A sad, haggard, smiley face (approximately one foot in diameter) on one side of a circular cardboard piece and a happy smiley face titled “Jesus” on the opposite side that may be attached to a popsicle type stick.
“...come you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you...” (v. 34b)
Good morning girls and boys,
It's so good to see you this morning. I hope you are fine. Let's see a great big smile. (children smile broadly) Now let's give God a big smile. (motion towards the cross and so on)
Dean Feldmeyer Christopher Keating Ron Love Mary Austin George Reed
In this week’s lectionary passage from his letter to the Thessalonians, Paul tells the congregation that they need to “test everything; hold fast to what is good; abstain from every form of evil.” Obviously, his intent was to demonstrate the veracity of the Hebrew prophets’ divinely inspired words when compared to the declarations of false prophets -- but as team member Dean Feldmeyer points out in this installment of The Immediate Word, it’s also an important lesson to keep in mind today... especially in an environment where it’s all too easy for accusations to run amok.
"The Magnificence of God" by Keith Wagner
"Hope for Tomorrow" by Keith Wagner
"Learning to Love" by John Fitzgerald
The Magnificence of God
by Keith Wagner Luke 1:46-55
In the movie, Santa Claus III, there is a scene where the bad guy in the movie has turned the North Pole into a profit making venture. Christmas has been completely exploited and actor, Tim Allen, is devastated. At one point he says, “Christmas is out of control.”
Caught in a Darkness at sea too terrifying for words, a Darkness that crawled and oozed and grabbed and stuck, the children of C. S. Lewis’s Narnia world sailed their ship, the Dawntreader, in circles of fear. “If you’ve ever loved us at all,” cries Lucy to the skies, “send us help now!”
And in a growing speck of light that seemed, Lucy thought, to look a lot like a cross, the battle of the powers whirled around them, till Darkness and fear melted before his Brightness.
Years ago when I was at college, there was a strong Christian movement in our year. I rather stood outside it, not because I wasn't a Christian, but because I found it quite oppressive and somewhat unreal. It all felt a bit sanctimonious.
On one occasion I remember a student who developed a bad back - not a good complaint for a student physiotherapist - I sympathised with her, only to be told that everything was absolutely alright because it was all part of God's will. Nothing could go wrong.
In the rural church where my family worshiped and served during my childhood and youth, the midweek prayer service usually included a time for people to share their personal testimonies. Many people would take advantage of the opportunity. Some would go into long narratives describing the many things that the Lord had done in their lives. Some would offer simple statements of thanksgiving or requests for prayer.