Monthly Archives: August 2018

Pastor’s Ponderings

As Christians and as Methodists we are sometimes criticized by others and ourselves as being too serious and not always taking the time to recognize the humor in life, to laugh and to smile. This message is written for the lighter side to find encouragement and usefulness. I thank Frank and Larry Gamby old friends from Fennville for passing on the “Missouri Chigger” for the background of this message.

Food for Thought:
There is no need to fear the wind if your haystacks are tied down.
Wisdom is the comb given to a man after he has lost his hair.
Three best things to have plenty of – sunshine, wisdom and generosity.
Everyone lays a burden on the willing horse.
Why should we go to church and encourage those Christians who say to us that, “I am a Christian but don’t need to attend church”?
A church goer wrote a letter to the editor of a newspaper and complained that it made no sense to go to Church every Sunday. “I have gone to church for 30 years now,” he wrote, “And I have heard about fifteen hundred sermons. But for the life of me I cannot remember much about any particular one. So I think that I am wasting my time and the pastors are wasting theirs by giving sermons at all.”

This started a real controversy in the letters to the editor section much to the delight of many. The discussion and letter writing went on for a number of weeks until one letter brought the discussion to a halt.

The writer wrote: “I have been married for thirty years now. In that time my wife and I have cooked and consumed some thirty thousand meals. But for the life of me, I cannot remember the entire menu for a specific one of those meals. But I know this…They all nourished me and gave me the strength I needed to do my labor each day. If my wife or I had not consumed these meals, we would be physically dead today. Likewise, if I had not gone to church for nourishment, I would be spiritually dead today!”
When you are DOWN to nothing ..God is UP to something! Faith sees the invisible, believes the incredible and receives the impossible! Thank God for
our physical and our spiritual nourishment!

Thank you, Robert McPheeters for sharing your great insight so that we might be able share this important concept with our brothers and sisters in Christ.

As we approach the end of summer it is my prayer and I ask the church parish to continue to pray that we extend a hand and welcome for those who seek spiritual feeding and know that Jesus went to the cross not only for all of us, He would have done it even if we were only one lost sheep. It is in His resurrection that we can know the love of God for each of us, His “Children.” This love will bring us together for eternity.

Pastor Gary

 

Announcements and Stuff

“Canvas and Giggles”
Save the date of Saturday, Oct 13th from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. Diane Hicks and Edith Brown are hosting a “canvas and brown bag lunch” for all who are interested. This should be lots of fun and best of all, there’s no talent needed, anyone is welcome! Please bring a jar to rinse brushes, spray bottle, and your own brushes if you have them as well as your own brown bag lunch. Canvas, paints and brushes will be provided. Cost will be $10. RSVP to Reba at 321-869-3373 or 616-901-7002.

Fall Adult Sunday School
Adult Sunday School will begin on Sunday September 9th at 9:30 am with our youth as they return to Christian Study. Our Adult Class will pick up where we left off late last spring in Hebrews. We will begin by reviewing Chapter 8 and continuing through chapter 9. Class will run for about six weeks. We will take a short break and then begin an Advent Series: Faithful – Christmas Through the Eyes of Joseph. This study is the newest study developed by Adam Hamilton for our 2018 Advent Season and includes outside reading, a short DVD presentation each week with class discussion. All are welcome to participate in both studies as they are available.

Youth Sunday School Beginning
Mechelle Schneider has graciously agreed to fulfill the position of Superintendent of Children’s Education. She will also be teaching the upper elementary/high school children while Karissa Pease will continue to teach the elementary children. Sunday School will begin on September 9th at 9:45 am with song time with Megan followed by classroom studies starting at 10 am. If you know of a child not already affiliated with a church, please invite them to join in the fun. CUMC would love to plant as many seeds in as many children as possible. After the seeds are planted, God will nourish them in His time.

Calendar for Worship and Adult Study
Fall 2018-Spring 2019
Sunday School Begins September 9 for Youth and Adults
Adult Bible Study September 9 – October 21 or 28 – Hebrews continuation from spring study
November 18 – December 9 Advent Study “Faithful-Christmas Through the Eyes Of Joseph”
Blue Christmas December 16
Christmas Eve Service Monday December 24
Adult Bible Study January 13 – February 17 or 24 (Scripture yet to be determined)
Ash Wednesday Service March 6
Lenten Study March 3 (four to five sessions) ending on April 14 (Series possibilities: Living as United Methodist Christians, The Way, or Our Faith Promise)
Palm Sunday April 14 – “The Cultural World of The Prophets”
Holy Thursday April 18 – Combined service with Montague UMC
Good Friday April 19 – Service Remembrance, “At Noon on Friday”
Easter Sunday April 21
May 5 – June 2 or 9 Spring Bible Study (Scripture yet to be determined)

Mark Your Calendars!
The New Era Christian School Fundraising Auction will be Saturday, October 20! Get ready to bid on great items and services donated by area business and supporters as you enjoy an evening of fellowship, food and fun! As part of this year’s auction theme, NECS Art Prize, art work done by students will be on displayed and up for bid! The silent auction is from 5:00-6:15 p.m. with the live auction starting at 6:30 p.m. Dinner will be available from 5:00-7:00 p.m. All proceeds directly benefit New Era Christian School. If you have questions or would like to make a donation, please contact event chairs Val Vincent at (Vincentdvj@gmail.com or 231-329-2292) or Katie Bultema (231-206-0018). You can also obtain information through the school office at 861-5450.

Nursery Schedule
9/2 – Kathy Ohman
9/9 – Joyce Twiss
9/16 – Doris Graham
9/23 – Edith Bogart
9/30 – Carol Adams

Upcoming Worship Schedule

9/2 – Song of Solomon 2:8-13 / Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23
“Children Wash Your Hands”
Labor Day Weekend

9/9 – Proverbs 22:1-2, 8-9, 22-23 / James 2:1-10, 11-17
“Even Today We Still Discriminate”
Sunday School Begins

9/16 – Psalm 19 / Mark 8:27-38
“Jesus Commands That We take the Cross and Follow Him”

9/23 – Proverbs 31:10-31 / Mark 9:30-37
“But I Want to Be First!”

9/30 – Open – Yet to be determined
Looking for y our suggestions!

August 26 Service

Claybanks United Methodist Church
August 26, 2018 10:30am
*Indicates to stand as you are able

Fourteenth Sunday After Pentecost
Welcome and Announcements

*Praise Song “We Are Called” SUMH #2172

Prelude

*Processional
In this place, among these people,
God is worshipped, God is praised.
We have seen the signs and wonders;
the lost are found here, the dead are raised.
We are living the Gospel story;
lives are changed, and mountains moved.
Won’t you come and work among us?
You are welcomed, you are loved.

*Call to Worship
One: Come! Dwell in God’s courts forever.
All: Happy are those who live and pray in God’s house.
One: In God alone our hearts sing for joy.
All: In God alone do we find strength.
One: O Lord of hosts, how lovely is your dwelling place.
All: We have come in prayer to worship the Lord.

*Gloria Patri UMH #70

*Opening Prayer

*Hymn “Spirit Song” UMH #347

Prayers of the People – Joys and Concerns

Children’s Time/Shalom Giving – Pastor Glenn Wagner
After prayers, sing the Children out – “Jesus Loves Me.” Children 5 and under are welcome to remain in worship or go to the nursery at this time.

The Offering of Our Gifts and Ourselves

*Doxology UMH #95

Prayer of Dedication

*Hymn “Breathe on Me, Breath of God” UMH #420

SHARING THE WORD
Scripture Reading Acts 10:34-35 Page

Message Pastor Glenn Wagner
“More Than Coincidence”

Prayer

*Hymn “Amazing Grace” UMH #378

Benediction

Thank you to Pastor Glenn Wagner for taking time out of your busy schedule to be with us and lead our service today. We hope to see you again in the near future.

Church Calendar
Sunday, August 26, 2018 – Pastor Glenn Wagner Leading Service
10:30 am – Worship
Monday, August 27, 2018
5:30 – Movie/Potluck
Sunday, September 3, 2018 – Communion
10:30 am – Worship

Email: glpeterson32@frontier.com
Office Telephone 231-923-0573
Office email ClaybanksUMC@gmail.com
Website http://www.claybanksunitedmethodist.com

Pianist Megan Schihl
Liturgist Mechelle Schneider
Nursery Carol Adams
Ministers All People As We Live the Good News

 

August 12th Service

Claybanks United Methodist Church
August 12, 2018 10:30am
*Indicates to stand as you are able

Twelfth Sunday After Pentecost
Welcome and Announcements

*Praise Song Voices 8

Prelude

*Processional
In this place, among these people,
God is worshipped, God is praised.
We have seen the signs and wonders;
the lost are found here, the dead are raised.
We are living the Gospel story;
lives are changed, and mountains moved.
Won’t you come and work among us?
You are welcomed, you are loved.

*Call to Worship
One: Out of the depths I cry to you. Lord, hear my voice.
All: Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy.
One: If you kept a record of sins, Lord, who could stand?
All: But with you there is forgiveness, that we might serve you with reverence.
One: I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, an in God’s Word I put my hope.
All: Israel, put your hope in the Lord and in God’s unfailing love.
One: Out of the depths I cry to you.
All: Lord, hear my voice.

*Gloria Patri UMH #70

*Opening Prayer
*Hymn “I Surrender All” UMH #354

Prayers of the People – Joys and Concerns

Children’s Time – “Be Careful What Comes From Your Mouth” After prayers, sing the Children out – “Jesus Loves Me.” Children 5 and under are welcome to remain in worship or go to the nursery at this time.

The Offering of Our Gifts and Ourselves
Offertory Voices 8

*Doxology UMH #95

Prayer of Dedication

*Hymn “Happy the Home When God Is There” UMH #445

SHARING THE WORD
Old Testament Reading Psalm 130 Page 500
New Testament Reading Ephesians 4:25-5:2 Page 951

Message “Controlling Anger is Difficult” Pastor Gary

Prayer

*Hymn “You Raise Me Up” Overhead

Benediction

Postlude Voices 8
We want to thank Voices 8 for sharing your gifts with us today. Dick DeWitt, Mike Squire, John Frank, Nels Carlson, Kedon Lamphere, Nick Pulaski, Mike Witkope, & Larry Lindquist, you always brighten our service. We look forward to having you back again soon. Blessings!

Church Calendar
Sunday, August 12, 2018
10:30 am – Worship
Wednesday, August 15, 2018
2:00 pm – Card Making Party
Thursday, August 16, 2018
1:00 pm – UMW Meeting
Sunday, August 19, 2018
10:30 am – Worship
11:30 am – Brat Cookout Fundraiser for Camp
5:30 pm – Serve at Family Promise

Email: glpeterson32@frontier.com
Office Telephone 231-923-0573
Office email ClaybanksUMC@gmail.com
Website http://www.claybanksunitedmethodist.com

Pianist Megan Schihl
Liturgist Edie Bogart
Nursery Doris Graham
Ministers All People As We Live the Good News

August 5th Service

Claybanks United Methodist Church
August 5, 2018 10:30am
*Indicates to stand as you are able

Eleventh Sunday After Pentecost
Welcome and Announcements

*Praise Song “Let Us Be Bread” SUMH #2260

Prelude

*Processional
In this place, among these people,
God is worshipped, God is praised.
We have seen the signs and wonders;
the lost are found here, the dead are raised.
We are living the Gospel story;
lives are changed, and mountains moved.
Won’t you come and work among us?
You are welcomed, you are loved.

*Call to Worship
One: There is one body, one spirit, one Lord of all.
All: We are one body in Christ, bound together in holy love.
One: There is one hope, one faith, one Father of all.
All: We are one family of God, blessed with gifts of one Spirit.
One: There is one baptism, one true home, one Mother of all.
All: We are one people, nourished by God with the food of eternal life.
One: Come! Let us worship.

*Gloria Patri UMH #70

*Opening Prayer

*Hymn “One Bread, One Body” UMH #620

Prayers of the People – Joys and Concerns

Children’s Time – After prayers, sing the Children out – “Jesus Loves Me.” Children 5 and under are welcome to remain in worship or go to the nursery at this time.

The Offering of Our Gifts and Ourselves

*Doxology UMH #95

Prayer of Dedication

*Hymn “O Thou Who This Mysterious Bread” UMH #613

SHARING THE WORD
First Reading Ephesians 4:1-16 Page 951
*Gospel Reading John 6:24-35 Page 867

Message “I Like Angel Food ” Pastor Gary

Words of Assurance

The Great Thanksgiving

Prayer

*Hymn “In Remembrance of Me” UMH #2254

Benediction

Church Calendar
Sunday, August 5, 2018 -Communion
10:30 am – Worship
Friday, August 10, 2018
5:00 pm – 76th Annual Strawberry Social
Sunday, August 12, 2018
10:30 am – Worship

Email: glpeterson32@frontier.com
Office Telephone 231-923-0573
Office email ClaybanksUMC@gmail.com
Website http://www.claybanksunitedmethodist.com

Pianist Megan Schihl
Liturgist Art Grumm
Nursery Joyce Twiss
Ministers All People As We Live the Good News

Pastor’s Ponderings

Misusing Scripture

When I was studying to become a pastor at United Theological Seminary, in more than one class, I remember the instructors cautioning us as pastors to be careful how we use Scripture to support an idea or opinion as we present God’s Word to our members and community.

Normally when I write Pastor’s Notes to you in our newsletters I tried to make them informative and upbeat so that as we continue to engage each other and community as we present the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit as positive and influential in the ways we live our lives thus encouraging others to walk a closer journey with God.

I am not trying to take political sides but recently the Attorney General of the United States, Jeff Sessions, reminded me and others of what our theological school professors continually reminded us of: how to and not to use a single verse from Scripture to defend what we say and do. When we use a single verse, it can easily be taken out of context and misused in an attempt to support what we say or do. But, to do this is an inappropriate way for the use of Scripture. When we use a single verse and do not take into consideration the complete context from which it was taken, we could misuse or misappropriate its meaning.

“Every person should place themselves under the authority of the government. There is not any authority unless it comes from God, and the authorities that are there have been put in place by God” (Romans 13:1). This single verse was used to justify and defend the policy of separating immigrant children from their families. Now this use of Romans 13:1 was not the first attempt to justify how the government or administrative authorities have the right to do whatever they want. Throughout history there have been times when governments have used Romans 13:1 to defend their actions as, “Sanctioning governments as instruments of God and coerce people into obedience”. During the American Revolution slaveholders used this verse to promote slavery. In our early times advocates for the death penalty used it to defend capital punishment. When we look at Romans and the chapters and verses that surround Romans 13:1, what we see from chapters 12 and 13, they tell us that we are to abhor evil and do good, to practice hospitality, to be at peace, to overcome evil with good, to love our neighbors and to lay aside immoral actions.

When we look for other Scripture to justify the separation of children from parents we find very little in Scripture that would promote such practices. The opposite can be supported by an accumulation of a number of other Scriptures that would support that families should and must be kept together. When we use a verse in Scripture it must be supported by other Scripture verses as we work to interpret what the Bible says to us, and in this case, we should look at Zachariah 7:9 – 10 “Make just and fateful decisions; show kindness and compassion to each other! Do not oppress the widow, the orphan, the stranger, and the poor; do not plan evil against each other!” Proverbs 31:8 – 9 says, “Speak out on behalf of the voiceless, and for the rights of all who are vulnerable. Speak out in order to judge with righteousness and to defend the needy and the poor.” Jeremiah 22:3 “The Lord proclaims: do what is just and right; rescue the oppressed from the power of the oppressor. Do not exploit or miss treat the refugee, the orphan and the widow. Do not spill the blood of the innocent in this place.” We can go on and find other Scripture such as Isaiah 58:6 – 7 or Leviticus 19:33 – 34 and yes, the list could go on and on as we search for how God would want us to use Scripture, in this case as we advocate for the love of our sisters and brothers and yes, the little children.

I am proud that many within the United Methodist Church and many within our denomination have taken a stance to support the care, respect and loving treatment of all of God’s children. I want to thank and acknowledge the United Methodist Agency On Justice for Neighbors, the United Methodist Counsel of Bishops, the United Methodist Women and so many other United Methodists who have spoken against the separation of families recently and against this in the future; also, Professor Magrey deVega who researched and presented the correct way to read and use Biblical Scripture in this matter.

Pastor Gary