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Romans 11:36—“From Him and through Him and with Him
are all things, to the glory of God forever!”

Psalm 73: 25—“Whom have I in heaven but You?
Earth has nothing I desire besides You!”

“Man’s [Humankind’s] chief and highest end {goal or purpose}
is to glorify God and enjoy God forever” (Book of Confessions--
Westminster Confession [Shorter Catechism]7.001, [Longer Catechism]7.111)

Pentecost is this month. Pentecost, the coming of the Spirit, is all about mission. What is mission? Many think of that as far away work by folks to evangelize the unbeliever. Others think of charity or justice work for the poor or needy whether far away or next door. All of that is right but not complete. Mission is what the Westminster Confession called our chief goal and purpose in life to glorify God (Paul says in words or deeds in Ephesians) and to enjoy God forever (serve is the old English meaning of enjoy). The Book of Order in it’s very first paragraph makes clear that we as believers and Church members have no mission of our own, but instead have as our purpose to ”participate in God’s mission for the transformation of creation and humanity” by telling everyone of God’s grace in Christ Jesus, calling folks to the sacraments, and being about discipleship in all we do. (F-1.01) How well do we engage in God’s mission here at First Presbyterian?

Ok, before anything else, put down the newsletter and read Luke 24: 13-35. I’ll wait…Ok, good. You know that story right, the road to Emmaus. Classic Easter story. You notice that only one of the disciples is named (Cleopas in verse 18). That was a common way in the first century that writers invited their reader into the story. You are the unnamed disciple! So imagine yourself not watching the story but actually living it.

John 6:37 reads - “All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.” (ESV)

Lent is a time to come to the Lord and repent. On Sundays during this season we are studying Micah in worship, to remind us that it is in kindness and love and humbly turning to God that we come to Him, not in rituals or speeches or pretend ways. And all of us need to turn to God in Jesus. We need to come no matter how much we think we deserve Jesus or don’t deserve Him, because Jesus welcomes us just as we are. That reminds me of the Hymn, “Just as I Am” which has a long history of use in the church to remind us of just this truth. Some may associate it with funerals or tent revivals, but it is a song of joy and love. Did you know that Heather and I had that hymn at our wedding—not only to remind us of our grandparents but also to remind us that always in our marriage we turn to Jesus, no matter where we are or what state we are in, we turn to Jesus together.

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