February 7, 2016 - This week was Transfiguration Sunday. The Gospel Lesson from Luke 9: 28-36 tells when Jesus, Peter, John, and James go to the mountain top. There Jesus is transformed by “flashed lightning.” Elijah, who represents the prophets, and Moses, who represents the law, are also there, talking to Jesus. From the clouds a voice proclaims Jesus as the Chosen One.
My sermon didn’t speak of the transfiguration. Instead, the scripture came from Jesus’ favorite book in the Jewish Testament—Isaiah. In Chapter 58: 11-12, the prophet promises the people that out of ruin the foundation from old will restore them. We are promised that the Lord will guide and provide for us.
In my sermon I questioned how successful we are in living the life Christ wants us to live. Jesus wasn’t about building churches but transforming lives. In the liturgy for Holy Communion, I quoted the Catholic mystic of old, Teresa of Avila. She reminded Christians that Christ has no body but ours. We are the hands, feet, and eyes of the Christ. That is an awesome responsibility.
It was so great to see everyone this morning. Fannie had a great Sunday school lesson as always; in our discussion we realized how important it is for each generation to pass on our faith and our values. Mr. Fiedler ably led our singing this morning, but we sure missed Hilda on the piano. We also remembered Ms. Gloria, who has a birthday this week. We sang Happy Birthday long distance.
Sue and I were very appreciative of all the prayers and love that we felt this week. My mother died Monday, so our week was spent in Dallas getting arrangements done and people notified. Sue and I were uplifted by thoughts and prayers, not just from our church but from so many in our community. It was great to see many relatives that flew in for the services and friends who journeyed from Joaquin. The funeral service was officiated by my mother’s pastor, Cheryl Walenta Gorvie, who did a wonderful job. We chose music meaningful to my mom, including Forties tunes, music composed and played by our Aunt Barbara, and the hymns “Morning Has Broken” and “Lord of the Dance.” The weather was perfect, especially for February.
On Monday I had my yearly interview with our District Superintendent, Rev. Huffman. In his kindness, he conducted this interview over the phone. Rev. Huffman is not only a great District Superintendent, he is a good friend. I expressed my desire to continue serving Paxton as its pastor.
“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 9:15 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. God’s Speed!