Make a joyful noise

Our choir joined voices with two other UMChurches yesterday under the direction of Dr. Doug Burian. It was, indeed, joyful!

But don’t be fooled. We are all expected to make joyful noises, no matter our singing ability.

Several places in Scripture command this: Psalm 66:1; 95:1-2; 109:1; 1 Chronicles 15:16. And we are told how: “Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises! Sing praises to the Lord with the lyre, with the lyre and the sound of melody! With trumpets and the sound of the horn make a joyful noise before the King, the Lord” (Psalm 98:4-6). The psalm goes on to describe the sea roaring, the rivers clapping their hands, and the hills breaking forth in song. All of creation joins together in noisy, wonderful worship of God.

This promises to be a noisy week. Don’t let the cares of the world pull you way from our focus on God. Give thanks, sing praises and dedicate yourself to prayer.

God is with us! All is well!

In Christ,

Pastor Alice

In the midst of life, we are in death

“In the midst of life, we are in death…”

These words, taken from The Book of Common Prayer, 1662, Burial of the Dead, are often shared at graveside services. They are a poetic and scriptural reminder that life is short, endings can happen unexpectedly and – most importantly – that life and death co-exist all the time, all around us. Loved ones die; new loved ones are born. The circle of life is unstoppable and we simply live within it.

At this time of the change of seasons, from the warmth of summer into the cool of fall, comes All Hallow’s Eve and All Saints’ Day. It is a time we remember well that “in the midst of life, we are in death.” It is a time we can honor again all those in our lives that we have had the privilege of knowing and loving.

This year, we have the added blessing of our newly finished Memorial Garden, which we will dedicate this Sunday during worship.

Come, join us. Let us love and laugh and weep together as the hands of time move ever onward.

And, as a reminder:
The holidays are coming. Will you consider inviting your friends, family and neighbors to be part of a loving faith community during a time that can be immensely lonely for some?

“In the midst of life we are in death.
To whom can we go for help, but to you, Lord God?
You know the secrets of our hearts;
mercifully hear us, most worthy judge eternal;
keep us, at our last hour, in the consolation of your love”.

Love in Christ,
Pastor Alice