Getting Real

Getting Real View in browser April 12, 2022 Getting Real Mary Luti Peter took Jesus aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This must never happen to you.” But Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me.” – Matthew 16:22-23 (NRSV) A … Read more

From Holy Week to Earth Week

From Holy Week to Earth Week Many of the themes from Holy Week transfer to the focus we give God’s creation during Earth Week. To be certain, the present state of our environment is cause for grief. At the same time, in the UCC we have good reason to let our Easter “hallelujah” resound and … Read more

A Better Person Than I Am

A Better Person Than I Am View in browser February 22, 2022 A Better Person Than I Am Kenneth Samuel When David had finished speaking, Saul called back, “Is that really you, my son David?” Then he began to cry. And he said to David, “You are a better man than I am, for you … Read more

Deceptive Cadences

Daily Devotional for Small Group Discussion: Deceptive Cadences View in browser February 21, 2022 Deceptive Cadences Vince Amlin Jesus taught them, saying, “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles? In … Read more

Second Fiddle

Second Fiddle View in browser February 20, 2022 Second Fiddle Matt Laney John the Baptist said, “He must increase, but I must decrease.” – John 3:30 (NRSV) Leonard Bernstein, the renowned orchestra conductor, was once asked, “What is the hardest position to fill?” He replied with zero hesitation: “Second fiddle. I can always get plenty … Read more

Keep Nothing Back!

Keep Nothing Back! View in browser February 19, 2022 Keep Nothing Back! Marilyn Pagán-Banks Open up before God, keep nothing back – Psalm 37:5 (MSG) I recently met with a spiritual director and shared with her my trouble with guilt and worry. Guilt and worry over old sins. Guilt and worry over what I have … Read more

Do Not Fret

Do Not Fret View in browser February 18, 2022 Do Not Fret Rachel Hackenberg Do not fret because of the wicked; do not be envious of wrongdoers, for they will soon fade like the grass and wither like the green herb. … Commit your way to God, trust in God who will act. – Psalm … Read more

Best. Party. Ever.

February 17, 2021 Best. Party. Ever. John Edgerton The attendants served Joseph by himself, and his brothers by themselves, and the Egyptians who ate with him by themselves, because the Egyptians could not eat with the Hebrews, for that is an abomination to the Egyptians. – Genesis 43:32 (NRSV) This dinner party was going to … Read more

Incomplete

Incomplete View in browser February 16, 2022 Incomplete Donna Schaper For we know only in part … but when the complete comes, the partial will come to an end. – 1 Corinthians 13:9-10 (NRSV) When Alec Baldwin came to the Orient Congregational Church to give a talk on spirituality in the light of Covid, he … Read more

A Steadfast Pivot

A Steadfast Pivot View in browser February 10, 2022 A Steadfast Pivot Talitha Arnold The pivots on the thresholds shook at the voices of those who called. – Isaiah 6:4a (NRSV) Everything had come unglued for Israel. Long-time King Uzziah had died, his sons were at one another’s throats, and an enemy army was at … Read more