elm leaf home

Go to Elmwoodil.org

January 20, 2014

Unity Blog

Farmer Father

Death of Peter Rabbit

Angel of Death

Free in the Shire

Twomey Company

Individuals in Business

The American Dream


Smithshire IL

Smithshire fields Flooded

Smithshire IL Tillage

Gleaner Smithshire IL

Smithshire IL

Smithshire Harvest

Smithshire IL

Smithshire IL

Smithsire IL

Smithshire IL

Twomey Elevator

Santa Fe Rail Trestle

River Otter Gladstone IL

Smithshire Methodist

Mosher Moon

Hermit Cabin

hearth home

Shire Field

SLU Arch

Journey winter

just email: The Steve

Unity Blog

This page holds the latest blog posts in my 12 week gym challenge and my goal of finding cosmic spirit unity. So I will write about Christianity and religion, politics, news, history, sentimental fluff, in other words the thought fireflies flitting around in my mind. I haved named it the Unity Blog

Let's Begin ---- Jan 22 ---- Jan 27

  ---- Jan 31
Current Post   ---- Feb 4
    ---- Feb 13

February 14-16

I am a local lay servant at the Elmwood United Methodist Church. When our minister has to be gone I am one of the people who may be asked to prepare a message for a Sunday. I always start refining and trying to deliver a fabulous inspiring thought provoking message. The reasons I had enough sense to never want to be minister become evident as I do deliver it. I always walk away from these Sunday efforts reminded of the song Eleanor Rigby - "Father McKenzie, writing the words of a sermon that no one will hear; no one comes near."

These efforts do involve a great deal of my time and psychic energy. This time combined with weather, meant my gym sessions were neglected. Nancy and I went to a local restaurant, the Hick'ry Stick, whose last night was Valentine's Day. I will say the half slab of ribs were as good as any in Memphis; they were worth the calories. It was good to be there; sad to see it end. Now, I have to claw back to try to break 220 again. I am going to use my Sunday message as the current post. As we watch wintry mix wondering whether Nancy will be flying on the rescheduled departure from PIA.

Title Conversation

Scripture Luke 6 v31:38 The Message


Guide us here today and through out the week as we walk in this world – may your spirit fill us even as we face a troubled world.
I pray this every day yet sometimes it seems I should pray for guidance every thirty seconds I thank you for your loving spirit which allows all of us to model love.

I followed by the Lord's Prayer asking them to substitute daily need in place of daily bread. This has been my habit over past year.

A Conversation

I do write better than I speak. I have spent much of my reading alone, somewhat isolated not around others interested in the same topics or books.  I have learned words by reading, I often had not heard them spoken or used in discussions. In a classroom situation this could lead to ridicule for mis pronunciations. This was only compounded by my hick upbringing as a 10 year old I would have said "my shirt got so dirty I had to Warsh it in the Ole Crick."  I have developed the habit of being a hesitant speaker wanting to draw back my words as I wait for the ridicule. At the same time experience has taught me my usage is correct, my thoughts are sound, I have as much to contribute as anyone else.  I would rather write this and have a good speaker read it. But alas Nancy will not to do it.

Racoon Hunters

Laura Stewart asked me last Sunday if I was going to make everyone move this time?  I said no but I would prevail upon the congregation in another way.

Pastor Brad chose a hymn last month. A spiritual that I made Nancy and Erik practice before Sunday morning so that it would go well.  In searching for you-tube videos I found a description of the lyrics of the song. The writer wrote the lyric is spoken not by someone seeking faith or someone asking to be granted a favor or a gain. The words speak with the voice of some one possessing faith and looking ahead to the troubles and sorrows to come. Asking Jesus to walk with him, somewhat reversing Jesus’ query to follow me.  I added the last part

I did sing it with this quality of voice, but we did bring out the petiton of the song.

Hymn # 521 I want Jesus to walk with me

Normalizing Relationship with God

If we are asking Jesus to walk with us we must be at ease in God’s presence. Prayer can be anxiety producing especially in front of a group. If we are walking with someone, they will learn about us from what we say, how we walk, a walking partner will get to know us very well.  Are we on time, do we like to stay the same course, enjoy a short cut or a diversion, do you take a leisurely pace in life, or drive ourselves in power walking.  I think power walking is best done on a big four-wheeler

.Power Walking

If we believe in an all-knowing God then we need to normalize the relationship. We may still be nervous if asked to speak in public but our private prayers need to be an ongoing conversation. A conversation, we fall into as naturally as we do when walking with someone. God wants us to live good lives, but we sometimes do not appreciate what is good. We need to put away the old “scare the Hell right out of them” approach to God many religious traditions follow. Love is a far more powerful motivation than fear. Yes we fall short, we run away, but seeking God is to seek to be as God would be in our everyday world. Jesus is a model for how God can be present in us and in the world. Being with God does not mean giving up the fun stuff as our religious forbearers would have insisted. There is no greater fun than walking through life as God would, as Jesus would. You cannot have real fun unless you are fully living life.

panic-coffeeshared-Hell Scared

Many of us have known a dependent person either with drugs, alcohol, or materialism. We can see how it destroys their life. If we attempt to counsel them, they might say I am just having a little fun leave me alone. We know it is not fun, we can see it is not satisfying.  Maybe you would invite them to church.
Being here this morning, listening to me ramble on, would that be fun?  Maybe you would say stay home with your family. Being at home with three screaming kids would that be fun? Yet, in the celebration of life, a long time love of family, is what a person will say was fun. Connecting together in a church family lifting each other up, working together on a project, experiencing joy in worship together, we will look back and say that was fun. The things that are most meaningful grant us life long fun. We can easily predict that our addicted friend will not look back on a destroyed life filled with broken relationships and say it was fun. We need to be who we are contribute what talents we have in our family life and as a member of our church family. Being our true selves in celebration with others will be fun.

Dependency-Moralless Materialism-Project Joy

Many fail to reach out to experience God beyond the cartoons. We colored pictures of Noah, Daniel, Moses in Sunday and Bible School of our youth. Many times this is still our vision of the Old Testament times. As Christians we follow the teachings of Jesus and his Disciples but is our understanding deeper than our waving a palm branch as a child? Knowledge is ever expanding, it is not to test us or deceive us. It is to allow us to have a deeper experience, one that allows us to be more with God. It allows more of our true God self to exist in the everyday. Some religions try to deny truth to keep their religion simple; they claim the universe is 6000 years old, they calculate the end days, they deny science. It is because their faith is weak; they fear God more than they love God. They seek a simple-minded religion because it is more comfortable, more Disney like, has a nice Hollywood ending. I seek honesty above all else, I do not try to destroy another’s fantasy, but I must expand my experience, I must test and question and learn in my walk with God. I believe it is what God wants for all of us to be more fully in God in our world. I believe God is offering us all, the red pill if we have enough faith to accept it.

Noah-Expand-Red Pill

Sunday Continued - Creating a Loving Environment

Top HatReturn to Illinois Observer Index Illinois Observer

Forgottonia is a place where you can endlessly wander the lonely roads, and never once miss the fast lane. The name Forgottonia captures an image of a region, off the beaten path, which is very true of Western Illinois.

Steve Davis | Create Your Badge