July 5, 2020
Welcome and News in the life of the church
This is Gil Lee. By the grace of God, I started the third year of my ministry as a pastor of the Contoocook United Methodist Church. Thank you for your understanding, patience, and support and help in various ways. I do appreciate all of your prayer, love, and support. I hope and pray that all of us can keep walking by faith in Jesus Christ together even though we encounter even more unexpected and unfamiliar situations.
Today, I hope and pray that all of us can worship the Lord, our God, and King together with all of our heart, mind, and soul in the same Spirit of God even though we worship in different places.
There are 7.8 billion people in the world. Among them, God chose us as His children to lift up His name and praise His glory by worshipping Him wholeheartedly. Let us give thanks for His choice of all of us as His children and give everything to Him with whatever we can give as a living sacrifice.
Introit / Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus
: Invite the Holy Spirit to come in the midst of our hearts.
Prayer Response / FWS #2193
Call to Worship
L: The music is playing, and God is calling.
P: We have come to sing and dance with God.
L: The prayers are flowing, and the Spirit is moving.
P: Breath on us, the breath of God.
L: Christ promises rest and renewal when we come to him.
P: We are here, trusting this sacred promise.
Creator God, you have created us to walk with You.
Help us walk with You in this time of worship,
that we may be strengthened to walk with You
all the days of our lives.
As we come to You this day,
bless us with Your grace and Your rest,
that we may find renewal
and the strength to serve
with confidence and joy.
In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.
Ministry of Music: "Way Maker"
Today's Scripture: 1 Timothy 2:4 (NIV)
"God wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth."
Sermon: "God's Dream"
When we live through times of crisis, the things that must be checked are the pillars of our life foundations that support us. We will have to check where we are coming from and where we are going and walk in a clear direction without going off our way.
When we meet unexpected things or face a crisis, it can shake our minds or thoughts. It's important to check the foundational values that hold our lives together. I hope that it will be a time to discover once again what the most important values are in our lives and to strengthen our foundation so that our hearts and eyes can remain focused on God always.
Today I am going to share the Word of God, which has held me since 1995. That is 1 Timothy 2:4. "God wants all men to be saved and to come to know the knowledge of the Truth." This is my Life Verse that I decided to do as an overseas missionary after entering a seminary to do ministry in Korea.
The Life Verse is a verse that allows me to focus my mind back on God even during a difficult time. When I see this, I have the heart of God, who loves everyone, and I remember God’s calling for me to serve as a missionary. This word, which has led me to the heart of God for 25 years so far, probably holds the rest of my life as well.
The wish that I always have while talking about this verse is that all of you who listen to this be able to find your own "Life Verse." You may change your Life-Verse for a while. But at some point, you will have a verse or some verses that keep you from seeing God in your lives so that the verse or verses will keep your focus on God and bring you back to God when you might lose your way.
Who is a Christian?
Basically, Christians are people who have accepted Jesus as the Christ, the Savior, and the Lord in their lives. Other than that, you may describe it in various ways. Today, I would like to introduce a 'Christian' as 'a person who achieves God's dream'. Because Christians are people who live according to the purpose of Jesus' life in this land. Christians are those who decided to follow the life of Jesus. Therefore, it is the Christians who live to fulfill God's dream that Jesus wanted to achieve.
What is God's dream?
1 Timothy 2:4
“God wants all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the Truth”
2 Peter 3:9
"The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead, he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance."
God wants all men to be saved and does not want anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
The population of the world is about 7.8 Billion. When God said ‘Everyone’ he meant there are no exceptions in the world. This is God's dream that all the people in the world are to be saved and that they come to know the Truth of Jesus Christ. The purpose of God's sending Jesus to the earth was to save everyone, and the purpose of Christian living is also to follow the purpose of Jesus’ life.
This is the reason God calls us 'God's fellow workers' in 1 Corinthians 3:9
1 Corinthians 3:6-9 (NIV)
6 I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. 7 So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. 8 The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. 9 For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building.
But we have a concern. Some might think that “I am not qualified for God’s work”
I don't know what qualifications you have heard for God’s fellow workers. But I find there is a misunderstanding about God's worker. There's good advice I want to introduce.
"God doesn't call the standardized, but God equalizes the call"
(Mark Batterson, Lead Pastor, National Community Church, Washington D.C.)
Like Isaiah's confession, if we want to participate in God's dream, God is the one who molds those who respond to His dream.
Isaiah 64:8 (NIV)
8 Yet you, Lord, are our Father.
We are the clay, you are the potter;
we are all the work of your hand.
God did not only create us, but he still molds us through His dream.
Meditating on God’s Word more and more, In fact, we can find that God did not invite us to do God’s work, but to mold us as His wonderful creature, restoring His image by inviting us for His work.
We will discover God's ultimate purpose is to mold us, not to achieve God's work through us as we participate in His work more and more. We will finally find the ultimate purpose of God is not His dream alone but for us as well..
I hope and pray that all of us will find the ultimate purpose of God which is not for His sake but for our sake.
Let us pray.
Father, Our God, thank you for choosing us as Your fellow workers. We want to be used by You. Although we encounter difficult and hard situation to endure, fill us with Your Spirit so that we can walk them through with Your big picture. Pour out Your Spirit upon us as Your fellow worker continually. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.
In this special season, your weekly pledge by mail would be appreciated. Our church address is Contoocook United Methodist Church PO Box 356, Contoocook, NH 03229.
Praise God from whom all blessings flow;
Praise him, all creatures here below;
Praise him above, ye heavenly host:
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
Blessings of the Offering
Receive these gifts we now bring, God of gifts,
and bless them to be gifts for Your world.
Through our giving, renew others,
that they too may know the comfort and rest
of living in the arms of Your compassion and your love.
In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.