Upcoming events in June:
June 5th Pentecost Sunday – Celebrating the birth of the New Testament church. Faith is sparked by Heart & Mind that sets the Soul on fire, are we on fire for God? Let’s wear red.
June 12th Trinity Sunday – God is always creating (inviting) inclusive community as the one in three God is community. Following the service stay for a special orientation of our denomination, local church history and the ministries of the FCC of Huntley.
June 16th Story & Snack – Right outside the front doors of the church I’ll be reading a story to preschool aged kids with snacks every Thursday @ 10 am through the summer and there might be a song or two to sing.
June 19th Father’s Day – Skip the golf course fellas or at least reserve a later tee time. As we explore being “Men of God” Sometimes being a roaring lion (Competing/leading) other times like a dolphin (collaborating/being a team player).
And Remember I’m happy to visit with you:
A preacher visits an elderly woman from his congregation. As he sits on the couch he notices a large bowl of peanuts on the coffee table. “Mind if I have a few?” he asks.
“No, not at all!” the woman replied.
They chat for an half hour and as the preacher stands to leave, he realizes that instead of eating just a few peanuts, he emptied most of the bowl. “I’m terribly sorry for eating all your peanuts, I really just meant to eat a few.”
“Oh, that’s all right,” the woman says. “Ever since I lost my teeth all I can do is suck the chocolate off them.”
If you would like a visit don’t be shy about asking… and I promise not to eat any of the peanuts.
- Pentecost, June 5, 2022
- Trinity Sunday, June 12, 2022
- Flag Day, June 14, 2022
- Father’s Day, June 19, 2022
- First day of summer, June 21, 2022
Celebrating the Church’s Birthday
On Pentecost, we remember when the Holy Spirit descended on Jesus’ disciples. As they gathered in Jerusalem 10 days after Jesus’ ascension, they saw tongues of fire, heard rushing wind and began speaking in many languages. Because the disciples could then share the good news with all the pilgrims assembled for the Pentecost festival, the occasion marks the birthday of the Christian church. That day alone, about 3,000 people devoted their lives to Christ. Like the Holy Spirit, Pentecost is important and relevant today. As theologian Henri Nouwen writes, “Without Pentecost the Christ-event — the life, death and resurrection of Jesus — remains imprisoned in history as something to remember, think about and reflect on. The Spirit of Jesus comes to dwell within us, so that we can become living Christs here and now.”
The Church Hive
Bees live in a cooperative way described as “eusociality,” or good relations. Each bee contributes a specific skill to the colony, synchronizing its efforts for the benefit of all. Likewise, a church’s health depends on all members fulfilling their responsibility to the organism as a whole. Descriptions of hive life mirror Paul’s words about the body of Christ, with members having different gifts “but the same Spirit” (1 Corinthians 12:4). According to R.S. Beal Jr., who was both a pastor and a zoology professor, a beehive is the perfect “living illustration of how to walk in unity.” He wrote, “Those of us who have believed in Jesus belong to one another just as much as we belong to Christ. We cannot live independently of one another anymore than we can live independently of Christ. Like the bees, we must learn to practice the sacrifice, labor, sharing, and submission of love that together we ‘may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ’” (Ephesians 4:15, KJV). How are you using your own spiritual gifts to build up your church “hive”?
Now I think of all achievements ’tis the least
To perpetuate the species; it is done
By the insect and the serpent, and the beast.
But the man who keeps his body, and his thought,
Worth bestowing on an offspring love-begot,
Then the highest earthly glory he has won,
When in pride a grown-up daughter or a son
Says “That’s Father.” —from “Father,” by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Grateful People are Joyful People
In a 2013 TED Talk, David Steindl-Rast says many people think happiness leads to gratefulness. “Think again,” he says. “Is it really the happy people that are grateful? We all know … people who have everything it [takes] to be happy, and they are not happy, because they want something else or they want more of the same. And we all know people who have lots of misfortune [yet] are deeply happy. … Why? Because they are grateful. So it is not happiness that makes us grateful. It’s gratefulness that makes us happy.”
We must be cautious: Depression is a real illness, and therapy or medicine may be necessary to help us feel “happy” and enjoy life again. Also, “joy” is perhaps a more fitting word than “happiness”; happiness can be fleeting and superficial, while joy is heart-deep and abiding. In Jesus, even when we’re sad or struggling or fearful, we can have joy — the confidence that God holds us in his arms. And for that, we can be grateful. Indeed, Steindl-Rast concludes, “Grateful people are joyful people.”
A Standup Guy
During the pandemic, a Maryland man used “dad jokes” to lift neighbors’ spirits. Tom Schruben jotted down a joke-of-the-day on a curbside whiteboard. Hearing people chuckle and chat eased the isolation. Schruben and his wife, Ann, became intentional about seeking joy after two of their children died. They vowed to “find happiness again” and share it. For Father’s Day last year, Schruben held a Bad Dad Joke contest, donating entry fees to a local charity. Here are a few of his favorites:
- If two vegans get into an argument, is it still considered a beef?
- I ordered a chicken and an egg from Amazon. I’ll let you know.
- What do you call a bear with no teeth? A gummy bear.