LOOKING AHEAD

November 2, 2022

Recently I ordered something online for my wife, Cherie. After I punched “buy with one click,” because filling out my information was too time consuming I was asked to choose my preferred shipping method. The choice I was confronted with was, “free next day shipping,” or free two day shipping.” Well, I’m no dummy, these items we needed for a Christmas party in December must be shipped the next day! We are a people that crave immediate satisfaction.


This desire to be appeased immediately is taught to us at a young age. If you are around my age, you grew up waiting and anticipating special events on television. In November you looked forward to the Thanksgiving day parade, a big football game and the TV special, “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving.” This classic half hour show was broadcast once a year and if you missed it… you missed it! Today we can stream our kid’s favorite entertainment options “on demand.” 


I think one of the unintended consequences of our culture’s demand for immediate, on demand satisfaction is the lost opportunities to train our kids and ourselves how to wait, how to be content and by extension how to be grateful for what we have. If our favorite show, or the serving dishes we need for a party a month away can be had the next day or even the next minute why shouldn’t we expect whatever we want or desire to be available to us? Why should we be content with what God provided? What motivates us to share what God has given us with others?


We are going to explore those questions in our next sermon series, The Other Side of the Tracks, beginning Sunday, November 20th. This short two week series will prepare us to focus on the blessings God has provided for us this holiday season. I’m looking forward to sharing our study of 1 Timothy 6 with you.


We will have another special opportunity to focus our attention on God’s provision and express our thanks to Him on November 20th at 5:30 pm. We will gather as a church family to give thanks to God at our annual Prayer, Praise and Pie event. We will spend time praising God in song, praying together and then enjoy some great pie together in fellowship. We are inviting the other churches we partner with in United as One to join us for this evening of worship and fellowship. It is sure to be a little glimpse of heaven (because I’m sure there is pie in heaven)!Please mark your calendars and plan to make this evening of worship a part of your celebration this year. I’m looking forward to praying with you!


- Lance


But godliness with contentment is great gain, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. 


- 1 Timothy 6:6-8


October 5, 2022


Last night, Aaron Judge hit his 62nd home run of the season. I’m not sure how I feel about this record breaking swing. This long fly ball to left field in Texas broke the Yankee’s team record and the American League home run record both previously held by Roger Maris. My first apprehension with the new record is that it was passed from one Yankee to another NY Yankee! My second issue with this record is that it doesn’t really set a new home run record for all of baseball. Several men in the National League have hit more than 62 home runs in a season. Barry Bonds hit 73 home runs, Mark McGwire hit 70 in a season and Sammy Sosa struck 66 home runs in a single season. All three of those sluggers are rumored to have been aided by performance enhancing drugs in their record breaking seasons. Roger Maris Jr. has recently stated that he thinks Bond’s record should carry an asterisk and that Judge should be considered the true home run champ. I guess the home run record is sort of complicated. It’s pretty weird how we make seemingly simple things complicated. I recently read that the proof for 1+1=2 is over 300 pages long. It takes 300 pages to prove something that we all learned in first grade; if you have one apple and your grandma gives you another apple, you have two apples. Unfortunately we make things more important than home run records and first grade math complicated.


One of the most simple concepts the Bible teaches is that we are all children of God. The Apostle Paul said in Galatians 3:28, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”  It really is simple, isn’t it? Because of our faith in Jesus we are the part of one family! Unfortunately, we take this simple concept and complicate it. We draw distinctions and create differences that don’t really matter. Even with all of these complications we can live out the simple principle of Galatians 3:28.


On Sunday, October 9th churches across Leavenworth County will gather together for a community worship service on the campus of First United Methodist Church in Leavenworth. Beginning at 4:00 pm we will have a time to worship in song together (led by Wallula’s worship team and others). There will also be some great preaching as we unpack the night’s theme, Conquering our Complication. The night will conclude with a panel discussion addressing the issues that complicate our relationships. So, bring your lawn chair, family and friends and worship with other believers from all over Leavenworth County. 


Because of Him,


Lance


“After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’”              

- Revelation 7:9-10