Worship 9 am
Sunday School 10 am
There’s nothing ordinary about Ordinary Time anymore. But then it was never really “ordinary.” The season of Epiphany has always been about seeing the light that is Jesus the Christ breaking forth into the world in which we live. Seeing is only the first step, however. We don’t see the light of Christ the same way we see the beauty of the Grand Canyon, for example, or a particularly beautiful sunset. While there is beauty in the presence of Christ, it is a beauty that calls forth a response. There are many ways to respond to the presence of Christ. In this series, we focus on the invitation to follow. It is the mission of the church to make disciples, even as we are being made disciples. It is an ongoing process to follow Jesus; a transformation that continues through every stage of our lives.
January 17: “Follow Me! Anything Good" (1 Samuel 3:1-10 & John 1:43-51)
“Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” That is the guiding phrase from our gospel text this week. “Anything good?” Surely you can hear how that sounds; the sarcasm and even prejudice tucked within this question. We are potentially dealing with some difficult topics this week; not because they are difficult but because they may seem threatening and personal. Using the story of Samuel’s calling and an interaction between Jesus and several disciples the answer present within our service for today to the question “Can anything good…” be a resounding yes! Yes, there is always good in us, even as flawed as we are. This Sunday’s service will hopefully serve as that reminder that through God’s grace we are renewed and restored once more.
January 24: “Follow Me! Follow Me!" (Jonah 3:1-5, 10 & Mark 1:14-20)
Fishing for people. What images come to mind with this phrase? How can we move beyond the simplistic “rounding people up for Jesus” and instead talk about making connections? Within our Gospel lesson today we are moving well beyond the numbers to include acceptance and hospitality. Jesus is inviting his followers to a life of engagement. How might we as the church, even in the midst of pandemic still remain engaged with one another though fellowship, accountability, and spiritual growth? How might we as the church once again explore how God, through Christ and the Holy Spirit might be calling to us as disciples AND as the church?
January 31: "Follow Me! What Have You To Do With Us?" (Mark 1:21-28)
We are a people on a journey of transformation, and it isn’t always easy. Today we acknowledge the hard work of becoming disciples and of setting aside the weight that clings so closely, and of handing over the reins of our lives so that we can be led to wholeness. And so, we can proclaim wholeness to the broken world around us. Today the disciples in our text, as well as each of us, are confronted with the question, “what have you to do with Jesus of Nazareth?” How are we living out what it means to overcome evil, and bring justice to an unjust world?
February 7: "Follow Me! She Began To Serve" Mark 1:29-39
Follow Me” is the call we respond to every time we say yes to Jesus. This week we once again make our commitment to serve. Not only because we have been healed in so many ways but also because we have been claimed and loved and accepted in ways that still surprise us. While Peter’s mother-in-law does not have any lines in our gospel drama, her witness is strong. As soon as she got to her feet her first action was to serve. Let us celebrate service today, but not as only as a call to do more, work more or fill our schedules with more work to do. May our celebrations instead focus upon our thanks for both the small and large acts of service that others do. Who has served us recently and how might we offer thanks?
February 14 (Transfiguration Sunday)"Follow Me! But Only Jesus" Mark 9:2-9
Transfiguration Sunday may not feel like a common observance for many within the UMC, but as a close to the “Follow Me” series, we do that very thing as we consider this event in the life of Jesus and his disciples. While it is not the task of leadership to explain the transfiguration, we as a congregation are called to stand in open-mouthed wonder at the fullness of the Christ we worship. In this in-between moment, before we launch into Lent, we catch our breath by standing on the mountaintop with Peter and John and James. And we watch Jesus do something unexplainable. Now is the time to follow Christ down the mountain and to remember that the commandment to not tell was given to them, but not to us. We are called to tell anyone and everyone. We are called to live our telling, and walk our proclamation. How will we do this very thing as we prepare to enter into the Season of Lent?