“Gracious speech is like clover honey –
Good taste to the soul, quick energy for the body.”
Many of you know about my habit
of taking notes during the sermon each Sunday.
I hear better if I record on paper
what I process through the ears
to the brain through the fingertips.
Often the preacher wouldn’t recognize
the message as I interpret it.
But that’s okay – when my mind wanders
It’s generally related to something
she just uttered – and eventually
I get back to the voice in front of me.
Your mind doesn’t ever wander during
speeches or sermons, does it?
Here’s what I heard/processed
from Rev. Jean Johnson’s sermon today.
By the way, the scripture was not
the Proverb listed above!
The scripture that inspired the sermon
was actually John 12:20-30.
But, nevertheless, what I heard was:
A Honey of a Sermon
From the cardiac care room
Patients looked out to see a cross
Lighted and perched atop the church
On the street across.
The patients were looking
For new life – a new heart.
Waiting for a new spirit after
Their chest was torn apart.
What would you do
With a heart and spirit anew?
Would you take advantage
Of the fresh start given to you?
As we live our lives aware
Of the sin that we repeat,
Do we work to try and get
A clean heart with loving beat?
Working to receive a clean spirit
Is not the way to receive it.
All we need to do is accept
The forgiveness Jesus gave; just believe it!
Jesus gave each of us a chance
To have a clean start each day.
His death on the cross gave us
A chance to walk straight in His Way.
The crucial function of His relationship
To give us new life and a new heart
Was demonstrated by His resurrection.
Relate to Him in acceptance today for your fresh start!
Let’s Do It!
God has entrusted us
With treasures of great worth.
Hope and inspiration are ours.
God gives us each other – and Christ’s birth.
God gives us, by His grace,
The gifts of immeasurable treasure.
He gives us the abilities
To use these gifts without measure.
We don’t get to choose
What treasures we receive,
But we are allowed to choose
What we do or achieve.
To fulfill our life’s purpose
Or to ignore our responsibilities
Is a choice we each make.
What are your possibilities?
We can double our gifts
Or we can ignore or bury ’em.
We can share our gifts
Or we decide they’re too heavy to carry ’em.
We will be rewarded according
To the return to God on our gifts.
Our talents are ours to use or
We’ll watch dismayed as our reward shifts.
God will take from the selfish
The wonders He placed in their hands.
He’ll rebuke the ungrateful ones
Who ignore His service demands.
So, are we giving back double
The abilities God generously gave us?
Do we accept them and honor Him
By using the gifts that can save us?
He gave us comfort so we
Can return comfort to others.
He gives us perfect directions
For how to use our gifts for our brothers.
So, let’s do it!
-based on a sermon by Rev. Jean Johnson
-reflecting on Matt. 25:14-30
It is Stewardship Sunday.
What does that mean to you?
If you are a member of a church, you might think it is a time
when the church leaders seek to “Fleece the Flock.”
Our sermon today was titled, “The Offering.”
As is my habit, I took notes as I listened.
Here are my internal reflections as I heard the message:
What do I have that God needs?
He doesn’t need my money.
What do bees have that God needs?
You think He needs their honey?
What do I have that I alone produce?
My offering to God is FROM me.
What do I have that is unique to me?
It’s a gift from me that’s FREE.
What can I give to God who has it all?
He doesn’t need my $$ bills.
My offering is not FOR God;
It’s given in gratitude TO God
For a life of chills and thrills.
What do I have that God wants?
He wants my love and trust.
What do I have that’s free from God to me?
His love, my faith, and TIME. Give it to God? I must!
What does God need with my money, I wonder.
It is not for God, you see.
What does my giving mean? Is it plunder?
No, it’s a THANK YOU to God from me.
My checkbook is my stationery.
It’s how I give thanks for breath.
I’ll write my thanks, my gratitude to God,
With JOY and WISDOM until death.
What do I have that God wants?
More than anything, it is my faithful free TIME.
I can waste my TIME or spend it
In service to God. The choice is mine.
Lord God, take me
– and my time –
I am yours.
Make me an offering.