Each of the activities (such as the Easter Egg Hunt, the Emory Grove Picnic, Chrismon Tree Workshop and Tree Trimming, and Fall Hoe Down) are treasured events for our faith family. Be on the lookout for upcoming familiar events as well as some new ones coordinated by this Team.

If you have not yet completed a survey, please do so as quickly as possible. Thanks! Here's the link to the online version: nominations survey We particularly need to know if some of you do not wish to continue in your current position.

This Sunday will be the last in our worship series, Women of the Bible. Station WWJD will return with an interview focused on the raising of Jairus' daughter and a provocative poem by Joy Mead, very different from the 3 poems we read related to Eve and the Garden.

As the fall season continues to ramp up, please remember to make your faith life a priority, including participation in worship and spiritual growth. We are always happy to see you in worship, and it is my prayer that worship and the Grow Hour will be one of the most important ways that we all grow closer to God and deeper in our walk with Jesus!

Blessings on you!

 

2015-09-01 Newsletter Message

Summer has flown by. School has begun. And I have been hearing from many of you about life balance – or maybe it’s lack thereof?

Do you remember that image of a calendar that I shared with you months ago? At the beginning of 2014, I think it was. My friend wrote a blog about a blank calendar – the same blank calendar that all of us have to fill. Every day is like a blank canvas, and we each choose how to use the minutes and hours available to us.

There is a gripping song entitled Seasons of Love in the Broadway musical, Rent, with a chorus that goes:

Five Hundred Twenty-Five Thousand Six Hundred Minutes
Five Hundred Twenty-Five Thousand Moments so dear

In the movie version, the song is sung by the whole company, and the scene that always comes to my mind is when Jesse Martin (whose character is “Roger,” a man diagnosed with AIDS/HIV) sings a solo verse, contemplating the woman he loves who is dying of AIDS. This song has been used as a kind of reflection on endings. My friend’s blog encourages us to consider those precious moments ahead of moments like that – to consider how we invest our time.

Is your time invested the way you want it to be? What are the things that are high on your list of values? Does time slip away and you suddenly realize that you have not invested your time in what you see as your calling? Have you realized that you haven’t been investing an adequate number of those precious minutes with family and others dear to you? Investing or just spending – to me there is a huge difference!

Psalm 90, verse 12 is a prayer – perhaps it’s not too dramatic to say an “urgent” prayer – asking God to Teach us to count our days. The Psalm begins with a declaration that The Lord has been our dwelling place for generations and then becomes a prayer asking that God have patience with us – God’s children who often forget God’s ways.

Teach us to live well! Teach us to live wisely and well! (Eugene Peterson’s version in The Message)

Right now I am praying for all of us to live well. I am also praying that all of us will live in ways that will give us the deep satisfaction of knowing that we have

  • served God and loved our families and those dear to us to the best of our ability,
  • reached out in love to our neighbors, and
  • continued to grow spiritually.

The next worship series begins on September 13, when we will spend 3 weeks focusing on the theology and history of John Wesley.

Blessings on you!

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