News from Paxton Methodist

Grace and peace from our friend and brother Jesus. We are fast approaching Independence Day, and it sure seems like we Americans are ready to celebrate. After being cooped up for over a year, we are ready to brave the heat to sing, shoot off some fireworks, and have a cookout. So happy Fourth of July to all!

This Tuesday residents of the Paxton area will meet at Paxton United Methodist Church to discuss the building and operation of disposal well in the area. This proposition has got people thinking long-term about all the possible consequences that come with project like this. The meeting will update folks and also continue the discussion.

Our music this morning included our responses to our affirmation and God’s generosity as we sang the Gloria Patri and the Doxology. Our two hymns were “When We All Get to Heaven” and “Hymn of Promise.” We had to work pretty hard to keep up with the tempo of the first one: The CDs that we are using don’t have many places in the music to pause for breath.

The Old Testament scripture that our Sunday School is focusing on is still tracking Joseph. Today’s lesson is one of surprise and uncertainty all around. Would Joseph’s brothers realize that they were speaking to their long-ago castoff brother? How is Joseph going to react when he hears that his father is still alive? And of course, can Joseph get past the way he was treated by his brothers to forgive and allow them to come together as a reunited family? The answers to these questions were all positive, and it seems that a new chapter in Joseph’s life is beginning.

The book titled Wisdom of Solomon is found in part of the Bible we Protestants don’t use, called the Apocrypha. But there is so much to read and learn in that section. The wisdom literature that served as the main scripture for my sermon begins with a bold statement that God did not make death. It goes on to say that God does not delight in the death of the living because he created all things to grow and generate wholesome, fulfilling lives. God made us in the image of his own eternity. The wisdom which is often portrayed as feminine—Lady Wisdom has been with God from the very beginning, and humanity quickly learned how life becomes whole when we cultivate wisdom.

I had a really nice Father’s Day. I heard from Megan, Jacob, and Audrey, which is always nice. Sue and I went out to dinner, a normal pre-pandemic thing for us, but not so normal now. Sue also bought me some cool stuff, including a portrait of my little canine companion Sam.

Sue and I ordered a copier from Amazon, and I was able to run off bulletins for this morning. Unlike last week, I also persuaded my tablet to share my sermon. So I feel a little more “techie” today. When I start feeling cocky, though, I’ll just compare myself to my kids, who can do pretty much anything on a computer. Today, that even included my son talking to Sue on the cellphone while Zooming on the computer to see her laptop screen and work her through a problem.

This week was the last Sunday of the month, so we loaded up toilet paper and paper towels to deliver to Community Christian Services. I’m always glad for a collection like this, which is much lighter to carry than a bunch of cans. But I discovered that paper goods, while not as heavy, are lots bulkier. In order to make room for my dog companions in my truck, I had to unload the whole lot to my home office and then will reload on Wednesday to take to CCS. Next month, spaghetti and ravioli.

Whoever you are, in whatever faith you were born, whatever creed you profess; if you come to this house to find God you are welcome here. Paxton United Methodist Church is an inviting church that takes to heart the idea of “Open Doors, Open Hearts, and Open Minds.” Worship begins at 10:00. Our email address is paxtonumc@yahoo.com. If you would like the weekly email newsletter about Paxton Methodist, you can send your email address to the Paxton email address, and I will add you to the list. God’s Speed.