Showing posts from November, 2016

"An Advent Question: Will We Be Ready?" - Sermon, November 27, 2016

Community UMC, Quincy “An Advent Question: Will We be Ready?” Isaiah 2: 1-5 Matthew 24: 36-44 Pastor Andrew Davis November 27, 2016
        How many of you have started your Christmas decorating yet?  How about listening to Christmas music?  Even though we’re only a few days after Thanksgiving, it sure feels like we’ve already been seeing Christmas since Labor Day…maybe even since the Fourth of July.  Now, I know some people will lament that all things Christmas seems to appear earlier and earlier each year, as it sure feels like it comes up earlier.  Right after Labor Day or Fourth of July is a little too early, but the thought of Christmas stuff going up early brings me back to a series of books I loved reading as a child.  I particularly remember reading The Berenstein Bears series about the Bear Family written by the late Stan and Jan Berenstein, which was more or less based on their own family (kind of the same way the comic strip “For Better or For Worse” was loosely based on Lynn Joh…

"Towards a New Kingdom," Sermon for November 20, 2016

Community UMC, Quincy “Towards a New Kingdom” Pastor Andrew Davis November 20, 2016 Jeremiah 23: 1-6 Luke 23: 33-43
        I’m thinking that God has been trying to tell me that our services have been too busy these last couple weeks, so this week we get a little bit of a breather from so much going on before Advent starts.  This is also the time of year when I tend to get hit with a cold and unfortunately, this past week is when I happened to get hit.  ‘Tis the season, nevertheless.  So, if you enjoy the shorter sermons, this is your week!!  Plus, we have Thanksgiving on Thursday, meaning we are getting closer to jumping head-first into the hustle and bustle of the Christmas shopping and preparation season.  However, today also marks the end of the year for us in the church.  Not the actual end of the year when we watch the giant crystal ball drop in Times Square, NYC, but the end of the church liturgical year.  The church/liturgical year is divided up into the Christmas cycle of Advent, …

"Keep on Trusting Jesus" - Sermon, November 13, 2016

Community UMC, Quincy “Keep on Trusting Jesus” Pastor Andrew Davis November 13, 2016 Isaiah 65: 17-25 Luke 21: 5-19
Even though it has been a couple weeks since preaching a sermon up here, this morning is one where I feel like I really need to hear a good sermon after this week instead of preaching.  I feel like I need to hear some good news, in spite of everything we have dealt with in the aftermath of the election this past Tuesday.  Everything we have read in the editorials, or comments on various social media platforms have shown some strong reactions on both sides.  People who voted for Donald Trump are suddenly attacked as if they are now supporting hate, while there is real, almost paralyzing fear among those who did not vote for Donald Trump.  There have been words said on both sides showing the deep hurt that people are feeling right now and how deeply divided our society has become.  As I said in my pastoral letter on Wednesday, the result of Tuesday’s election may be seen by man…

A Post-Election Pastoral Letter

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3: 22-23, NRSV)
By contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.  There is no law against such things.  And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.  If we live by the Spirit, let us also be guided by the Spirit.  Let us not become conceited, competing against one another, envying one another.  (Galatians 5: 22-26, NRSV)
Dear Members and Friends of Community UMC, Quincy, 
            By now, the results are in and the reality of last night’s election has begun setting in for many of us, with Donald J. Trump elected as the 45th President of The United States.  For many, this outcome may be viewed as a new day and direction for our nation, while also for many, this election has created new wounds and a time of g…

Adventures, November 2016

For the beauty of the Earth, for the glory of the skies, For the love which from our birth, over and around us lies; Lord of all, to thee we raise this our hymn of grateful praise (UMH, 92).
It feels like the weather has changed over very quickly this year, as Fall has arrived here in Quincy and the surrounding areas at the time of writing this month’s Adventures.  The first sign is that when I’ve taken my regular drive up to Bucks Lake, there is hardly anyone there.  It’s almost like I have the whole shoreline to myself at Sandy Point while walking the growing shoreline as the water level in the lake goes down.  Then there is the explosion of colors on the trees, the vibrant reds, oranges, and golds that are a feast for the eyes whenever we are outside or even when we are driving around.  Then we have the smell of fireplaces and burning leaf piles beginning to perfume the air, another sign that Fall has fully arrived. 
As we approach Thanksgiving, which is November 24, what are some of …