Perfect Father

Perfect Father 

Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me. Psalm 27:10

I Love You, Dad
I Love You, Dad

God, the Perfect Father, will never let us down, leave us, or stop loving us. Psalm 27. 2 Chronicles 32–33. John 18:19–40. 

Standing in the crowded store aisle, I struggled to find the perfect Father’s Day card. Although we had reconciled after years of a strained connection, I never did feel close to my dad. 

The woman next to me groaned and shoved the card she was reading back into the display. “Why can’t they make cards for people who do not have good relationships with their fathers, but are trying to do the right thing?”

She stormed off before I could respond, so I prayed for her. Thanking God for affirming only He could be a perfect Father, I asked Him to strengthen my relationship with my dad.

I long for deeper intimacy with my heavenly Father too. I want David’s confidence in God’s constant presence, power, and protection. Psalm 27:1–6. 

When David cried out for help, he expected God’s answers. Ps. 27:7–9. Though earthly parents could reject, abandon, or neglect their children, David declared God’s unconditional acceptance. Ps. 27:10. He lived with assurance in the Lord’s goodness. Ps. 27:11–13. Like most of us, David sometimes struggled, but the Holy Spirit helped him persevere in trust and dependence on the Lord. Ps. 27:14. 

We will encounter difficult relationships on this side of eternity. But even when people fall short, fail us, or hurt us, we are still completely loved and protected by the only Perfect Father. – Xochitl Dixon. Daily Bread. 

Lord, thank You for being a Father we can always count on. 

Good Good Father 

Chris Tomlin 

You’re a good good father

It’s who you are, it’s who you are, it’s who you are

And I’m loved by you

It’s who I am, it’s who I am, it’s who I am … 

Forming True Partnerships

Forming True Partnerships 

But it is from our twisted relations with family, friends, and society at large that many of us have suffered the most. We have been especially stupid and stubborn about them. The primary fact that we fail to recognize is our total inability to form a true partnership with another human being. – TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 53. 

True Partnership
True Partnership

Can these words apply to me, am I still unable to form a true partnership with another human being? What a terrible handicap that would be for me to carry into my sober life! In my sobriety I will meditate and pray to discover how I may be a trusted friend and companion. – Daily Reflections. © 1990. Alcoholics Anonymous World Services. 

Step Four. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves. 

Before honestly engaging this humbling step, one AA veteran needed to write out the following and meditate on them. 

 

Ten Commandments
Ten Commandments

Ten Commandments 

A set of 10 rules given to Moses on tablets that were passed down to keep people on the straight and narrow. 

1. You shall have no other Gods but me. 

2. You shall not make for yourself any idol, nor worship it. 

3. You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God. 

4. You shall remember and keep the Sabbath day holy. 

5. Respect your father and mother. 

6. You must not kill. 

7. You must not commit adultery. 

8. You must not steal. 

9. You must not give false evidence against your neighbour. 

10. You must not be envious of your neighbour’s goods. You shall not be envious of his house nor his wife, nor anything that belongs to your neighbour. 

Seven Deadly Sins
Seven Deadly Sins

Seven Deadly Sins 

Seven things that are considered the worst things to do. 

1. Greed – Wanting too much of something. 

2. Gluttony – Similar to greed, but gluttony is the action of taking too much of something in. 

3. Lust – The need to fulfill unspiritual desires (not just sexual desires, but this is usually what lust is associated with.) 

4. Envy – Jealousy; wanting to have what someone has. 

5. Sloth – Being too slow or lazy at doing something. 

6. Wrath – Vindictive anger; angry revenge. 

7. Pride – Being too self-satisfied 

In forming a true partnership with a loved one or an accountability partner we create a relationship of caring and love that finds its basis in Spirituality. 

Dear Father God, Please bring respite from anxiety and pain to this believer in recovery, success and all the precious fruits of the Spirit. In your trust we commend our faith and our futures. Amen. 

Pastors Michael and Cathy Hanus 

Spirit Recovery 

Pancho and Lefty 

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard 

Open to Change

Open to Change 

Self-searching is the means by which we bring new vision, action, and grace to bear upon the dark and negative side of our natures. With it comes the development of that kind of humility that makes it possible for us to receive God’s help, we find that bit by bit we can discard the old life, the one that did not work, for a new life that can and does work under any conditions whatever. – AS BILL SEES IT, pp. 10, 8. 

I have been given a daily reprieve contingent upon my spiritual condition, provided I seek progress, not perfection. To become ready for change, I practice willingness, opening myself to possibilities of change. If I realize there are defects that hinder my usefulness in A.A. and toward others, I become ready by meditating and receiving direction. “Some of us have tried to hold on to our old ideas and the result was nil until we let go absolutely” (Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 58). To let go and let God, I need only surrender my old ways to Him; I no longer fight nor do I try to control, but simply believe that, with God’s help, I am changed and affirming this belief makes me ready. I empty myself to be full of awareness, light, and love, and I am ready to face each day with hope. – Daily Reflections. © 1990. Alcoholics Anonymous World Services. 

Changes 

David Bowie 

I still don’t know what I was waiting for

And my time was running wild

A million dead-end streets

Every time I thought I’d got it made

It seemed the taste was not so sweet

So I turned myself to face me

But I’ve never caught a glimpse

Of how the others must see the faker

I’m much too fast to take that test. 

Believe

Believe in Me
Just for today, I will have faith in someone in NA who believes in me and wants to help me in my recovery. Page 165.

believe
I Believe I Can

Basic Text, p. 100. Not all of us arrive in NA and automatically stay clean. But if we keep coming back, we find in Narcotics Anonymous the support we need for our recovery. Staying clean is easier when we have someone who believes in us even when we do not believe in ourselves.

Even the most frequent relapser in NA usually has one staunch supporter who is always there, no matter what. It is imperative that we find that one person or group of people who believes in us. When we ask them if we will ever get clean, they will always replay, “Yes, you can and you will. Just keep coming back!”

We all need someone who believes in us, especially when we can not believe in ourselves. When we relapse, we undermine our already shattered self-confidence, sometimes so badly that we begin to feel utterly hopeless. At such times, we need the support of our loyal NA friends. They tell us that this can be our last relapse. They know from experience that if we keep coming to meetings, we will eventually get clean and stay clean.

It is hard for many of us to believe in ourselves. But when someone loves us unconditionally, offering support no matter how many times we’ve relapsed, recovery in NA becomes a little more real for us.

Just for Today: I will find someone who believes in me. I will believe in them. – (c) 2018. NA World Services.

Belief. Acceptance that a statement is true or that something exists; Trust, faith, or confidence in someone or something.

Believe
Shawn Mendez

Healthy Braised Chicken and Spring Fruit Vegetable Salad

Spirit of Peace Health and Wellness presentation by Pastor Cathy 

Healthy Braised Chicken and Spring Fruit Vegetable Salad 

Spring Salad
Healthy Braised Chicken and Spring Fruit Vegetable Salad

Braised Chicken prepared with coconut oil

Basmati rice prepared in the chicken broth spices

Spring salad with broccoli, tomatoes, radishes, and strawberry 

Celery, natural unprocessed almond butter 

Nutrition lesson summary 

Salad greens, vegetables 

 Colors describe nutritional groupings 

Chicken 

 Lean white meat protein, 

 Braised in organic coconut oil, 

  Medium chain fat 

 Basmati rice 

  Healthy alternative 

  High protein, natural vitamin rice alternative 

  Low in sugar 

 Benefits: 

  Deter cancer cell growth, 

  Low glycemic index, 

  Amylose satiates hunger, 

  High in fiber, an insoluble carbohydrate, 

  Fat absorption inhibitor, 

  Cholesterol binding activity, 

Come visit with Pastor Cathy Hanus for more Health Wellness and Nutrition Fellowship! 

Hope

Hope
Since most of us are born with an abundance of natural desires, it is not strange that we often let these far exceed their intended purpose. When they drive us blindly, or we willfully demand that they supply us with more satisfactions or pleasures than are possible or due us, that is the point at which we depart from the degree of perfection that God wishes for us here on earth. That is the measure of our character defects, or, if you wish, of our sins. – TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 65.
hope
hope
This is where long-term hope is born and perspective is gained, both of the nature of my illness and the path of my recovery. The beauty of A.A. lies in knowing that my life, with God’s help, will improve. The A.A. journey becomes richer, the understanding becomes truth, the dreams become realities and today becomes forever.
As I step into the A.A. light, my heart fills with the presence of God. – Daily Reflections. © 1990. Alcoholics Anonymous World Services.
 
Hope. Feeling of Trust or Expectation and Desire for a certain thing to happen.
 
Song of Hope
Canto Esperanza
https://youtu.be/Cus53eeR3bA
 
May the God of hope go with us every day,
Filling all our lives with love and joy and peace.
May the God of justice speed us on our way,
Bringing light and hope to every land and race.

Prayer

Honest Prayer

Although honesty is difficult to practice, it is most rewarding. Page 163.

honest
honest

Basic Text, p. 96. How difficult we find it to be honest! Many of us come to NA as confused about what really happened in our lives that it sometimes takes months and years to sort it all out. The truth of our history is not always as we have told it. How can we begin to be more truthful?

Many of us find it the easiest to be honest in prayer. With our fellow addicts, we sometimes find that we have a hard time telling the whole truth. We feel certain that we will not be accepted if we let others know us as we really are. It is hard to live up to the “terminally hip and fatally cool” image so many of us portrayed! In prayer, we find an acceptance from our Higher Power that allows us to open our hearts with honesty.

As we practice this honesty with the God of our understanding, we often find that it has a ripple effect in our communications with others. We get in the habit of being honest. We begin to practice honesty when we share at meetings and work with others. In return, we find our lives enriched by deepening friendships. We even find that we can be more honest with ourselves, the most important person to be truthful with!

Honesty is a quality that is developed through practice. It isn’t always easy to be totally truthful, but when we begin with our Higher Power, we find it easier to extend our honesty to others.

Just for Today: I will be honest with God, myself, and others. – (c) 2018. NA World Services.

Honesty
Billy Joel

 

Challenge of the Day

Meeting the Challenge of the Day

The decision to ask for God’s help is our greatest source of strength and courage. Page 153. 

Challenges
Challenges Ahead

Basic Text, p. 26. A challenge is anything that dares us to succeed. Things new and unfamiliar serve as challenges, whether those things appear good or bad to us. We are challenged by obstacles and opposition from within ourselves and from without. New and difficult things, obstacles and opposition, all are a part of “life on life’s terms.” Living clean means learning to meet challenges.

Many of us, consciously or unconsciously, took drugs to avoid meeting challenge. Many of us were equally afraid of failure and success. Each time we declined the day’s challenge, we suffered a loss of self-esteem. Some of us used drugs to mask the shame we felt. Each time we did that, we became even less able to meet our challenges and more likely to use.

By working the NA program, we find the tools we need to successfully meet any challenge. We come to believe in a Power greater than ourselves, a Power that cares for our will and our lives. We ask that Power to remove our character defects, those things that made our lives unmanageable. We take action to improve our conscious contact with that Higher Power. Through the steps, we are given the ability to stop using drugs and start living.

Each day, we are faced with new challenges. And each day, through working our program of recovery, we are given the grace to meet those challenges.

Just for Today: I will ask my Higher Power to help me squarely meet today’s challenge. – (c) 2018. NA World Services. 

Precious Lord Take My Hand 

Trinity Celebration

Trinity Celebration for the Community. Modern Song Focus on Contemporary Church Artists performing hymns of traditional foundation. 

Everyone is Welcome!  

Nicodemus
Nicodemus

Introduction:  

The Lord calls upon Isaiah and Isaiah shows no fear. In his vision, Isaiah experiences a visually painful act to seek forgiveness. How do we discern reality in our lives? May we draw inspiration from our visions. 

Psalm 29, the voice of the Lord, should create thunderous messages in our lives. God does love you and me. 

Today in Paul’s letter to the Romans, God adopts us as His children. We adopt one another through Christ, a relationship we have gained in being believers in Christ. 

Nicodemus, a learned Pharisee of his day, struggles with the concept of born again, as Jesus calls his spiritual theology into question. Rebirth to faith, not knowledge. We are all recipients of Gods gift. 

For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him may not perish but may have eternal life. John 3:16. We will explore these concepts further in today’s sermon. 

I anticipate and hope with all my heart that today we will be transformed, born again, and leave enthusiastic about our role in Gods kingdom! 

John 3:16.
John 3:16.

 

Here I am Lord, Dan Schutte (1981). 

Scripture: 

Old Testament: Isaiah 6:1-8. 

Psalm: Psalm 29. 

New Testament: Romans 8:12-17. 

Gospel: John 3:1-17. 

John 3:5.
John 3:5.

Prayer: God of delight, your Wisdom sings your Word at the crossroads where humanity and divinity meet. Invite us into your joyful being where you know and are know in each beginning, in all sustenance, in every redemption, that we may manifest your unity in the diverse ministries you entrust to us, truly reflecting your triune majesty in the faith that acts, in the hope that does not disappoint, and in the love that endures. Amen. 

 

The Lord Will Bless His People with Peace 

Responsorial Psalm 

 

Prayer Intentions: Holy, holy, holy God, in calling forth creation from the void, revealing yourself in human flesh, and pouring forth your wisdom to guide us, you manifest your concern for your whole universe. You invite us, as your people, to gather the world’s needs into our hearts and bring them before you. 

Prayers of the People; 

Holy, holy, holy God, fill us with strength and courage, with discernment and compassion, that we may be your instruments of justice and love in this world, that it may be on earth as it is in heaven.  Amen. 

Apostles Creed 

I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth. And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary; suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and buried; He descended into hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sits on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from there He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit; the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting. Amen. (Book of Concord). 

 

Our Father 

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name, Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen. (Book of Concord).  (Matthew 6:9-13). 

 

Liturgy of the Eucharist 

Handshake of Peace 

Confession 

The Apostle John proclaims, If we confess our sins He who is faithful and just will forgive our sins, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9. 

Most merciful God, we confess that we are by nature sinful and unclean. We have sinned against You in thought, word and deed, by what we have done and by what we have left undone. We have not loved You with our whole heart. We have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. For the sake of Your Son, Jesus Christ, have mercy on us. Forgive us, renew us, and lead us so that we may delight in Your will and walk in Your ways to the glory of Your holy name. Amen.

Communion Hymn

Christ in Me Arise, Trevor Thomson 

 

Institution of the Lord’s Supper

26 Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and after blessing it broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is my body.” 27 And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying, “Drink of it, all of you, 28 for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.  – Matthew 26:26-28(ESV). 

Communion

Prayer: Holy God, the earth is full of the glory of your love. May we your children, born of the Spirit, so bear witness to your Son Jesus Christ, crucified and risen, that all the world may believe and have eternal life through the One who saves, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, now and for ever. Amen. 

 

Closing Hymn. 

What wondrous love is this, O my soul, O my soul!, Anonymous 

 

The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; The Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace. Numbers 6:24-26. 

The Service has ended. Go in Peace. 

Thanks be to God.  

Love One Another Celebration

Love One Another Celebration for the Community. Modern Son Focus on Contemporary Church Artists performing hymns of traditional foundation. 

Everyone is Welcome!  

Love One Another
Love One Another

Introduction: 

In Acts today, Peter encounters the age old concept of limitations in our historical human understanding. Can we imagine the Holy Spirit descending even upon Gentiles? Of course! Our limited human understanding does not limit God. Cornelius must overcome limitations of the mind to understand that the Spirit grows as it is poured into more people. 

Psalm 98 is an enthronement psalm. This psalm celebrates the reign of God over all humanity. God will deliver believers from oppression. There is Good News for celebration. 

In 1 John 5 today we are reminded that all believers should share the love of God as it was delivered to us and manifested in Jesus. We find the important facts restated with respect to water, Spirit, witness, and truth. 

In the Gospel of John today we find the restatement of the commandment to love another as told by Jesus. Here we see the implicit concept of necessary self-sacrifice. Sacrifice in love keeps you attached to God through Jesus. Jesus’ concept of friendship and love extends to the commitment among believers. 

Do we sometimes find it difficult to love one another as Jesus loves us? 

The Church’s One Foundation 

Samuel Stone (1866). 

Rick Betts 

The Church’s One Foundation is Jesus Christ her Lord; she is His new creation, by water and the Word; from heav’n He came and sought her to be His holy bride; with His own blood He bought her, and for her life He died. 

Scripture: 

First Reading: Acts 10:44-48. 

Psalm: Psalm 98. 

New Testament: 1 John 5:1-6. 

Gospel: John 15:9-17. 

Prayer: Mighty God, in whom we know the power of redemption, you stand among us in the shadows of our time. As we move through every sorrow and trial of this life, uphold us with knowledge of the final morning when, in the glorious presence of your risen Son, we will share in his resurrection, redeemed and restored to the fullness of life and forever freed to be your people. Amen. 

Cantate Domino 

O sing unto the Lord a new song, for he has done marvelous things. His own right hand and his holy army have gotten him victory. The Lord has made known his victory; He has revealed his vindication in the sight of the nations. He has remembered his steadfast love and faithfulness to the house of Israel. All the ends of the earth have seen the victory of our God. 

Prayer Intentions: Dear God, your Son remained with his disciples after his resurrection, teaching them to love all people as neighbors. As his disciples in this age, we offer our prayers on behalf of the universe in which we are privileged to live and our neighbors with whom we share it. Prayers of the People … 

Open our hearts to your power moving around us and between us and within us, until your glory is revealed in our love of both friend and enemy, in communities transformed by justice and compassion, and in the healing of all that is broken. Amen. 

Apostles Creed 

I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth. And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary; suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and buried; He descended into hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sits on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from there He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit; the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting. Amen. (Book of Concord). 

Our Father 

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name, Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen. (Book of Concord).  (Matthew 6:9-13). 

Liturgy of the Eucharist 

Handshake of Peace 

Confession 

The Apostle John proclaims, If we confess our sins He who is faithful and just will forgive our sins, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9. 

Most merciful God, we confess that we are by nature sinful and unclean. We have sinned against You in thought, word and deed, by what we have done and by what we have left undone. We have not loved You with our whole heart. We have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. For the sake of Your Son, Jesus Christ, have mercy on us. Forgive us, renew us, and lead us so that we may delight in Your will and walk in Your ways to the glory of Your holy name. Amen.

Communion Hymn

Spirit of the Living God, Fall Fresh on Me. 

Daniel Iverson 

 

Institution of the Lord’s Supper

26 Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and after blessing it broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is my body.” 27 And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying, “Drink of it, all of you, 28 for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.  – Matthew 26:26-28(ESV). 

Communion

Prayer: Faithful God, make our hearts bold with love for one another. Pour out your Spirit upon all people, that we may live your justice and sing in praise the new song of your marvelous victory. Amen. 

Closing Hymn. 

No Greater Love 

As the Father has loved me 

Michael Joncas 

The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; The Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace. Numbers 6:24-26. 

The Service has ended. Go in Peace. 

Thanks be to God.