Summer Sermons! July & August 2016

Following is our Cheatham Memorial UMC sermon Planner for July and August 2016.  Our church is open to anyone seeking to deepen their faith and take part in significant ministry as a way of life.  Our Motto is “WELCOME HOME” and we know our congregation to be about these three things:  Fist, our Mission:  Making Disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the World; second  our Vision: We are Christ’s Love in Action: Following Christ, Serving Others, Unifying the Church. And finally, Our motivation:  Loving God’s Word, Deepening the life of Prayer and developing ministering Skills.  For more information on how we do that, click here and check out our activities on the main website. 

July 3:  7th Sunday of Pentecost

Text:  Psalm 33:6-17, Philippians 3:17-21 “God Country”

We live in the greatest nation with the greatest faith, the largest economy and the greatest technology in the history of the world.  How did we get it and how do we keep it?  Things seem pretty uncertain and we desperately need to look for this answer!  Join us with a theological look at what it means to be a Christian in the USA today.

 July 10: 8th Sunday of Pentecost

Luke 10:25-37  “The very first Lawyer Joke”

There are many lawyer jokes but only one that I know of in the Bible and it comes from one of the best known of all of Jesus’ parables.  Which one?  Look it up and see.  Do you get the joke?  How does your, mine and our faiths fit together?

 July 17  Vacation Bible School Wrap Up Sunday

Luke 10:38-42  “Kids Remember What Grownups Forgot”

God speaks volumes through children.  If you want to know God-Sized answers to God-Sized questions you must take on the manner of a child.  What does that look like and how do I get it?

July 24  “Lawn Chair Worship Sunday”

Revival Theme.  The text will be announces later for this morning of fun, barbecue and praise.  Outside service at 9:00 AM followed by too much food and lots of music!  See the main website for details.

 July 31  Lawn Chair Sunday Rain out Day

Colossians 3:1-11 “You Find What You Look For”

August 7:  Youth Service at 10:00 and Youth Rally at 2:00

Youth Speaker

August 14:  Block Party Celebration

Hebrews 11”1-13  “A Love Song for the Vineyard”

I’m tired, where is the faith I need for today?  The church is a fertile vineyard and Christ loves his church.  Still, some days we fall short of Christ’s vision.  The fruit of His vineyard is faith and faith is the seed where that fruit begins.  We will discuss our every-day starting place to find and cast that faith for ourselves.

August 21:  Back to School Consecration Sunday

Jeremiah 1:4-10 “Only a Child can Know”

We think of children as needing our teaching but often they are the example of faith for us grown-ups.  Faith is supposed to grow in us and mature .  Not knowing how the things of faith work is not an excuse.  I our “not-Knowing” are the seeds of exciting spiritual formation.  How do we build and plant that necessary faith?

August 28 15th Sunday after Pentecost

Hebrews 13:1-16  “Hospitality’s Gift”

Our church knows what hospitality looks like and knows that it is a FAITH BUILDER!  We are very strong in opening our home to others.  What do we get out of it?  Is it ok if we get something out of it?  We will discuss that gift that we get in return regardless of what our guests leave behind.

Coming Events:  Gideon’s Sunday on September 18,  Fall Festival on October 14 and a celebration service on October 15

 

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June 2016 Sermons at Cheatham Memorial

compass of faith

The Cheatham Memorial Family invites you to join us for worship at 10:00 am each Sunday.  We have a variety of activities and service projects that you can check out at our WEBSITE!

Do you ever feel like you have lost direction?  We will discuss ways to “Face the Fire by Faith”.  What do I do with faith in a world that seems so random.   Transformation is a mystery that begins and ends with faith.  The fun stuff lies in the middle.  Find your way with us as we seek Christ together.

June 5:  The 3rd Sunday of Pentecost, Communion Sunday,

Text:  1 Kings 17:8-24 “Now What”

Transformation in the soul is built by our experiences in the day to day.  We need companions for the journey and our eye on God.  With each day’s ups and downs, let’s face it, faith can just be difficult.  And yet we grow through these experiences.

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June 12: 4th Sunday of Pentecost. 

Text: Galatians 2:15-21,” Faith is Dead Right”

The way to faith is faith.  God is faithful to plant the seeds of faith within us and water them with our experiences. Faith expressed leads us to faith experienced.   “Paul speaks of what kind of sinner he is and asks, “what kind of sinner are you?”

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 June 19: 5th Sunday of Pentecost, Father’s Day

Text Luke 8:26-39  “Hey, those are my pigs!”

A dad’s promise does not come from a perfect life but by following a perfect Jesus.  Faith opens our eyes to our own brand of distress and randomness.  Rather than excuse our lives as “Just the way it is”, a new way is given, by faith, to all who will fearlessly face the challenge.

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 June 26:  6th Sunday of Pentecost

Text:  2 Kings 2:1-14  “Pass it on”

Faith is not a possession to hold but one to nurture and pass on.  Our companions in life feed our faith but also depend on us to build them up too.  Leadership is successful when we let god and watch another grow.

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The April 2016 Sermon Schedule

April brings the spring  and a newness to our faith journeys.  Easter has given us the faith of an empty tomb!  These scriptures have been chosen to reflect the four gifts of the cross-the final point of our Lenten sermons.  Forgiveness, Righteousness, Faith-Sight, and Ministry are given to us at the cross and lived in the resurrection in everyday life.  These gifts are for the here and now as well as the hereafter.  Come and join us in worship!  For more details check us out at Cheathamumc.net

April 3:  The second Sunday of the Easter Season  “Every Eye” Revelation 1:4-8

The first gift of the cross is that of a Jesus focused sight.  In Christ we simply see things differently.  The tomb is empty and is the bedrock of the Christian’s faith.  It is a place of victory and eternity rather than a place of death and finality.   Seeing our everyday with the focus of Jesus makes for healthier and eternal living.

 

April 10:  The third Sunday of the Easter Season  “Right Away”  Acts 9:1-20

The second gift of the cross is the forgiven life.  With our ransom paid at the cross we live with the righteousness of Jesus as our guide and goal.  By faith through Jesus’ gift to us we have this righteousness!  It is a responsibility as well as a privilege!  Living out of Jesus’ righteous freedom makes for healthier and eternal living.

April 17:  The fourth Sunday of the Easter Season  “Healing Right Away”   Acts 9:36-43

Jesus is still in the healing business but not always in the way that we imagine it should be.  The final gifts of the cross are being forgiven and made worthy for ministry.  Peter had denied Jesus and squandered many opportunities for faith.  Yet, this story show him to be used of God for a dramatic healing event.  Being healed of our sin puts us in a position to minister in a way that makes for healthier and eternal living

April 24:  The fifth Sunday of the Easter Season “Laity in Ministry Sunday”

Our lay leadership, with Judi Yarbrough bringing the message, will share our ministry from the last year  in pictures, word and song. This will be an exciting service of praise for the shared ministry of Cheatham Memorial UMC!

See you Sundays at 10:00!

 

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The January 2016 Sermon Schedule

The Cheatham Memorial Family invites your to a brand new year of Spiritual Growth in Jesus Christ?  We worship at 10:00 AM each Sunday with activities for disciples of all ages and places.   The Theme for January centers around our church family’s growth goals:  Loving Scripture, Deeping the life of prayer, and developing our basic skills for ministry.  Each message will include everyday ways of doing and being a growing Christian.

Watch our website for our many worship, learning, service and fellowship activities!  Here are our study offerings.  Everyone is invited to search the sermon text BEFORE worship and then follow up with the Sermon briefs afterward.  Here are our offerings for January!

January 3, 2016:  Three Kings Sunday-“Epiphany”  Matthew 2:1-12  “Becoming a Star“.  We will search this story, which everyone thinks they know, and find some details that are their plus some things we thought but aren’t there.  In this story we will celebrate the role of searching with the eyes of Christ for grace in our everyday living.

January 10, 2016:  Baptism of the Lord Sunday, Ecclesiastes 3:1-13, “For Such a Time as This”.  In this passage that some call the “Desiderata”, we will celebrate and discover the role of timing in our everyday life in Christ.  Not just any timing but that of God’s timing.

January 17, 2016: the Second Sunday after Epiphany, 1 Corinthians 12:1-11, “You’ve Got This”.  Have you ever said, “Spiritual gifts?  I don’t have any.”  Wrong!  “A demonstration of the Spirit is given to each person for the common good” 1 Cor 12:7.  Everyone has gifts from God to use for God.  By using them we watch God build us and others.  We no satisfaction and peace that we never knew was possible.

January 24, 2016: The Third Sunday after Epiphany, 1 Corinthians 12:12-31a, “Pieces, Parts and Whole”  In this often quoted text we will celebrate the role of order in our discernment of God’s direction for our everyday living.  We each are a part of someone else’s lives as well as taking care of our own.

January 31, 2016:The Fourth Sunday after Epiphany, 1 Corinthians: 13:1-13, “Never Fails….: This is a continuation of last week’s text and a discovery of our driving motivation to be and become a Christian disciple-LOVE.  The very word is often abused and misused.  To grow in grace is to grow in love in our everyday living.  This is more than a wedding scripture!!

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December and Advent 2015 Sermon Schedule, Cheatham Memorial UMC

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The Cheatham Memorial Family invites your to Celebrate the Christmas season at 10:00 AM each Sunday.   The Christmas special music is from the musical “Mary Did You Know” and is centered around 5 questions “Did you know…..?  We would be honored to be a part of your family’s Christmas.

Watch our website for our many worship, learning, service and fellowship activities!  Here are our offerings for November.  If you are viewing this from far away,  Check out our Smart phone Bible study BEFORE the sermon and the Sermon briefs as a follow up after the sermon!

December 6: 2nd Sunday of Advent “Christ the Way”  Text: Luke 3:1-6  “John the Methodist”.  Did you know that God had, has and will always have a plan for your life?

December13:  3rd Sunday of Advent “Peace”.  Text: 13:2-13  “What about us?” Did you know that God has a plan for your life and living to succeed?  This will NOT BE A REGULAR SERMON! Our mission project for this season in an “Angel Tree” ministry to about 50 of our local families.  at 10:30, we will dismiss to the fellowship halls to prepare these gifts!  Everyone will have a task to do !:

December 20:  4th Sunday of Advent  “JOY”.  Text Luke 1:39-45  “Why Such a Hurry?”.  Did you know that when we recognize Jesus JOY breaks out?

December 20 at 4:00 pm we will host a community service of old fashioned carols and special music at the Edgewood Heritage Park’s “Church in the Wildwood”.  This is an amazing and fully restored  building that housed our congregation in 1897.  Make this a part of your family traditions!

December 24: Christmas Eve  “Completion”.  Text Luke 2:1-20  “Just as They Had Been Told”.  Did you know that you are the only gift Jesus wants on His birthday?  This will be a traditional service with music, special songs, our Children’s choir, candle lighting and Holy Communion.  All Christians are welcome to take communion with us.

December 27:  Christmas +1, Text Luke 2: 41-52  “What his Parents knew”.  Did you know that in Christ Christmas NEVER ends

Monday School: November 30, 2015, Coping with Christmas 1 of 3, Matthew 20:20-28

This is an overview of our discussion and not a text for success.  This is not just a Holiday thing either.  We are sharing stories and principles for coping with life and not just Christmas.  This is not a discussion of right and wrong behaviors but of healthier and unhealthier.  This is not a discussion of living stress free wither-only dead people are stress free. The trick is living in heathy stress and not constant distress. There are no quick fixes but this story gives us a framework for discussion.

Read our story from the Gospel of Matthew and follow along as we ask the text some questions:  Click here for Matthew 20:20-28

Our discussion of the text:  James and John show up to see Jesus with their mom.  She asks them to make these two the number two and three people in His messianic kingdom.  She misunderstood the kingdom to be an earthly-political one while Jesus was teaching that it would be one in heaven.  While she only had her community model to understand a kingdom, she knew Jesus, recognized  and she had faith that He could make her request happen.

Jesus gave them all a question as an answer and used Holy Communion language to teach them.  He is asking, “do you really know what you are getting in to.  They said sure and then Jesus said, “You’ve got it!”  BUT the three seats of leadership are not His to give nor theirs to receive-they are for the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Later, Jesus would gather them together, with all of the grumbling, and explain that their mission was not to set up another human led, lord and master government system.  The Kingdom of God would be spiritual and focused on serving others rather than being the big dog in charge and being served.  Jesus did not die the make them power people but to be their ransom-payment-redemption, freeing them for a rich life that changes the world.

After this rather lively discussion of the text, we turned the worksheet over and asked these question.

  1. Who brought whom to Jesus? Did mom bring the boys? Or did the boys bring mom to fade the heat?  Who brings their mom to something like this!  Perhaps mom was that strong willed and didn’t trust her kids to stand up for themselves.  Maybe the sons brought mom to take the heat and passively do their talking to Jesus for them.  It makes a difference in our family dynamics.  Who is the strong willed in your family and who waits to be brought along.  Neither is more right or more wrong but you need to understand how that works to understand how a group of people come together and operate in a healthy way.
  2. Why did anyone have to bring anyone? The short answer is anxiety.  one or another was worried more than the other and pushed this action to relieve the anxiety.  Mom worried about sons, or sons worried about what Jesus would think or all of them just wanted to make sure they got to the front of the line.  Some things to consider
*The anxiety of each person in any group or family effects the anxiety of others.
*Some handle stress and anxiety better than others but everyone is two people; how they are normally and how they are when anxious.
*Self identity effects how we see God and hence how we see everything.  “Know thyself!”
*When unhealthy living is all you know, that’s how you go about living and will strive to make that happen.  Likewise when your family is healthy you will strive to maintain healthy living.
  1. First from verse 22: He calmly refocused the question in a spiritual way  in a calm place in a focused way.  When our family is in crisis we can begin by getting focused around facts and not emotion.
  2. Second from verse 23:
  3. And third from verse 25     How did this effect the group dynamic?  I made the other 10 “indignant”!  It caused stress and acting out.  He and gathered this family of disciples.  Being together in a familiar place is powerful but has to be mutually respectful  to be healthy
  4. What happens in football when you have 12 players on the field.. “Too many players on the field” gets a flag and the loss of control.  When an outsider or one unhealthy voice gets control the play has to change directions!  This is hard and usually goes against long standing patterns.  Jesus didn’t let the two define the mission that was to be their lives.
  5. What happens when one (or more) try define a group members identity.  anger with yelling?  anger with silence, isolating?  or….calmly sharing the cause and asking God to lead rather than the emotion of the moment.  Prayer is amazing when we do it at first instead of as a last resort.  Following Jesus’ calm yet firm persona.  He did not yell back and taught then retaught the role they would have and the one they would follow.  Consistency and discernment is a key.  Seeing God clearly through the fog of anxiety is key to getting started.  Knowing whose you are is key to knowing who you are and living in the healthy light of faith.
  6. What correction did Jesus offer?  Seek to serve and not be served.  Seek to follow God in spirit and truth rather than lead from your own limited vision and strength.  His witness and example would lead and guide all of those who follow.  It was suggested that this confrontation by James and John’s mom was embarrassing!  They probably knew the answer but pushed the point any way.
  7. Fusion versus differentiation:  Sometimes we are “Fused” as a group to the point that we lose all individuality-this is called fusion.  Sometimes we are so focused on ourselves that we don’t need anyone else-this is called differentiation.  The truth is that we float around somewhere in the middle.  We must know ourselves well enough to go to Jesus without mom making our case for us.  We also have to take on our life’s role with or without Mom’s approval and be ok.  We must be connected to our group but not to the point we have no identity-that describes a cult.  To lack any need for our family makes us empty shells and narcissists.
  8. Ideally, who should we “fuse” with?  The only perfect person that ever walked was Jesus.  He is the one who gives us an identity that gives us a life of significance here and life eternal hereafter.

 

 

 

 

 

Weekly Sermon Brief: November 15, 2015, “The Church isn’t a church isn’t at Church”, Mark 13:1-8

 

Click here to read This week’s text for this sermon bite.

This past Saturday I was rewarded with an honor that shows that my vast array of gifts and graces are finally being recognized  Members of our Historical Society, who care for our magnificent Edgewood Heritage Park ( it is a living museum!), sought carefully and bestowed upon me the august honor, I sniff back a tear just thinking about it, of making me a Judge, yes a juSlide1dge…..of the pinto bean competition.

While I am only a talented amateur at this time, with the proper training, focus and motivation I might go professional in the future.  Sadly, the title would not fit onto my business cards but I will prevail as people recognize this honor and see me in the light of a true pinto bean judging professional.  And when the pronounce, out of jealousy, that I am full of beans, I will proudly proclaim my gracious thanks for recognizing this wonderful filling within me.  Hallelujah and amen.

Silly isn’t it?  Be we  often have trouble see ourselves in our real significance as a redeemed child of God.  The disciples in our story have spent the day being taught by the one who spoke creation into existence and at the end of the day, all they can say is, “wow, we sure have a beautiful church.”

Look at the title;  The Capital “C” Church is the worldwide saving enterprise of which our small “c” church-congregation is a part.  and while it meets at the Church-House or sanctuary, of which we are blessed to have a great facility, the building is NOT the church.  Those smiling people at the top of the post are the real sure enough, Jesus following, Spirit led CHURCH. 

Slide2Admittedly the Jerusalem Temple was a big deal. Originally built in 957 BC, Destroyed around 604 BD, Rebuilt a century later and then remodeled just before the time of Christ’s earthly ministry, it was a huge facility that was more than a church.  This was an icon of the Jew’s national, racial and religious identity.

To the Jew, the Temple was a sign that God’s victory over the world and was a center of the world and not just the center of Israel.  The Temple is where God lives and provided a place to speak to and about God!  This was where people were led to God and learned the stories that edified faith.  However, it had sadly become and idol to some and an amusement park to others rather than a power center of God.  The Roman invaders used it as a tool of manipulation.  By controlling Temple worship and giving local leaders municipal “Bean Judge” type titles, a small force would control big crowds through brutality and civic organization.

Jesus would prophesy in verse 2 of the destruction in 70 AD.  It would beSlide3 the building that was defeated and not God!  This took the newly forming Christians back to the desert tabernacle and dispersed them throughout the world.  Jesus was taking the formal faith of the temple back to its roots.  He speaks of false messiahs, soul stealing rumors, family upheaval, political and natural disasters and redeems them from sources of fear to the validation of this new faith in Jesus the Christ, our God incarnate.  Jesus told them to expect these things, be ready for injustice and to speak in the power of the Holy Spirit.   The Christ would call for patience as “the Gospel must first be preached to all nations.”

This past Friday, this old pattern would come to call in the attacks in France:   At this writing there are 129 dead  with 352 others wounded, 99 of them critically in premeditated and coordinated attacks — This isn’t merely terror, it is war.  This is also not faith but a false and narrow chaos dressed up as religion.

In light of the horrific attacks in Paris, terrorist  tactics haven’t really changed that much since the first Century.  Neither has the Gospel.  We can watch terror groups who wage this war on us as they prey on populations who are  desperate , and will grab onto anyone that gives hope.  Beyond the extortion and brutality, modern terror groups are fixing basic needs, Providing an identification and a purpose “organizing social welfare programs and even recreational activities for children, distributing food and fuel to the needy, and setting up clinics.”*  This helps build community around the groups ideals.  They build on earth for war while we build for the Savior and His Kingdom.

Last Friday, the command to love our enemy became far more difficult and  Romans 12 says “17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,”[says the Lord.  The voices who spout wrath  can be attractive.  But wait a minute and consider a truly Christian response to this terror.

First, DON’T FORGET GOD, we must respond by a smart faith. Rage isn’t enough.  Warmongering at all cost in the Name of God on our own will is the height of spiritless and human centered Sin.  On the other hand Peace Mongering at all cost in the name of Jesus is lazy and far less Christian.  We cannot lose our souls by replacing our faith in the risen Jesus with faith in government and weapon systems.  Seek Christ by holding fast to Christian Standards and principals and recognize in this text, that this isn’t God’s first experience with this  behavior.  We must pray, search the scriptures and engage our enemy like never before and do it AS THE CHURCH.

Second, find ways to cope NOW: take care of our kids and other sensitive people by limiting the terrible images.  Stay informed but don’t add to the sensationalism of the Media.  Stay connected with God in prayer, study, service and worship.  Keep it real and not just routine to keep the fear in perspective. Be prepared to grow spiritually and be challenged in this “Desert Spirituality” in its great cloud of unknowing- “Wars and rumors of wars”.  Prepare for the future with and for the living God. We must fight by faith and remember that we do not fight alone.

Again, this is not easy but by God’s grace it is possible.  This isn’t about beans!  With the proper training, focus and motivation we will be able to judge a secure truth through the eyes of Christ.

*http://www.cnn.com/2014/06/12/world/meast/who-is-the-isis/index.html

This post is a follow-up to our sermon from last Sunday and I pray it touches your heart and that you have a church to be “Welcome Home”.  If you don’t, please click on the link below and check out our Family.  We would love to welcome you whenever you find yourself in our corner of East Texas.  Come and see us!

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