Friday, June 28, 2013

Living by the Fruit of the Spirit

Galatians 5: 22By contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, 23gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against such things. 24And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25If we live by the Spirit, let us also be guided by the Spirit.

I often talk about transformation and suggest that once we are truly living for Jesus we are always transforming.  One way this concept is played out is in our early history.  Although the time was ripe for messianic thought, Jesus wasn't what people were expecting; and as their understanding of what God's plan was for the Hebrews began to take hold, the Savior they looked for wasn't a triumphant military commander.  Instead, Jesus message would transform their lives, their faith and their religion.

This is pretty huge!  And truly transforming.  When we live by the Spirit, we too should be transformed. 

Thursday, June 20, 2013


I really like the Parables in our Bible.  They are an amazing example of how we can leave like Jesus.  They are simple ways to bring Jesus into our lives and to share Jesus with others. 

I was recently praying over the parables and the one about the Wheat and Weeds was sticking out.  You see, the workers came to the farm owner and asked if they should pull the weeds that had been planted in amongst the wheat.  The farm owner said no because they could uproot the wheat along with the weeds and have no crop.  He told them later when they crop was harvested they would separate the weeds and wheat.

That is a good lesson for us.  As we live our lives we are not the judges of others (wheat or weeds) but instead we are to care for all in order to allow all to live. A good message.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Let Us Build Up

But if I build up again the very things that I once tore down, then I demonstrate that I am a transgressor. 19For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ; 20and it is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21I do not nullify the grace of God; for if justification comes through the law, then Christ died for nothing.

The above quote comes from Galatians 2 and it is fittingly found in this weeks lectionary.  It is important for us to remember where we came from in order for us to be able to move forward with our future.  But at the same time, we have to be able to let our past go and not let it impede our future.  As we celebrate the 200 year history we see that Huron has done this time and time again.  The humble beginning of meeting in several different school houses led to several divisions by the Presbytery to make it easier for people to commute.  And yet, that didn't stop the churches from growing.  When the church burnt in the 30's it took only one year to the day for the church to be dedicated - what an accomplishment!  Some churches burn and never heal but Huron hasn't let the past get away of moving forward.  Some churches rebuild only to stay stuck in the memories of what the church once was - not Huron.  Time and time again, Huron moves forward. 

God has shown a lot of wisdom to Huron through the years.  When difficult times have come, our Lord has shown us a path way out.  Let us not get stuck in the past and continue to make past mistakes now, but instead raise our heads high and move forward - knowing that Huron lives with the Spirit of Christ. 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

God is CALLING you...

One of the most powerful lessons I think we can take from the Bible is the lesson of God's call.  That's right - God calling us into action. 

The striking thing is that God does have an MO for calling people and Jesus modeled this as he called his disciples.  The Lord meets us where we are at and asks us each in our own way.

Some are called young, some are called several times, some only need to here the word come, others need proof, others need a hand to hold and still others avoid God's call.  And yet the Bible is full of calls...

What then is God calling you to do?  Finding out and following that will bring you a great amount of peace.  Following God's call doesn't mean just going into ministry or giving to a mission, God can be calling you to many different things - parenthood, teaching, ect... whatever gives you fulfillment.

Let's all try to live lives in which we are following God's call for us.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

the power of the well

The women at the well is a well known passage but I think in our becoming familiar with these words we have forgotten the power of the Word - God's revelation!

First, let us remember the passage. A women was at the well in the middle of the day, lots of historical/ cultural experts tell us this would be unusual. Women usually fetched water at the beginning or end of the day and would usually do so in groups.  Her coming alone could be a sign of her being an outcast perhaps because of her sins.

Second, let us keep in mind that she didn't go to the well that day looking to be changed, looking for something different.  She wasn't expecting anything more then to fetch water as usual.

Third, when Jesus offers her forgiveness - she is activity sinning.  She hadn't asked to be forgiven or promised to stop sinning.

Fourth, we have no idea what happened to her.  We know from later / other passages that some people who had been sinners but believed and trusted in Jesus followed him around - but we don't know if this women did. We don't know if she went back to the man she was with or not.  In fact if we think about the social / cultural stuff we would assume she did go right back to her former life - what would a women like her do if she gave up her life, would she become a beggar?

So what is the lesson for us?  The power punch in this story is that God forgives us EVEN when we are activity sinning.  That the power in the forgiveness isn't God forgiving us but is in OUR acceptance and in US allowing the forgiveness to transform our lives.  It is pretty easy to have a feel good moment with God and then go on doing what we humans do - sin.  It is more powerful to change our lives and allow forgiveness to be transforming.

Look at those who followed Christ and gave up their ways, they had a much more meaningful transformation.

The power in accepting Jesus as our true living water is to be willing to let the forgiveness be the final one - not keep sinning or stay in the cycle of non-accepting.  Let us accept forgiveness, we don't have to already be stopping - we can choose today to live a more transformed life.