This weekend was very interesting for me. It was busy, but relaxed, if that makes sense. Friday was a holiday and I spent the day with my wife shopping and just hanging out. Saturday morning I got up and went to the First Town days in New Philadelphia and ran in my first 5k race. I ran with some other NewPointer’s Dave Cantwell, Kevin & Marianne West, Pat Walker, Jenn Klopfer. I am sure there were some others as well. I was a little nervous before the race, because people kept telling us how tough the course was, a lot of hills. I ran most of the race with Dave, he helped me set the pace. I ended up running a better time than I expected and loved the whole environment of running. I can see how this can be a little addictive. I did not realize the running world was so popular. I can’t wait for the next race I can run in.
Later on Saturday I did a wedding for a couple at the Carlisle Inn in Sugarcreek. Congratulations Ron & Jackie! I went home and relaxed Saturday evening by mowing the yard and pulling some weeds in the garden.
Sunday morning I was scheduled to preach at my parents church. I did catch the first part of the NewPointe service online. It rocked! Pleasant View Mennonite church was having a day at the park (Memory Park near Mt. Hope). I grew up in this church, so it was a little weird to be preaching in front of that church. My grandpa and grandma came out to see me as well. They had never heard me preach. My grandfather was a pastor at Sharon Mennonite for many years. He is very passionate about preaching and still loves it, he is in his mid 80’s.
I talked about loving God with all your soul. How we need to make sure our souls are well tended. These were the main points:
1. Receive God’s love – You matter to God. You are significant and God loves you. You can’t do anything to make God love you more. God wants to use the pain from your past for ministry in the future. To do that you need to allow God to heal the hurts and hangups you have from your past. Only then can you experience His love and become the person He wants you to be.
2. Set some Soul/spiritual goals – Spiritual growth doesn’t just happen. You need to plan and work at it like any relationship. When was the last time you sat down and set some spiritual growth goals?
3. Prayer – Prayer is how we build intimacy with God. We are all priest’s that can communicate with God at any time. Your prayers should be simple, real and honest.
4. Love other people – If you can’t get along with other people then you may have a problem with God. Jesus said to love our neighbor as ourselves. He said this is as important as loving God. How compassionate are you about other people.
I challenged them to stand out from the ordinary Christians. To be a purple cow Christian, that will turn heads and make people ask questions. The local church is God’s only plan to change the world!
That was my weekend. I had a couple of naps, finished a John Grisham book and went on a walk with my wife as well. Oh yea, we drove to Canton and bought some cat food.