Worship at Home for March 12, 2023

Dear Friends,

We are continuing our Lenten Journey this week as we contemplate the need for water, food, and direction in our lives. Remember: Day Light Saving Time begins this Sunday! So, make sure that your clocks spring forward by one hour.

If you would like a home visit, conversation, or home communion, please call me at
573-437-2779 (church) or 573-832-2475 (cell).

  • Church Council meeting on Monday at 6:30pm
  • Bell Choir on Wednesday at 4:15pm
  • Lenten Wednesday Worship on March 15 at 6:30pm
  • Choir Practice and Confirmation after Lenten Wednesday Worship
  • Pi Day Celebration on Sunday, March 19. Bring a pie to share for a meal after worship.


Pastor Stephanie DeLong

Scripture: Exodus 17:1-7, Psalm 95, Romans 5:1-11, John 4:5-42

Sermon: God Gives Us Water

  • What’s the thirstiest that you have ever been?
  • How did you feel when you eventually got something to drink?
  • Have you ever travelled with someone and wondered where you were going?
  • Did you question the group leader?

Over 25 years ago the Indiana Kentucky Conference had a retreat for those who served on Conference Boards. This retreat was for both clergy and lay. As the Chair of the Conference Mission Committee, I was invited to attend. My friend Joan was also on the committee and the Conference Treasurer. Joan lived about 20 minutes away from me and did not drive, so the Conference Staff was always putting us on boards together, so that I could drive her to the meetings. Another friend joked that I was earning jewels for my heavenly crown by driving Joan around. For this meeting Joan called and told me that I wouldn’t have to drive all the way from South Bend, Indiana to Merom, Indiana (a town on the Wabash River in Southwest Indiana) for the retreat. A member of her church, let’s call her Becky, had a large van and was willing to drive those in our area who would be attending.

On the day the retreat was to begin, I left my home very early in the morning, picked up Joan and drove to Becky’s house. We loaded up the van and proceeded to drive all over Northwest Indiana picking up people to take to Merom. Becky meandered through Indiana on a route that she claimed was the shortest way to Merom. It was a hot August day, and we began to get thirsty and questioned, if Becky knew where she was going.

When we reached the sixth hour of what should have been a five-hour van ride, we became especially concerned. In addition to being thirsty, we were hungry. From what we could tell, we were nowhere near our destination. Becky kept assuring us that she knew the way, and all would be well…

Eventually, the van passengers insisted that we stop for a lunch. However, the area appeared to be filled with corn fields with the occasionally gravel road leading to a farmhouse. We were adrift in a gigantic Hoosier corn maze. Suddenly, the Pie Restaurant appeared.

The Pie Restaurant had a large board on the wall with an incredible list of pies for sale. There was Sugar Pie, Blackberry Pie, Blueberry Pie, Shoofly Pie, Custard Pie, Lemon Pie and pies that none of us had encountered before. We may have lost faith in Becky as our leader, but God had led us to water and some of the best pie that I have ever had before or since. When we were wandering in the vast corn fields of Indiana, and God rescued us with pie and water.

The Israelites were journeying in the middle of the wilderness of Sin (Sin was the name of a Semitic moon goddess) when they became thirsty, really thirsty. Was this journey to the promised land really going to be this convoluted? Did Moses have any idea of where he was going? In the desert heat a person can die of dehydration in as little as seven hours. The people weren’t whining; they were afraid.

Moses cried out to God for help, and God answered. Moses to took up his staff, gathered some leaders, followed God’s guidance, and struck some rocks with his staff. Praise to God, life giving water came flowing out of the rocks. The people were saved and reassured. They had received their manna in the morning, and now they had water to drink.

In the John 4 Jesus promises living water to the Samaritan women that he meets at the well. Like Nicodemus last week, the woman engages in a dialogue with Jesus.  After all Jesus had just asked her for a drink how could he give her living water which keeps you from ever being thirsty again? She was amazed that Jesus knew so much about her. Jesus even tells her that he is the Messiah.

When the disciples showed up, they were astonished that Jesus was talking to this strange woman. The woman took this moment to run back into town in such a rush that she left her water jug behind. The disciples tried to get Jesus to eat, but Jesus talked about food that they do not know about. There is living water and spiritual food that may fill us in amazing ways.

The people came out from the city to meet Jesus and believed because of the woman’s testimony. Jesus remained there for two days teaching the people. They learned Jesus provides living water and food. As we journey through life may we drink from this living water and eat of this spiritual food.

Which brings me back to the beginning of this message and another series of questions.

  • Have you ever travelled with someone and wondered where you were going?
  • Have you ever been really, really thirsty for real water and the Living Water?
  • How did God care for you?
  • Did you eventually get pie?

Prayer: God who feeds our hunger and thirst both spiritually and physically, help us to trust where you are leading us today and every day. Amen.

Prayer list: Elizabeth, Cheryl, Dave, David, Evelyn, Jason, Paulette, Bobby, Kevin, Jim, Darryl (doing better!), Marilee, Beverly, Jim, Jenny, Jaqueline-Dixon’s daughter, Kirk, Barbara, Mitchell, Mahala, Mary, La Rae, Bud, Tyra, Marilyn, Tom, Jeff, Mary Ann (Ken’s mom), Jesse, Kate, Kyle, Carmen, Sandy and for peace. Special prayers for the Loder family, Prayers for Turkey and Syria in the aftermath of the devastating earthquakes.