Worship ar Home for October 23

Dear Friends,

Welcome to the Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost.  This Sunday we look at the words of the prophet Joel who foretold of new things after years of hardship.
If you would like a home visit, conversation, or home communion, please call me at 573-437-2779 (church) or 573-832-2475 (cell).

  • We still have apple butter for sale!
  • Butter Braids will arrive on Tues., 10/25/22 at 5:00 PM
  • Hand Bell Choir at 4:15 on Wednesday.
  • Wednesday Confirmation Class Wednesday at 6:30
  • Choir Practice on Wednesday at 7pm.
  • Celebration of Life for Phyllis Nicks on Saturday, October 29 at 11am at Gottenstroetter’s Chapel. Visitation is from 9am-11am.
  • Laurie and I will be attending the Conference Annual Gathering Virtually October 27 through October 29. I hope to attend in person on Friday, October 28.
  • Date: Dec 10th 9 to 1 or when we run out. Selling by the pound. Choose your own cookies and pack your own box. Place: St Peters downstairs

o Bakers: please bake 3 different kinds. 3 dozen of each kind. Need cookies put down in the kitchen by noon on Friday December 9th Thanks to all the bakers and candy makers!

  • Camp MoVal Events this month:
    • October 30 – Halloween Bash Join in a fun, family, friendly Halloween Party. Cost is $10 per person with a $40 family max. Includes delicious food, face painting, games, crafts, wagon rides and more! You must pre-register at www.linktree.com/campmoval

Prayers and Blessings,

Pastor Stephanie DeLong

Scripture Lessons:
Joel 2:23-
32, Psalm 65, 2 Timothy 4:6-8, 16-18, Luke 18:19-14

Sermon: Repay the Years

I will repay you for the years
that the cutting locust,
the swarming locust, the hopping locust, and the devouring locust have eaten—
my great army, which I sent against you.
You will eat abundantly and be satisfied,
and you will praise the name of the Lord your God,
who has done wonders for you;
and my people will never again be put to shame.
Joel 2:25-26, (Contemporary English Bible)

When you first read the sermon title, I bet you thought about repayments and payment plans that require financial planning for goods purchased. Reading these verses in Joel, we learn that God is going to repay the people of Israel for the years of hardship which were endured due to an army of locust eating the crops and years of devastating drought. The people have known hunger and thirst. The years have been horrible! God is promising to repay those years with abundance and wonders. In return the people will praise God’s name.

We have all lived through years of hardship. Chomping locust can take many forms in our lives: pandemics, inflation, national discord, drug epidemics, drought, floods and more. Our congregation has seen so much change in the last few years as many of our long and true members are finding that they no longer have the stamina to do all that they once could. Others have passed from this life onto their heavenly rest. The pews that were full decades ago now contain remnants of the faithful.

God is still with us. God will repay us for the hard years, but we will have to adapt and become a different church. We will change from a congregation focused on what we did in the past to a group of faithful believers who proclaim praise and wonder all that God has done and will do for us.

We long to be restored to what was, but that is not God’s plan. Ancient Israel was never restored to the grandeur of Solomon’s time. Instead, faithful remnants remained in or returned to Israel after years of hardship. The people were not restored to what was. God had a better plan for them, instead of being restored they were redeemed! Redeemed by the love of God.

We are being redeemed to be new church of the faithful. St. Peter’s does so much good in our community with very little recognition. Our congregation needs to keep doing God’s work. We need to allow God into our lives to save us in faith and love. We need to focus less on what was and what isn’t, but on the promise of what could be if we allow the Holy Spirit to do new things at St. Peter’s.

Let us praise God and share the good news that “Jesus Saves”! God will repay the hard years with abundance. We will rejoice and praise God in new ways and new places. Thank God all mighty we have been redeemed!

Prayer: Redeeming and saving God, you will repay the hard years with new ways of being the church. You will bless us in new and unimaginable ways. Let us be open to the leadings of the Holy Spirit as we find our way in the strange new world of redemption. Thank God almighty, we have been redeemed. Amen.

Prayer list: All who have been on our list in the past and Elizabeth, Cheryl, Dave, David, Ken and Evelyn, Jason, Paulette, Jaqueline, Friends of Shelby, Bobby, Kevin, Jim, Darryl (doing better!), Marilee, Beverly, Jim, Jenny, Dixon’s daughter, Barbara, Melvin, Mitchell, Mahala, Maybelle and Mary, La Rae, , Bud, Bob, Ruth, Tyra and for peace in troubled and war-torn places. Those who have been impacted by the recent hurricanes.

Prayers for the family of Phyllis Nicks who passed away on October 15, 2002.

 

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