A Word for Today

A bit of history—in the 1700’s in England John Wesley was a priest in the Church of England who noticed that the church seemed more concerned about itself than about truly connecting with God and addressing the suffering of people. Along with his brother, Charles, and others John began to delve more deeply into his faith.  This led him to go to the places where people’s lives were broken, into the streets, mines and bars and into the homes of suffering people. Out of his ministry, the Methodist movement emerged and spread across England and eventually to other places.

From April 20-29, 2020, a group from our church is going to visit the places that shaped Wesley and Methodism, and go to other sites in England as well. You are invited to come and find out more about this pilgrimage at an info meeting on Sunday, March 24 at 12:45 p.m. in Fellowship Hall. There is no better time than now to learn and be reminded about the forces and places that shaped Methodism.

That history is not separate from today. During Lent we’re talking in worship about Confronting Suffering and Evil.  Last fall I asked what you wanted to know regarding what the Bible really says about…  Many of you had questions about suffering and evil and the Bible. One person posed a question that may be on the minds of others as well:  “Is killing ever okay?” this person asked. That’s what we’re going to talk about this Sunday, March 24, 2019.

Studying about and writing messages on suffering and evil for this Lent has been difficult. I’ve thought, “what do I say that addresses the topic AND gives people hope and guidance?”  I’ve wondered, “how do I even begin to narrow down the big topics in this series—suffering, good people, bad things, wrong choices of people, natural disasters, and the presence of hatred and violence around us. Whew! So I’ve been praying my way into these messages even more than I usually do. I welcome your prayers at this time.

Prayer:  God, Heal our world. Strengthen us to join you in that healing.  Pour hope into our hearts by your reassuring Presence.  Calm our anxieties and draw us close to you in love.  Amen. 

Blessings, Sharon