The prophet Ecclesiastes ends his discussion about there being a time for everything in chapter 3 with these words...
"God has made everything beautiful in its time."
A businessman working in Asia happened to meet a blind man from Belgium, who sat next to him during dinner and a show. The man said, "I'd love it if you'd describe a little of what you see." The businessman happily agreed.
The blind man asked him to describe the musicians, which the businessman had failed to note, and then to describe their instruments. "What do our fellow tourists look like?" the blind man asked. The businessman described two in great detail: an elderly Japanese woman and a blond Scandinavian boy. When the show began, he described the dancers, their four-inch fingernails, and their elegant movements.
The businessman later commented: "I discovered colors, patterns, and designs of local costumes; the texture of skin under soft lights; the movement of long, black Asian hair as elegant heads angled to the music; the intense expressions of the musicians as they played; even the flashing white smile of our waitress." At the close of the evening, the blind man said, "How beautifully you saw everything for me."
Ask God to open your eyes today and help you see the intricate beauty and detail of the world around you.... as you have never seen it before. It's God's gift to us, and we have only begun to realize its splendor.
Remember that pretty sunset? I painted it just for you. --- GOD
+++ This Sunday is Palm Sunday! We will be blessing palms and worshipping at 8:30am and 10:00am in the Sanctuary. We will postpone the celebration of the Sacrament of Holy Communion until next Sunday and we will meet the apostle Peter this week. But this week we will see the fearful side of Peter and learn once again how God's Amazing Grace saved him. We will continue our "live-streaming" on the church's Facebook page at 10:00am and then "upload" the completed worship to our YouTube channel, as well. So you have lots of ways to join us for worship this coming weekend! Also Sunday is the last opportunity to order Easter flowers for our altar next Sunday. Just see Phyllis is the Narthex and she will be glad to help!
+++ This Sunday is also a delivery day for our Shut-in Meal Ministry. Thanks to all who are a part of this ministry of visitation!
+++ Our Holy Week worship includes:
*** Maundy Thursday worship at 7:00pm in the Sanctuary on Thursday, April 6th.
*** Good Friday meditation will be available on both FaceBook and YouTube on Friday, April 7th.
*** Easter Sunday worship celebrations are at 8:30am and 10:00am on Sunday, April 9th!
+++ Next Sunday we will also offer another Service of Healing Prayers and Anointing at 12:00noon in the Fireside Room. We invite all those in need of healing to plan to join us for this time of prayer and worship.
+++ On Tuesday, April 11th we have 3 meetings taking place here at the church...Finance Team will meet at 6:00pm; SPRC will also meet at 6:00pm; and our Administrative Council will meet at 7:00pm. Mark your calendars, please!
+++ The great Annual Garage Sale is coming on May 4, 5 & 6! Dates to bring in clean, saleable items are 4/30, 5/1 & 5/2. See Shelley for details or to get involved and help!
Make this day a great day and look around at the beauty God has created just for YOU!
Happy Friday! Here are some words for us to consider from Matthew's Gospel...
"Small is the gate and narrow the road that leads
to life, and only a few will find it." (Matthew 7:14)
Many years ago when Egyptian troops conquered Nubia, a regiment of soldiers was crossing the Nubian desert with an Arab guide.
Recognizing that they had limited water and were suffering from great thirst, the soldiers were deceived by the appearance of a beautiful lake on the horizon. They insisted that their guide take them to its banks. The guide, who knew the desert well, knew that what they were seeing was just a mirage. In vain, he told the men that the lake was not real. He refused to lose precious time by wandering from their designated course.
Angry words led to blows and in the end, the soldiers killed the guide. As they moved toward the lake, it receded into the distance. Finally, they recognized their error -- the lake was only burning sand. Raging thirst and horrible despair engulfed the soldiers. Without their guide, the pathless desert was a mystery. They had been so sure they knew what was best. Instead they had sealed their own fate.
You may be certain you know exactly what's right for your life, what will bring you happiness and success. You may in fact be so sure that you feel you don't need God's help. Don't deceive yourself. Only God knows the beginning from the end.... and every step along the way.
Going my way? --- GOD
+++ On Sunday we celebrate the 5th Sunday of Lent at both 8:30am and 10:00am. And this week we will meet the apostle Paul. We will hear about how God's amazing grace changed Paul's life and changed him from a Christian-hating Pharisee.... to one of the strongest witnesses for Jesus. We will continue "live streaming" the worship service at 10:00am on the church's Facebook page and then "uploading" the completed worship to our YouTube channel. Be sure to join us for worship on Sunday!
+++ We continue with our exciting Kidz Club program each week at 10:00am and Alex is looking for helpers to assist her with the kids. If you could spare perhaps one Sunday every couple of months, please sign-up on the white board outside the Fireside Room! We guarantee you'll have a great time with these kids!
+++ Today and Saturday is our annual Spring Craft Show! Check out the selection on Friday from 4-8pm or on Saturday from 9am-3pm. You will find some beautiful crafts and a good time to be had by all. Barb's Bistro will be open and this is a great event to invite a friend to join you! We hope to see you all there!
+++ Easter Flower orders continue on Sunday. See Phyllis on Sunday to order your Chrysanthemums to decorate our Easter altar.
+++ Our Holy Week Schedule is as follows:
Palm Sunday Worship..... at 8:30am and 10:00am!
Holy Thursday ...... worship at 7:00pm.
Good Friday... a recorded meditation on our Facebook page
Easter Sunday...... worship at 8:30am and 10:00am!
+++ Plans are underway for our spring Mission Trip to Buffalo April 17-21, 2023. And there is still time to become a part of the group! See Mike B. or Jerry S. to get involved. Remember the old saying, friends... Many hands make light work! We need your hands!
Make this day a great day and enjoy your journey each day with God!
While recently re-reading John's Gospel account, I came across these very familiar words...
"God did not send his Son into the world to condemn
the world, but to save the world through him."
(John 3: 17)
You know, it's fun to speculate about heaven. What will we do? What will a life without pain and fear be like? Will heaven's streets really be gold or is that just a biblical metaphor?
But what about life in the other place? That's not such a pleasant topic. Theologians speculate and debate about what hell will be like (e.g., "Is it a real location -- or just a metaphysical state? Is it really hot there -- or is that just a metaphor?")
Like Heaven, hell is a mystery to us. But two things are certain. First, hell is something separated from God's love, from God's grace. Second, hell's gates are shut from the inside. The Bible makes it clear that God calls out to us, urging us to come to Him. God's Word assures us that God doesn't want anyone to perish.
So, the next time you're on your way to an earthly destination -- work, home, the movies -- take some time to consider your ultimate destination. Do you want to spend the afterlife basking in God's love and mercy? Or filled with the regret and anguish that come from rejecting God's love and mercy? Eternity is a long time to spend separated from the One who loves you more than anyone else in the universe. Choose wisely. Your choice makes a world of difference!
You think it's hot here? --- GOD
+++ This Sunday we worship at 8:30am and 10:00am as we celebrate the 4th Sunday of Lent. And we will meet and hear from the woman at the well from John's 4th chapter. What was it like to meet Jesus at the well while drawing your water? And how did Jesus know so much about her? Come and hear from me and her about that experience. And, of course, we will be "live streaming" the 10:00am worship on the church's Facebook page and then "uploading" the completed worship to our YouTube channel. How ever you are most comfortable... join us for worship this weekend!
+++ This Sunday is also UMCOR Sunday. A lot of us are filling our Lenten Self Denial boxes to assist with earthquake relief as our Lenten devotion, but we also can support UMCOR's work with a special gift using the envelopes at church on Sunday. Thanks for supporting the mission work of our United Methodist Church!
+++ Speaking of mission work... Have you always wanted to be part of a mission team experience but not be able to clear all the time away in your schedule? We have a great opportunity for you! Immanuel is planning a Mission Trip to the Buffalo area on April 17-21, 2023. While there, our folks will be helping to repair damage caused by the devastating snowstorms of the fall. There is also the opportunity to spend part of the week on this trip since Buffalo is so close a destination. You do not need to be a contractor to be an integral part of the team... you only need to have a servant's heart! There are jobs for all ages and abilities. If you are interested, plan to attend an organizational meeting in the Fireside Room on Tuesday, March 21st at 7:00pm. There are some forms to be completed to participate and all of your questions can be answered at this important meeting!
+++ On Sunday we begin taking orders for Easter plants to decorate our Sanctuary on Easter. See Phyllis to place your order starting this Sunday.
+++ Our Finance Team will meet on Tuesday, March 21st at 6:00pm in the Fireside Room, after their 4:00pm Audit meeting. Members... please mark your calendars for this rescheduled meeting. Thanks!
+++ And finally... it's almost time for our Spring Arts and Crafts show on March 24 & 25! We have many crafters signed up and it is a great chance to invite your friends to join you for a fun time at the church! And we still need helpers in several of the jobs. Talk to Betty or signup outside the Fireside Room on Sunday. We guarantee you'll have a lot of fun!
Make this day a great day and always keep your ultimate destination in mind!
Greetings, Friends! Today we hear from the Book of Genesis for these words...
"God created man in his own image, in the image of God.
God created him; male and female God created them."
When Darwin's "theory of evolution" was first introduced into our public schools, it was considered just that -- a theory. These days, evolution is taught as a foregone conclusion.
Most thinking people would agree that some form of evolutionary process is at work on the earth. However, it's silly to suggest that the theory posted by Darwin eliminates the possibility of a creative God who authored the universe. If we follow the "evolutionary trail" backward to its farthest point, we are still left to wonder, "How did it all begin?"
The discussion about what came from what will always find its way back to the hand of God. So why does the discussion rage on? Because distancing ourselves from our Creator relieves us of the responsibility of responding to God. It allows us to feel like the captains of our own ships, owing our existence to a simple series of accidents.
What a shame! For when we deny our Creator, we deny the song that is embedded in our hearts. It cuts us off from our true identity and leaves us floundering in a sea of insecurity and uncertainty. No matter what you might think about the "theory of evolution," God predates it! Open your hearts to see your Creator and experience God's great love for you!
Darwin says to tell you that he was wrong. --- GOD
+++ Remember the old joke about what happens after the last hymn on Daylight Savings time day? The answer is... those who forgot to change their clocks arrive for worship! Don't be one of those people! Make sure you "Spring ahead" one hour on your clocks before going to bed on Saturday night!
+++ This Sunday is the 3rd Sunday of Lent, and we will hear about and meet the Blind Man from John's Gospel account. Talk about a guy who needed God's Amazing Grace! Wait till you hear all about his journey to sight! We worship at 8:30am and 10:00am and, of course, our 10:00am worship is live streamed on the church's Facebook page. Following worship, the completed service is then uploaded to our YouTube channel, as well! You have many ways to join us for worship this week! At our 10:00am worship we will welcome Konrad and Ezra Hughes to the waters of Holy Baptism. Their parents were married here at Immanuel in 2019 and now we will welcome the whole family as we gather at the font!
+++ Check out the Installation Worship Service of our new Bishop, Bishop Hector Burgos Nunez on Saturday at 2:00pm livestreamed from the Liverpool UMC sanctuary. Be a part of welcoming Bishop Hector.... and you just might see a familiar face or two assisting in worship!
+++ New this week.... we will offer a new worship service of Healing and Anointing Prayer at 12:00 noon in the Fireside Room. This informal worship will invite us to be in specific prayer for your needs for healing and restoration. We will pray for physical and emotional healing, as well as healing of relationships and situations in your life. We will offer this worship opportunity every 2nd Sunday of the month at 12:00 noon!
+++ Our Finance and SPRC teams both meet on Tuesday evening at 6:00pm next week, March 14th. If you are a member of one of these teams, please mark your calendars and plan to attend as we do the "business" of our church.
+++ Next Sunday, March 19th, we begin receiving orders for Easter flowers to decorate our altar for Easter. This year the altar will be decorated with multi-color Chrysanthemums! Each plant will cost $10 and can either be taken home, or donated to one of our shut-ins. Look for your order form online or next Sunday, please!
Make this day a great day and always accept and return God's love for you!
Here are some words from the 14th chapter of John's Gospel....
"Do not let your hearts be troubled, Trust in God;
trust also in me." (John 14:1)
Robert and his wife were in shock when their dream cabin overlooking Mount Timpanogos was crushed in an avalanche. It took nature only ten seconds to destroy what had taken them several years to design, plan, build, and furnish. They had a very difficult time seeing God in the situation as they picked through the smashed bits of their belongings.
Eight months later, a colleague told Robert about an accident their wives had almost had on the day of the avalanche that destroyed the home. The man's wife and son, coming down the narrow road from their cabin, had skidded on the icy pavement and almost collided with Robert's wife, who was on her way up the hill. Just before the two vehicles collided, the man's wife turned her car into a deep snow bank.
It took almost an hour to get the vehicle unstuck. While they worked, Robert's wife and son waited, unable to pass. Had the accident not occurred, they would very likely have been at home, killed in the avalanche!
Be slow to judge devastating circumstances in your life. Trouble does not come from God, but God is ever present to turn those things around for your good. Ask God to show you His hand of protection in every situation.
I make happy endings. --- GOD
+++ On Sunday we worship at 8:30am and 10:00am and this week we celebrate the Second Sunday of Lent. And, after we hear from Luke 15 we will get to meet and hear about The Prodigal Son. If there was ever anyone who really needed God's Amazing Grace.... it was him! Come and hear how his confession brings him once again into the presence of his loving Father. We will also be celebrating the Sacrament of Holy Communion together this week, so if you're joining us from home, have your communion elements ready! Just log onto the church's Facebook page for the 10:00am live stream event! And if you are worshipping at another time, you can find us on our YouTube channel a little later in the day. After worship, volunteers will be delivering this month's Shut-In meal ministry meals. Thanks to all who make this amazing ministry possible!
+++ Next week Pam is on vacation.... so the office will be staffed with volunteers each morning from 9:00am until about 12:00noon. Thanks to our volunteers for stepping in and helping out next week.
+++ Our church Trustees meet on Wednesday afternoon, March 8th at 4:00pm in the Fireside Room! Please mark your calendars, Trustees, and plan to attend this important meeting.
+++ Next Sunday, March 12th will be our first Service of Healing Prayer and Anointing in the Fireside Room at 12:00 noon. This service is designed for all who have a need for healing.... either physical, emotional, or in a relationship or situation in life. If that describes where you might be at right now, put the date and time on your calendar and plan to join us on March 12th at 12:00 noon!
+++ The Choir is looking for some additional singers for the Lent/Easter season and you are invited to help! Rehearsals are on Thursday evenings at 6:30pm and you can get more information by talking to Lisa or Dan! It's fun to sing God's praises!
+++ Both our Finance and SPRC teams meet on Tuesday, March 14th at 6:00pm. Members of these ministry teams.... please mark your calendars!
Make this day a great day and always look for the happy endings God provides!
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