MessageS from Our Pastor…

The Pastor's Part

I have been given a challenge.

  Last week I attended a two-day Clergy Gathering at Lakeview. Our featured speaker was Dr. Michael Slaughter from Ohio. In 2004, his congregation was seeking a way to help the people of Sudan. That fall he said to them, “I want you to have a slim Christmas this year . . . and whatever you spend on your family, bring an equal amount for hunger relief in the Sudan. Because Christmas is not your birthday; it’s Jesus’ birthday.”

  This is a good challenge for me and for you. It is too easy for us to get caught up in the spirit of consumerism today. Jesus came to break the chains of oppression and bondage. At the end of 2016 the average U.S. household owed over $16,000 in credit card debt. Materialism is one of the greatest forms of bondage in Western society.

  This spirit of materialism has encroached into Christmas, and we (Christians) have bought into it.

  This year, let us try to change our focus and begin to think about what it really means to celebrate Jesus’ birthday. How would Jesus want us to honor him?

  As Dr. Slaughter and his church went through this process over several years he developed his book, Christmas Is Not Your Birthday: Experience the Joy of Living and Giving like Jesus, published in 2011 by Abingdon Press. Find this book and read it. Form a small group and study it together, or come to Sunday morning worship Nov. 26 through Dec. 31 and listen as 1 preach on this theme during Advent and Christmas.

  I cannot tell you how much to cut your spending or increase your giving. I can only encourage you to prayerfully consider how best to please our Lord as we celebrate HIS birthday.


Brother Mike

Holy Land notebook

Early in 2015, the Rev. Michael Fraley, our pastor, visited the Holy Land. He came home with lots of impressions he wanted to share with us. He captured impressions in a notebook. Members and others interested may share those impressions HERE .

© The United Methodist Church of Frankston 2015-17