Come & See

Start with Amen

Written by St Andrew on .

A couple of months ago, I was chatting with a dear friend and the conversation went something like this:

“How’s your father-in-law doing?” 

“Not too well, I’m afraid.”  My father-in-law had faced some chronic health conditions, including congestive heart failure, the last few years.  I brought my friend up-to-date with his most recent hospitalization and his subsequent discharge to a rehabilitation facility.  It was becoming harder and harder to remain hopeful about his long-term health and prognosis. 

Trusting God

Written by St Andrew on .

The other day as I sat at my window watching the birds I saw a little House Finch at the birdbath.  He seemed so nervous as he hopped back and forth around the rim.  It appeared that he was longing for a long cool drink of water.  Round and round the rim with his head turning in constant movement he danced.  I felt sorry for the little guy.  Fear clearly was keeping him from just dipping down to the refreshment.  As I watched I said out loud, “ go ahead, it’s ok, you are safe.”

God in a Box

Written by St Andrew on .

“Think outside of the box “is such a common expression in our culture.

I began to wonder just how often do we put God in a Box.  We can only think in terms as big as our available knowledge.  So we are very limited indeed, or at least I am.

What kind of boxes do we put God in?  Is He in our 'duty' box?  We only bring Him out on Sunday morning for worship and then slip Him back on the shelf for the rest of the week?

Maybe He is in a 'fear' box.  This can be a very large box for human fear can be overwhelming and enormous!  Yet if we have Him in this box He is of little use, for we refuse to let Him out. We hold tight to our troubles.

Re-Membering Thinking of You

Written by St Andrew on .

This space has its roots in the history of how this congregation came to be - a group of Jesus followers inviting others to come and see Christ and live that faith out together.  Once a month, we will bring forth a devotional from years gone by.  Today we re-member (put together again in our minds) from thirty-five years ago  in the Lenten Devotional of 1983 - Sunday, March 6th to be precise though this one was written in January of 1982.

As I am writing on this January Sunday it is minus 15 degrees with a wind-chill of minus 60 degrees.  I have just returned from the gathering of the hardy few at church, where I was asked to prepare a thought for the Lenten booklet.  Lent -- so far removed from this January day.  I volunteered to write this because I want to reach out to you.  I wanted to write something that would have meaning to both you and me.  What can that message be?  Dominating my thoughts now is the bad weather -- Did anyone get stranded coming to or going home from church?  Will the canned food in the garage cupboard freeze?  Will it warm up enough to get out the cross-country skis?  My feet are cold.  Lent is so far away.

Happiness Awaits

Written by St Andrew on .

Back to school, and back to the frenzy of spelling words, library books, shin guards and carpools.  Days where even the 20 minutes to actually sit down and eat feel like an unlikely luxury. And you better have your math flashcards ready for review with that fork in the air!!  There’s a rhythm to it though – the routine brings order compared to the carefree summer when nature is the only topic on the study plan.   But somehow in both times, the lull and the sprint, the steady flow of church life persists.  

I just read a well-cited article on what the happiest people do every day.  The first specific action listed is going to church, which research shows to bring people “a disproportionate amount of happiness.”  The author concludes that church life provides a frequent, constant and scheduled time for us to engage in fellowship with people who matter to us.  Anecdotally, I also received this week a Snapchat (and I’m not even a millennial!)  from my dear friend Gretchen that said simply “Church makes me happy!” I love church too, for the feeling of family that it builds for me and my kids.   Some might (ok most would) say I’m an incurable social butterfly, so this may be no surprise.  However, and probably more critically for me, it is also the scheduled time for peace; for sitting down, being quiet, listening, and reflecting (especially when I can talk the tots into Sunday school!).