Join us on Tuesday’s at 12 Noon beginning Sept. 18, 2018 as we explore “The Ten Guiding Lights to Health and Wholeness” by Etta Dale Hornsteiner. Every day, we are bombarded with information on health and wellness. It can be overwhelming and often contradictory. “The Ten Guiding Lights to Health and Wholeness” is a faith-based approach to navigate through the vast quantity of information. “Ms. Hornsteiner’s work approaches integration of the spiritual, social, psychological, and physical through the lens of the Ten Commandments.” –says David Allen of MD.
The study will be led by Gail Wathen, a holistic health educator, who will bring additional information on the healing properties of foods and herbs. These are God’s provisions that are backed by evidenced-based studies. John 10:10 states that “The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance.” God wants us to have a healthy and abundant life in our body, mind, and spirit. Come if you are able and let’s take this journey together. The book can be ordered through Amazon*.
*Sign onto AmazonSmile and select Good Samaritan LC as your charitable organization. A portion of all purchases you make will support Good Sam at no cost to you through a Smile.Amazon.com donation.
Tuesday Morning Lesson Study and Fellowship Group Begins November 7, 2017
Join us at 9:30 A.M. on Tuesday mornings to share some coffee, read and discuss the lessons for Worship on the coming Sunday and imagine together what themes and messages they hold now for us and for our community. We will have time to care for each other and finish in prayer. Come and join us beginning November 7 at 9:30 A.M.
As we enter the season of Lent, I begin to contemplate. I think about ways in which I can be present with others. I think about things that I [perhaps] need to release from my own life. As I ponder, I realize what I need most is to meditate on God’s Word and just listen.
During Lent, people often make some sort of change—whether it be giving something up or engaging in a new discipline. Whatever it may be, that change can be challenging. But, if we look in our scriptural “toolbox,” God gives us encouragement through His Word all along the way. If we ponder on it, it becomes more engrained within us—easier, something we can readily access.
So this year, during the Lenten season, I’m taking one scripture each week to allow me time to really internalize and digest the message God wants to reveal. I use God’s Word to settle my mind and create space to allow the Holy Spirit to speak. When I fill my mind with the Word of God, there’s no room for all the chatter. For me, this is basically putting God at the helm. By beginning each day meditating on His Word, I’m allowing Him to be my guide. It may be that’s all He wants from me–giving my time to Him first. It may be that He is leading me to grow in an area of my life. This, I don’t know. What I do know, is that spending time really meditating—or pondering—on His word helps me to grow as a Christian and in the body of Christ.
I invite you to join me in this journey of meditating, or pondering, on a scripture each week beginning on Ash Wednesday. I’m calling this journey “40 Days to Ponder.” My hope is that others might find scriptural meditation to be a useful discipline. If you’d like to take this journey, I’ve included the Bible verses I’ll be using. Feel free to use them or find ones that speak to you. If you’d like to journey together or talk about it, please contact me.
Enjoy the journey!
God Bless, Gail Wathen
Week 1: Philippians 4:13
Week 2: Isaiah 41:10
Week 3: 2 Corinthians 12:9
Week 4: John 14:27
“ If you notice in my suggestions, the first three weeks focus on strength. This was intentional. I for one find myself drawing on God’s strength daily. As I embark on a journey through lent, and discern how God is working in my life and perhaps leading me to make some changes, I will need His strength more than ever. My thoughts are that perhaps others may experience similar feelings. The last week/scripture focuses on God’s peace. John reminds us in this passage that Jesus left us with a gift when he ascended back into heaven—a gift that the world can’t give. He left us His peace. We can tap into Him at any time and He will show us how to get back to Him and how to feel the depth of spirit that brings us peace again. He alone can provide that peace that stills the mind, renews our strength and restores our soul.” –Gail
Recently a church member said to me, “Pastor, I need to know the Bible more. I just want to know more about what is there.” It was at that moment that I began watching for an opportunity to help anyone who felt like that to have a fun, engaging, meaningful, thoughtful – liberating experience of discovering the big story that is the Bible. I have found it.
Wouldn’t you know, they call it, “The Story.” And what is the Story? It’s the Bible itself, in its own words, gathered up in such a way that it is easy to see the broad work and activity of God, in the everyday lives of people.
The next most wondrous part is this, knowing more about the big story in the Bible really helps us find God’s story working itself out in our lives, in our stories. Imagine being able to talk and think about your own story in a way that helps you discover God, working in your life. It is the greatest story there is to uncover.
Please join us in reading, learning and reflecting on The Story this year at Good Sam. We will introduce it on Sept 6th in worship and begin with Chapter One on Sept 13th in Worship. We have even added a new 11:00 am praise service (You’ll be hearing more about that soon) to make room for you to invite your, kids, grandkids, neighbors, friends, coworkers and anyone else that God in nudging you to share this great story with. Join us, won’t you? It will be a great way to find your neighbors on the journey of faith.
I’ve been thinking a lot recently about our church’s financial situation in light of our individual and collective engagement in Good Sam’s mission and purpose as a congregation. Good things are happening throughout our congregation, praise God! Your council continues to look for opportunities to economize and manage within available resources. However, as you may remember from our annual congregational meeting, after much contemplation, the budget we adopted for 2015 anticipated that expenses (even with drastic cuts) would exceed income by about 12%. This presents an opportunity for us to consider our blessings and our responses, and also to engage with our neighbors and invite them to join us on our mission of discipleship. During the past few weeks, our worship has focused on Jesus’ triumphant entry to Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, the example he set by washing his disciples’ feet, and his gift to us of his body and blood in the institution of communion. We also have contemplated his sacrifice for our sins on the cross. The good news is that we know and believe the passion story has a happy ending as we experience the joy of Easter. A wise person said that we can’t “out-give” God. I invite you to ponder that throughout the comings days, and contemplate further who our neighbors are, and how we might individually and collectively walk alongside them as we journey together in faith.