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July 2018 Sermons

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Find Peace!

July 15, 2018:  “I am with you always.” These are Jesus’ final words to his disciples in Matthew’s Gospel.  When we’re facing life’s challenges, it’s good to know that we are not alone.  The Son of God is with us, and that gives us hope. Rev. David Eardley helps us find the peace that comes with Jesus’ presence in our daily lives.

The Open Door Service

This sermon is currently unavailable.

July 15, 2018:  As people of faith, we stand on certain promises.  One of these promises is that GOD IS WITH US, and is probably the most pastoral and vital tenant of my core beliefs.  No matter what happens in life, no matter where we go, no matter what we do: God’s love can and will reach us. Rev. Erin Fitzgerald asks:  How is God’s love holding you this week?  Where do you feel God’s presence alive in you?

 

 

Bind Us Together or No Meal, No Peace

July 8, 2018:  There is something special about sitting down and having a meal with family and friends. No matter what our situations may be, no matter how strained our relationships, voluntarily gathering around the table for a meal often brings comfort, clarity and even understanding. Rev. Carter Grimmett tells us with this last supper, the comfort and clarity is not always immediately understood.

The Open Door Service

July 8, 2018:  A long time ago, Jesus and his disciples gathered in the Upper Room on a Thursday night; it was a quiet, intimate setting for The Last Supper that he would eat with them.  Within the words of the liturgy and the taste of the bread and juice, we FIND REST in the hope, joy, love, peace of Jesus Christ and his presence with us at the table.  Rev. Erin Fitzgerald asks: How else do we FIND REST: in community, in Sabbath practices, in service and surrender?

 

Zacchaeus Syndrome

 July 1, 2018:  Zacchaeus was a rich tax collector, an occupation resented by many and despised by most – especially the taxed and oppressed Jews. It was a profession fraught with dishonesty that often took advantage of the poor. As Rev. Carter Grimmett previews the Gospel of Luke, it is clear as Jesus talks about the rich, they do not fare well. So, what made Zacchaeus a special exception?

 

The Open Door Service

July 1, 2018:   We welcome our new associate pastor, Rev. Erin Fitzgerald.

June 2018 Sermons

Find Acceptance!

 June 24, 2018:  This new series focuses on our Vacation Bible School scripture passages.  Our focus will be the wonderful story of Martha and Mary found in Luke 10:38-42.  Rev. David Eardley says join us as we discover how to find acceptance in God’s eyes…The answer may surprise you!

The Open Door Service

June 24, 2018: Jesus was known for great miracles, but the people who heard him were also impressed by his wisdom.  How do we become wise?  Why is wisdom valuable in a world of dollars and cents?  Is Jesus’s wisdom still relevant for us?  Rev. Rick Kress preaches.

 

Remember This

June 17, 2018:  Let us remember some of the amazing things God has done at St. Paul’s over the last six years thru music and liturgy. I cannot thank everyone at St. Paul’s enough for the incredible six years I have had here said Rev. Jon Reynolds.  My wife, kids and I have been overwhelmed by all of your support and encouragement.

 

Seeing the Unseen

June 10, 2018: We live by faith and not by sight, which means, as Christians, the foundation of our lives is so much more than our immediate circumstances, our emotional state at the moment.  Rev. David Eardley says living by faith involves taking a longer view of our lives and the presence of God at work within us and around us.

 

The Open Door Service

June 10, 2018: It’s hard to believe that this will be my last Open Door service at St. Paul’s. Words cannot express my appreciation for the folks that make this service possible every Sunday.  Rev. Jon Reynolds preaches.

 

We Preach Christ

June 3, 2018:  In the text for today Paul is most likely defending himself against his opponents in Corinth who would like people to believe that Paul’s motives are self-seeking.  In response, Paul makes the point: the subject of his preaching is Christ Jesus is Lord, We are challenged by Paul to serve the Lord and each other by proclaiming God’s good news.  Rev. David Eardley preaches.

 

The Open Door Service

June 3, 2018:  Children are taught to “be good.” How good is good enough to God? In a world of conflict, why bother being good? The answers will surprise you! Rev. Rick Kress preaches.

May 2018 Sermons

For God so loved the world

May 27, 2018:  For God so loved the world…  These familiar words begin one of the most famous verses in all of the New Testament (John 3:16).  Rev. David Eardley has us listen to Jesus and learn along with the Pharisee Nicodemus what it means to be caught up in this love and to trust in it with our daily lives.  Jesus welcomes us into a life-transforming relationship with him.  Will we choose to accept it?

 

The Open Door Service

May 27, 2018:  In the 40th chapter of Isaiah God makes God’s people a great guarantee. The guarantee is that the everlasting God will lift you up on wings like eagles. Rev. Jon Reynolds explores this incredible promise.

Come, Holy Spirit, Come!

May 20, 2018:  There was a sound like a rushing wind… In these few words, Luke describes the presence of the Holy Spirit coming upon the apostles and the birth of the church.  Rev. David Eardley tells us the good news is that the Holy Spirit continues to be present in our lives and in the church.

 

The Open Door Service

May 20, 2018:  The Apostle Paul challenged us to be a part of a spiritual community in his letter to the Ephesians. He said: live in unity through the Spirit. Rev. Jon Reynolds explores what it means to be a part of a great spiritual community, the Body of Christ.

Transformed by Love

May 13, 2018:  Love is the only way.  It may sound too simple, but it truly is the most healthy way to live, not only for yourself, but for all those around you.  In the best of circumstances, love nurtures us into our most authentic identities, allowing us to be who we were meant to be.  Indeed, love transforms us.  Rev. David Eardley celebrates the power of God’s love within our lives and the joy of sharing this love with others.

 

The Open Door Service

May 13, 2018:  Unfortunately, this recording is unavailable.

A Church Transformed

May 6, 2018:  Rev. Judy may talks of the Apostle Paul’s rebuke of the church at Corinth with regard to their worship practices, specifically their abuse of the Lord’s supper. Paul says they have lost the basics…the life of faith is a life of community. To be faithful to Christ’s message of love for and inclusion of all, their ways of being the church need to be transformed.

 

 

The Open Door Service

May 6, 2018:  Jesus encouraged everyday people like you and me to be great and to do great things. Rev. Jon Reynolds explores Jesus’ calling to go out and spread the message of love and inclusion to all the world. We are called to share our faith with everyone we meet.

April 2018 Sermons

A Courage Transformed

April 29, 2018:  There is a time to speak.  There is a time to be where you need to be.  These are the moments when we are transformed by a courage infused with God’s presence.  These may not be the easiest of times, but they are the situations where the good news is lived and shared, and the world may be changed.  Rev. David Eardley talks about a courage transformed.

The Open Door Service

April 29, 2018:  Rev. Jon Reynolds explores why Love should be on your bucket list. Love for God, and Love for your Neighbor. Listen as we learn how to love more deeply and holistically.

A Faith Transformed

April 22, 2018:  When we claim Jesus as Savior Lord, and truly begin to live for him and in his way, faith is transformed in a way that impacts everything we think, say, or do.  Rev. David Eardley says it becomes a faith that changes the world around us, because we are no longer the same.

 

The Open Door Service

April 22, 2018:  Rev. Jon Reynolds looks at why Having Grace should be on your bucket list. We hope that by the end of your life you are able to realize that your successes and your failures are all a part of you. Grace for yourself, grace for others.

A House Transformed

April 15, 2018:  The power of Jesus’ resurrection changes everything… including relationships.  This is the transforming power of Easter revealed as families are healed, friendships restored, and communities experience health and peace. Rev. David Eardley asks: Are you ready for a new way?  Are you ready to be transformed?

 

The Open Door Service

April 15, 2018:  Rev. Jon Reynolds explores the relationship between suffering and hope. Those two words barely sound like they should belong in the same sentence. Listen to find out why they do.

A Life Transformed

April 8, 2018:  “…how God changed a hateful man, who will change the history of the world.”  These words from the trailer for the movie, Paul: Apostle of Christ, speak of the power of the Risen Christ to transform lives.  Rev. Rick Kress begins a new series, Transformed.

The Open Door Service

April 8, 2018:  Rev. Jon Reynolds starts a new sermon series called “The Bucket List.” It is a series intended to help you separate out the most important things in your life and help you generate a plan to accomplish them. This Sunday we will be exploring how Faith helps us get a little closer to accomplishing our bucket list.

 

Transformed by the Resurrection

April 1, 2018:  There is joy on this most amazing day of days.  At first, only whispered rumors of an empty tomb… how can this be!? Then the disciples begin to see him, the Risen Christ alive in their midst!  This is the Good News that changed the world and has transformed our lives.  “I have seen the Lord!” Mary Magdalene exclaims. Rev. David Eardley invites you to shout along: Christ is risen!  Christ is risen indeed!

 

The Open Door Service

March 31, 2018:  Jesus finished everything he said he was going to do before he died. Jesus challenges us with a big question, “What are you here to do?” Rev. Jon Reynolds leads Easter celebration as we explore what it looks like to live every day like it was our last.

 

March 2018 Sermons

It is Finished

March 25, 2018: Palm Sunday brings us to Jesus’ last words on the cross in John’s Gospel.  He speaks of endings.  In many ways the parade into Jerusalem was also an ending.  Rev. David Eardley has us consider the power of endings within our lives.  May we take a moment to ponder how it is in endings that the seeds of new beginnings are sown…

The Open Door Service

March 25, 2018:  Jesus knew that his entry into Jerusalem was the beginning of the end of his life. He knew the road ahead, but Jesus trusted that God would take care of him. When Jesus said “Father, into your hands I commend my Spirit” he conveyed his trust in God. Rev. Jon Reynolds has us ride into Jerusalem with Jesus, trusting God every step of the way.

 

I Thirst

March 18, 2018:  One of the last things Jesus said on the cross was “I am thirsty.” The phrase reminds us of the agonizing pain Jesus must have felt on His last day. Rev. Jon Reynolds talks about the pain Jesus still feels with the 1 billion people who still do not have access to clean safe drinking water.

The Open Door Service

March 18, 2018:  We have needs in our daily lives.  Hunger and thirst remind us that our bodies need nourishment.  Even upon the cross, as Jesus hangs crucified, he has needs.  He is thirsty.  Rev. David Eardley asks; when life hangs in the balance, what do you need?  What keeps you grounded as everything around you seems to be falling apart?

 

Why have you forsaken me

March 11, 2018:  Where is God?  This is not just a question asked by human beings in the midst of a crisis.  It is also a question that Jesus cries out upon the cross.  Have you ever felt apart from God?  If so, then you’re not alone.  Rev. David Eardley talks about the God who knows us, even our feelings of abandonment.  Even in the distance, there is grace to be found…

 

The Open Door Service

March 11, 2018:  In our world there is so much to be anxious about. Sometimes it can be hard to find good news. Rev. Jon Reynolds looks at what we can do with the anxiety we are feeling. How do we manage it? Who do we go to with it? How do we pray through it? Jesus showed us the way.

Behold your son, Behold your mother

March 4, 2018:  Our series continues as we listen to Jesus’ seven last words from the cross.  Rev. Carter Grimmett focuses on relationships and the ways that we support each other as the family of Jesus Christ.  Hear how Jesus encourages us to see those around us as family.

The Open Door Service

March 4, 2018:  One of Jesus’s last instructions from the cross was to tell John to take care of his mother and his mother to take care of John. The kind of love Jesus modeled for us was not confined to just your own nuclear family. Rather, Jesus calls us to love everyone like they are our family. Rev. Jon Reynolds explores what radical love looks like.

 

February 2018 Sermons

Today, you will be with me in Paradise

February 25, 2018:  Think about the last time that you were in a real crisis and consider how easy it was for you to think of somebody else’s pain.  If you’re like a lot of people, it would be a challenge.  Our very culture (and vanity) conditions us to keep the focus squarely on ourselves.  Rev. David Eardley tells us that’s not how God operates.

 

The Open Door Service

February 25, 2018:  We know that on Jesus last day, he leaned over to the those he was crucified next to and he said “Truly you will be with me in paradise.” The men who were crucified on the left and right side of Jesus were criminals, Jesus had done nothing wrong. Rev. Jon Reynolds explores Jesus’ statement.

Father, forgive them…Really?

February 18, 2018:  As the season of Lent progresses, the sermon series will contain words of Jesus spoken from the cross. Rev. Judy May has us hear Jesus pray for those who crucify him…”Father, forgive them; they don’t know what they’re doing.” It is an echo of what we ask each time we pray the Lord’s prayer. Can we follow the example of Jesus?

 

The Open Door Service

February 18, 2018:  One of the last things Jesus said was “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.” What an incredibly grace filled statement. Rev. Jon Reynolds talks about God’s grace and how it helps us extend grace to others.

RESOLVE to Grow

February 11, 2018:  It’s so tempting to see faith as nothing more than God making us happy… sort of like a divine genie.  But faith is so much more than just getting what we want… it has everything to do with giving God all we have every day.  Rev. David Eardley tells us how we serve each other is critical to a vibrant faith in Jesus Christ.

 

The Open Door Service

February 11, 2018: This is a story about going in the wrong direction. God directs Jonah to go to Ninevah. Jonah does not go. Have you ever gone in the wrong direction? Rev. Rick Kress explores Jonah’s story.

RESOLVE to Grow

February 4, 2018:  How will you be growing in your faith this year?  Hopefully this has been one of your New Year’s resolutions.  Here’s the secret:  if you don’t commit to growing, you won’t.  Rev. David Eardley says doing nothing equals accomplishing nothing.  Let’s all push ourselves to a little stronger.  Let’s all push ourselves to grow in the likeness of Jesus Christ!  Now, wouldn’t that be something to see?

 

The Open Door Service

February 4, 2018: Elijah was a brave man. He had the courage to challenge over 450 prophets who worshipped another God in the Old Testament. Have you ever felt like you were standing alone, but with God’s power beside you, you were not afraid. Rev. Jon Reynolds explores Elijah’s incredible courage.

January 2018 Sermons

RESOLVE to Connect

January 28, 2018:  This is a time where many New Year’s resolutions have ended, due to a lack of resolve. The same thing can and does happen with our faith journeys. We resolve to connect, to gather as God’s people to worship and to support one another. Rev. David Eardley  says there is a unique power to our faith in Jesus, when we resolve to connect with other believers.

 

The Open Door Service

January 28, 2018:  Lydia just happened to be in the right place at the right time. People around her needed a place to stay. She overheard them talking and felt moved to ask them if they wanted to stay at her house. Rev. Jon Reynolds asks, Have you ever been in the right place at the right time to do something to serve God?

RESOLVE to Follow

January 21, 2018:  Michigan Area UMC Bishop, David Alan Bard, is present with us for our morning worship services with a message to our congregation about the power of daily following Jesus Christ in our lives.

 

Living in Faith: Beyond the Logic of our Fears

January 14, 2018:  John Wesley wrote that “God hath appointed baptism as an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace… a new birth  unto righteousness.”  It is God’s saving act in Jesus Christ. Rev. Carter Grimmett asks is Baptism enough?

 

The Open Door Service

January 14, 2018:  It is hard to believe we have been worshiping together at the Open Door for a year. Rev. Jon Reynolds celebrates this tremendous milestone in ministry. by looking at how relationships change our lives and examining the most important relationship we have.

Overwhelmed by Joy

January 7, 2018:  Happy New Year!  We begin 2018 traveling with the Magi to Bethlehem to see the Christ Child.  According to Matthew, upon seeing him, they were “overwhelmed with joy.”  Rev. David Eardley invites you to listen as we claim (or reclaim) joy as a key part of our faith as we meet Jesus in our everyday lives.

 

The Open Door Service

January 7, 2018:  You have heard it said that “money is the root of all evil” but I tell you that money is one of the many things that can keep you up at night.  Rev. Jon Reynolds explores the many ways money causes us anxiety in our lives and what to do about it.

 

 

 

 

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