Sunday, December 28, 2014

Sermon: The One- Emmanuel (God With Us)

Sermon from Sunday, December 28, 2014
Scripture: Luke 2: 1-20

Where Do I Turn?

At Bible Study last week the ladies asked me where I turn to in the Bible when I'm having a hard time in life. They also wanted to know where they could send someone who is struggling. I started pondering where in scripture I've found comfort. In college, I used to write what I found comforting on post-it notes and put them up in my room. I still have those post it notes. Each time I struggle, grieve, or feel hopeless I find different scriptures speak to me. Sometimes what used to be so comforting is no longer comforting. So I've made a list of scripture that I have found comfort over time in no particular order. I also asked some collegues where they go and have made a list of them.

Where I Turn:
Psalm 143
Isaiah 41: 9-10
Isaiah 43:1-7
Joshua 1
Psalm 103
Psalm 139
Isaiah 30: 21
Romans 12
John 10 

The Book of Job- When I have lost someone or something
The Book of Psalms- When I can't seem to pray, the Psalmists seem to have some of the same thoughts/struggles and so I pray different chapters of the Psalms (143, 103, 139 and 23 are a few of my favorites in times of trouble).

Where My Collegues Turn:
Psalm 139
Ecclesiates 3 (especially verse 15)
John 16:33
Isaiah 54:10
Romans 8 (nothing shall seperate us from God)
Psalm 23
Genesis- Story of Abraham and Isaac
Habakkuk 3:17-19
The Birth of Jesus

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Sermon: The One- Expectations (Joy)

Children's Sermon from Sunday, December 21, 2014

Due to Copyright Laws, we are unable to post the Christmas Program. If you have Santel, you should be able to view the program Dec 28- Jan 3 at 9:45am and 6pm on the local channel.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

ReBlog: Nine Issues Regarding Pastors Office Hours

I try to keep office hours. Some days, these get tough.
Apparently I'm not the only one... 

Click Here for Thom Rainer's Article

Want to know my office hours? Monday and Thursday 9am-12pm...
Can't meet during that time? Call me and schedule an appointment.
Leave a message if I don't answer. I'm not ignoring you, but may be intently listening to someone just like you want to be listened to.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Clergy Corner: Blessed to Be A Blessing

Blessed to be a Blessing
When you say you are blessed, what are the circumstances that surround this? New babies? New car? Abundant crop? God has gifted you with wonderful things. However, you are really “gifted.” I recently read a blog post about this very concept of being blessed. In the blog post it pointed to the Beatitudes in Matthew 5. Have you read them recently? If not, pull out a Bible and take a look.
It says “blessed” are the poor in spirit, those who mourn, the meek, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, the merciful, pure in heart, peacemakers, persecuted, and the insulted. Now when was the last time you were insulted that you said “I am so blessed?” When seemingly bad things happen, do you respond with “I am so blessed?”
As we enter into a time of Thanksgiving, we want to remember those things that have blessed us so wonderfully. I want you to truly look at all of your blessings as scripture describes them. Jaime, the blog writer mentioned earlier, wrote “We’ve created a culture in which we measure God’s ‘blessings’ in terms of dollars and cents, comfort and pleasure, wealth and well-being.” We measure happiness. “God’s blessing is presence.” Emmanuel- “God with us.”
I want to tell you that even in the moments that are full of hurting, grief, and loneliness we are not alone. Matthew 5 says blessed are they for they shall be…Look it up! We are not left to depend on ourselves. We are blessed by presence. Now the question is what do we do with our blessings? Here are some suggestions:
Sit in the presence of God, thanking the Creator for all of your Blessings.
Share the blessings with others who are struggling. Be the presence of Christ in their life.
Give in the abundance that you have.
The Parkston Ministerial Association sees many of the needs hidden in this community. We see those who are struggling with unspoken “blessings.” We are collecting money this November to help those in need in our community. We are also gathering together to count our blessings November 26th at 7:00pm at Memorial Baptist. We will worship God with us, take an offering to bless those in need, and share our blessings together over pie and ice cream.
You have been blessed to be a blessing… to be God’s presence.

From Matthew 5:
He said:
 “Blessed are the poor in spirit,
    for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 
 Blessed are those who mourn,
    for they will be comforted. 
 Blessed are the meek,
    for they will inherit the earth.
 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
    for they will be filled.
 Blessed are the merciful,
    for they will be shown mercy.
 Blessed are the pure in heart,
    for they will see God.
 Blessed are the peacemakers,
    for they will be called children of God.
 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
    for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
  “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.  Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Thursday, September 25, 2014

ReBlog: The Most Popular Book of All Time

I found this infographic HERE. It explains some great information about the Bible, it's history, facts, and how the translations compare.


Sunday, September 14, 2014

Guest Sermon: New Hope Mission Trip

Sermon from Sunday, September 14, 2014
Guest Speakers: Tim Kurbis, Jody Genant, Keith Goehring,
Matt Leischner, AJ Zolnowsky, Nick Zolnowsky

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Sermon: Take Your Burning Bush and ?

Sermon from Sunday, August 31, 2014
Scripture: Exodus 3: 1-15 and Matthew 16: 21-28


Guest Preacher: Theresa Kashale

Guest Preacher: Theresa Kashale from Theresa's House

Clergy Corner: "Ice Bucket Challenge"

You probably have heard about the “ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.” It’s hard to miss. People have been dumping water and ice on their heads as a way to advocate for ALS and raising money. How does it work? You get nominated by your friend to take the challenge. In order to get out of paying the requested amount of $100 you can dump ice and water on your head to only donate $10. You then get to nominate three other people to do the challenge. According to ALSA as of Wednesday, August 27, $94.3 million has been raised. 

Last weekend, I got to see Tim’s aunt get water dumped on her. She was so excited, but I realized that she had no idea why she was doing this. She originally had no idea that this was a way to raise money for an organization to fund research for an ALS cure. She was just as excited when she knew it was for charity.

Why do we do good things? 

Do we do good things so that others see how good we are? Do we do good things because we want the praise for how cool our video is? Do we do good things because we believe in the cause? Do we do good things because we want to see the glory of God? What is your motivation? 

I pray that the money raised through the “Ice Bucket Challenge” will find answers and cures to this horrible disease. However, as I sat dreading the nomination that was eventually to come, I started asking myself: Am I passionate about ALS research? I only have x many dollars to give, is this something I desire giving to? What is my motivation for giving to ALS research? I found myself dreading the day. It came yesterday. Thanks Max.

Deuteronomy 15: 10 says “Give generously to them and do so without a grudging heart; then because of this the Lord your God will bless you in all your work and in everything you put your hand to.” 

Asking myself these questions, I realized that I am most passionate about 32 kids in Liberia. An orphanage cannot use their water supply, a dirty swamp, because of the Ebola outbreak. They have no clean water, and their “dirty” water is possibly contaminated. So I gave. My challenge to you: wherever you give, may you do it with joy, with grace, and with peace to the Glory of God.

Intersted in learning more about CRI? See our website at

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Monday, August 18, 2014

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Clergy Corner: Numb

This morning I find myself numb to the news. I’ve noticed this lack of feeling more and more this year as 74 times in the past 18 months we’ve turned on the news to hear about another shooting. The horrific scenes of people fleeing from buildings, loved ones clinging to one another, and police storming into the danger. Where did the feelings go? Where did the rage I felt on 9/11 go? Where did the need for action go? 

Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy a pheasant hunt each fall with my dad even if in my 20+ times of hunting my personal bird count is 0. I enjoy the meat that hunting provides each year. I don’t have answers. I don’t know where to go. I know that as I search for feeling this morning, as I push past the numbness there is anger, there is rage, there is sorrow. 

There is something deeper here. In the Bible we find several books predicting, encountering, or cleaning up after the exile of Israel and Judah into Assyria and Babylon. There has been complete and utter destruction. One of these books is Lamentations. In this book the writer cries out: 

Lamentations 1: 12 “Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? Look and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow, which was brought upon me…(ESV)” 1:16 “For all this I weep, weep buckets of tears, and not a soul within miles around cares for my soul. My children are wasted, my enemy got his way (Message).”
Even as the writer cries out he moves on to chapter 3 and talks about God’s faithfulness. 3:19-24 “I remember my affliction and my wondering, the bitterness and the gall. I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me. Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him (NIV).” 

Even in the numbness of this morning, I find hope. I find promise in God our Creator who will not abandon us in the midst of horror. I find peace in the midst of the chaos. I find longing for the day when all of this senselessness is gone.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

ReBlog: Maundy Thursday Memo from Simon Peter

Reblogged from Brian Mclaren

Maundy Thursday: Memo from Simon Peter

You shall not wash my feet, I said.
My reaction was visceral, reflexive, furious.
I couldn't then say why I was so offended
By his self-humiliation.
But now I see.
If he, Rabbi and Leader, would abandon
All protocols of propriety,
What would it mean for us, for me?
I had my heart set upon a throne,
Right next to his,
Preferably to his right,
With Zebedee's sons, my rivals,
Put in their places on his left.
I was ambitious. I am even now.
What does it do to my ambition
To make the top the bottom,
The leader the servant,
And the last the first?
Where could this lead?
Will women dare to aspire
To be seen as our equals?
Will the outsiders stand on level ground
With the pure, the righteous, the orthodox?
Will circumcision, sacrifice, priesthood, temple
Count for nothing?
Doesn't he know?
The cosmos is hierarchical.
There are kings at the top and slaves at the bottom,
Fathers and sons, men and women, teachers and students,
Older and younger ...
No sane man would unsettle that order.
It is divinely ordained.
So, yes, I was offended.
When he pressed me,
Said my feet must be washed
Or I had no part with him. So
I wrestled again to be first,
Seizing on this:
I will be first in being served!
And so I demanded to be washed
More than the others, head to toe.
But no. He saw through my game, and
Would not comply.
As he washed my feet and allowed me no special place,
I burned within.
Later, the burning flared: I will never abandon you! I said.
All the others might falter, but not I!
He told me the cock would mock my boast.
I hated him. I resented him. I thought he hated me.
Yet I loved him.
Serve one another as I have served you, he said.
Love one another as I have loved you, he said.
If his wild ways succeed,
All this world's order will be undone
And some new order will come.
I see why Judas has been so concerned.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Clergy Corner: God's Not Dead

There are a number of religious based movies coming out this Lenten season: Son of God, God’s Not Dead, Noah, and Heaven is For Real. I say they are based movies because if you go to these movies expecting to see word for word scripture without a Hollywood spin, you will be sorely disappointed. The world has some influence over each of the movies that I have seen. I encourage you, IF you are going to see the movies, go with an openness to meet with God. Go with a mind searching for what God is saying to you and meeting with you. 

Last week, I went to the movie “God’s Not Dead.” It is a movie mostly focused on the relationship between a professor and student. On the first day of class, the professor had the students write down three words on a piece of paper “God Is Dead” and then sign the paper. One student stated that he could not do this. Because of this, he is forced to “refute the antithesis” during three class times. 

On the side of this story, there are several other stories happening with relation to this professor and student. One of the side stories is about siblings and their mother suffering from Alzheimer’s. Mom is in the last stages of the disease, and the son has not visited recently. As he sits with his mother, he asks her questions about God. He asks why “her God” would give her this terrible disease when she is such a wonderful person while he is a terrible person, yet he has everything he wants in the world.  In a moment of brief clarity, his mom states that when we don’t have any needs, we won’t have any need for the creator. Satan sometimes creates a simple life so that we simply do not seek God. 

This stuck with me. 

Ephesians 6:12 says “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Ephesians 6:13-17 gives us instruction for dealing with evil. God has armored us with truth, righteousness; readiness from the gospel of peace, faith, salvation, and the Holy Spirit with is the word of God.  May you stand firm and boldly seek the face of God.