Pleasant Home UMC
Wednesday, October 18, 2017
Open Hearts. Open Minds. Open Doors.
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Sermons


September through May

Sunday Service 11:00 a.m.

 
 
Hope you can join us!
 
 
 
From the Pastor’s Desk...
 
October
The heart is a muscle circulating blood in our body to keep us alive. Concurrently, the proper functioning of our spiritual heart fortifies our relationship with God and others. If the blood of Jesus flows in our hearts, then our thoughts, words and deeds will be transformed and we will glorify God in everything we do. The Bible says, God searches the heart and He knows what it is filled with. We read in the Psalm 139, “O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit or stand. When far away, you know my every thought.”
Thereby, our physical and spiritual hearts are vitally important not only for our physical body but also for our spiritual life. Hence, we need to exercise our physical body and nourish our spirit by feeding on Scripture. We need to be more attuned to the Holy Spirit, If we don’t, the blood of Christ won’t flow through us and our bond with God will break. We read in Jeremiah 17:9, “The heart is the most deceitful thing there is, and it is desperately wicked.” Well, God knows what’s in our hearts. “He searches all hearts and examines the deepest motives so he can give to each person his right reward...” (Jeremiah 17:10).
As King David was a man after God’s own heart, God ordered Samuel to anoint him as the king of Israel. Samuel looked for a tall and strong man. But God chose David as 1 Samuel 16:7 says, “Don’t judge by a man’s face or height, for this is not the one. I don’t make decisions the way you do! Men judge by outward appearance, but I look at man’s thoughts and intentions.” God chose the least likely to be the king as he looked at the heart. By nature, man is evil and susceptible to temptations. David failed miserably falling for Bathsheba and paid for his sins of adultery and murder, but David’s prayer for forgiveness healed the broken bond with God. Too often, we struggle to live up to our commitment with God. Each of us must pray David’s prayer, “Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a right spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take Your Holy Spirit from me” (Psalm 51:10-11).
Let us be earnestly concerned with both of our physical and spiritual hearts.
God bless you!
 
 
November
Time and tide these days seem to be quickening the steps, and running faster. Though we may try to keep pace with them, we cannot.We are totally preoccupied with our daily responsibilities.
Moreover, every day we plan, prepare and carry on our regular as well as unexpected duties in our jobs and in our personal lives too. By the end of the day, we exhale to relieve stress and feel relaxed. We also desire to slow down and breath because it is one of the most pleasurable experience, we human beings treasure. It is not only a time to slow down and relax, but it is also a time to enjoy a moment of complete satisfaction and reflection on God’s grace in our lives. We also desire for a bit more of a breather in between our tight schedule.

Thanksgiving is a time to slow down from the fast paced world we live in. It is a time we group. reflect and relax. It is a time that we not only share a delicious meal with our loved ones, but we also express gratitude for God’s blessings in our lives. It is family time and families would gather and share stories. Thanksgiving is a wonderful day for everyone and what a blessing to have a day out of our so called busy lives to be thankful and grateful for God’s blessings. Sometimes those blessings come to us through our circle of friends, family members, co-workers, ministry partners or fellow church members, etc. These people are a part of who we are! Our lives would be far poorer without them.

However, frequently in our fast-pace lives, we neglect to tell them how much they mean to us. I wonder and ponder on whether we would take time to thank God and people around us if there is no fixed day to do this. Think about it because we are transforming and being transformed into automatons or cyborgs. We read in Proverbs 10:22 “It is the blessing of the Lord that makes rich, and He adds no sorrow to it.” God is the source of all our blessings. Sadly, amid our busy lives, we sometimes forget where it ultimately comes from. When I take a moment to slow down, here’s what I realize. I am grateful for God’s abundance showering on me. I am thankful for my wonderful family. I am thankful for all the people God has me surrounded with, and I am thankful for you.

Most of all I thank God for the assurance of the promises of an eternity in heaven. As you gather with family and friends and celebrate Thanksgiving, I encourage you to sow down and reflect on the many blessings that God has showered on you this past year. Thanksgiving is an opportunity for us to slow down, catch our breath and be thankful. What are you thankful for? 
 
December

 

We read John 1:14 “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father.)” As I read this sentence I understand God’s love for the lost world through Jesus Christ. Jesus became a human like us so that we could relate to Him on a personal level and visa versa. In John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not parish, but have eternal life.” God wants to reconcile the broken relationship between us and God through Him. We would be lost without God in our lives. Thereby, God showed us His love when he sent His Son to identify with us, so now we can say with confidence that God understands our struggles, fear and worries.

 

However, too often we don’t realize this truth. For example, politicians travel around the United States during campaign season not only to speak to people but also try to relate to them. They go through a small farming town in Nebraska, a surfing village in Florida, and a small rainy town in Oregon. Politicians love to show how they can relate to the people in each area they visit. However, you and I know that they can’t relate to them on the same level; they can’t identify with them no matter how hard they try.

On the other hand, Jesus had never tried to appear that He understands what we’re going through in life because He identifies with us. Jesus related to the people then and He is relating to us today on a level that we can understand and appreciate. I am sure that at one point or another we’ve all said, “nobody understands my situation, and no one understands me.” If you are saying that now, let me tell you that Jesus understands your situation. He’s been there and He knows what we’re going through every day. Jesus was working as a carpenter; He had a mother, father, brothers, sister, friends, and enemies. He even faced the same temptations that you and I face every day, yet He never sinned. Jesus understands our struggles because He had faced the same challenges of life. If you are facing life challenges in this Advent season and you feel like nobody understands your situation, let us remember what Jesus has done for us. You may have heard the saying, “God helps those who help themselves.” As long as we do our part, by trusting God He will do His part. God understands everything we are dealing with in our daily lives, and He has promised to walk with us at every step. Let us not lose heart, because He has promised that He will never leave us nor forsake us. Emanuel, God with us understands our struggles and He can give us the strength to overcome anything we deal with in our daily lives.