July 13, 2020 - Grace and peace from our brother Jesus, Amen. Sunday was the 6th Sunday after Pentecost. This past Friday I got up early to walk my dogs and myself at the city park. We are in those “dog days” of summer when I have to get things done early in the morning or after the sun begins to fall in the evening. I am putting the final touches on my sermon, which has Jesus explaining the first of seven Kingdom parables. This one should be called the parable of the sower. Rev. Barbara Brown Taylor wrote a sermon several years ago that did just that—focused on the sower (God) instead of the soil and the way he with wild, joyful abandon strewed seeds.
In the last week or so, we have had around nine inches of rain in downtown Joaquin. That has helped keep the temperatures more moderate and has certainly helped my garden. I made salsa this week with the last of the tomatoes. Sue said I looked like a mad scientist when I was cutting, mixing, and pureeing.
Sue and I are still hunkered down for the most part. I ventured out early Friday morning to Brookshire’s to get a few things, and I go daily to the Post Office to check the mail around noon. Other than that I stay close to home. The Joaquin Senior Center will remain closed as Covid 19 is spiking in Texas. Sue and I taught for 30-plus years, and we certainly don’t envy the school folks with the decisions they are facing about reopening schools. There just are no easy answers.
We had a nice crowd at church—for Paxton Methodist, that is. Our Sunday School lesson was so interesting. Our scripture came from the first chapter of Daniel, where we find in Daniel someone who is principled and determined not to give up on who he is or his understanding of God. Though he has been taken to Babylon in captivity, because of his social standing and intelligence, he has a chance to learn—and to become for all practical purposes a Babylonian. But Daniel will have none of this and works hard to understand and absorb God’s wisdom. I loved it when our author said, “Commitment and dedication in doing the right thing does not have to be loud and animated. Daniel exemplified quiet strength in the midst of a challenging time.” Good advice for us!
It was so good to see Theresa and Larry this morning. Gene was out with a bad back, and we missed him. We are hoping that Carolyn will be back with us next week. Paxton Methodist is collecting cans of ravioli and spaghetti in July for Community Christian Services. Our regular crew certainly misses going to the nursing homes and hope that everyone there is staying safe and healthy.
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, and Open Minds.” Worship begins at 10:00. Our email address is email@example.com. If you would like the weekly email newsletter about Paxton Methodist, you can send your email address to the Paxton email address, and I will add you to the list. God’s Speed.
Randy & Sue Smith/Paxton United Methodist Church