Joseph and Mary Weren’t Confused – ARE YOU?

Life is demanding and confusing, even at Christmas.  

Mary-Joe of the Christmas story are to have a child-yet they hadn’t had sex with one another or any others. Like Joe and Mary how do we understand our confusion?  Answer: Certainly not by ourselves, but through the supernatural. The Virgin birth of Jesus is an awesome truth.

Could I ask? Are you confused over your sexual identity? It’s ok if you are?  God has promised that anyone who sincerely seeks Him will find him (Jeremiah 29:13). For questions about how God made you please review Psalm 139 especially verses 13-18.

Mary and Joseph weren’t confused over how God created them. With all the questions we may have about sexuality, like Mary and Joe seek God revealed in Jesus Christ. In seeking God-Mary and Joe came to discover God chose them for a far greater adventure then they had planned; the adventure of bring the Messiah into the world.

Allow God who created you to use YOU For something great that will outlast your earthly days!. God knew what HE was doing in creating you.

We will lift up Holy Marriage this Sunday. A couple will renew their wedding vows and exchange their wedding rings!

See Ya Sunday.  Pastor John and Maureen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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See This Movie!

Imagine you are crossing a desert and are thirsty. Then it happens. You find water-it is so rare. So it is with an outstanding movie.

Outstanding movies are hard to describe or find but you know when you find one!

What makes for an outstanding movie? A story that is based on timeless principles like faith, hope, and love. A simple story line that involves good and evil. The ability of a story-to touch your heart and move you to laugh or cry.  You aren’t the same leaving the theater as compared to how you were before the movie.

In a day when bad news, scandal, war, famine, earthquakes, so dominate what people think is newsworthy-this movie is worthwhile. In a time when we aso cynical in how we view people and institutions-thank God for a movie that lifts us up out of the valley to see the beautiful mountain hid by our fog of despair.

As we prepare for the gift of Jesus Christ’s coming-give others and yourself a small gift-go see the movie “Wonder”. Drink up!

See ya Sunday!  Pastor John-Maureen

 

Reduce the Glaze Not Jesus Christ !

    So Happy Thanks-living!

Cooking includes reduction. In cooking, reduction is the process of thickening and intensifying the flavor of a liquid mixture such as a soup, sauce, wine, or juice by simmering or boiling.

Reduction also happens spirituality. Reductionism is taking a certain half truth  and neglecting the larger truth of which this certain truth is only a part. Then the party involved base their whole view of life around this part of the truth. This is how all cults come into being. Oops, ouch and dangerous.

Some reduce the Gospel to social justice neglecting personal salvation. Others reduce faith in Jesus, to personal holiness neglecting social justice. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is both.

While in cooking-reducing intensifies the flavor; it’s just the opposite spiritually.  Spiritual reductionism leaves a puny, watered down Jesus Christ.

Reduce the orange glaze, not Jesus Christ, for the time is coming when“every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father (Phil 2:9-11.)” 

Sunday after worship we begin decorating  the sanctuary for the season of Advent-Christmas. Bring a dish to help share for lunch as we decorate.  See you Sunday.  Pastor John-Maureen.

 

Are You Grounded? Where’s Your Boat?

We’re created for adventure. Adventure is different then excitement. Excitement is temporary, which necessitates always looking for more excitement. Spiritual adventure is a life-style and biblical worldview, which is constant.

If you and I are like boats-where are you? On the shore, or maybe you find yourself grounded or stuck in a rut. Remember Columbus? His boat didn’t stay at home port. Are you making new discoveries called friendships? Are you discovering new lands-like new wisdom from the Holy Spirit? Are you hanging with people who are different then you?

Make a difference. Yes you can help pass out food at the local food bank.  Yet adventure is more than giving stuff, as important as food and stuff can be. Adventure is actually getting involved in someone else’s life.  Listening to his/or her story and humbly telling this new friend the difference Jesus has made in your life!

Jesus sees Peter coming in after a night of catching no fish. He says-“Put out into deep water and let down the nets for a catch (Luke 5:4).”  What are  we waiting for? Reach out to people in Jesus’ name!

See ya Sunday-Pastor John-Maureen

 

 

 

Serpents and Doves Point the Way!

The church shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Sunday November 5th, has caused us all to take a “time out.” Having a gunman violateworship by killing and wounding others just doesn’t compute.

I call your attention to Matthew 10:16: “Behold I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.”

To be wise, have street smarts, and be able to size up people without spiritually judging their worth are skills we all need. To realize someone is sizing you up as a prey is an important skill.  Sort of like a snake. On the other hand like a dove the symbol of The Holy Spirit-we all need to be able to convey respect, and peace to anyone we meet.

So between the skills of the snake and dove-develop a spirit smart street balance. Don’t be offensive to people but on the other hand don’t be anyone’s push over!

Continue to pray for the families who lost loved ones in this  bizarre tragedy. Happy Veterans today tomorrow!

See ya Sunday in worship!  Pastor John-Maureen!

 

Hurricane Headed Towards The United Methodist Church!

Our hearts go out to the recent victims of hurricanes in Houston, Florida and Puerto Rico.

Another hurricane, category five is gaining strength.  This is a hurricane within the United Methodist Church and its thirteen million members.

There is a growing disagreement over who Jesus Christ really is, the authority of Holy Scripture and the obeying of The Book of Discipline. Over the last many years Bishops and various Pastors have gone against Holy Scripture and the Book of Discipline. Those in authority have refused to discipline those who mock and openly violate our covenants.

This hurricane will fully hit on February 23-26, 2019 in St. Louis.  At this General Conference there will either be reconciliation or a split.  I believe the United Methodist Church will follow in the footsteps of The Episcopalian, Presbyterian Church USA, and The Evangelical Lutheran Church, and split. This will absolutely effect all 33,000 congregations around the world.

So, let us further discuss more in depth what the issues are that are driving The United Methodist Church to split.  I would be very interested in what you perceive the issues to be that are driving this disagreement.  Send your feedback to bipperhunsberger@gmail.com.

See ya Sunday. Pastor John-Maureen

 

 

 

Hustling Run Amok! God Save us All!

With the record killing and wounding at Las Vegas Oct 1st-we all need a time out!  Here’s what comes to me.

Hustling is a life style, which comes out of our sinful nature. Hustling is taking advantage of others how ever one can. People who tell you what you want to hear.  Some youngsters are developing hustlers who know how to push your buttons. Society promotes hustling in business, culture, and thru media.

Hustlers don’t believe in boundaries and moral absolutes.  A hustler’s self image is all illusion and fantasy. They live in make believe. They don’t know what a real honest relationship is.

All hustlers end up hustling themselves. After a while really can’t tell the difference between reality and the total fantasy life they live.

What terrible fantasy did Paddock live out in killing and hurting so many?

Recognize and listen to your God given conscience-come to know Jesus Christ, as Lord and Savior and love your neighbor as yourself.

Paddock,  was a sophisticated hustler. Animals kill what they need to survive. Humans like Paddock kill for the thrill of it.  How sick. Continue to pray for the victims families.  Watch out for developing hustlers!

See ya Sunday!

Pastor John and Maureen

 

Thank you Jesus For The Soul Cafe!

I praise God for how The Great I AM used the former Soul Cafe location to be a beacon for HIM.  From January 10, 2013 to Sept 29, 2017-what a ride?  What an awesome way of reaching out to people, engaging them on the street level. Praise God for the hundreds of people engaged and the spiritual bridge built to Trinity United Methodist.

Special thanks to Valerie Eckley and Sisay for allowing the Soul Cafe to use  their building for God’s glory.

For various reasons it wasn’t meant that The Soul Cafe could co-exist with the new owner.  The Soul Cafe board will be meeting soon to determine what the next steps need to be in this ministry. I’m reminded of the song:”To God be the glory-great things He has done”-which so describes for me the goodness of the Soul Cafe Ministry.

More info coming.  Pastor John Hunsberger

No Near Death Experiences in the Bible-No $17.95

Near death experiences have made  it into books and movies. Don Piper’s-Ninety Minutes in Heaven , Bill Wiese’s  Twenty Three Minutes in Hell  and Bob Burpo’s Heaven is for Real, are reported experiences. What are we to believe?

Take your cue from the Bible. The Bible is clear-near death is not death.  Lazarus died, Jesus died, and Paul-even though blinded by a great light-didn’t experience a near DEATH.

We all are curious as to what heaven is like?  Yet Lazarus, Jesus and Paul don’t talk about near death experiences.

If we say the ultimate authority for our faith is first the authority of Holy Scripture- and not one person here or there then the Bible is ultimately our guide. If not the Bible, then who is the expert?

Seeing a glorious light does’t by itself guarantee that you have experienced heaven. I conclude near death experiences can’t be supported in Holy Scripture. With respectful disagreement for all near death story tellers. Save yourself $17.95 for the book or Hollywood drama for $10.50.

Join me  Sunday at 9:30 as we tackle another tough issue-“What does the Bible say about suicide? ”

Another continuous learner like you-Pastor John

Why Feel Like a Wimp As a Believer?

Our hearts and prayers are with the recent hurricane Harvey and Irma victims, whose electrical power won’t be back on for quite a while. Even though I live in Washington State and can’t physically reach out to help you-I do in Jesus name pray for those who are and will be helping you.

What’s really said is that even for us who do have access to power-we don’t use it.  No, I’m not referring here to electrical power-but instead God’s spiritual power in Jesus’ name.

How easy it is to go through life so weak and whimpy. We complain about this or that, or we feel so insignificant or spiritually weak and fatigued.  It doesn’t have to be this way,

Instead as believers in Jesus Christ-we can draw upon spiritual power available in Jesus’ name.  Jesus says to you:”I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you (Luke 10:19).”

So, know dear brother or sister in Christ, you don’t have to feel like a wimp as a believer.  Access God’s power through the name and shed blood of Jesus Christ.

See ya Sunday-Pastor John-Maureen