Nov 19, 2017
The Days of Whine and Woeses

November 19, 2017 The Days of Whine and Woeses

     This Sunday is just four days before Thanksgiving! To help turn our hearts toward a spirit of thanksgiving, we will have three special guests joining us from Woe Is Us UMC in Lowland County, Virginia:

Ima Whiner, Office Administrator
Joyless Chintzy, Choir Director
The Reverend Bob Tweaks, Pastor

These three experts on whining and grumbling will share some of the challenges they face at Woe is Us UMC and how they have learned to tolerate life in a dysfunctional church.

After the staff from Woe Is Us UMC shares their wisdom with us, I will join with Shawna Hiner and Joy Tinsley in a time of reflection about moving our hearts toward thanksgiving for the blessings we have received by God's grace.

In Christ's Grace and Peace, Pastor Bob

Romans 12:4-21

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  • Nov 19, 2017The Days of Whine and Woeses
    Nov 19, 2017
    The Days of Whine and Woeses

    November 19, 2017 The Days of Whine and Woeses

         This Sunday is just four days before Thanksgiving! To help turn our hearts toward a spirit of thanksgiving, we will have three special guests joining us from Woe Is Us UMC in Lowland County, Virginia:

    Ima Whiner, Office Administrator
    Joyless Chintzy, Choir Director
    The Reverend Bob Tweaks, Pastor

    These three experts on whining and grumbling will share some of the challenges they face at Woe is Us UMC and how they have learned to tolerate life in a dysfunctional church.

    After the staff from Woe Is Us UMC shares their wisdom with us, I will join with Shawna Hiner and Joy Tinsley in a time of reflection about moving our hearts toward thanksgiving for the blessings we have received by God's grace.

    In Christ's Grace and Peace, Pastor Bob

    Romans 12:4-21

  • Nov 12, 2017The Upside Down Kingdom
    Nov 12, 2017
    The Upside Down Kingdom

    November 12, 2017 The Upside Down Kingdom

         The Kingdom of Heaven must be an "upside down Kingdom."

          Every person I've ever met who lived out the beatitudes of Matthew 5 lived against the tide of human culture. They saw the world through Kingdom eyes and knew that obedience to God was the highest calling. That obedience would humble their hearts; cause them to be merciful when the world called for revenge; give them the courage to withstand human condemnation in exchange for God's approval.

          During this Sunday's sermon (part 2 in a 2-part sermon series) we'll listen again to Jesus as he proclaims in Matthew 5:1-12 that there is a heaven-sent joy in living out the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. Last Sunday we were reminded that the Kingdom of God lives within every disciple of Jesus; and that in Jesus we experience a "here and now" joy that is unparalleled by any joy the world can provide.

          I hope you will come and be blessed by God's Word and the fellowship of fellow believers.

    In Christ's Grace and Peace, Pastor Bob

    Matthew 5:1-12

  • Nov 5, 2017Theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven – All Saints Sunday
    Nov 5, 2017
    Theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven – All Saints Sunday

    November 5, 2017 Theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven- All Saints Sunday

       The Kingdom of Heaven must be an "upside down Kingdom."

    Every person I've ever met who lived out the beatitudes of Matthew 5 lived against the tide of human culture. They saw the world through Kingdom eyes and knew that obedience to God was the highest calling. That obedience would humble their hearts; cause them to be merciful when the world called for revenge; give them the courage to withstand human condemnation in exchange for God's approval.

    You have had those blessed saints in your lives. This Sunday is a day to remember all those who lived out the Kingdom values of Matthew 5; who were made holy by the grace of God in Jesus Christ; who now rest from their labors.

    Truly, theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.

    This Sunday is All Saints Sunday. Give thanks for all the saints in your life who are no longer on "this earthly plain" but who have blessed your life by their Godly love and example. I hope you will join us in worship as we light candles and offer up prayers for these loved ones.

    Peace in Our Lord, Pastor Bob

    Matthew 5:1-12

  • Oct 29, 2017Hold to God’s Unchanging Hand
    Oct 29, 2017
    Hold to God’s Unchanging Hand

    October 29, 2017 Hold to God's Unchanging Hand

           "Build your hopes on things eternal, hold to God's unchanging hand."

    This great hymn from the church of my youth reminds us of the fundamental truth of our faith - in the midst of an ever changing universe, God does not change. His promises are trustworthy, his nature is love, and his grace abounds to all. 

          As we gather this Sunday for our church's Homecoming, let's stand firm in our faith and hold to God's unchanging hand. Don't forget, you're invited to wear "period clothing" from any time in the last 139 years of our church's history.... and also bring to the church any old household items (antiques) that will help us remember the generations of saints who have served Christ through this church.

    In Christ's Grace and Peace, Pastor Bob

    Psalm 90:1-6, 13-17

  • Oct 22, 2017The Church At Its Best
    Oct 22, 2017
    The Church At Its Best

    October 22, 2017 The Church at Its Best

         What does a church "at its best" look like? The Apostle Paul's letter to the Philippian Church gives us a pretty good idea!

          Find paths to agreement among members. Rejoice. Be reasonable. Think on things that are true and honorable, pure and just, lovely and commendable. Imitate those who have lived lives worthy of imitating....

          Paul might have summed it all up by saying that a Church at its best is a church that is fully surrendered to its Lord Jesus Christ.

          I hope you can in worship this Sunday as we welcome new members and reflect what it means to be a church at its best.

    In Christ's Grace and Peace, Pastor Bob

    Philippians 4:1-9

  • Oct 15, 2017Please Accept This Invitation
    Oct 15, 2017
    Please Accept This Invitation

    October 15, 2017   "Please Accept This Invitation"   Matthew 22:1-14
     

    Some years ago I officiated  a wedding for a couple who put a tremendous amount of effort into their wedding ceremony. They sent out invitations to over 200 of their friends and family and acquaintances. They even rented horses to ride away on at the end of the festivities.

    As I stood with the groom, ready to make our entrance into sanctuary,, he peered out at the nearly empty pews and quietly whispered, "Where is everybody?"

    My heart broke.

    This Sunday we'll take a look at a parable in Matthew's Gospel that addresses a situation where many are invited to a wedding feast but few attend. The point of the parable is that our Father in Heaven has also invited us to a wedding feast - have we accepted his invitation and are we prepared to attend?

             In Christ's Grace and Peace, Pastor Bob

     

  • Oct 8, 2017Grape Expectations
    Oct 8, 2017
    Grape Expectations

    October 8, 2017    "Grape Expectations"   Isaiah 5:1-7
     
    What are God's expectations for our congregation?
     

    This Sunday's message will reflect on "a song for my beloved" from Isaiah 5 where the owner of a vineyard had great expectations that went unfilled. How are we meeting the expectations of our gracious Lord who has equipped us for service in this world? 

                                  In Christ's Grace and Peace, Pastor Bob

  • Oct 1, 2017Is the Lord Among Us?
    Oct 1, 2017
    Is the Lord Among Us?
    Series: (All)

    October 1, 2017 Is the Lord Among Us?

         There are those who believe that sharing Holy Communion requires a certain amount of intellectual understanding and/or holiness. From the beginning, many have erected fences around the table of our Lord, often with the good intent of protecting it. But Jesus came to break down walls, not build them, and there are no human beings more worthy of coming to His table than those we call children.

         And who better to testify to the place of children at his table than our Lord himself. In Matthew 21, the chief priests and teachers of the law hear children calling out in praise of Jesus. They are indignant. But Jesus quotes the Scripture to them that says, "From the lips of children and infants you, Lord, have called forth your praise." In Luke 18, Jesus scolds his disciples for preventing children from coming to him. Despite whatever personal disdain we may have for children, Jesus values them highly and invites them into his presence.

               Let's follow his example this Sunday.
                                  In Christ's Grace and Peace, Pastor Bob

    Exodus 17:1-7

  • Sep 10, 2017It’s God’s Call on How Far You Should Go
    Sep 10, 2017
    It’s God’s Call on How Far You Should Go

    September 10, 2017 Teach Me O Lord

          This Sunday is "Education Sunday" and we'll lift up in prayer all the teachers who expand the minds and souls of our young people from home-school, to public school, to Sunday School.

         I was blessed to have some adults who truly cared about me as I grew up. My first grade teacher's name was Happy Boozer (I'm not kidding) and she truly lived up to her first name, though not the second, thank God.

    I was something of a hyper-active joker (a smart-aleck according to my parents) who liked to lean back in my chair during reading circle and fall backwards, crashing to the floor. The other kids would hoot and holler with laughter. That was understandable - kids by nature laugh when their classmates do really stupid, infantile things. What used to astonish me was that Miss. Boozer would laugh, too. No punishment. No warnings about how I was going to suffer a concussion. She would just laugh and keep reading.

         Pretty soon I stopped the pranks because I discovered that she was a really good reader and I enjoyed the stories more than the laughs. And as I began to read myself, she encouraged me and complimented me to the point that I no longer needed to do pratfalls in order to get attention.

         Miss Boozer taught me it was OK to be who you are. In fact, it wasn't just OK. It was essential to life, learning, and happiness.

         Thank you, Miss Boozer for teaching me that it's possible to be myself and be happy, even in school. And thank you to every teacher who has ever made an eternal difference in a child's life.

                                  In Christ's Grace and Peace, Pastor Bob

    Psalm 119:33-40

  • Sep 3, 2017Have it HIS Way
    Sep 3, 2017
    Have it HIS Way

    September 3, 2017 Have it HIS way

          This Sunday's message tells an amazing story. Peter has just become the first disciple of Jesus to openly declare Jesus is the Son of God. Then Jesus proceeds to tell his disciples about the dark times ahead, including his betrayal and crucifixion. Peter's reaction? "God forbid... that cannot happen to you!" In other words, Peter openly denies the authority of Jesus just moments after declaring his deity.

          This isn't the Bible's only example of human beings trying to tell God what to do. On Sunday we'll examine some of those passages, take a look at God's responses, and ask the question, "What would my life be like if I always insisted that God let me have things my way?" Burger King's slogan may work fine for burgers, but having it our way - and not God's way - is a certain recipe for a disastrous life.

                                                               In Christ's Grace and Peace, Pastor Bob

    Matthew 16:21-28