February 11, 2018 - Sunday was Transfiguration Sunday. This is the last Sunday before the beginning of Lent. Ash Wednesday is early this year, falling on Valentine’s Day. Lent is the forty days before Easter when we study the last weeks of Jesus’ life, preparing our hearts and souls for Easter. Easter this year is April 1st –April Fool’s Day. Strange year!
I used the Old Testament lesson for Transfiguration Sunday from 2 Kings 2: 1-12. In this scripture story, the greatest of the Hebrew prophets, Elijah, is nearing the end of his life. He is on a quest to the Jordan; his student and successor, Elisha, refuses to stay behind. Elisha received from his mentor Elijah his teacher’s coat and also asked for a double of Elijah’s spirit. Christians see Jesus as their mentor as well as their savior. We are to model our living on how Jesus lived and interacted with others. Our efforts to follow in Jesus’ footsteps must be genuine: We must be willing to keep trying until we get it right a lot more often than not.
Fannie had a great Sunday School lesson from James 3: 1-12. This part of James deals with our inability to bridle our tongues. So often we speak without thinking, which of course causes problems. James was speaking to a small Jesus community that couldn’t afford to ignore or discount the feelings of other members. The early Jesus communities had many enemies—from the religious leaders to the Roman Empire. Churches then and today must be prophetic voices calling for unity and respect for all people.
There will be a memorial service for Nancy Thompson this Saturday at 2:00 PM at Paxton Methodist. Nancy is the daughter of Lillie Townsend and sister of Liz McCoy. Lillie, Liz, and Liz’s husband Mike always come to Paxton Methodist when they are at the East Texas farm. There will be a meal for the family afterwards at the home of Fannie Watson.
“Whoever you are, in whatever faith you were born, whatever creed you profess; if you come to this house to find God you are welcome here.” Paxton United Methodist Church is an inviting church that takes to heart the idea of “Open Doors, Open Hearts, Open Minds.” Sunday School starts at 9:30 and Worship begins at 10:00. Our email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like the weekly email newsletter about Paxton Methodist you can send me your email address to the Paxton email address and I will add you to the list. Godspeed.