December 2018 Pastor's Corner

Advent is an in-between time of year. It's not just between Thanksgiving & Christmas, though that's when it occurs. Advent is all about what was and what is to be, about what has already happened and what has yet to occur. It's a time of anticipation, of expectancy. To live the Christian journey with expectancy at a most basic level is to e a resident of two worlds. We live fully in the here and ow, with all the joys and sorrows, victories & setbacks of incarnate life. We love, laugh, get tired, make mistakes, hurt, rejoice, and grieve in the journey through this wonderful creation & re-creation given us by God. And we live with anticipation in the life to come, having entered into the near end of the eternal journey through the waters of baptism & belief, faith, & practice. We are in between the coming of Christ & his coming again, living the "now" with hopeful expectancy that empowers and sustains us.

You're invited to join us throughout December as we explore living in the in between time.

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November 2018 Pastor's Corner

November is usually the time of year when Broadmeadow emphasizes stewardship. This year is no different. I'm aware, as always, that stewardship is not the topic that gets most of you super excited. 
But, I want our focus to be a little different this year. We're going to hone in on what it means to give in love. 
"Love" is an overused word. And its overuse leads to its watering down. But, when Scripture talks about love, it's not just talking about a nice feeling toward someone or something. To love someone means to take drastic action to do good for them. It means living sacrificially so that your neighbors, strangers, and even your enemies have what they need to live abundantly. It means forming communities that work for the betterment of everyone.
So, all this month, we'll be talking about Gifts of Love. And, yes, I hope by the end you'll make a commitment to support Broadmeadow through the coming year, not just with your money, but with your actions, faithfulness, and love.

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The Upside-Down Kingdom

During worship this October, we'll be studying the 10th chapter of Mark. Jesus and the disciples are making their final journey to Jerusalem, and he is elaborating on what following him requires. This chapter contains a collection of teachings, sometimes very difficult ones, about the nature of true discipleship. It's based on a life contrary to the perspectives and priorities of the world and is more in line with the kingdom of God. In a sense, the values of the kingdom seek to turn the world upside down. Each of the texts we' be reading reveals a different way that God inverts the culture at large and requires us to live a life "upside down."
We'll see you in worship this month for "The Upside Down Kingdom".

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A Faith That Works

This September, our sermon series will focus on the book of James. This short letter stands unique in the New Testament for its no-nonsense, practical, proverbial wisdom. There is very little cryptic language or mysterious imagery in the way that it calls people to live out their discipleship. For James, faith is neither radically privatized nor solely personal. It is to be expressed outwardly, to improve one's relationships with others and to help those in need. This series will challenge we who believe that faith is something that should be kept to one's self and challenges a culture that sees very little value in religion at all. You're invited to join us for "A Faith That Works."

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Pastor's Corner for August 2018

Look, I'll be the first to admit, I'm a United Methodist nerd.
That doesn't mean I'm just a nerd who is United Methodist, though that's true. I'm really into the United Methodist Church. I like talking about it. I read books and articles and about it for fun. I argue fine points of Wesleyan theology with friends. I know where to find things in The Discipline without looking (also, I know what The Discipline is). Paige asked me to fill in teaching Methodist Traditions at Pastor Licensing School the last weekend in July, and I couldn't think of anything more fun.
I tell you that to tell you this: I'll be teaching an Introduction to Methodism class in the fellowship hall after worship every Sunday in August. If you're new to this crazy Methodist family, or if you've been part of it your whole life but just want to know more, I'd love for you to join us for the 4 weeks. It's just about my favorite thing to do. 
See you then!

"No Longer Strangers" sermon series

We'll be starting a new sermon series this Sunday. This walk through the letter to the Ephesians teaches the church how to be a community worthy of the gospel. In the midst of familial interpersonal conflicts, the author of Ephesians reminds them that they are "now in Christ Jesus," no longer strangers to God and, importantly, no longer alienated from each other. Because of this new life in Christ they are experiencing a radical transformation of their identity - as individuals and as a community. These six weeks will explore what it looks like to live rooted in reconciliation, with God and with neighbor and how we practice this reconciliation in radical ways. You're invited to join us for "No Longer Strangers."

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Pastor's Corner for July 2018

As I'm writing this on Wednesday, June 27, 2018, I have been in my office at Broadmeadow for exactly 365 days...1 year.

As I look over this year that we've spent in ministry together, I can't help but give thanks for the welcome and acceptance you all have extended to me. 

Broadmeadow has its share of challenges. But, as we've been talking about on Sunday mornings this past month, I believe more than I did a year ago that God is at work here. And God has given us all the gifts and graces we could need to be effective witnesses to Christ's saving work in this community. 

I'm thankful for the year behind us, and I look forward to the next year. God is at work! Let's be at work with God.

"God At Work" Sermon Series

Throughout the books of 1 & 2 Samuel, we are invited to see God's radical grace at work in unexpected ways. The stories of Samuel's call, David's unlikely anointing as king and victory over Goliath, and his the lesser-known elegy where David mourns Saul and Jonathan and his official kingship is over all of Israel highlight the unexpected ways god is actively working among God's people. It is a challenge to our present-day lives as we perceive God working among us - calling us, responding to us, seeing us, leading us, saving us, and uniting us, even today. Come worship with us the next six weeks as we see "God At Work."

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Upcoming Charge Conference

Dear Member of Broadmeadow UMC,

 

At the May 6 meeting, Broadmeadow’s Board of Stewards voted to recommend that the congregation sell the church’s parsonage.

This recommendation comes after months of study and conversation. The decision was mainly based on the following factors:

·         Continued cost of upkeep of the parsonage

·         The most recent renters have terminated their lease and moved out

·         There is an interested buyer

The proposed sale of the parsonage is an important decision for Broadmeadow, and every member of the church has input.

In light of that, the West Jackson District Superintendent, the Rev. Dr. Stephen Cook, has officially called a Charge Conference for Broadmeadow for Sunday, May 20, at 11:30 am, immediately after worship. The Charge Conference will convene in the Fellowship Hall where we will enjoy a light lunch, have a time for questions and discussion, and vote on the issue at hand.

Anyone and everyone is invited to worship and lunch. However, only individuals on Broadmeadow’s membership roll will have a vote.

Please plan to attend this important meeting, and please be in prayer about this decision until then. Included is a list of questions the Board sent to Dr. Cook pertaining to a possible sale, and his answers. These will, hopefully, assist you in making an informed decision. If you have any further questions, please feel free to let me know, and I will do my best to get you answers.

In Christ,

Rev. Lance Presley