Psalm 54.4 (CEB)
But look here: God is my helper; my Lord sustains my life.
Recognizing the work of God is a daunting task. It is more than physical: simply assessing the world through our bodies. It is more than mental: answering the where, why, what, and how questions. Discernment is more than emotional: trusting your gut to telling you what to do.
Discerning the movement of God is a practice of trust. We trust that God who has acted in our lives will continue to do so. We trust that “I” might not have the right answer for everything, but communally “we” have everything we need to do as God leads. We trust that God will continuously show God’s self to us in ways that we can recognize and that God will give us the wisdom to act accordingly.
God is ceaselessly reaching out to us in the lives of those around us, in the words of the Bible, and in our common life together. Evaluating God’s movement is risky business because it just might mean we live differently, we love selflessly, and we give generously.
Sunday, we will be staying in the book of 1 Kings and find out how Elijah was sustained by God. See you there…
Grace and peace,
Psalm 34.11 (CEB)
Come, children, listen to me. Let me teach you how to honor the Lord:
Listening to podcasts has become a daily activity for me. Often while walking the dog, I am also learning something new. When I first began it would take me the specified time to listen to the whole thing. Until I found that I could cut the time in half if I listen at double speed. I must confess listening at this rate did take some time to get used to. Yet, I got rather comfortable to it.
Then there are several podcasts that I generally listen at their “normal” posted speed. These podcasts are really too hard to understand when sped up. I also listen at regular speeds to the ones that I really want to pay particular attention to and concentrate on. The content is so informative and challenging that I have paused it occasionally just to let some words sink in.
Listening to God takes some practice as well. While it seems simple, it’s the simplicity that makes it hard. We have a tendency to complicate listening to God with the right posture and dedicated times. And while this is all well and good, if we have forgotten to trust that God is moving, then all the right posturing will not help us listen and obey. Yet God is always calling to us, showing us the ways to go, if we will but listen.
Grace and peace,
Proverbs 22.6 (The Message)
Point your kids in the right direction - when they're old they won't be lost.
In life, there are several milestone events each with their own unique celebrations. Graduation is one substantial milestone of many more to come. These 13 years of compulsory education may have gone fast and swimmingly. While for other graduation didn’t come quickly enough. As a result of their dedication, each student completed the requirements to earn their diploma.
And while the education is ultimately up to the student to grab hold of there are many that have supported this grand endeavor. Typically it is the parents that offer much of the support. It’s the parents that have picked up forgotten supplies at the all-night store or have carted their child to and from afterschool events. Parents silently cheer them on when everything comes together and feel the heartache of when their children are disappointed. Both children and parents learn together through this grand adventure.
Sunday, as part of our worship, we will recognize the accomplishments of our graduating high school seniors. We will celebrate their hard-earned successes and bless them for their work in the world they will soon enter. After all, they have always been a blessing to us!
Grace and peace,
John 1.1 (RSV)
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
La Porte Community Church is part of something that begins with words. The Christian Church started when the Holy Spirit made a big move transforming language into ways to connect people. The disciples then and now are thrust out into the streets, intoxicated with the spirited to share the good news that salvation is for us all.
The church is not a building made with hands the church is a building of hands. Its roof is made of reasoning brains that carefully and thoughtfully engage the world with faith. The church’s walls are made of flesh that is permeable letting folks come in an out when the time is right. Its doors are made of open hearts offering again and again and again compassion to all. This is what it means to be the church.
God still creates the church of all times and places with people like you and me. As the nursery rhyme goes:” Here is the church, here is the steeple/Open the doors, and there’s all the people.” A suggested verse was added later: “You can have a church without a steeple/But you can’t have a church without any people.” The church is you and me, sent out into the world to share with the world the good news of Jesus’ salvation of us all. Happy Pentecost!
Don’t forget to wear Red this Sunday!
Grace and peace,
I Corinthians 2.10 (CEB)
God has revealed these things to us through the Spirit. The Spirit searches everything, including the depths of God.
As a kid, I always wanted a bike. And not just any bike, but a truly special one. One day my mom and dad took me to get my first bike. Looking carefully over the racks, I pointed to the one I wanted; a Huffy Wrangler. A tan bicycle with brown banana seat, front and rear fenders, and a depiction of a lasso on the chain guard. And while I loved this bike, both mom and dad reminded me those banana seats where not as popular as they once were. Nonetheless, I was certain this was my bike.
We often want for all things we do or have to be certain and popular. Yet sometimes the faith that we
affirm moves us to new and different places that are not always well received. The love that we have for God and one another is always being shaped by our scriptures, prayers, and trust in the Holy Spirit. The freedom that we silently affirm allows us all to come to our own conclusion. The popular thing to do is to tell people what to believe, as if all things are already settled and we already agree on the subject. Yet the actuality is that we have as much to learn as we have to say.
We trust that God’s will will ultimately be known and lived in us all. Being a Christian means that we believe that God guides us, loves us, creates peace, and brings us together. Popularity is not our aim, faithing is.
Grace and Peace,
Husband, father, minister, child of God, follower of Jesus Christ writing in the context of La Porte Community Church