The Weekly Message

Recordings of the weekly message are available online for download.
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Seeing, But Still Blind

posted Mar 22, 2020, 6:11 AM by web feat   [ updated Mar 22, 2020, 6:39 AM ]

Walking down the street, Jesus saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked, “Rabbi, who sinned: this man or his parents, causing him to be born blind?”

3-5 Jesus said, “You’re asking the wrong question. You’re looking for someone to blame. There is no such cause-effect here. Look instead for what God can do"...

...39 Jesus then said, “I came into the world to bring everything into the clear light of day, making all the distinctions clear, so that those who have never seen will see, and those who have made a great pretense of seeing will be exposed as blind.”   (John 9:1-5 from Eugene Peterson's "The Message") 

We all like to think that we see things clearly, but human nature has a way of distorting our vision, so that sometimes we only see things as we want them to be. The question is, do we really want to see? 

 Video,  audio and bulletin - (recordings of full service)

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Not Out of Fear

posted Mar 15, 2020, 7:13 AM by web feat   [ updated Mar 16, 2020, 6:56 AM by Joicy b ]

As the coronavirus spreads, experts in public health have made it clear that the best way to prevent the virus from growing exponentially is to dramatically scale back gatherings of all kinds through "social distancing." So, o
n this third Sunday in Lent, we are doing something totally unexpected: instead of gathering in person, we are offering a simple online worship experience.

But it's important to understand that this decision was made not out of fear, but in response to Christ's charge to "love our neighbors and care for the least of these." There is unprecedented territory ahead, but we can still "be the church" wherever we are. And this offers us a new way for us grow in our faith. May you be blessed as you listen to today's service (25 min.) and feel a new kind of connection, not limited to location. (An order of worship may be found here.)

We All Have a Choice

posted Feb 17, 2020, 6:59 AM by web feat   [ updated Feb 17, 2020, 7:20 AM ]

In Deuteronomy, we are reminded of how God's people endured many hardships, but they also grew in hope and trust. And as they were about to enter the Promised Land, Moses offered a final message that is an important reminder for us all:

Love God, your God. Walk in his ways. Keep his commandments, regulations, and rules so that you will live, really live, live exuberantly, blessed by God, your God, in the land you are about to enter and possess.

But I warn you: If you have a change of heart, refuse to listen obediently, and willfully go off to serve and worship other gods, you will most certainly die. You won’t last long in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess. [From The Message by Eugene Peterson, 
Deuteronomy 30:15-20]

Those "other gods" can take many forms, and it's easy to be misled. But we must never forget that it is in choosing to be faithful to God's ways that we will find the life we long for.

Click here to listen to the message, and here for previous messages. 

Trying to Figure it Out?

posted Feb 9, 2020, 3:01 PM by web feat   [ updated Feb 17, 2020, 7:20 AM ]

Do you ever wonder about the Meaning of Life and what your purpose is? As Paul wrote to believers in Corinth,

God’s wisdom is something mysterious that goes deep into the interior of his purposes. You don’t find it lying around on the surface. It’s not the latest message, but more like the oldest—what God determined as the way to bring out his best in us, long before we ever arrived on the scene. 
(from Eugene Peterson's "The Message," 1 Corinthians 2:1-16)

Each of us is a child of God and loved by God. And each of us is here for a reason. But we can only know that purpose if we pay attention and are open to God's leading. We will know WHO we are and our purpose as we come to understand and embrace WHOSE we are - beloved children of God.

Click here to listen to the message, and here for previous messages.  

Grace, Faith and Love

posted Sep 15, 2019, 1:39 PM by web feat   [ updated Feb 17, 2020, 7:21 AM ]

Over and over in the Scriptures, we see examples of God choosing the most unlikely people for an important purpose. And the apostle Paul is certainly a good example. In fact, as one who arrogantly and violently persecuted Christians, he is the last person anyone would ever expect to be transformed into such a humble and faithful advocate for Christ, and used in such powerful ways. But as he wrote to Timothy,

"[Jesus] went out on a limb, you know, in trusting me with this ministry. The only credentials I brought to it were invective and witch hunts and arrogance. But I was treated mercifully because I didn’t know what I was doing—didn’t know Who I was doing it against! Grace mixed with faith and love poured over me and into me. And all because of Jesus.

15-19 Here’s a word you can take to heart and depend on: Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners. I’m proof—Public Sinner Number One—of someone who could never have made it apart from sheer mercy." (from Eugene Peterson's "The Message," 1 Timothy 1:12-19)

God has a plan for us as well, and we are offered that same grace mixed with faith and love. The question is, how will we respond?

Click here to listen to the message,  and here for previous messages. 

The One Who Knows You

posted Sep 8, 2019, 2:51 PM by web feat   [ updated Sep 15, 2019, 1:22 PM ]

Do you ever feel invisible? Do you sometimes wonder if anyone understands you, or even really cares? Most of us have experienced this at one time or another, and for some, it's a feeling that won't turn loose.

But the Psalmist reminds us that there is One who has known and loved us and been with us since the moment we were conceived, before we were even born. There is One who formed and shaped us, and who knows us inside and out.  One who never stops loving us or believing in us. That One is God, and even when we try to run and hide, God is always with us and never abandons us.

Wherever you are in your journey, seek God, and know that God will not only show you the way, but will help you find your most beautiful self.

Click here to listen to the message, and here for other resources. 

A New Way of Seeing and Being

posted Aug 4, 2019, 2:17 PM by web feat   [ updated Sep 8, 2019, 2:54 PM ]

It's easy to talk about being a Christian, but we're called to put our faith into action. As Paul wrote in Colossians,

So if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—that’s where the action is. See things from his perspective.   [From Colossians 3, lEugene Peterson's, "The Message"]

And living it means recognizing that we are ALL God's children, and that we are called to love ALL as our brothers and sisters - no exceptions.

Click here to listen to the message, and here for other resources. 

Let’s Get Real

posted Jul 28, 2019, 3:49 PM by web feat   [ updated Aug 4, 2019, 2:17 PM ]

What exactly does it mean to pray? We worship a God who loves us beyond our understanding, yet for many, prayer may be limited to turning to God only when we need something, or when we're at the end of our rope. Often the focus can be limited to asking for specific results, with a fixed idea of what God's answer should be. And when the answer is slow to come or not what we expect, we may feel let down or forgotten. We may also feel uncomfortable showing our real selves, or sharing our real feelings.

But prayer can be so much more. 

Click here to listen to the message, and here for other resources. 

Missed Opportunities

posted Jul 21, 2019, 2:23 PM by web feat   [ updated Aug 4, 2019, 2:00 PM ]

It's a familiar passage from Luke:

"As they continued their travel, Jesus entered a village. A woman by the name of Martha welcomed him and made him feel quite at home. She had a sister, Mary, who sat before the Master, hanging on every word he said. But Martha was pulled away by all she had to do in the kitchen. Later, she stepped in, interrupting them. “Master, don’t you care that my sister has abandoned the kitchen to me? Tell her to lend me a hand.'” [From Eugene Peterson's, "The Message"]

Martha was a "do-er," and she took great pride in getting things done. She wanted to give Jesus her best, so she hustled to prepare a good meal, that he might be fed. Somehow, it never occurred to her that Jesus came to feed her, and sadly, she was missing out.

Click here to listen to the message, and here for other resources. 

Just Who IS Our Neighbor?

posted Jul 14, 2019, 3:01 PM by web feat   [ updated Aug 4, 2019, 2:00 PM ]

It's a story we've probably heard many times before. A religion scholar is looking for a loophole concerning the teaching to love your neighbor as yourself, and Jesus responds by sharing the story of a man robbed and beaten, and left to die by the side of the road. Both a priest and a Levite religious man saw him lying there, and both avoided him and went on their way. Surprisingly, it is a Samaritan - one of a group despised and looked down on by the Jews - whose heart is moved to help. He gets the man the help he needs and at his own expense, asking for nothing in return.

As Jesus concludes the story, he asks the scholar:
 “What do you think? Which of the three became a neighbor to the man attacked by robbers?”
“The one who treated him kindly,” the religion scholar responded.
Jesus said, “Go and do the same.”  [Eugene Peterson's, The Message]

Who is OUR neighbor? 

Click here to listen to the message, and here for other resources. 

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