Saturday, February 22, 2020
Friday, February 21, 2020
Thursday, February 20, 2020
Thanks to Dave for sharing the message while I was away at my parents!
Scripture Lesson - 2nd Samuel 7:1-17
A gray-haired woman in a white jacket carefully positioned the optometer in front of my eyes. "Concentrate on the bottom line" she said. "Can you read it?"
"T..F..P..V..O.. or is that a C..."
"Which is clearer?" She asked. The lenses snapped into place and the image changed slightly.
"That's fine," she said. "We'll make the glasses."
Eye exams... we have all had them. Adjustments to vision...minor corrections to make things clearer. Bifocals when our arms get too short. Trifocals when the music on the piano or the computer screen isn't quite in focus with either correction.
King David got a vision correction in our lesson today. With the help of Nathan the prophet, he got a clearer picture of himself and God.
As we reckon time it was about 1000 years before the birth of Christ. Israel was a rag-tag tribe of nomadic shepherds and farmers. They were in the "Promise Land", but besieged by enemies on all sides.
King Saul had build an army to protect the rapidly growing population, but had limited success against his aggressive neighbors.
David was an uneducated keeper of the flock. Today with his background he might be an attendant at a car wash. Perhaps he would be the guy who washes the wheels before the car goes through the machine. He had no formal education, no military background, no chance at a career.
On those long, boring afternoons in the hot sun of Palestine he would amuse himself by composing songs, and throwing rocks at mice. He probably had some encounters with wild animals who saw his sheep as easy prey. He got to be quite good at throwing rocks, but most parents would see little future for someone who was really good at throwing rocks.
I can still hear my grandmother's voice saying, "You kids put those rocks down before you put somebody's eye out."
We all know the story of David killing Goliath with his sling shot and a rock. Since my name is David I was always fascinated by the story of this boy hero.
It was not one of my Grandmother's favorites.
Wednesday, February 19, 2020
Tuesday, February 18, 2020
Thursday, February 13, 2020
Wednesday, February 12, 2020
Tuesday, February 11, 2020
No video this week. Sorry!
1-2 Feb 2020, Christ Mountain Top
Scout Sunday, the Lord’s Table
Praying the Scripture, Psalm 34, pp 769-770
Children, Genesis 18.1-15 (OT Trinity, simple hospitality)
Message, Matthew 25.31-46 (sheep and goats)
Mission Moment, Scouts
Years ago, the regional shelter for homeless men was mobile. Guys would stay at a church for a week and during the day be bussed out to work or elsewhere. At that time, Debbie Evanko was our church administrator, and one of the weeks when the men were here they had a snow day. The guys couldn’t get out of the building during the day, and school was closed. So Debbie’s ten-year old son Jimmy came to work with her. They ordered pizza for the men that day and Jimmy came in and asked if he could eat with them. “The pizza was ordered for the men, not for you.” “But they asked me.” Jimmy and the men ate together and hung out for the day. On the way home, he said to Debbie, “You know mom, they’re just like us. Only … they have time for me.” These homeless men gave Jimmy a gift, and he gave them a gift.
Let us take seriously the cause of the poor
as though it were our own –
indeed as what it really is, the cause of Jesus Christ,
who on the final judgment day will call to salvation
those who treated the poor with faith in him:
“Whatever you did to one of these poor ones –
the neglected, blind, lame, deaf, mute –
you did to me.”
Archbishop Oscar Romero, The Violence of Love: The Pastoral Wisdom of Archbishop Oscar Romero, translated and compiled by James R. Brockman, S.J., San Francisco: Harper & Row, 1988, p 196.
Friday, February 7, 2020
Monday, February 3, 2020
Mamy Liata, with crutch, and her family are among the war-displaced people in Eastern Congo who are receiving humanitarian assistance from The United Methodist Church. Photo courtesy of UMCOR Disaster Management Office, East Congo.
Jan. 8, 2020 | LUBUTU, Congo (UM News)
25-26 Jan 2020, Christ Mountain Top
Praying the Scripture, Isaiah 66, selections (inserted)
Children, Matthew 12.46-50 (My Brother and Sister and Mother)
Message, Revelation 21.1-8 (dwelling place of God is with humanity)
Years ago, I went through an exhaustive and exhausting personal and professional assessment for serving as a church planter in our region of The United Methodist Church. Jim Griffith, who was conducting the screening process, sat down across from me and Robin and looked at my standard personality inventories: “Well, we’ve got an ax murderer here.” Those were his first words.
As I talked about my long-term dream to start a church, he stopped me and asked, “Why haven’t you done it already?” Being more vulnerable and exposed than usual, and being pushed into extensive self-reflection, I said something I had not prepared or anticipated. “Because I did not have a home.”
We’ve all got “stuff” to work through, and I’ve got my share. Adopted siblings who had been victims of abuse and who when puberty hit … well, enough about that. It was hard on them, it was hard on me, it was hard on our whole family. I insulated myself with Scripture and hymn and prayer and fasting. I left for college, my parents rented out my room, and I never came back except to visit over holidays. Then, when I became a United Methodist, my parents were sure I had lost the true faith and my salvation with it. Fortunately, I’ve worked through most of that stuff, except the ax murderer part, and I’m as normal as can be.