God's Eye Is on the Sparrow
The major news of the past week for us has been the growing wildfire in Shenandoah Park. While the firefighters have thankfully kept it contained enough to prevent major impact on our community, the heavy smoke has at times impacted our daily routines, making travel harder and keeping us indoors. Many folks have also headed out in the evening to see flames lighting up the night. Whether it is the billowing cloud of smoke by day or the glowing flame on the mountain by night, seeing such a sight certainly puts things in perspective. While we are used to thinking that we humans are masters of the world around us, things like this wildfire show us how little control we have and how small we are truly are. How powerless and insignificant we are in comparison to something so powerful and great!
And yet we are told that we are somehow special to the great God of all creation - an almost unbelievable claim if there ever was one. The One who made all the stars of the sky, all the living things of the earth, and hidden wonders beyond our comprehension knows us and cares for us. Scripture reminds us of how insignificant a sparrow is to us and yet God, the one infinitely greater than us, knows each one. Not a single sparrow can fall from the sky without God taking note. Not a single tree can fall in the wilderness of the park without God knowing it. Not a single bear cub can be driven homeless from its den without God taking note. Not a single thing can happen to us, as small as we are, without God knowing it and loving us all the while.
Sunday's Sermon Snippet: Gifted by God's Spirit
(1 Corinthians 12:1-26)
God has prepared amazing things for us to do in the name of Jesus Christ, and God is preparing us to do them. One of the ways that God prepares us is through the gifts of the Spirit. The Spirit gives us the ability to be teach, to speak for God, to discern good and evil, to pray, to stand firm in faith, and to encourage one another. Every one of God's people receives a gift of the Spirit, but the gifts are not about honoring us. The spiritual gifts are given to us but not for us. They are given for the common good - so that we can work for the good of all according to God's purposes. We receive these gifts but they are given to us for others. Likewise, no one person receives all the gifts of the Spirit. This means it takes many people to do the whole work of Christ. Some will teach, some will serve, some will pray, some will encourage. Each person is a part of the body of Christ, and the body needs the gifts and abilities of each member. Our spiritual gifts are given to us, but they are intended to be used with others. With others, for others - that is purpose of the spiritual gifts that we receive for the common good.
Responding to God's Call
Complete the online Spiritual Gifts Assessment.
What are my strongest spiritual gifts? How am I using them for God?
Join us this Sunday as we explore how we are "Skilled by God's Provision" to do the good works God has prepared for us!
Living in Community
Keep praying for the firefighters and the support staff keeping the wildfire under control. May God give them safety, wisdom, and strength in the days ahead.
This Week at Port Church
Wednesday, April 27
9:30 am - 2:00 pm - Office Hours
Thursday, April 28
9:30 am - 12:00 noon - Office Hours
Sunday, May 1
9:30 am - Worship Service: "Skilled by God's Provision"
11:00 am - Sunday School
VBS Training - May 22
Vacation Bible School - June 27-July 1
News and Updates
Find out what is going on at Port Republic UMC this week and in weeks to come!