There were several things at church yesterday, that really “jived” for me, so I think it deserves a post! (Haven’t you missed me?)
The first thing requires some background. A few days ago when looking for something else, I discovered that I have some burlap, in my box of scrap materials. So after doing a search on Pinterest, I’m in love with decorating using burlap! (Any kind of decorations, not just Christmas.) It’s that natural, rustic look that is so appealing to me.
When we arrived at church for the morning service, one of the first things you notice is the very tasteful Christmas decorations, using lots of burlap! The other two materials used: wood branches and white mini-lights.
The other “jivey” things:
- Liturgy: The Met did not “do” Advent candles last year, but they are doing them this year! Including a reading while one of the families of the church lights the candle. As well as the banners (burlap) with each week’s theme printed on them. It was just a couple of days ago that we were talking about how little liturgy our new church uses (which is both good and bad), so I personally, was very glad to see this! Even when we sang one Advent hymn in particular, we just knew our former church of 35 years in Toronto, was probably singing the same one that very morning! :D
- Speaking of “jiving”, I’m always one who can’t keep still during the worship music. I sometimes worry that it’s driving the people around me a little crazy. But yesterday morning, the guy in front of me was jiggling away, and another lady in front of him was jumping… guess I finally found the right section to sit in!
- Not only that, but several people around me were also using their phones and pads, whatever, to follow the sermon (on The Met’s app, making notes, reading the scripture). So for once I didn’t have to wonder if someone was watching me do it and thinking “she shouldn’t be on her phone during the sermon!”
- The sermon theme was “Hope”, in which he talked about Jesus’ first coming, and looking forward to his second coming. He used a “hope tank” illustration, in which a see-through “tank” was filled with red and gold Christmas tree balls. Red and gold happens to be my tree theme this year; RED stands for Jesus’ first coming, when he shed his blood, GOLD stands for his second coming, when he will be crowned King of All! (And I didn’t just think of that now!)
On to sermon notes. (After all, I should be allowed to make up for all those days I haven’t posted!!) I think it can be summed up briefly enough, though. Our interim pastor is continuing his series from 2 Peter for his Advent sermons. (This week, 2 Peter 3:1-8)
How to keep your “hope tank” filled? Pastor Tim placed a lot of importance on reading God’s Word. (Our church’s full name is “The Metropolitan Bible Church”.) He spent some time showing how there is so much evidence for scripture; which we appreciate, because you can’t just say to people “believe it because the Bible says so”, and not know that there is this evidence. Once you know the Bible is true, you need to read it! Because it’s so easy to get distracted by the culture, and become hazy in your knowledge of what’s true. And there are so many God-promises to fill up your hope!
We should also “fill our hope tank” by contemplating Jesus’ second coming: 1) Watch for it actively, 2) Wait for it patiently (realizing that some of those God-promises are yet-to-come), 3) Work for it by using the talents God has given you, and by recognizing God’s work in you and in the world around you.