Worship at Home for Sunday June 6 2021

Dear Friends,

This Sunday is Welcome Back to our Journey of Faith Sunday. If you have not been to in person worship in a while, please join us this Sunday!

If you need anything, please call me at the church office (437-2779).

Announcements:

  • Our Mission of the Month is Every Child’s Hope.
  • Sunday School is on vacation for the Summer. Vacation Bible School will be on July 11 from 3pm to 5:30pm. The Pool Party will follow at 6:15pm.
  • Welcome Back to Our Journey of Faith on Sunday on June 6 at 9am with a brunch to follow.
  • Arts Council Trivia Night is on Saturday, June 5. I am organizing a just for fun table from St. Peter’s. Let me know, if you would like to be on the St. Peter’s table.
  • If you would like to help our recent confirmands travel to the Eureka Springs Passion Play on from June 28-30, there will be an offering envelope and plate in the back of the sanctuary.

Prayers and Blessings,

Pastor Stephanie DeLong

Scripture Lesson: Please read these passages in your Bible at home. If you do not have a Bible, we have many at church and would love to give you one.

1 Samuel 8:4-11 or Genesis 3:8-15, Psalm 138, 2 Corinthians 4:13-5:1, Mark 3:20-35

Sermon: Different Houses

In the scripture lessons for this Sunday, both Jesus and Paul talk about houses. Jesus says that famous phrase, “If the kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand.” Abraham Lincoln used to this text explain why our nation needed to remain as one. Jesus uses this phrase to explain that he is not Satan, because Satan would not be casting out his own demons. Paul refers to the houses to when speaking about the heavenly home that God is building for through the grace and power of the crucifixion and resurrection.

Which leads me to ponder, how do we think about houses? For most of us, a house is a place to live. It has a roof, floor and four walls. There are doors so that people and pets can enter and exit the house. There are windows that let in light and fresh air. Often there are systems for heating and cooling the home, kitchens for cooking and eating, places for taking care of our hygiene needs and beds for sleeping. Houses offer protection from the wind, rain, snow, hail, heat and cold. Hopefully a person’s house keeps out unwanted critters. Houses are supposed to keep us safe.

The people who live in a house are considered a household. In 2020 the US Census wanted to know who was living in each household. People living in a household are often relatives (parents, children etc.). Sometimes people living in a household choose to live together for a variety of reasons such as sharing expenses and companionship. Households are best when everyone is willing to work together even when they have differing ideas and ways.

Jesus and Paul speak about new ways of living in God’s household. Jesus expands family relationships beyond his birth mother and siblings. Jesus includes all the brothers and sisters who wish to do God’s will. Paul acknowledges that these earthly houses that we build for ourselves will fall apart in time. The promise of the heavenly home that we cannot see is far more glorious than the earthly one that we can see.

God is building for us a beautiful home built with grace for those who do God’s will and love God. This house is heavenly and beyond the constrains of earthly homes which even with constant maintenance eventually fall apart. This heavenly household will be filled with all the brothers and sisters who follow Jesus and listen to the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

The heavenly householders will disagree on this earth. Even Jesus’ birth family was ready to take him home and put him a back room, because of the rumors circulating about him. Paul is pleading with the beloved Corinthian church to not break their relationship with him in 2 Corinthians. We as faithful householders of God will struggle in our relationships but need to remain firm in our love for one another and faith in God.

We need to extend and share the grace of God to one another and the world. God’s heavenly household is filled with many people giving thanks for the gift of salvation. God’s family is led by the Spirit to do God’s will in this world as we look forward to the joy of the next. May we take time in our earthly houses to offer thanks for all that God has done and will do for us. Together we look forward to that eternal and heavenly home that is being built for us.

On this Welcome Back Sunday, let us be truly joyous that we have weathered the Covid storm in our house of faith. Welcome back to being together in person as we live as brothers and sisters in Christ in our household of faith.

Prayer

God who loves us and houses us in glory we give you thanks and praise. We are thankful that Jesus’ calls those who do your will brother and sister. May we open our hearts in love to our brothers and sisters in Christ. May the Spirit strengthen and renew us in this world while we look forward in hope to our eternal houses in heaven. We pray this day for those who are in our hearts asking that you surround them with your healing love and grace. Amen.

Silent Prayer followed by the Lord’s Prayer

Prayer list:

Ahna, Priscilla, Grandpa David, Virginia, Vic, Liz’s sister in law, Butch, Anonymous Cancer Patient, Linda, Pat, Laurie Lee, Gail, Brenda, Jeff, Terry, Bev, Mark, Dave, Peggy, Shawn, Lindsey, Sue, Diann, Danna, Janet, Lisa, Joyce, Sara, Cheyenne, Katelyn, Michelle, Dawson, Mary, Tricia, Don, Mildred, Bob, Paul, Lilian, Corey, Uncle A. J., Grace, Marcie to get a new guide dog, Andrea, all who grieve, all who struggle with mental health issues and their families.

 

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