March 12, 2018 - Sunday was the Fourth Sunday in Lent. It is still winter, but we have had a taste of spring this week. The days are getting longer; once we adjust to Daylight Savings Time, we will be able to enjoy the light-filled evenings. Of course DST has plunged our morning coffee into darkness. I guess we can’t have everything.
The Gospel Lesson for the Fourth Sunday in Lent is John 3:14-21 and includes probably the most famous verse in Christianity—John 3:16. John intended for these verses to be words of comfort, love, and hope during a very difficult time in the early Jesus Movement.
About once or twice a year I cite the boy wizard, Harry Potter. I still remember the elementary kids at Joaquin Elementary carrying around these huge books. I wondered what had captured the imaginations of so many kids, so I read that first Harry Potter novel. I was hooked—books and movies.
In my sermon, I referenced the time when Harry’s wise mentor, Dumbledore, reminded Harry what the greatest magic was—love. John the Evangelist also believed that it was love—the love that Christ had that was the way and the truth.
Our Sunday school lesson was titled “There Is No God Like You.” The scripture was 2Chronicles 6: 12-21, speaking to the covenant that Yahweh made with David. The Israelites certainly believed that there was no God quite like their God: When Yahweh made a promise, it was always kept.
This past week several volunteers went to Focused Care in Center. Hilda was already playing and the residents singing when I got there. And unless you get the wrong idea, I wasn’t late! There were so many Joaquin folks that it was almost like a school reunion. The Cammacks joined us, along with Louise and Wanda. Fannie read a biography of Jesus that was very poignant. Nora sang two songs that are special to her church—Old Home Baptist. I shared my favorite Bible verse, Micah 6:8, which talks about what God requires of us. Ms. Hilda was lively on the piano, and we had a large crowd full of good singers.
“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.