|THE JOYFUL NOISE
It was an exciting moment, when the moon completely blacked out the sun last Monday. The total eclipse finally arrived giving people all across the state and country a glimpse of one of the most rare events in life. Claire and I put out a sleeping bag on the parsonage lawn and leaned back to watch the slow, incremental darkening of the sky. Little by little, the shape of the moon filled in the bright yellow sphere. When the eclipse finally reached totality, we marveled at the sight, taking off the glasses to see a moon with a halo flaring all around it. Incredible! A 360-degree sunset! The temperature dropped 20 degrees and the streetlights came on as we sat in what seemed like moonlight in the middle of the day.
One of the most wonderful things about this event was the way it allowed people to stop what they were doing - stop their routines and stop their work life to be present in that moment to look up and experience God’s creation. We left our every day lives behind for a time to enter into a state of awe and wonder.
When Jesus was telling his disciples about faith the size of a mustard seed in the Gospel of Luke, he was not suggesting that the size of their faith could be measured, or that a tree could be moved from one spot to another. He was suggesting that they enter into the experience, that they imagine the impossible becoming possible. He was telling them to see something they had never seen.
Really, if we think about it, this is the way we must experience faith itself, as something that requires imagination. Without imagination, how could we come to terms with the resurrection? Rising from the dead is impossible, but Jesus rose from the grave and the world was changed forever. New life came out of death and in your life the same can happen. Something new, something unimaginable can happen but you must enter into the experience of extraordinary.
We spend most of our time trying to manage, control and figure out life, so that we can create permanence, so we can eliminate the unknown. In a world that appears to be dangerous and uncertain, this makes us feel safer. And that is understandable.
The problem for us lies is our tendency to rely completely on ourselves, boxing ourselves into what we can do on our own rather than entering into the mystery of the mustard seed and the miracle it represents; Jesus is inviting us to enter into the imaginative possibilities for God solving our problems. Life is more than safety and security; it’s more than managing responsibilities. Maybe God wants to bring something new into your life, something that seems impossible. So enter into the experience and imagine the impossible coming true for you.
When we sat there in the back yard, watching the eclipse, we were experiencing, something new, something exciting, something more than a novelty event. We stopped everything so we could enter the moment and experienced awe and wonder. We let ourselves be open to God’s working in our hearts and minds and I was transformed by the event!
As we think about our church and its mission in this community, let’s imagine something new. Let yourself see the impossible happening here in our church. Instead of focusing on what it lacks and its limitations, imagine the impossible coming into being in our church. Then, be prepared to experience awe and wonder at what God will do!
Grace and peace,
IN OUR THOUGHTS AND IN OUR PRAYERS:
**Please remember to write down any meetings, gatherings, etc. on the
DATES TO REMEMBER
September 3, 10, 17: Bible Study
September 4th: Labor Day
September 5th: Project Patricia
September 8th: 6:00 p.m. - Ad Council Meeting
September 11th: Patriot Day
September 14th: UMW Lunch Meeting
September 16th: - 8:00 a.m. Breakfasts
September 24: Pastor Robin will be taking a vacation day to join Claire,
***EQUAL EXHANGE, FAIRLY TRADED COFFEE
UNITED METHODIST WOMEN
The United Methodist Women (UMW) met once over the summer, in July,
UMW activities will kick off with a Project Patricia meeting on Sept.
The first UMW lunch and meeting for the Fall season will take place on
All ladies of the church are invited to attend any of these events. We
BRENT VERNON AT WUMC
On Friday, August 25th, the Wheatland United Methodist Church sponsored a
BIBLE STUDY TO BEGIN
“The Bible Tells Me So”
Learn about the translation process and how various versions are produced.
Learn how Protestant traditions examine and explain biblical content.
Learn to critically examine common assumptions about the Bible.
Learn about Wesley’s methodology for interpreting controversial texts.
Learn how to examine and interpret controversial verses.
Sept. 3, 10, 17, Oct. 1
SIGN UP ROOSTER FOR SEPTEMBER
PASTOR RILEY'S SCHEDULED TIME-OFF
October 2nd – 8th
Pastor Robin would love to talk with you. If you would like to get together, just let
FAITH & FELLOWSHIP
We are always in need of persons to supply snacks and cookies, and volunteers to
LAY SERVANT CLASSES
Basic Lay Servant Ministry Course,
BASIC and ADVANCE CLASS