And They Sung a Hymn

Psalm 150:1-6, Ephesians 5:18-20 and Matthew 26:26-30

I think that there is music for any occasion, mood, memory, and mind set! Birthdays, anniversaries, wedding parties, ballgames, movie soundtracks, and sleep disorders all enlist music to help and to enhance the event! And people have different preferences and “tastes” in music. Some just can’t abide banjo and others nod off to classical. Within worship, churches too have preferences.

For most however, the bottom line is to make music and be glad in it! The gladness may be enthusiastic or somber but it is a response to a need or to a blessing. This Sunday is no different. We may have a bit more singing and playing but we will hear of some descriptive moments in scripture which show us the people of God responding in song as worship and response to life in the moment!

Bring your “listening ears” prepared to raise your voices unto the Lord! We all may have our struggles and stresses but music is a gift from God to help us!

Thanks be to God

Pastor Barry †

Hard Times, Hard Sayings, But Eternal Life

Psalm 34:15-22, Ephesians 6:10-20 and John 6:56-69

This past Sunday the Roman Catholic Church celebrated the Assumption of Mary into heaven both body and soul. This doctrine proclaims Mary was not buried at death but was received directly into glory. Most Protestant churches honor Mary but do not teach this as doctrine. However, we can see one spiritual value emphasized that we can affirm. This is the affirmation that the body is good, valuable, and has an eternal future as a “transformed body.”

Our scriptures this Sunday remind us of the hardships and difficulties we endure since we are bodily creations. The psalmist notes our afflictions. Paul tells the church at Ephesus that we have “to wrestle” against adversaries. And Jesus speaks hard to grasp words such that the disciples are tempted to abandon the Teacher.

But, we are not left to our own weakened condition to contend with afflictions and enemies, and doubt. Paul uses the language of “protective gear,” and Jesus says he is the “bread” which will nourish and sustain his disciples in this life.

This is Good News when all about us is trouble from COVID19, other diseases and injuries, natural catastrophes, and warring conflict. So, let us “put on the full armor of God” and remember who is the Bread of Life that helps our finite bodies and calls us to help others as well.

“The Lord be with you. And also with you!”

Pastor Barry †

Trying Times? Try Wisdom!

I Kings 3:4-15, Proverbs 9:1-6 and Ephesians 5:15-20.

Between unprecedented Western fires, drought, heat, COVID19, schools difficult reopening, and one’s own personal, family, and work problems, it seems like we are in need of wise leadership and our own wise behavior! Not a time for foolishness!

Our texts for Sunday highlight the third King of Israel and his seeking God to guide his governing. Solomon is known for thousands of proverbs and wise observations on life. His 38 year reign was peaceful and prosperous. If only he had been more careful about marrying foreign wives who brought their own gods and shrines into Israel!! Less than wise behavior!

Every generation has to wrestle publicly and personally with how to live “the good life” within a nation or community of diversity. Life in the community of Church should go a long way in helping bring about peace and shared prosperity. But Church is also there for all when times are less than good, when we “mess up.”

Paul in Ephesians addresses issue and attitudes and is not far removed from the wisdom of Solomon! Paul simply points to life in Christ as the “wisest way to live!” Let us take to heart the attitude of Solomon early on: to ask for understanding and guidance from God before we ask for “riches and glory” I Kings 3:12-15.

Join together in worship as you are able this Sunday. Invite your neighbor. And pray!


Pastor Barry †

The Great Question

Psalm 103 and Matthew 22:34-40

Baker Bachman, long active at WESLEY MTSU, will bring our message this Sunday. A lifelong Methodist out of Mt Juliet, Baker is exploring a vocation in ministry. He is finishing Orientation To Ministry studies this month. Pray for him in the discernment process that continues. His experience with the MTSU Wesley fellowship has helped shape his life in faith.

He steps up to bring our sermon on the Greatest Commandment from Jesus’ response to the inquiring Pharisees, experts in the religious Law. The answer is not so surprising to our ears, but to carry through on such a Commandment requires our deepest attention to understand and find a faithful response.

God, neighbor, and yourself: how we go about loving these three goes a long way to describing the quality of life we have.

Pray for Baker and yourselves as you participate together in worship and prepare for the week ahead.


Pastor Barry †