April 10th, 2024

April 10th, 2024

ps from ps 

It’s always strange taking down the cross.



Whether it’s Easter or Christmas, there’s always a “break down” time where we box up or put back in the attic or basement some of the extras that make these sacred days even more special.

Without the lilies, poinsettias, Christmas trees, cross and “extra stuff”, the sanctuary looks fairly plain.  Regular.  Ordinary.  

What’s interesting is the season that comes after Easter through Pentecost is sometimes referred to as just that: ordinary days.  In fact, that’s what Christmas and Easter are more about: the extraordinary for the ordinary days.  

Some days…many days..I feel fairly ordinary myself.  Down.  Loneliness can creep in.  Far away from Easter and Christmas moments.  Like a moon has blocked out the light and the clouds blocked out the moon!  Down right ordinary.

But during that eclipse on Monday, even though it seemed ordinary because of all the clouds blocking my view, there was something extraordinary happening behind it all: darkness for 3 minutes, temps dropping, tree frogs starting to ribbit because they thought it was night and then the birds starting to chirp as the sun arrived back, as if it was the morning dawn.  

Even in the ordinary times, the extraordinary has happened.  The Word became flesh.  And gave his life.  And conquered death itself.  And the light overcame the darkness.

If you feel ordinary today, that’s OK.  Because the extraordinary still happened whether you saw it or not.  So it’s OK, put the “extra stuff” away.  It’s nice, but not the main part of the story.  You are.  And God’s extraordinary love for you.

Lord, thanks for the ordinary moments that can reveal the extraordinary!  Amen

Still in One Peace,
ps
April 3rd, 2024

April 3rd, 2024

ps from ps 
It’s still Easter.  

Don’t wait until your own up close and personal resurrection to enjoy it!

This coming weekend, there will be a lot less people in church.  This coming weekend, there will be a lot fewer family brunches/dinners.  This coming weekend, there will be less pastel colors on the kids.  And probably a few less egg hunts as well.

But this coming weekend, there will still be resurrection.  There will still be light overcoming darkness.  There will still be new life where it looks like death has won.  

And you don’t even have to wait for the weekend.  Due to what we proclaimed last weekend, that resurrectiony, lighty, new lifeness is here TODAY.

Remember what the angel said: Go back into town, your daily life, Jesus is already ahead of you and there you will see him.  

Don’t wait for the end of life to look for that resurrection power.  Don’t only whip this good news out in the hardest of times – take it out today!  Jesus spends several days post-resurrection spotting up around town and entering into the regular stuff – in houses, over meals and several places in between.  To show us that this great news is meant to be experienced in the here and now.  Not just at an empty tomb and not just in a crowded church.

The resurrection is for your today.
 
Lord, let’s celebrate Easter today!  Amen

Still in One Peace,
ps
March 19th, 2024

March 19th, 2024

ps from ps – Lenten version

During the season of Lent, we have a tendency to slow things down.  To be a tad more intentional.

So during these “40 days” we will be adding Soup and Psalms in person at SPEC each Wednesday at 12pm.  When we gather, we’ll read a particular Psalm (the same one that will come up in the weekend worship) and ask ourselves a few questions and then take time in prayer.

So I’m inviting you to do the same thing.  Join us in person if you can (4007 Main St, Eggertsville NY 14226).  But if you can’t, join us in spirit through email.

Here is our Psalm for the week: Psalm 31:9-16.  Read it through once, giving yourself a chance to breathe after, and then read it one more time.

Psalm 31:9-16 9 Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am in distress;
    my eye wastes away from grief,
    my soul and body also.
10 For my life is spent with sorrow,
    and my years with sighing;
my strength fails because of my misery,
    and my bones waste away.11 I am the scorn of all my adversaries,
    a horror to my neighbors,
an object of dread to my acquaintances;
    those who see me in the street flee from me.
12 I have passed out of mind like one who is dead;
    I have become like a broken vessel.
13 For I hear the whispering of many—
    terror all around!—
as they scheme together against me,
    as they plot to take my life.14 But I trust in you, O Lord;
    I say, ‘You are my God.’
15 My times are in your hand;
    deliver me from the hand of my enemies and persecutors.
16 Let your face shine upon your servant;
    save me in your steadfast love.Then ask yourself the following:
1.  What caught your attention?
2.  What questions does this bring up?
3.  What do you hear God saying to us through it?

Feel free to share any of our thoughts with me and if you email steve@stpaulseggertsville.com before 11am Wednesdays, I will share them with the in-person group.

Enjoy Lent.  

Lord, speak to me.  Amen

Still in One Peace,
ps
March 13th, 2024

March 13th, 2024

ps from ps – Lenten version

During the season of Lent, we have a tendency to slow things down.  To be a tad more intentional.

So during these “40 days” we will be adding Soup and Psalms in person at SPEC each Wednesday at 12pm.  When we gather, we’ll read a particular Psalm (the same one that will come up in the weekend worship) and ask ourselves a few questions and then take time in prayer.

So I’m inviting you to do the same thing.  Join us in person if you can (4007 Main St, Eggertsville NY 14226).  But if you can’t, join us in spirit through email.

Here is our Psalm for the week: Psalm 51.  Read it through once, giving yourself a chance to breathe after, and then read it one more time.  
 Psalm 511Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.2Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.3For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.4Against you, you alone, have I sinned, and done what is evil in your sight, so that you are justified in your sentence and blameless when you pass judgment.5Indeed, I was born guilty, a sinner when my mother conceived me.6You desire truth in the inward being; therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart.7Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.8Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have crushed rejoice.9Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.10Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me.11Do not cast me away from your presence, and do not take your holy spirit from me.12Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and sustain in me a willing spirit.Then ask yourself the following:
1.  What caught your attention?
2.  What questions does this bring up?
3.  What do you hear God saying to us through it?

Feel free to share any of our thoughts with me and if you email steve@stpaulseggertsville.com before 11am Wednesdays, I will share them with the in-person group.

Enjoy Lent.  

Lord, speak to me.  Amen

Still in One Peace,
ps
March 5th, 2024

March 5th, 2024

ps from ps –
Lenten version
During the season of Lent, we have a tendency to slow things down.  To be a tad more intentional.

So during these “40 days” we will be adding Soup and Psalms in person at SPEC each Wednesday at 12pm.  When we gather, we’ll read a particular Psalm (the same one that will come up in the weekend worship) and ask ourselves a few questions and then take time in prayer.

So I’m inviting you to do the same thing.  Join us in person if you can (4007 Main St, Eggertsville NY 14226).  But if you can’t, join us in spirit through email.

Here is our Psalm for the week: Psalm 107.  Read it through once, giving yourself a chance to breathe after, and then read it one more time.  
 Psalm 107
1O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever.2Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, those he redeemed from trouble3and gathered in from the lands, from the east and from the west, from the north and from the south.17Some were sick through their sinful ways, and because of their iniquities endured affliction;18they loathed any kind of food, and they drew near to the gates of death.19Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress;20he sent out his word and healed them, and delivered them from destruction.21Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love, for his wonderful works to humankind.22And let them offer thanksgiving sacrifices, and tell of his deeds with songs of joy.Then ask yourself the following:
1.  What caught your attention?
2.  What questions does this bring up?
3.  What do you hear God saying to us through it?

Feel free to share any of our thoughts with me and if you email steve@stpaulseggertsville.com before 11am Wednesdays, I will share them with the in-person group.

Enjoy Lent.  

Lord, speak to me.  Amen

Still in One Peace,
ps