Sunday, April 27, 2014

Youth Confirmation Sunday

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God - what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:2)

Since mid-February, the following young people have been studying the Christian faith and our Methodist heritage as part of this year’s confirmation class at East Cobb U.M.C.  It was taught by our Minister of Youth and Young Adults Jim Huston.  The lively spirit and commitment of the participants was a true blessing to all! 

Today (April 27) at our 11:00am  worship service, each member of the class made their profession of faith in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, and became a full “professing member” of our church:

Christopher Hunt      by Profession of Faith

Michelle Jones         by Profession of Faith

Matthew Jones          by Profession of Faith

Luke Loubser            by Profession of Faith

Piper Malcolm          by Profession of Faith

Connor Grant            by Christian Baptism

Please join in welcoming them and in celebrating what God through Christ is doing in and through the lives of our young people!  Remember, God loves you and I do, too!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

An Instrument of God's Peace

“It is to peace that God has called us.” (1 Corinthians 7:15)

“Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace;
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console;
To be understood, as to understand;
To be loved, as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive,
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.”
            [--Francis of Assisi, 1182-1226]

Lord, in your mercy hear our prayer!  Amen.  Always remember that God loves you and I do, too!


“One is tempted by one’s own desire.... Then, when that desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin, and that sin, when it is fully grown, gives birth to death. Do not be deceived, my beloved.” (James 1:14-16)

I’ve shared this in the past, but as we continue our series on The Lord’s Prayer looking at the dangers of temptation and God’s power to help us overcome it, I thought this poem by Irene Holsted bears repeating (it’s the one I shared at the start of my April 6 sermon):  

            “There came a gentle tapping ‘let me in!’ 
               I opened and beheld a very little sin.
              He entered with apologies and scarcely raised his eyes
              As if abashed to contemplate tempting one so wise.

              I found myself amused at this and set out to explore
              This little cunning sin I’d let inside my door.
              I petted him and teased him & gave him bread & wine,
              Grew fond of him, then adopted him,
               this little sin of mine.

              He twined around my heartstrings & grew so very dear
               I loved him & assured myself he was too small to fear.
              He soon spied out my weakness & therein was the rub,
              He built himself a treadmill, my weakness at the hub.

               With every revolution my darling little sin
               Enlarged himself and multiplied over and over again.
               At last he stooped & lifted me & placed me on his knee,
               Now he is my besetting sin and makes a pet of me.”
                        [--Author Irene Holsted]

My prayer is that whatever “temptation(s)” or “besetting sin(s)” you are facing, you’ll trust Christ to walk with you to victory over them, lest you become a victim of them -- and always remember that I and all of our church’s pastors are available to help you privately and confidentially if you are struggling with something in particular, as well. 
Never forget that God loves you and I do, too (no matter what your “struggle” is)!