Posts Tagged ‘Lord’s’

Pastor’s Ponderings, Wonderings, Wanderings

June 4, 2013

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Jane and I were at the Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church last week in Houston. We were staying in the Hotel Americas there at the George Brown Convention Center. A very nice place to spend 3 days. As you can tell from the picture above we were staying in a room facing the west. Normally I am not fond of the Houston skyline but when God says to pay attention to how He can clean up this world and turn whatever we make into a thing of beauty, I have to take a picture. Yes, it is another sunset picture that just made my day.

At conference we heard Kenda Creasy-Dean speak. She is a professor of Theology at Princeton University and I believe she specializes in youth. She spoke in reference to her book “Almost Christian: What the Faith of Our Teenagers is Telling the American Church.” She speaks to the issues of teenagers not practicing the faith that they were brought up in as they mature into young adults. She also speaks to the issues of the parents who raised those children and how they exampled their faith to those children. Not just whether or not the children were raised in church but how the parents own faith was lived out in everyday life. She mentioned the fact the we as believers are translators of our Gospel but I believe that we must be translations of the Gospel message. Everything we do should reflect the Gospel message of love for the world that Jesus taught us. That before everything else God must come first and love of our neighbor is to follow. We will then be a living translation of the Gospel Message.

Are you living the Gospel Message? Are you that living translation that people will see and say “wow” that person sure is different from most of us? Yes we are called to be different from the rest of the world! Jesus Christ was different. Because of Jesus Christ the Apostles were different and because of them and many others who were different the world is a better place. Don’t lose focus on who God calls you to be and you too can make a difference for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Most especially in those you are around everyday.

Don’t be an “Almost Christian” and most importantly don’t be responsible for others being “Almost Christians.”

Please meditate and pray about your own faith walk and have a blessed day,

Pastor Randy

Pastor’s Ponderings, Wonderings, Wanderings

April 29, 2013

I ran across this illustration and thought I would share it with you.

The Peace of Christ in a World of Chaos – John 14:23-29

One of the best newspaper cartoons of all time is Calvin and Hobbes. One day Calvin and Hobbes come marching into the living room early one morning. His mother is seated there in her favorite chair. She is sipping her morning coffee. She looks up at young Calvin. She is amused and amazed at how he is dressed. Calvin’s head is encased in a large space helmet. A cape is draped around his neck, across his shoulders, down his back and is dragging on the floor. One hand is holding a flashlight and the other a baseball bat.

“What’s up today?” asks his mom.

“Nothing, so far,” answers Calvin.

“So far?” she questions.

“Well, you never know,” Calvin says, “Something could happen today.” Then Calvin marches off, “And if anything does, by golly, I’m going to be ready for it!”

Calvin’s mom looks out at the reading audience and she says, “I need a suit like that!”

That’s the way many of us feel as we see the news and deal with life. Sometimes this world seems quite violent and people seem to be at each other’s throats. A suit like that would help, so we can say with Calvin, “Whatever may come my way, I’m going to be ready for it! Bring it on!”

Well, I don’t have a suit like Calvin’s to give you this morning, but I do have word for this morning: Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

There is a defining phrase in that statement. One that tells us what kind of peace it is that Christ gives us. Listen to it again and see if you can pick it out: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” The defining phrase is: “Not as the world gives.” Do you see how that defines God’s peace? The world promises peace through the rule of law. Law and order is the only way for a society and a people to experience peace and law and order must be kept by the aggressive use of force. That’s the only way that the world can bring about peace.

But here is how Jesus will give you peace. If you obey his word He and the Father will come to you and make a home with you. Right in your heart. Not by force but by choice. They will abide in your heart bringing peace. The world’s peace is peace through strength. The Lord’s peace is peace through surrender…

Pastor’s Ponderings, Wonderings, Wanderings

March 25, 2013

I ran across this article or lead in to a sermon and found it really does apply to so many of us. Read it and meditate on it. Ask yourself what it is that Jesus Christ will save you from when you call on His Name?

Pastor Randy

Save Us

When we wave our palms and boldly cry out, “Hosanna,” do we dare imagine what we really want God to save us from? Save me from anger. Save me from cancer. Save me from depression. Save me from debt. Save me from the strife in my family. Save me from boredom. Save me from getting sent back to Iraq. Save me from the endless cycle of violence. Save me from humiliation. Save me from staring at the ceiling at three a.m. wondering why I exist. Save me from bitterness. Save me from arrogance. Save me from loneliness. Save me, God, save me from my fears.

In viewing Palm Sunday from that angle, we can begin to see the potential for some real depth in this celebration, for embedded in our quaint pageantry is an appeal to God that originates in the most vulnerable places inside of us; and it bubbles, almost beyond our control, to the surface. “Hosanna.” “Save us.” Please God take the broken places that will tear us apart and make them whole. We beseech you, God, jump into the water and drag our almost-drowned selves to shore. “Save us.” “Hosanna.”

Scott Black Johnston, Save Us

Lectionary Scriptures for 6-17-12

June 11, 2012

Lectionary Scriptures for March 25, 2012 – Fifth Sunday of Lent

March 19, 2012

Lectionary Scriptures for February 26th, 2012 – First Sunday in Lent

February 20, 2012

Pastor’s Ponderings, Wanderings, Wonderings

February 13, 2012

Mark 1:40-45  –  40 A leper came to him begging him, and kneeling he said to him, “If you choose, you can make me clean.” 41 Moved with pity, Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, and said to him, “I do choose. Be made clean!” 42 Immediately the leprosy left him, and he was made clean.

As I read this scripture from the Gospel of Mark I was struck with the desire this outcast had to be healed from this disfiguring, crippling, slow death disease.  Jesus shows us His compassion in His willingness to heal this man.  We see the Leper’s desire in his daring to even think about approaching a group of Jewish men walking down the road.  This leper came to Jesus even though he knew that if he got within 50 paces the Law said that the men were within their right to throw stones at him to keep him at a safe distance.  He also was required by Law to shout unclean whenever he was coming upon people.  Can you just imagine the compassion that led Jesus to walk up to this man and touch him even though under the Law Jesus would be considered unclean himself.  I don’t know but it seems to me that Jesus was there alone with the Leper.  The disciples probably kind of hung back to keep the proper distance.

This thought pattern led me to think of how many of us truly seek healing from the touch of Jesus Christ.  Many of us are plagued by diseases of the heart, mind and soul.  Our spirits are held back and our spiritual growth is stunted because we hang on to the disease we have.  It could be drugs or alcohol or sex or pornography or greed or selfishness or jealousy or many other diseases that cripple our souls.  Jesus wants us to seek Him out like this leper did.  He wants us to call out to Him because we want to be healed by Him.  He can and will set us free from the disease that is plaguing us.  Is the life you lead making you feel unclean?  Do people shun you because of your actions?  Seek out Jesus and call on Him.  Seek His healing touch.  Then go out and tell everyone who healed you.

Have a blessed week,

Randy

Lectionary Scriptures for February 19th, 2012

February 13, 2012

Lectionary Scripture February 12th, 2012

February 6, 2012

Lectionary Scripture for February 5th, 2012

January 30, 2012