It’s good to sit down and relax this afternoon. It’s been a busy couple of days. The good thing is the main boxes are unpacked — we have a functioning kitchen (thanks to some ladies at the church) — We can do laundry (the new washer arrived this morning — right on time — I might add.) — We now have phones — and to top it all off, Dish Network arrived during the very early part of their window giving us the afternoon to explore our new digs. Now I don’t feel so disconnected from the world — even though we don’t have internet at the house.
One of the first places we visited was the Augusta County Library — with free wifi — which will allow me to keep the blog up to date. All of us got library cards. I thank Pam for instilling a love of reading in the children.
Tonight, a church member has invited us over for dinner — which is really sweet. An they have a pool as well. Tomorrow I go over to the church for the first time to begin unpacking over there. Our worship team will rehearse as well in the evening. God has been so good to us.
Blessings and remember…the journey continues…
“Forgiveness is an act of the will, and the will can function regardless of the temperature of the heart.”
– Corrie Ten Boom
Home Sweet (Temporary) Home
Well, we have arrived in our new ministry location. This week I will be assuming the position of Student Ministries and Worship Arts Pastor at Parkway Wesleyan Church in Staunton, VA. We have loaded all the boxes into the residence where we will live until a permanent house is ready for us. Notice that I said the boxes were loaded in. Not all of them are unpacked. Thank you to the good people of Preston Wesleyan Church who helped us load the truck yesterday morning and thank you to the good people of Parkway Wesleyan who helped us unload — in three different locations. This morning we go to return the truck and get our new cell phones and this afternoon we wait at the house for a new washer and the Dish Network people to hook us up.
Simplify, Simplify, Simplify
While we were loading the truck yesterday morning, one of the ladies asked me, “Preacher, didn’t you preach a sermon about all this stuff?” I replied, “yes.” It is amazing at the amount of stuff we accumulate. We have about a half garage full in storage, so we don’t unpack it twice.
Big Thank Yous
Again I want to thank everyone who helped us and worked so hard yesterday — you are a blessing to our family.
The journey continues….
Rebecca, Anna and I sing “Blessed Is the Name of the Lord” during our farewell service at Preston Wesleyan Church
A Very Warm but Not Too Unpleasant Day
The weather was great today. It was hot, but there was a breeze and some cloud cover. Not bad for an early summer day on the Southside.
Again the Holy Spirit showed up as we worshiped. I have been thankful for the way God has worked over the last 6 or 7 weeks. It has been absolutely amazing. My sermon was part of our official goodbyes today. It was bittersweet as I did that.
Following worship the church had a picnic and we said our final goodbyes to the congregation in general. There was lots of great Southern cooking. I made a hotdog “all the way” Martinsville style (which means a red Jesse Jones hotdog, with onions, mustard, chili, and slaw.) Open Arms, Open Hearts played several gospel numbers and they asked me to play bass on several numbers. That was alot of fun. After they finished, I had their drummer, bass player, and keyboardist lead us in a few worship tunes. It was very cool. I will miss them.
The Final Packing
Almost all the boxes of are packed. We still have the computers up — the router is still turned on, but we are getting ready for bed. It has been a long weekend. I’ve posted a music video from this morning’s service for tomorrow. I don’t know when the next update will be…the journey continues…
June 28, 2009
Fourth Sunday after Pentecost
Welcome and Announcements
Call to Worship – Psalm 98
Song of Worship – I Know Whom I Have Believed
Songs of Worship – Sing to the King (Foote); Days of Elijah (Mark)
Worship Through Giving
Song of Worship – Great Is Thy Faithfulness
Message – I Thank My God for You
Song of Worship – God Be With You
Benediction – Christ Be With Me (based on St. Patrick’s Prayer)
I arise today through God’s strength to pilot me
God’s might to uphold me,
God’s wisdom to guide me,
God’s eye to look before me,
God’s ear to hear for me,
God’s word to speak for me,
God’s hand to guard me,
God’s way to lie before me,
God’s shield to protect me,
Christ be with me,
Christ before me,
Christ behind me,
Christ in me,
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ on my right,
Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down,
Christ when I sit down,
Christ when I arise,
Christ in the heart of everyone who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,
Christ in every eye that sees me,
Christ in every ear that hears me.
A Long Busy Day
Today began very early — the phone rang at 2:30 this morning — I did fall back to sleep and woke up around 7:30 and me and our family including my mom and dad began cleaning the windows and shades and packing up just about anything that was left. We got done ahead of schedule, which was great. Now, I am tired and want to spend a few minutes with the girls and my mom and dad before going to bed and saying our official goodbyes to our church tomorrow. Blessings….
This is just a short outline of the sermon that I actually preached. Click on either the audio or video link below to hear or view the complete sermon
The last week has been a long week. It has been a week full of packing boxes, cleaning all kinds of things, saying good-byes, getting my first motorcycle ride, enjoying time with the family and finishing up my time at Salvation Army. As we come to worship this morning, the boxes are all packed (the living room and dining room are filled with boxes.) My office is empty except for my sound equipment. We have had to change addresses and email addresses and all kinds of things that are needed to get ready to move. The truck is reserved and now it is time to say our official goodbye to the congregation at Preston Wesleyan Church. Some of you we will see tomorrow as you help us pack the truck. Some of you we will see at District Conference and at other district events. I searched for an appropriate scripture for this morning and my mind came back to the first chapter of Philippians. This passage first became special to me when I graduated from high school. It was put in one of my graduation cards and meant a great deal to me. Paul writes to the church at Philippi. As we read through this, I would like to share some parting thoughts and share from my heart.
3 Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God. 4 Whenever I pray, I make my requests for all of you with joy, 5 for you have been my partners in spreading the Good News about Christ from the time you first heard it until now. 6 And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.
7 So it is right that I should feel as I do about all of you, for you have a special place in my heart. You share with me the special favor of God, both in my imprisonment and in defending and confirming the truth of the Good News. 8 God knows how much I love you and long for you with the tender compassion of Christ Jesus.
9 I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. 10 For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return. 11 May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation—the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ—for this will bring much glory and praise to God.
Lamentations 3:23 23 Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning.
June 28, 2009
Fourth Sunday after Pentecost
2 Samuel 1:1, 17-27 • Psalm 130 • 2 Corinthians 8:7-15 • Mark 5:21-43 (optional Psalm reading: Lamentations 3:23-33)
23 Great is his faithfulness;
his mercies begin afresh each morning.
24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my inheritance;
therefore, I will hope in him!”
25 The Lord is good to those who depend on him,
to those who search for him.
26 So it is good to wait quietly
for salvation from the Lord.
27 And it is good for people to submit at an early age
to the yoke of his discipline:
28 Let them sit alone in silence
beneath the Lord’s demands.
29 Let them lie face down in the dust,
for there may be hope at last.
30 Let them turn the other cheek to those who strike them
and accept the insults of their enemies.
31 For no one is abandoned
by the Lord forever.
32 Though he brings grief, he also shows compassion
because of the greatness of his unfailing love.
33 For he does not enjoy hurting people
or causing them sorrow.
Most of us can probably relate to these words that come from Lamentations. This book was written at a sad time for the Israelites. It just so happens that we are singing the hymn that was inspired by the first verse this Sunday. I know the last few days have been a flurry of activity around here — So this morning as I write this I am reflecting on God’s faithfulness — His new mercies — I will hope in Him. The writer tells us that it is good to sit in the quiet and reflect and search out the Lord — to submit to His discipline. We often think discipline is a bad thing for us, but as the author of Hebrew writes, “The Lord disciplines those He loves.” Last week, during my sermon I mentioned that sometimes trials come to make us stronger. Sometimes trials come as a way of discipline — as a way to bring us back to God. Remember you are not abandoned — God is there with you — He loves you and cares about you — His grace is sufficient — His mercies are new every morning…
God of hope,
you are ruler of night as well as day,
guardian of those who wander in the shadows.
Be new light and life
for those who live in the darkness of despair,
for prisoners of guilt and grief,
for victims of fantasy and depression,
that even where death’s cold grip tightens,
we may know the power of the one
who conquered fear and death. Amen.
3 Days Remain
As I write this evening, three days remain before our move to Staunton, VA. These are days full of saying goodbyes, packing boxes — not many need to be packed, and cleaning the house. There are a few things over at church (mainly my sound equipment) that need to be brought over, but most everything is packed and sitting either in the Living Room/Dining Room and Basement. The furniture is still in the bedrooms. I’m really getting that “boxed-in” feeling and if you’ve ever moved you know what I mean.
The Argot Family Farewell Tour
Today, we went out to say our good-byes to many of our shut-ins. As you can imagine it was an emotional time. Most of our shut-ins have become that way during our ministry at Preston, so we have developed an attachment to them. I took my guitar and we sang for some of them. It was a great day, even as we take care of some things that still need to be done.
I’m not quite sure that we’ve ever encountered as many ticks as we have this year. Tonight, we had to get one removed that was on Pam. That makes three this summer. Ugh!
The Journey Ahead
Tomorrow I say goodbye to my co-workers at Salvation Army. It has been a great year as I have been involved in a wonderful missional ministry. Saturday’s plan is to clean and then Sunday we worship with the congregation at Preston one last time. The church is also having a picnic following worship so it will be a good break from the boxes. Monday morning finds us packing the truck. Several of the congregation have volunteered, so it should go pretty quick.
It’s hard to believe that the waiting is over and yet there is a sadness in our hearts as we move away from Martinsville. We have invested in our congregation and anytime you do that, you leave a little piece with you. As I have signed off lately — The journey continues….