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Timothy F. Merrill

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Deafening Decibels -- Joel 2:1-2, 12-17 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Ash Wednesday - C -- 2003
My neighbor across the street stopped by one day to tell me he had petitioned the city council for a
The Fat Factor -- Hebrews 11:29--12:2 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 15 | Ordinary Time 20 - C -- 2003
Camryn Manheim is an actor, best known for her role as the no-nonsense, take-no-prisoners, Eleanor F
A New Idea -- Luke 3:15-17, 21-22 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- The Baptism of our Lord | Epiphany 1 | Ordinary Time 1 - C -- 2003
The Utne Reader (named after its founder) is not at all like the Reader's Digest.
AAADD -- Jeremiah 1:4-10 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 16 | Ordinary Time 21 - C -- 2003
"Do you believe in life after death?" the boss asked one of his new employees.
Christ The President Sunday -- Colossians 1:11-20 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Christ The King (Proper 29) - C -- 2003
We have arrived at the last Sunday of the church year.
Sex Is A Turnoff -- Hebrews 13:1-8, 15-16 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 17 | Ordinary Time 22 - C -- 2003
You've seen the ads.
Where's Jesus? -- Luke 24:1-12 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Easter Day - C -- 2003
I have a hobby that some people might think odd, if not perverse.
Lopsided Clay -- Jeremiah 18:1-11 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 18 | Ordinary Time 23 - C -- 2003
My wife is a potter. She has a wheel in the sun room and a kiln in the garage.
The First Jesus Seminar -- John 20:19-31 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Second Sunday of Easter - C -- 2003
No biblical character has suffered as much exegetical and theological abuse as Thomas.
The Parable Of The Lost Dog -- Luke 15:1-10 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 19 | Ordinary Time 24 - C -- 2003
Like most of the general population, I lose things all the time.
A Shop That Specializes In Conversions -- Acts 9:1-6 (7-20) -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Third Sunday of Easter - C -- 2003
Have you converted anything lately?We do it all the time.
Prayer Meeting On The First Tee -- 1 Timothy 2:1-7 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 20 | Ordinary Time 25 - C -- 2003
I attend a small country church where I volunteer my time to preach and plan worship.
Freeze-dried Or On Ice? -- Revelation 7:9-17 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Fourth Sunday of Easter - C -- 2003
Slugger Ted Williams, "the greatest hitter in the world," the last player to hit over .400 for a sea
Body Building -- 1 Timothy 6:6-19 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 21 | Ordinary Time 26 - C -- 2003
The psalmist David seems to have it right when he muses, "It was you who formed my inward parts ...
The Ketchup Church -- Acts 11:1-18 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Fifth Sunday of Easter - C -- 2003
My parents didn't put up with a lot of foolishness.
Lipstick Pistols -- 2 Timothy 1:1-14 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 22 | Ordinary Time 27 - C -- 2003
"We do disagreeable things," wrote novelist John le Carré in The Spy Who Came in From the Cold, "so
The Nanotest -- John 14:23-29 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Sixth Sunday of Easter - C -- 2003
When I was a kid I got sick probably as much as the next kid, but not abnormally so.
Gratitude Deficit Disorder (GDD) -- Luke 17:11-19 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 23 | Ordinary Time 28 - C -- 2003
I love all these new diseases, syndromes, and disorders they've come up with in the last ten years.
The Mind-set -- John 17:20-26 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Seventh Sunday of Easter - C -- 2003
Justin and Juliana, twins, are college seniors at Beloit College, Beloit, Wisconsin.
The Nag Factor -- Luke 18:1-8 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 24 | Ordinary Time 29 - C -- 2003
Alex, nine, is just one kid among millions who make up the demographic group aged four to twelve, a
The Popcorn Fork -- John 2:1-11 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Epiphany 2 | Ordinary Time 2 - C -- 2003
You've rented the movie Shrek like for about the fourth time, and you're all settling in the family
Croppies -- Joel 2:23-32 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 25 | Ordinary Time 30 - C -- 2003
My wife enjoys Mel Gibson's talent. Sort of like I enjoy Jamie Lee Curtis' talent.
The Head Light -- Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, 8-10 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Epiphany 3 | Ordinary Time 3 - C -- 2003
Every once in a while, I hear from friends I had in college and seminary.
Deus Absconditus -- Habakkuk 1:1-4; 2:1-4 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Proper 26 | Ordinary Time 31 - C -- 2003
Sometimes, you just don't know where God is, or if you do, what he's up to.
The English Garden -- 1 Corinthians 13:1-13 -- Timothy F. Merrill -- Epiphany 4 | Ordinary Time 4 - C -- 2003
Allan Metcalf, executive secretary of the American Dialect Society, likes to think of language as a
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New & Featured This Week


John Jamison
“When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father—the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father—he will testify about me. And you also must testify, for you have been with me from the beginning.” (vv. 26-27)

The Immediate Word

Mary Austin
Katy Stenta
Dean Feldmeyer
Thomas Willadsen
Bethany Peerbolte
George Reed
Christopher Keating
For May 23, 2021:
  • Are We There Yet? by Mary Austin — God’s people never get good at waiting. Our Christian calendar has two whole seasons dedicated to preparation, aka waiting, and we never quite mange to do it gracefully.

Emphasis Preaching Journal

Mark Ellingsen
Frank Ramirez
Bonnie Bates
Bill Thomas
Acts 2:1-21
A focus on the Holy Spirit in the lesson is nicely explained in a sermon by Martin Luther. He proclaims that “the Holy Spirit, the real teacher, comes and gives power to the word so that it takes hold” (Weimar Ausgabe, Vol.17 II, p.460 [translation mine]).  Elsewhere he adds:
Wayne Brouwer
Schuyler Rhodes
Note: This installment was originally published in 2009.

An ancient Jewish writing declares, "Pentecost is the day on which Torah was given." According to the teaching, it was on the day that eventually became the feast of Pentecost that God gave birth to the Hebrew nation by speaking the divine covenant to them at Mount Sinai.

As the book of Acts makes clear, Pentecost was also the day on which the New Testament church was born. Just as God spoke through Moses to bring the nation of


John E. Sumwalt
Frank Ramirez
“The Billy Graham Test” by John Sumwalt
“Correctly Hearing Each Other” by Frank Ramirez

The Billy Graham Test
by John Sumwalt
Romans 8:22-27

And God, who searches the heart, knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. (v. 26)

The Village Shepherd

Call to Worship:

On this, the birthday of the Christian Church, let us welcome God's Holy Spirit into our hearts and into the heart of our Church.

Invitation to Confession:

Holy Spirit, sometimes our hearts are cold or luke-warm.
Lord, have mercy.

Holy Spirit, sometimes we fail to believe that you still have power in human lives.
Christ, have mercy.


Richard A. Jensen
Over at last. That's the only thought she could think about just now. Over at last. The funeral finished. The committal service completed. She was home now and weary; bone weary. Her husband, Carl, was safely tucked into the grave. How had she ever endured the year of his agony?
Schuyler Rhodes
In Christian tradition, we receive the gift of the Holy Spirit as a partner on the journey (John 14:16; 15:26; 16:7), an advocate who will accompany us on our journey toward faithfulness. We hear the Pentecost story and delight in the dancing tongues of fire as they descend and create something new in their wake.
Michael D. Wuchter
Now the whole earth had one language and the same words. And as they migrated from the east, they came upon a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there.

William J. Carl, III
What a way to start a church! It's certainly not the typical format for new church development. Where is the planning committee, the fund-raising, the arm twisting, the real estate deal acquiring the land, the faithful few who volunteer from other churches to give the whole thing its initial push? Not everyone has the personality to start a church from scratch, but Paul did. "I planted, Apollos watered," says Paul (1 Corinthians 3:6). Some preachers are just good at planting churches and getting them started.

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