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ILL: This is an alleged New Year’s letter written from a church member to the pastor.
You often stress attendance at worship as being very important for a Christian, but I think a person has a right to miss now and then. I think every person ought to be excused for the following reasons and the number of times indicated.
Christmas Holidays (the Sunday before & after) 2
New Years (the party lasted too long) 1
Easter (get away for the holidays) 2
July 4th (national holidays) 1
Labor Day (need to get away) 2
Memorial Day (visit hometown folk) 1
School closing (kids need a break) 1
School reopens (one last fling) 1
Family reunions (mine & wife’s) 3
Sleep late (stayed up too long Saturday night) 9
Deaths in family 2
Anniversary (second honeymoon) 1
Sickness (one per family member) 5
Business trip (a must) 1
Vacation (three to four weeks) 6
Bad weather (ice, snow, rain, clouds) 2
Ball games 2
Unexpected company (can’t walk out) 2
Time changes (spring & fall) 2
Special on TV (superbowl, etc) 3
Pastor, that leaves two Sundays per year. So, you can count on us to be in church on the 4th Sunday in February and the 3rd Sunday in August unless we are providentially hindered.
A Faithful Member
I’ve always liked the story of the 3 old widows who lived together. One sister got up to go to bed, half way up the stairs she stopped and asked "was I going up or was I coming down"
One sister replied with hint of aggravation, "you were going up to bed."
A second sister headed into the kitchen to make herself a sandwich. Once in the kitchen she hollered back to her sister who was still down stairs; "what did I come in here for"
The sister responded again with a trace of irritation, "you went in to make yourself a sandwich" after which she said; "I’m so glad I am not as forgetful as the both of you are" as she knock on the end table.
And then she got up and walked over to the door and said "Who is it?"
Yes, we are a forgetful people. And from my vast experience I have concluded that forgetfulness is not a respecter of age. And there fore we come up with all kinds of ways to help us remember; (string around finger; post it notes, day planners, memory courses). And most of us do need a little help to remember.
1 Peter 2:2-2:10
1 Peter 2:11-2:12
1 Peter 3:3-3:5
1 Peter 3:1-5:15
1 Peter 3:17-4:4
1 Peter 5:1-5:13
1 Peter 2:5-2:10
1 Peter 2:18-2:25
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THEY DIED IN THE SERVICE
One Sunday morning the pastor noticed little Alex was staring up at the large plaque that hung in the foyer of the church. The plaque was covered with names, and small American flags were mounted on either side of it.
The seven-year-old had been staring at the plaque for some time, so the pastor walked up, stood beside the boy, and said quietly, "Good morning Alex."
"Good morning pastor," replied the young man, still focused on the
plaque. "Pastor McGhee, what is this?"
"Well, son, it’s a memorial to all the young men and women who died in the service."
Soberly, they stood together, staring at the large plaque. Little Alex’s voice was barely audible when he asked, "Which service, the 9:00 or the 11:00?"
A man came to the Lutheran Church and asked to see the pastor. “Pastor,” he said, “My dog died and I would like a Christian burial for him.”
The Pastor said, “I’m sorry to hear about your dog, but we Lutherans don’t do funerals for dogs. You might try the Baptist church down the street. Baptists will do most anything.”
The man turned sadly and said, “I’m sorry you won’t do my dog’s funeral, but I understand. I’ll try the Baptist church. But would you tell me how much is appropriate to leave for a memor...
It was Sunday morning and Harry was off. He pulled out of his driveway in his 2-seater convertible, with the roof closed because of typical Melbourne driving rain, and headed for church. But as he turned into the main road he saw ahead of him three bedraggled figures huddled under a single umbrella at the next bus stop. One was old Mrs Fletcher. She still insisted on getting to church by herself, despite her arthritis which was always worse in wet weather. There was Dr Jones, the local GP. A year earlier Dr Jones had diagnosed a rare and dangerous disease that Harry had contracted on an overseas holiday, so Harry virtually owed him his life. And the third person was Judith. Harry had had a crush on Judith for the past 6 months since she joined their church but had never had the courage or the opportunity to ask her out.
Harry had about 3 seconds to decide what to do. There was only one spare seat. Who should he offer a lift to? But 3 seconds was enough. He pulled to a halt, jumped out, passed the keys to Dr Jones, helped Mrs Fletcher into the passenger seat, then modestly waved them good-bye as he huddled close to Judith under the umbrella.
God’s sovereignty and our action so often go hand in hand.
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THE ANGLICAN DOG
A man came to an Anglican Church and asked to see the Vicar.
"Vicar," he said, "My dog died and I would like a Christian burial for him."
The Vicar said, "I'm sorry to hear about your dog, but we Anglicans don't do funerals for dogs. You might try the Baptist church down the street. Baptists will do most anything."
The man turned sadly and said, "I'm sorry you won't do my dog's funeral, but I understand. I'll try the Baptist church. But would you tell me how much would it be appropriate give the Baptist Church as a memorial if they do the funeral? I was thinking of a gift of £10,000. Do you think that is enough?"
"Wait a minute," the Vicar said. "You didn't tell me that your dog was Anglican..."
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COMMUNION: IN REMEMBRANCE
A man was working in his backyard one day, when his neighbor began talking to him over the fence. He said, "Yeah, my wife and I went to one of those seminars yesterday, you know, where they teach you ways to improve your memory and such."
His neighbor commented, "Really. What was the name of the speaker?"
The man answered, "Ah, ah, what's the name of that flower that smells so good and has thorns?"
"You mean a rose?"
"Yeah, that's it." He called over his shoulder, "Rose, what was the name of that speaker we heard yesterday?"
We humans often have a hard time remembering things. My memory has gotten so bad I figure that within a few years I'll be able to hide my own Easter eggs.
The Lord knows how short our memories are, so throughout the Bible we find Him reminding us of things again and again, and even doing things to help us remember. We have memorial offerings, writings, and tassels. There are rainbows, books, and stacked stones. Jesus used parables and items around Him in those parables, to help people remember what He taught; but in the whole Bible there is no reminder more important or significant than the one He established the night before His crucifixion. It is Communion, the Lord's Supper, our Memorial Meal. In verse 19 of the passage we just read, Jesus said, "Do this in remembrance of Me." The whole meal is a reminder of Him, and the two elements of the meal remind us of three important things about Him.
*Too Late To Date*
An elderly woman died last month.
Having never married, she requested no male pallbearers.
In her handwritten instructions for her memorial service, she wrote,
"They wouldn’t take me out while I was alive, I don’t want them to take...
Just as when a man and woman fall in love, so also new believers rejoice at their new found forgiveness. You know how it is when you first get married. The newness of it makes it so exciting.
An 80-year-old couple was having problems remembering those good times, though they were having problems remembering anything. So they went to see their doctor to get checked out. They explained and, after checking the couple out, the doctor said they were physically OK, and they should write things down, make notes. They thanked doc and left.
Later while watching TV, the man got up from chair and the wife asked,
"Where are you going?"
"To the kitchen."
"Will you get me a bowl of ice cream?"
"Don't you think you should write it down so you can remember it?"
"NO, I can remember that."
"Well, I would also like some strawberries on top. You had better write that down, because I know you will forget that."
"I can remember that you want a bowl of ice cream with strawberries."
"Well, I also would like whipped cream on top. I know you will forget that, so write that down."
With irritation in his voice, he said, "I don’t need to write that down; I can remember that!" He then fumes into the kitchen.
After about 20 minutes he returns and hands her a plate of bacon and eggs. She stares at the plate for a moment and says angrily, "I TOLD you to write it down You forgot my toast!"
No wonder they couldn’t think back to how it us...