ANNOUNCEMENTS

Next Sun. Aug. 25         11 am  Worship

The Wolf Creek Museum has an exhibit featuring Esther Miller this month.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Sun. Sept. 1                  11 am   Worship(communion), potluck after

Wed. Sept. 4              4:30pm Set up to serve Christian Buffet – Twin Oaks   Meat and potatoes provided. Have food to bring over at church by 4 pm.    Contact Norma Miller with questions.

Sun. Sept. 8                  10 am   Rally Day brunch (burritos & donuts provided);   11 am  Worship;   4 pm  Service at Twin Oaks

Wed. Sept. 11                        7 pm     Council

Sat. Sept. 14              6 pm     Ice Cream Social & Movie

Sun. Sept. 15                10 am   SS;    11 am  Worship

Wed. Sept. 18                        7 pm     Bible Study

Sun. Set. 22                  10 am   SS;    11 am  Worship

Wed. Sept. 25                        7 pm     Bible Study

Sun. Set. 29                  10 am   SS;    11 am  Worship

Wed. Oct. 2                7 pm     Bible Study

Sun. Oct. 6                   10 am   Sunday School;      11 am   Mission Fest Worship (communion):   Shoe the World (Venezuela) – Halleluiah LeBaron;   Potluck after worship

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DRESSED FOR ACTION

(Luke 12:35-59)                   Pastor Carol Weist

In Luke 12:35 Jesus commands us to be dressed for action and have our lamps lit.

Jesus, our Lord, is the light of the world. Jesus is the light for our lamps. Jesus is our lamp, our lantern, our flashlight and headlights, as we go about our daily work. Jesus is our sunshine even in the darkness. Psalm 119:105 states that our Lord’s word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our paths. We do not always pay attention to the light given us.

We are not just to have our lamps lit and to use them, we are also to be dressed for action. The action in this world includes conflict and stress and divisions. Jesus states in Luke 12:49-50:   “I came to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled!  I have a baptism with which to be baptized,  and what stress I am under until it is completed!” Jesus experienced stress as we do except his stress did not have any sinful strains.  Our stress is not purely motivated.  At times our motives are purer than others, but who has not gotten their priorities inside out for a moment here or there?

We are not to despair about our lack of one hundred percent pure motives.  Hebrews 12:1-2 gives us a prescription: “Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses,  let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely,  and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us,  looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith,  who for the sake of the joy that was set before him endured the cross, disregarding its shame,  and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God.”

You need to be dressed for action to run a race with perseverance.  You need a focus.  That focus is Jesus.  Being dressed for action does not mean dragging along with us every weight of regret and things we do not need and every weight of sin.  Jesus takes the weight of sin away.

Run your life, dressed for action. Let the light of Jesus be your lamp, the light for your eyes, guiding your way. Continue reading

CONSIDERING

(Luke 12:1-48)                   Pastor Carol Weist

There is much for our consideration in Luke 12. Luke 12 opens with a “crowd gathered by the thousands,  so that they trampled on one another.”  (Luke 12:1) 

Consider that Jesus speaks first to his disciples.  Later his words are shared by the disciples to others including us.  He warns them of the bad yeast of the Pharisees.  Yeast does good things such as make bread rise, but the Pharisees are raising trouble and opposition to Jesus, openly and in secret.  Jesus tells the disciples not to be afraid of them even if doing so costs their lives.  Consider that.  Death on this earth is temporary.  Life in heaven with Jesus is permanent.

Consider that “you are of more value than many sparrows.”  (Luke 12:7)   God does not forget even a sparrow which is not worth a penny.  Consider that we need not be afraid because God will not forget us.  He will not forget to bring us to heaven when that time comes.  Even if dozens of others die at the same instant, God can keep track of every single one of us and of them.  God can keep track of who acknowledges Jesus and God does so most excellently.

Consider more time considering how much God values you and other people and even sparrows instead of letting fearful considerations monopolize your thinking.  Your brain will be more refreshed and ready for active problem-solving and addressing fearful situations that actually come about.

Consider that we have the gift of the Holy Spirit and claim the promise Jesus gives us:  “Do not worry about how you are to defend yourselves or what you are to say; for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that very hour what you ought to say.” (Luke 12:11b-12) Continue reading

MEANT TO BE LIVING SOULS

(Luke 12:13-21)                   Pastor Carol Weist

We are meant to be living souls, not tools of tools.   A redeemed life is our inheritance. Luke 12:15 states, “Life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.” Life does not consist in the abundance of anything.  Life is in Jesus.  All other things are tools meant to be used for good to the glory of God.

There are things we enjoy and things we do not enjoy.   As the book of Ecclesiastes opens King Solomon noted for his abundance of wealth and wisdom is not enjoying life much:

     2Vanity of vanities, says the Teacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity.

     12I, the Teacher, when king over Israel in Jerusalem, 13applied my mind to seek and to search out by wisdom all that is done under heaven; it is an unhappy business that God has given to human beings to be busy with. 14I saw all the deeds that are done under the sun; and see, all is vanity and a chasing after wind. 

     2:18I hated all my toil in which I had toiled under the sun, seeing that I must leave it to those who come after me 19—and who knows whether they will be wise or foolish? Yet they will be master of all for which I toiled and used my wisdom under the sun. This also is vanity. 20So I turned and gave my heart up to despair concerning all the toil of my labors under the sun, 21because sometimes one who has toiled with wisdom and knowledge and skill must leave all to be enjoyed by another who did not toil for it. This also is vanity and a great evil. 22What do mortals get from all the toil and strain with which they toil under the sun? 23For all their days are full of pain, and their work is a vexation; even at night their minds do not rest. This also is vanity

                                                (Ecclesiastes 1:2, 12-14, 2:18-23)

However, by chapter 3 his perspective has mellowed:

    1For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: 2a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; 3a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; 4a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; 5a time to throw away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; 6a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to throw away; 7a time to tear, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; 8a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace. 9What gain have the workers from their toil? 10I have seen the business that God has given to everyone to be busy with.

     11He has made everything suitable for its time; moreover he has put a sense of past and future into their minds, yet they cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. 12I know that there is nothing better for them than to be happy and enjoy themselves as long as they live; 13moreover, it is God’s gift that all should eat and drink and take pleasure in all their toil. 14I know that whatever God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it; God has done this, so that all should stand in awe before him. 15That which is, already has been; that which is to be, already is; and God seeks out what has gone by.   (Ecclesiastes 3:1-15)

In today’s parable from Luke the prosperous farmer sets out to enjoy his wealth in a similar matter by relaxing,  eating, drinking and being merry, taking pleasure in the fruits of his toil for many years to come.

He was just following Solomon’s advice in scripture. Or was he? Continue reading

THE LORD’S PRAYER

(Luke 11:1-13)   Pastor Pete Weist

“Lord, teach us to pray”   Do you think praying is easy?  I don’t think it is. And the problem is not prayer. We have met the enemy and the problem is us.   Prayer is not distracting, or confusing.  God has not put barriers between us and Him. We are not too verbally challenged to pray.  But everything in our hopes, in  our dreams and in our ambitions,  distracts us so much that often we barely start. Tom Mertens, a great Christian and a great writer, wrote no fewer than six, books dealing with the question “How should we pray.”   He writes: “Prayer is a retreat from our world, and Union with God in his world.”

The apostles, lived, with, and were taught at Jesus feet.  But prayer wasn’t easy for them.  “Lord teach to pray”  We must begin here,  before we can address the Lord’s Prayer. Continue reading

DOING GOOD CONSIDERING

(Galatians 5:22-6:10, Luke 10:25-37)     Pastor Carol Weist

Doing good considering …

Folks say that on occasion as a way of acknowledging that there is more they might wish could be done, but they are only human and can only do so much about circumstances and situations that may very well be piled up.

Doing good considering, while considering what the Lord does for us – that is doing good as we are commended to do in Galatians 6:9-10: And let us not grow weary in doing good,  for in due season we shall reap, if we do not lose heart.  10 So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all,  and especially to those who are of the household of faith. Some translations say family of faith.  The basic word is household from which springs the concept of family.  A household generally implies physical space and structure even for nomads living in tents or RV’s.  That structure gives space for family to interact and grow on a regular basis.

Most people weary of doing good at times – even doing good considering limitations and the unlimited help of God.  Doing good is doing what is right, honorable, honest, fine, beautiful, precious  and it is doing what is fitting, although our ideas of what is required to be fitting get out of kilter from time to time.

In the parable of the good Samaritan, the two people who walked past the person beat up by robbers on the far side of the road were doing what they thought scripture said was fitting, not to be contaminated by blood and possibly touching a dead person on the way to do their religious duties. Samaritans did not follow such strict rules about being worthy to worship and help with worship in the temple.  Samaritans worshipped elsewhere.  So the good Samaritan considered it fitting to help the man who was beat up. He did what good he could considering. Continue reading

NO REGRETS

(Luke 9:51-62)              Pastor Carol Weist

No regrets.  Repent as called for.  Accept Jesus’ forgivenesswhich wipes away sin and regret.  With Jesus’ strength and guidance learn from mistakes and how not to repeat them.  Don’t dwell in regret.  Go forward with Jesus’ strength and guidance.

Whatever might be regrettable in our lives is not meant to control our lives. Jesus is not a control freak, but regrets can become control freaks. Jesus is our guide and shepherd.  It is not always possible to do over what is regrettable in a good way.  If the regret is not doing something, that opportunity may be lost.  Getting tangled up in regrets keeps us from seeing the opportunities available here and now.

Life can be rough at times and we may need times of reflection to heal, learn and regain strength that do not  end up in a downward spiral of regrets. Jesus does not promise that life with him will be easy street, a perfectly smooth paved road and no possibility of bumps and bruises. Continue reading