Last Sunday After Epiphany
by Kenneth C. Kroohs
Later this week we begin my least favorite church season -- Lent. So let’s enjoy this last Sunday before then!! Lent is not a favorite season of mine and every year I wish it were only about 4 or 5 days long. Despite that, I very much appreciate the great gift we have in the church calendar. The sense of movement from one time to another. More importantly the sense of movement from one attitude to another. As human beings we relate to God, and to each...
by Bob Wickizer
I had been doing some calculations in the sand when like a thunderbolt two of my old friends walked up the road to meet me. They said they heard stories of people beyond the river where wondrous signs foretold big changes - changes that would make the world different forever. So we stood there in the road a long time, three old friends now living in far away places only to find ourselves called together by events and stories and signs we did not...
Star of Wonder
by Tony Nester
One of my favorite Christmas carols has always been "We Three Kings". The melody has a lilting movement to it that helps us feel the movement of the magi riding on camels from the East toward Bethlehem. The carol lifts up the "Star of Wonder" that inspired the three kings to undertake their journey and it shines on many of the Christmas cards we’ve been opening in our mail. We’ll sing the hymn at the close our service today, and I hope it elicits some feeling...
When We Look into the Manger, What Do We See?
by M. Jolaine Szymkowiak
With the expectations of Christmas, there are a lot of emotions and memories. There are so many things that may or may not be able to be accomplished before the expectant day. There hardly seems to be a time to sit back, catch my breath after a very fast, hard, challenging last few weeks of the year, and see the beauty of the season...
You Are a Prize!
by Tony Nester
One of my teachers from seminary days often said that every child needs that all-important look in the mother’s eye that communicates, ‘‘You’re just great!’’ We never outgrow the need for that kind of affirmation. No matter how old we become, no matter how sophisticated our lifestyle, no matter how secure we are in our self-esteem, we all need someone to communicate to us - ‘‘You’re just great!’’ And it’s not because we’re egotists or...
The Baptism of Jesus (7 of 13)
by Brad Whitt
I’ve baptized in lakes and swimming pools and portable baptistries and traditional baptistries. I’ve baptized with waders and robes and tshirts and swimming trunks. I’ve baptized young people and old folks, girls and boys. I’ve baptized here in the states and overseas and here’s what I’ve concluded - they’re all...
The Identification Test (2 of 11)
by Jeff Schreve
We’re in a series called ‘‘Footsteps: What it Really Means to Follow in the Footsteps of Jesus.’’ And today, we want to look at the very first thing Jesus did when He started His ministry and that is baptism. That was the first thing that Jesus did. You know, we don’t know a lot about Jesus. We have that one recording when He was twelve when He went up to the temple. And then they were going back home to Nazareth and Jesus wasn’t with the family...
God's Gift to Us
by Jerry Watts
Most people look forward to birthdays, Christmas, and other special days because, we all like to 'get' things.They best kind of gift to receive is one that you really need. We 'think' it's to get what we want. The greatest need every person has is the need to be reconnected with Holy God. God created us to enjoy fellowship with us. His desire is for a relationship with His ''Crown Creation.'' Some people say, ''If this is what God wants, why doesn't He just do...
John: Jesus the Son of God (4 of 32)
by Stan Coffey
While Matthew presented Jesus to the Jews as King and Mark presented Jesus to the busy Romans as Servant and Luke wrote his gospel for the Greeks and introduced to them Jesus as the Sympathetic Son of Man, John, the beloved disciple, wrote a book for both Jews and Gentiles presenting Jesus as the Son of God. We know that John had Gentiles in mind- as well as Jews because he often ‘‘interpreted’’ Jewish words of customs for- his-rea
The Wonder of Jesus’ Baptism (1 of 5)
by Jeff Strite
Does anybody here know what baptism means?
(I asked the audience for what they knew of baptism. They cited salvation, forgiveness, gift of the Holy Spirit, clothing ourselves with Christ, death/burial and resurrection) Now, all those things are true. And all those things are wonderful things that God does for us when we accept His gift of love by our Faith, Repentance...