Happening Now Blog

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Pastor's Wednesday Message

If you travel in Muslim countries, you'll hear the muezzin calling the faithful to prayer five times a day.  These days it usually comes over a loudspeaker placed atop a tower centrally located in a town or city neighborhood for maximum broadcast coverage.  We may not understand the Arabic in which the call is issued, but there's no denying the beauty of the muezzin's art, nor the wisdom of stopping to pray to God five times every day.  How I wish Christians would pray to God so frequently!

Today I proclaim a call to prayer.  Not just because it's the season of Advent — though this is a season of penitence and prayer.  I ask you to pray because tomorrow night the Church Council will elect our Call Committee.  The Council needs our prayers as they consider candidates and cast their ballots.  Pray that the Holy Spirit guide their hearts.  Pray that God's will be done in Council as it is in heaven.  Human wisdom and feelings by themselves cannot put together a good Call Committee responsive to God's call.  Only God's Spirit can call, gather, enlighten, and empower a Call Committee fit to fulfill the holy work ahead: considering, identifying, and recommending a pastor who truly meets the needs and honors the aspirations of this community of faith in Jesus Christ.

When we find out who is on the Call Committee, keep answering this call to prayer.  Pray for the Call Committee regularly.  Maybe not five times a day, but if you pray daily for your Call Committee, it would be a good thing.  The work is challenging, the responsibilities weighty.  Busy people are adding more work to their week.  Pray they stay healthy.  Pray that God give them a spirit of hope and joy in their work together.  Pray that their conversations are respectful and bear good fruit.  And as the Synod staff are selecting a slate of candidates to bring to the Call Committee, pray that this will be a good bunch of clergy who have the gifts, the stamina, and the hunger to serve as Shepherd's pastor for years to come.

As Advent brings us to Christmas, and our work of calling a new pastor begins, let St. Paul's words guide us on our way:

"We appeal to you, brothers and sisters, to respect those who labor among you, and have charge of you in the Lord and admonish you; esteem them very highly in love because of their work.  Be at peace among yourselves.  And we urge you, beloved, to admonish the idlers, encourage the faint-hearted, help the weak, be patient with all of them.  See that none of you repays evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to all.   Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."  (1 Thessalonians 5:12-18)

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Lessons for Sunday
Micah 5:2-5a
Hebrews 10:5-10
Luke 1:39-55


Wednesday  9:00 - 1:00 p KOK Preschool/chapel
                   10:00 a Bible Study
                    5:30 p Advent soup/bread potluck
                    6:00 p Advent devotion
                    6:30 p Advent Holden Evening Prayer

Thursday      9:00 - 1:00 p KOK Preschool
                    10:00 a LLL
                    12:00 p All Church Christmas Luncheon
                     7:00 p Council Meeting

Friday        9:00 - 12:00 p KOK Preschool
                  1:00 - 9:00 p Palmeter Piano Studio

Saturday      10:00 - 11:30 a SOV Choir rehearsal
                     2:00 - 4:00 p Christmas Pageant rehearsal
                     4:00 - 8:00 p Youth Group Drop and Shop fundraiser
                                  Drop your children off at SOV for an evening of fun; food, games, crafts and movie! While you go out and finishing your Christmas shopping or have a date night.

Sunday     8:30 & 11:00 a worship services
                Sunday school Christmas pageant will be at the 11:00 a service.
                4:00 p Christmas Caroling

Please join us tomorrow, Thursday, December 17 at 12:00 pm for our All Church Christmas Luncheon.
Wear your festive attire, bring hats, gloves, mittens or scarves to donate to a local shelter.

Christmas Caroling, Sunday, December 20th
Meet at SOV at 4:00 p,  leaving at 4:15 p to carpool or Avamere Bethany and Rock Creek retirement homes. Followed by soup/chili potluck. All ages Welcome!

Sunday, December 27th
One Service at 10:00 am followed by Brunch.

Three more breakfast casseroles are needed, please email if you can bring one.