As we update our webpage and newsletter, I would first like to thank Janet Marks for her initiative and creativity in this new look! This is a great for our ministries and missions to share of how they are fulling the United Methodist Mission of making Disciples of Christ for the transformation of the world. I hope you take advantage of this new communication’s opportunity and share witness/testimony of how your ministry area is reaching out sharing the love of Christ with others!
Second, I hope this weekly pastor’s column will either inform, encourage, inspire or challenge you as we continue to walk this journey together.
Over the next few publications, I want us to take time and reflect on what we mean when we embrace our ZUMC Local Mission Statement: “Zellwood UMC is called to be the Heart, Mind, Hands and Feet of Jesus Christ. “ Today, let’s just look at what it means to be the “HEART of Jesus Christ”:
To say we are “The Heart of Jesus Christ”, we are speaking about Loving God and Loving Others. In Matthew (22:36-40) Jesus calls us first to the Greatest commandment “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul and all your mind. “ and the second (commandment) “love your neighbor as yourself.” We know this commandment… we say it often “Love God, Love Others”, but if we are totally honest sometimes these can be difficult. As life difficulties challenge us, our eyes and our hearts can get distracted and we find ourselves forgetting to give our whole heart to God. It’s not something we do ‘on purpose” but it happens. Of course there is also the challenge we have with loving others …, especially when we find ourselves with a difference of opinion(s). Whether it is someone in the church or outside, we can be unloving. Yes ,we are human and our feelings get involved and we can get angry or hurt. It’s difficult at times. However, as we focus our thoughts not to the situation but upward to God and on God’s love, we are equipped and empowered by the Holy Spirit to love others in the “unlikeable” moments.
When you awoke this morning… How did you basked in God’s love for you and how might you share that with others? What might it look like when you are loving God with ALL your being? And how are you loving others – even in those difficult times when you sometimes ‘don’t like them very much’?
Next week, I’ll reflect on what we mean when say we are called to have the “Mind of Jesus Christ”
Last but not least, I pray and hope you have made arrangements to be in attendance this Sunday. Some of our youth and children will be playing bells in the service and please plan to stay immediately afterwards for an important meeting in which we will be sharing and discussing some financial matters and immediate needs of the church.