8:30 A.M. Sunday Worship 9:45 A.M. Sunday School (beginning September 24th)
Blooming Grove United Methodist Church
Thursday, February 22, 2018
Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors

BGUMC Pastor's Page

 

Link here for an introduction to Pastors J.J. and Stefanie

 

Link here for the Announcement of Appointment from Bishop Ough

 

February 2018 - Thoughts From Pastors J.J. and Stefanie Morgan...

 

 

 “As members of this congregation, will you faithfully participate in its ministries by your prayers, your presence, your gifts, your service and your witness?” If so say “I will”.

[“Reception into the local congregation” pg. 38 United Methodist Hymnal]

Pastor Stefanie and I have enjoyed this current sermon series about discipleship. As people who are continuing to learn and grow as disciples ourselves, we have found this series helpful for our

own growth and pray that it has helped you to grow as well. There is no better way to remember than to study, ask questions and share what you have learned with others.

As study material, we have utilized the Bible and the book titled A Disciples Path: Deepening your relation- ship with Christ and the church by James A. Harnish. Within this series, we have been reminded of some of the basics of what makes us special as followers of Jesus and what makes us unique as United Methodists. The founder of Methodism, John Wesley, so poetically invites all of us to “Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as you ever can.” As a disciple, we understand that we can work toward this vision by Wesley by being a well-rounded follower of Jesus in these five areas.

Prayer. Jesus speaks of prayer in Matthew 6:7-8 and invites us to pray his name. As people working on being better disciples of Jesus, we need to remain in continuous communication with our living a Lord and Savior. Prayer is how that happens. “Prayer and scripture are the nonnegotiable essentials for the journey of discipleship. Without them, we run out of steam or get sidetracked along the way.” [Harnish, pg. 36.]

Presence. In the book of Hebrews 10:23-25 it speaks of the importance of encouraging one another in our faith journey. The brilliance of early Methodism was built upon this idea. John Wesley's philosophy grew from scripture “The gospel of Christ knows of no religion, but social; no holiness but social holiness.” Through his system of small groups, people found a way to learn of their faith, ask questions of fellow believers and to have a community to help them grow in their discipleship actions. “The evidence is clear that if an individual’s only contact with the congregation is worship, there is a good chance that he or she either will fall away or will miss out on the concern and care of the church community. Growth to maturity as a disciple of Jesus Christ happens best when each individual disciple is connected to others in the community of a small group.” [Harnish, pg. 40]

Gifts. Jesus says of money in Matthew chapter 6 24 "No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. [NIV] As Methodists, we understand that using our gifts of money is important for the build- ing up the body of Christ, which is the church.

Service. We have Jesus’ word that the Holy Spirit is with us. As believers we are invited to show the world God’s love and share the good news of Jesus. One way is to give of ourselves and share the skills, spiritual gifts and our time for the benefit of others. “It’s amazing enough to believe that God chooses to accomplish the transformation of the world through the lives of ordinary men and women who become disciples of Jesus Christ” [Harnish, pg. 57].

Witness. Our Savior says in the book of Matthew 28:18-20 that we are to go into the world and make disciples of all nations. The bottom line is that being a witness isn’t nearly as difficult or intimidating as it often seems. It simply means being who we are as followers of Jesus Christ and allowing the [Holy] Spirit of God to use our lives to touch the lives of others” [Harnish, pg. 70].

The conclusion to this sermon series will be on February 11th when we celebrate our identity as followers of Jesus and our commitment to do so following the practices established by the United Methodist Church. We invite you to come that day and renew your desire to be committed followers of Jesus and to renew your covenant as a United Methodist. If you are reading this newsletter and are not yet a member of the United Methodist Church, we invite you to join us on our journey to become better disciples of Jesus Christ as we join in God’s plan to transform the world. Contact either Pastor Stefanie Morgan or Pastor JJ Morgan to learn how to become a member.

Blessings on your discipleship journey.