Mark's Memos

GOD IN EVERY ROOM

October 28, 2018

In his classic book, "My Heart, Christ's Home, Robert Boyd Munger reminds us that God will accept no rival. God wants to occupy every room in the house of our heart.  God will not be satisfied with a place in the foyer alone or relegated to some discreet chapel in our life.  God wants access to our living room, dining room, family room, bedroom, basement, and yes, every single closet.  God seeks to breathe the fresh air of the Spirit into every room of our lifestyle.  God’s aim is to replace the thread-worn furniture of any attitude, priority, or habit that does not serve God’s good desires for our lives.

This is our second week in our series of Who’s On First.  This week we will explore the passage from Hebrews 7:23-28 with a about how Christ is above us which allows Him to fully engulf everything about us if we let Him.  However, we must decide who will be on first in our lives and yield ourselves to Christ to be filled in every to have the passion for being a disciple and a disciple-maker. 

 

See you in church Sunday!

Grace & Peace,

Mark

HARD KNOCKS

October 21, 2018

As a young man, the French Enlightenment philosopher, Jean Jacques Rousseau, was knocked unconscious by a dog. When he came to, the story goes, Rousseau found himself free of all worldly concerns. He was able to see "the big picture." He later observed that he never truly came to his senses till after he'd been knocked senseless.

At the age of 36, Count Leo Tolstoy was thrown from his horse while hunting. When he came around, a thought entered his mind that he just couldn't get rid of. "I am a writer!" he told himself. Soon after, Tolstoy did begin writing. Eventually, the great War and Peace came from his pen.

Harriet Tubman's name is famous in American history. Once a slave on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, she escaped to the North, but returned again and again to lead other slaves to freedom. Harriet's life as a liberator began one day in her teenage years, when she stepped between her master and another slave he was savagely beating. Harriet was struck on the head and fell to the ground, her skull fractured. For weeks she lay comatose, but finally recovered. For the rest of her life, she would suffer epileptic fits because of that injury.

Yet, that injury was also Harriet Tubman's liberation. "The blow that cracked Tubman's skull," her biographer wrote, "struck off her psychic chains. She had already died once; she had nothing to lose."

In light of these stories, perhaps the conversion experience functions like a hard knock to the head.  Only after that hard knock in the head can we really trust in the true high priest, Jesus.  Only then do we really know who’s on first in our lives the One who does it all on our behalf.  I hope you will join with me these next three Sunday as we explore who’s on first in our lives and how we might get ourselves aligned in such as way to have Jesus on first every day of our lives. 

See you in church Sunday!

 

Grace & Peace,

Mark

LEAVES THAT LOVE

October 7, 2018

As we are in the season of autumn I am thinking of leaves.  Leaves come in a wide variety of shapes.  Even if you do not recognize which tree they come from, you still would not mistake an oak leaf for a pine needle, or a weeping willow leaf for a maple leaf.  There are even differences among leaves in different types of the same tree.  Yet despite all there differences, all leaves have the same purpose: to make food for the tree, using water, light, and carbon dioxide.  Without all three of these things, the tree can not grow or even live.

The witness of the church is like a tree, and church members are like leaves.  Without our constant donation of time, talent, and treasure the church will soon loose its capacity to proclaim God’s love.  And a healthy church, like a healthy tree, will benefit others by proclaiming this love to the world.  It can be a source of food, shelter, and inspiration, too.  Remember this as you decide how you can provide your time, talent, and resources to help make the tree, witness, witness of Chapel Hill proclaim the love of God in 2019.

I hope you will join with me in worship this Sunday as recommit ourselves through the act of consecration of our commitments, individually (leaves), to proclaiming God’s love to the world; and helping the church, as a community (tree), to proclaim God’s love in even bolder ways in 2019. 

 

Grace & Peace,

Mark

Rev. Mark Jardine is the Senior Pastor at Chapel Hill United Methodist Church. Born and raised in Bartlesville, he is a graduate of Oklahoma City University and hold his Master in Divinity from the Candler School of Theology of Emory University.
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