Falling Nuts

One morning I was walking through our park just like I had done many times before. On this particular morning, I heard a rustling in the leaves above my head as I walked. After I passed by those trees I heard the sounds of black walnuts falling to the ground. A little later, I heard a very familiar sound above my head once again – this time however, it was an acorn falling to the ground. In addition to the noise that alerted me to the falling nuts and acorns, there is the visible evidence of the nuts and acorns. Anytime that you are under the canopy of trees, there are walnuts – some crushed – some not – and acorns. These are warning signs that there are falling nuts.

A year or two ago, Dale wrote a short post about a crazy warning that he found on a can of tuna. On the label it read “Warning: contains fish.” Talk about your crazy warnings – of course tuna contains fish. Here are a couple of crazy warning signs.

 

 

I was thinking in this day and age of funny and crazy warning signs, where were the signs to look for out for falling walnuts and acorns.

 

Sometimes we think about sin this way – we want warning signs for sin. Think about it – how easy would it be if life and sin has big red warning signs? We may not have big, red warning signs, but there warning signs if we keep our eyes open – just as it is up to me to keep my eyes and ears for falling nuts.

Back At It

It was a busy weekend, including yesterday, so I was not able to get a run or walk in all weekend.  Today was my first day out in three days.  I decided on a short but fast (as fast as I can go anyway) run and was pleased with the results.  Today’s run was 3.9 miles (three laps around Gypsy Hill Park) in 44:25 or a 11:23 pace.  This is a good thing.  I remember when a fast run was a 12:00 pace.  Or I can even remember when it took me the greater part of an hour to run three laps at Gypsy Hill.  It feels so good and yesterday at our District Learning Day, several came up and mentioned that they have been following my progress and encouraged me to keep going.  I’m not planning on quitting now — so much good has come as a result of this new discipline.  Pressing On!

You Go No Place By Accident

You go no place by accident this week. Wherever you go, Christ is sending you. You are nowhere by accident this week. Wherever you are, Christ has placed you. Because wherever you go, and wherever you are, Christ has a job He wants to do there, and He can only do it in your body.

– Richard C. Halverson, former U.S. Senate Chaplain

via my good friend Rich Avery

Sunday Night Thoughts

Rain, Beautiful Rain

The Shenandoah Valley is getting some much needed rain over at least the next 24 hours.  It was beginning to rain pretty good this evening.  It has been so dry here of late — and dry most of the summer.  Last week it also felt alot like the middle of summer.  We return to much more fall like temps this week.

Missions Weekend

This weekend we spent a lot of time around church as our church celebrated its annual mission’s celebration weekend.  We had Rich Avery from Wesleyan Native Ministries here for the weekend.  Friday night we had a great worship team from Parkway Wesleyan Church in Roanoke lead us in worship as we had a youth worship/missions rally.  Paul Haithcock and his team, most of whom were teens from his youth group, did a great job in leading us in worship and Rich spoke on following God’s call.

Yesterday morning, members of the church split up all over the city as we served people and organizations in our community.  It was a great time of relationship building and the ladies at church served a great lunch.

This morning Rich shared about the work of Wesleyan Native Ministries during Sunday School and then we had a great missions worship service.  God really met with us this morning.  We also collected our annual faith promise commitments  and were blown away by the amount that our congregation pledged for missions.  We are really humbled by what God is doing.

After church we went out to lunch with Rich and had a great time of fellowship before we parted ways.  What a wonderful weekend.

Glory In the Highest

Our choir has started rehearsal for our Christmas program.  It will be a wonderful worship experience. Several of the songs in the musical are “New Hallelujah,” “Glory in the Highest,” and “Jesus Messiah” as well as several Christmas carols.  The choir is doing a great job learning the music.

Day of Learning

Tomorrow our district pastors are gathering at our church for a Belief and Behavior Workshop put on by our Spiritual Formation department based in Indy.  It will be good so see some our our friends from HQ as well as our pastor friends from across the district.  We are looking forward to a good day.

Follow You

Our theme for  this year’s missions celebration was based on Leeland’s “Follow You.”  I love the second verse:

Use my hands, use my feet
To make your kingdom come
Through the corners of the earth
Until your work is done
‘Cause Faith without works is dead
And on the cross your blood was she’d
So how could I not give it away so freely?

And I’ll follow you into the homes that are broken.
Follow you into the world.
Meet the needs for the poor and the needy God.
Follow you into the World.

Seize the Day!

Sunday Set List

Sunday, September 26
18th Sunday after Pentecost

Welcome and Announcements

Call to Worship and Invocation

Songs of Worship

Lord, I Lift Your Name on High (Founds)

We Want to See Jesus Lifted High (Horley)

Hear the Call of the Kingdom (Getty/Townend)

Connecting through Prayer

Songs of Worship

Send the Light (Gabriel)

Worship through Giving

Worship Through God’s Word

Three Things You Need to Know About Missions

Ephesians 2:8-10

Song of Commitment

Changed (Niequist)

Benediction

9.78 Miles

Today’s run was one of the last long training runs I will be doing before the Staunton Ten Miler.  I will probably do one more next week — I could use the practice.  One of my goals today was to run as close as possible the course that we will be running that day.  The organization has a map up and I followed that.  The hard part was figuring out where the turnaround is.  That’s how I ended up slightly short.  It was a good run, but the second half of these long runs are really killing me.  I had to push with all I had to finish.  It doesn’t help that the worst hills on the course are near the halfway point and that the 3/4 mark.  I was able to complete the run in 2:00:29.  That gave me a 12:19 pace.  It wasn’t too bad considering the Shenandoah Valley is in another heat wave.  The temp as I finished up was nearing 80 degrees.  It should be cooler than that the day of the race so I may be able to quicken up the pace.  Also there will be more water and refreshment stops than on my run today.  I have to thank my wonderful support crew and beautiful wife for helping me out with some refreshment mid run.  She is wonderful.  Pressing On!

Weekly Lectionary Reading

READINGS FOR THE COMING WEEK
Proper 21 (26) (September 26, 2010)

Jeremiah 32:1-3a, 6-15; Psalm 91:1-6, 14-16; 1 Timothy 6:6-19; Luke 16:19-31

1 The following message came to Jeremiah from the Lord in the tenth year of the reign of Zedekiah, king of Judah. This was also the eighteenth year of the reign of King Nebuchadnezzar. 2 Jerusalem was then under siege from the Babylonian army, and Jeremiah was imprisoned in the courtyard of the guard in the royal palace. 3 King Zedekiah had put him there, asking why he kept giving this prophecy: “This is what the Lord says: ‘I am about to hand this city over to the king of Babylon, and he will take it.

—–

6 At that time the Lord sent me a message. He said, 7 “Your cousin Hanamel son of Shallum will come and say to you, ‘Buy my field at Anathoth. By law you have the right to buy it before it is offered to anyone else.’”

8 Then, just as the Lord had said he would, my cousin Hanamel came and visited me in the prison. He said, “Please buy my field at Anathoth in the land of Benjamin. By law you have the right to buy it before it is offered to anyone else, so buy it for yourself.” Then I knew that the message I had heard was from the Lord.

9 So I bought the field at Anathoth, paying Hanamel seventeen pieces of silver for it. 10 I signed and sealed the deed of purchase before witnesses, weighed out the silver, and paid him. 11 Then I took the sealed deed and an unsealed copy of the deed, which contained the terms and conditions of the purchase, 12 and I handed them to Baruch son of Neriah and grandson of Mahseiah. I did all this in the presence of my cousin Hanamel, the witnesses who had signed the deed, and all the men of Judah who were there in the courtyard of the guardhouse.

13 Then I said to Baruch as they all listened, 14 “This is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says: ‘Take both this sealed deed and the unsealed copy, and put them into a pottery jar to preserve them for a long time.’ 15 For this is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says: ‘Someday people will again own property here in this land and will buy and sell houses and vineyards and fields.’”

I’m Doing Great!

Over the past few days, I have been fighting a sinus infection.  I finally went to the doctor for several reasons.  He gave me medicine for it.

This morning, Dale was getting ready to go out for a walk — I decided I needed to stay home — and as a caring husband, he asked how I was doing.  I told him, “I’m doing great, but I haven’t got out of bed yet.”  Dale reminded me of this little prayer:

Dear Lord,

So far today, I’ve done all right. I haven’t gossiped, haven’t lost my temper, haven’t been greedy, grumpy, nasty, selfish, or over indulgent. I’m very thankful for that.

But, in a few minutes, God, I’m going to get out of bed. And from then on, I’m probably going to need a lot more help.

As you can tell, I am out of bed now, and I don’t feel as good as I did laying in bed.  I will probably take it easy — making cards for students who missed church last night and doing some other things around the house as we get ready for a guest this weekend.  God can help us even in the little things.