• Curious George

Every single one of us was formed in a mother's womb. It is where we began the journey of life on which we now travel. For most of us mother was the primary influence in the formation of our character. In her presence we learned the basic lessons of life. I say this knowing that sometimes the mother child relationship does not go well. This can leave a child insecure and anxious.

It was good to gather in the Big Red Church on Saturday morning to prepare the video below. The Called to Be Band sang songs to inspire and encourage anyone who takes time to listen. While a video is not quite the same as an in person gathering, it does allow us to share the spirit of God. Hopefully that living spirit will touch your heart and mind in a good way.

We would be very pleased to hear any comment or question you may send our way. Your perspective may be helpful as we look for effective ways in which to communicate the grace of God.

Here are the texts in which the songs and my message are rooted:

John 14:1-6 - "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house there are many dwelling places. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may be also. And you know the way to the place where I am going." Thomas said to him, "Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?" Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

1 Peter 2:2-6 - Like newborn infants, long for the pure, spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow into salvation - if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good. Come to him, a living stone, though rejected by mortals yet chosen and precious in God's sight, and like living stones, let yourselves be built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it stands in scripture: "See, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious; and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame."

Psalm 31:1-5 - In you, O LORD, I seek refuge; do not let me ever be put to shame; in your righteousness deliver me. Incline your ear to me; rescue me speedily. Be a rock of refuge for me, a strong fortress to save me. You are indeed my rock and my fortress; for your name's sake lead me and guide me, take me out of the net that is hidden for me, for you are my refuge. Into your hand I commit my spirit; you have redeemed me, O LORD, faithful God.

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  • Curious George

Thanks be to God!

This is an important time to be grateful concerning all the goodness of our lives. Such gratitude offers us a valuable resource for dealing with the challenges we face. Each of us has opportunity to turn the negative into the positive. In this way bringing at least a little light into the darkness of these days. You in your small corner and I in mine.

On Friday morning a handful of us gathered at the Big Red Church to film a short version of our Sunday services. It was wonderful to hear the Called to Be Band playing songs of faith in the hope of communicating grace to all who watch our video service. My message is basically rooted in Psalm 23, which you will find printed below the video. This Psalm was probably written by a young man named David. This is the same young man who confronted the boasting giant Goliath and overcame that giant through courage inspired by trust in God. In our modern times Psalm 23 continues to bring blessing to all who hear in it the spirit of God.

We are wondering if this way of sharing is being appreciated. Perhaps you could let us know what you think and maybe offer some suggestions regarding how we could do things differently? And, if you think it fitting, we are encouraging you to share the link to this blog with family or friends. A small way to bring God's love into all of our relations.

Here are the Bible passages which inspired our songs and messages:

Psalm 23 - The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; he leads me beside still waters; he restores my soul. He leads me in right paths for his name's sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no evil; for you are with me; your rod and your staff-- they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD my whole life long.

John 10:1-10 - Very truly, I tell you, anyone who does not enter the sheepfold by the gate but climbs in by another way is a thief and a bandit. The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep hear his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice. They will not follow a stranger, but they will run from him because they do not know the voice of strangers." Jesus used this figure of speech with them, but they did not understand what he was saying to them. So again Jesus said to them, "Very truly, I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who came before me are thieves and bandits; but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the gate. Whoever enters by me will be saved, and will come in and go out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly."

Acts 2:42-47 - They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. Awe came upon everyone, because many wonders and signs were being done by the apostles. All who believed were together and had all things in common; they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds to all, as any had need. Day by day, as they spent much time together in the temple, they broke bread at home and ate their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having the goodwill of all the people. And day by day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved.

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  • Curious George

Greetings to you each and all! It has been so good to see the signs of spring. Bird song in the air and green plants pushing through the dark soil. Nature is changing her appearance and most of us are very glad to welcome that change. It helps us keep our present circumstance in the background and God's grace in the foreground. No matter what life brings us we are confident in the love of God which keeps our spirits secure and comfortable through all changes.

On Friday morning a small group of us gathered at the Big Red Church. It was good to be in the company of friends to sing and share spiritual thoughts with our dispersed community. My message brings forward insight regarding the Bible readings for this week. It is my hope that my shared thoughts will inspire and encourage you along the way of your faith journey. If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to send them my way. I will be happy to respond.

Here are the Bible selections on which our service was based:

Acts 2:14a, 36-41 - But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them, "Therefore let the entire house of Israel know with certainty that God has made him both Lord and Messiah, this Jesus whom you crucified." Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and to the other apostles, "Brothers, what should we do?" Peter said to them, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who are far away, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to him." And he testified with many other arguments and exhorted them, saying, "Save yourselves from this corrupt generation." So those who welcomed his message were baptized, and that day about three thousand persons were added. Luke 24:25-35 - Then he said to them, "Oh, how foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have declared! Was it not necessary that the Messiah should suffer these things and then enter into his glory?" Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things about himself in all the scriptures. As they came near the village to which they were going, he walked ahead as if he were going on. But they urged him strongly, saying, "Stay with us, because it is almost evening and the day is now nearly over." So he went in to stay with them. When he was at the table with them, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him; and he vanished from their sight. They said to each other, "Were not our hearts burning within us while he was talking to us on the road, while he was opening the scriptures to us?" That same hour they got up and returned to Jerusalem; and they found the eleven and their companions gathered together. They were saying, "The Lord has risen indeed, and he has appeared to Simon!" Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he had been made known to them in the breaking of the bread.

Psalm 116: 12-19 - What shall I return to the LORD for all his bounty to me? I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the LORD, I will pay my vows to the LORD in the presence of all his people. Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his faithful ones. O LORD, I am your servant; I am your servant, the child of your serving girl. You have loosed my bonds. I will offer to you a thanksgiving sacrifice and call on the name of the LORD. I will pay my vows to the LORD in the presence of all his people, in the courts of the house of the LORD, in your midst, O Jerusalem. Praise the LORD!

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