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Soaring Prayer

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Good morning church family!  That’s got a good sound.  I like that.  You have shown us great kindness in the seven months that Diane and I have been here.  We are already developing a warm and deep affection for you.  We are indeed family together.  And it is right that we should feel this way towards each other because we are partners in this enterprise together.  Last week, we looked at the opening verses of the book of Ephesians.  There we discovered all that God had done for us.  We have been invited into “The Father’s Grand Story.”  That’s what makes us family!
Some people think I’m a Luddite – you know – a person who is averse to new technology because I don’t have a smart phone.  I used to have one; or, should I say, the church used to let me use one that they purchased for me.  But I’m cheap.  I’m now back with a simple flip-phone.  Don’t feel sorry for me.  It was an exchange I gladly made. 
They say that new technology is always better.  Maybe for some, but not for me.  My fa…

Living the Father's Grand Story

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Living the Father’s Grand Story Sermon on Ephesians 1:3-14  “In matters of God’s grace, hyperboles are understatements.” Eugene Peterson, Practice Resurrection (63)

You take after your Father…
I was fortunate to have a good father and I’m grateful for the legacy that he gave me.  Typical of his generation, he didn’t spend a lot of time with me – for him, nurturing the kids was my mom’s job.  But he modeled faithfulness, hard work, kindness and an appreciation for beauty that I have inherited.  He taught us how to do things – to not be afraid to get our hands dirty.  When he was happy, he would dance, sing silly songs or say things in a language that he made up himself.  (His father did the same thing.)
My father’s hobby was building boats, which was his father’s vocation.  When my day died several years ago, I built a model boat to affirm my connection to him and to mourn my loss – a hobby that I have continued to today.  I miss my dad; but I’m thankful for the legacy that he gave to me and…

God's Masterpiece

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Introduction What a terrific and moving time this has been together!  I have had the privilege of serving many different congregations.  Each has had their own unique traditions that have been deeply meaningful.  What you have established in this service of remembering, commissioning, and recommitment is truly a rich expression of what it means to be a church – the Family of God on mission.
This year has been a very significant season in the life of our church as we transitioned in the senior leadership role.  And God, indeed, has been with us.  Diane and I both feel affirmed in our calling here.  There is a sense that we are beginning to work well together as a staff and as a church.  Good things are happening and opportunities for engagement in the community are beginning to emerge.  One of those, the question of whether or not we should partner with the Knox Prairie Community Kitchen, will be addressed in conversation and a forum during our meal that follows this service.  I hope tha…

Pastoral Letter from Pastor Bob

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January, 2018

One of the factors that really excited me about our church when I first began to explore the possibility of being your senior pastor was the fact that some of our leaders had worked their way through a very important book entitled, Pursuing God’s Will Together.  I had read and digested the book a few years before and it profoundly influenced my philosophy and practice of spiritual leadership.  Now that I have been with you for over six months, I know that some of the principles of spiritual discernment have taken root in our church’s culture and that is very encouraging to me. 

Now, we have an opportunity to test our ability to hear God’s voice together.  Earlier this week, I published a piece in our monthly newsletter detailing an opportunity that has emerged to partner with the Knox Prairie Community Kitchen (KPCK http://www.knoxprairiekitchen.org).  Here’s a portion of that letter:

During the Summer of 2017, our facility served as the preparation and distribution hub…