Monthly Archives: February2017

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ECUADOR MISSION FUNDRAISER Save the Date! Join us at McAllister’s Deli on Hardy Street on Wednesday, March 8th, after 4:00 PM, to raise money for the Youth Ecuador Mission Team. Encourage your friends and neighbors to join us as well!

Pastor’s Blog

You have heard that it was said, “You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.” But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous. (Matthew 5:43-45) 

These words are some of the hardest words that Jesus ever said.  We keep trying to explain them away.  We say things like “of course I love everybody,” paying lip-service to this difficult teaching rather than making an effort to follow it.  We even use Jesus’s conclusion for this passage, “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect,” as an excuse to say that no one is perfect, so this teaching is impossible to follow anyway.  Trying to explain our way out of doing what we are called to do is the classic mode of most Christians.  We would rather find an excuse.

When we try to explain our way out of this teaching of Christ, we are doing ourselves and our brothers and sisters a disservice.  Christ even makes it clear that this teaching applies to all of us because we are all human, we all live on the same earth, under the same sun, and all experience life in similar ways.  We all have enemies.  We all are someone else’s enemy, whether we know it or not.  Yet, we are all God’s children, and at the end of the day, we all want to be loved by God and loved by others.  Christ is calling us to live out God’s love, not just with the ones that love us, but with the ones that hate us, too.  That doesn’t mean that it will be easy, but that kind of love can change the world.

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

“You are the salt of the earth….” “You are the light of the world….” “Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets….” Matthew 5:13-20
            Salt.  All of creation needs it to survive.  Though humans often get too much in our diets, if we don’t have enough, we die.  Plants need salt to be healthy. Epsom salts cause many evergreen plants to gain a deep, healthy, green color because it gives them the substances they need to grow.
            Light.  All creation needs it to survive.  Humans need it to make necessary Vitamin D.  Plants depend on it to create the substances that feed them.  Humans and animals suffer depression when there is too little light.
            Jesus in the above text calls us to be the very elements needed to aid ourselves and others in finding our spiritual center.  And these two analogies indicate that to be effective we must be concentrated, focused, and invested from the very beginning of life.  We are to be elemental in our work in this world.
            And to keep us from wandering too far in our passionate endeavor, Jesus reminds us that the law, the tradition of faith, is to be held close.  We can be fully spiritual, personal, and individual, but we are to remember that we are part of God’s work in this world that has gone on from the beginning.  We are a part of a spiritual lineage originating from the beginning of creation.
            In one hand we hold our own unique expression, in the other hand we hold the tradition and experience of God’s work through the ages.  Everything is new and old at the same time.  Our work is as new as birth and as old as the universe.  We belong to something much greater than we are, and we are to invest ourselves in this world in our own unique way.  May we all find God’s call to serve where we are called in this world.
                                                                           Peace,  Todd

DISASTER RELIEF
We, at Main Street, believe that service is part of discipleship. We serve because God has given us the ability and the opportunity to be the hands and feet of Christ in our community and to give back out of the abundance that God has given us. We have, in front of us, the opportunity to connect directly with our brothers and sisters through disaster relief. Please make plans to serve somewhere over the coming weeks and months. There is something for every age and ability.
Special Offering for UMCOR:
We are still receiving donations for UMCOR. If you would like to give, please make your check payable to Main Street UMC and mark it “Disaster Relief” on the memo line.
Disaster Cleanup:
For any that want to help with disaster cleanup, we have a team interested in going out regularly through UMCOR. If you would like to be a part of that team or lead a team for a week, please contact Sean McGee at sean.mcgee@bxs.com.
Volunteer Dinners at R3SM:
R3SM hosts out-of-state volunteers that are supplementing recovery efforts. R3SM provides breakfast and lunch, but needs churches and individuals to provide an evening meal. If you are able to help prepare, provide, or serve these meals, please let Aislinn know your availability.
For all disaster relief efforts, check our Signup.com Disaster Relief Page for ongoing opportunities. All meals at R3SM will be posted there. http://signup.com/go/7ugTga
Diapers and Wipes:
This Sunday is our last day to promote our diaper and wipes collection for families who suffered from the recent tornadoes. Please bring your items and place them in the wagons located by the elevator or along the preschool hallway! Thank you to each person who donated!

PRIMETIME
We are in for a treat on February 14th! A string quartet from the University of Southern Mississippi Music Department will be with us to provide a
mini-concert of light classics and well known “love” songs. A delicious meal
will be served at 11:30 AM, and the program will begin around 12:15 PM. To
make a reservation, please call the church office, email info@mstreetumc.
org, or sign the pew register during worship.