Weekly Message from the Pastor, January 12th, 2017

Have you created your Bucket List? On Sunday we will hear the account of Simeon’s, (Luke 2:25) Bucket List. A Bucket List usually includes the wild and wonderful things we want to do before we die. It’s hard to imagine ourselves doing exciting things. We live with routine. But during the Season of Epiphany we celebrate the God of surprises, who sheds new and exciting light into our lives. Are we ready for it? Or are we closing our eyes, living in darkness? Maybe it’s time to write our Bucket List and plan exciting things to do at church! This week someone said to me, “I dropped out of church when I was 10 because it was boring.” How sad! My seminary professor said it is a sin to make the Good News of Jesus Christ seem boring. Let’s ask for an Epiphany for all who find God boring! This morning I taught children about prayer, using prayer boxes, and it was exciting for them! Let’s consider the possible but improbable!

Pastor’s Weekly Message

Ring out the Old, Ring in the New! New Year’s is a time of celebrating the survival of the old and the arrival of the new.

We have much to appreciate about 2016 – survival of a tumultuous presidential election, a summer drought, water issues, illnesses, the death of loved ones, changes in church leadership, and personal matters that only you know about. We celebrate survival!

We were blessed in many ways in 2016, too many blessings to remember them all: a new baby, new members, new friends, different kinds of services, many days of good health, a robust body of believers willing to pitch in and ‘get it done’, love for each other, our families, church family, and community…

New Year’s Day is also time to celebrate the “arrival of the new: “I am making all things new!” says Jesus the Christ, King of kings and Lord of lords. (Revelation 21:5) What new things are you hoping for in 2017? Come to the Worship Service and become part of All Things New 2017!

On New Year’s Day we will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day. ~Edith Lovejoy Pierce

We spend January 1 walking through our lives, room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched. Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives… not looking for flaws, but for potential. ~Ellen Goodman

On New Year’s Eve we first ring out the old, then ring in the new, and finally are wrung out ourselves! Its ok if you come to church on New Year’s Day “wrung out”. We are going to sing a few carols, read a few New Year’s poems, dedicate our New Year to Jesus Christ, and share communion.