Worship at Home for January 21, 2024

Dear Friends,

This past week has been snowy and frigid. We chose to cancel church last Sunday due to the hazardous conditions. This Sunday the weather looks more promising for our annual meeting and potluck lunch.

Note: If we need to cancel church due to hazardous road conditions or inclement weather, an email will be sent out to our email list. You may also check the KSDK Closings, St. Peter’s UCC Facebook Page or our Website for cancelation notices.

If you would like a home visit, conversation, or home communion, please call me at 573-437-2779 (church).

  • Bell Choir on Wednesday at 4:15pm
  • 2023 Annual Reports will be available on the table in the back of the sanctuary on Sunday.
  • The Congregational Annual Meeting will be on Sunday, January 21 after worship.
  • Games and Potluck Lunch on Sunday, January 21 after the meeting. The Church Council will provide fried chicken. Please bring a dish to share.
  • Souper Bowl Lunch Fund Raiser for Helping Hands will be on Sunday, February 11.
  • We have plenty of service opportunities available at St. Peter’s. Check out the sign-up sheets in the back of the church.
  • Are you interested in becoming a member of St. Peter’s? Meetings becoming a member will be held in February after worship. New members will be welcomed into membership during worship on Palm Sunday, March 24.

Pastor Stephanie DeLong

Scripture: Jonah 3:1-5, 10 • Psalm 62:5-12 • 1 Corinthians 7:29-31 • Mark 1:14-20

Sermon: Waiting

For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from him. Psalm 62:5 NRSV

In Psalm 62 we hear the words of someone who is patiently waiting for God’s care and response. This person has been deeply hurt and battered by their enemies. But they will continue to trust and wait on God’s care and support.

What images does the word waiting conjure up for you? Take a moment to list them. Write them down if you like. What phrases do you associate with waiting? Write them down too. Here is a list of some of the phrases and thoughts that I have concerning waiting:

“Waiting on a Friend” was a Rolling Stones song from the early 1980’s when the band members sang about waiting for a friend or friends to arrive at a location. We have all had moments when we have waited on a friend at a restaurant table, movie theater, in our homes and other places. The waiting may be pleasant or frustrating. Sometimes we may even make new friends as we wait for old ones to arrive.

“Waitin’ on a Woman” is country song by Brad Paisley when talks to an older man on a bench in the mall as they wait for their wives to finish shopping. The older man advises the younger one to just relax on the bench because he doesn’t mind waitin’ on a woman.

There are also songs about “Waiting on a Miracle” and “Waiting on Sunny Day,” “Waiting for the World to Change” and more. It seems that people have always been waiting for something or someone. In these cases, waiting implies hope.

Sadly, there are other places and times when the term waiting is not so hopeful. Waiting rooms in hospitals and doctors’ offices are places that we may be waiting for a miracle and for a sign of hope. Looking around the waiting room of an Intensive Care Unit we may look at the faces of family and friends desperate for some good news.

Psalm 62 expresses that when we wait on God we live in the hope and trust of good news. God’s love is steadfast. God is with us even when the news is other than we would wish. God stands by us even when others will not.

The story of Jonah shows that God cares for peoples that we might not like. God sent Jonah to prophesy words of judgement to the people of Nineveh. People whom Jonah abhorred. When Jonah eventually arrived   Nineveh after a rather fishy detour, Jonah proclaimed the words of judgement. Much to Jonah’s surprise the people repented, and God forgave them. The story of Jonah might be seen as story of God waiting on us to do the right thing. Waiting on God and God’s waiting on us results in God’s loving nature being known.

Prayer: God, may I wait on you in hope and trust. May you wait on me with love and patience. Amen.

Prayer list: All who have been on our list for a while, Mark’ s brother Billy, Delores W., Tyra, Freya, Vicki B., Barb Z., Jesse, Tammy. Jennifer, Richard, Tamara, John, Dixon’s great granddaughter, Ashlely and Cody, Garth, Linda, Tessa, Carl, Kimbra, Liz’s father, Dannie, Lathe, Marilyn, Kris, Lee Ann, Bob, Diane, Linda, Keetha, Carly, Mia, Brenda, David, earthquake victims in Japan, places where there is war and all who are in need about which we do not know. If you know of anyone who would like a prayer shawl, please let us know.