All posts by Gary Poole

New Beginnings

Wow!  Our new website is up and running thanks to the countless hours and efforts of David Burgess and the IT Ministry Team.  There are numerous ways that we will eventually be able to use our web site. 

You will be able to sign up to receive our e newsletter, thereby saving hundreds of dollars on paper and postage.  Although you can still receive the paper newsletter if you wish.

You will eventually be able to sign up on line to attend a class or a church dinner or to enroll your child in Vacation Bible School.

You will be able to receive all church notifications on funeral services and prayer requests.

You will be able to hear the Sunday morning sermon, as well as reading the text.  Since sermons are meant to be experienced and not read, I am particularly excited about this prospect.

You will be able to click on our blogs and see what’s going on with us and what we’re thinking at the time.

As the hymn says, “This is a day of new beginnings.”  It is exciting and it is scary, because it involves change.

Someone once said, “People don’t want change.  They just want things to get better.”  Someone else said, “People resist change with all the vigor of antibodies attacking an intruding virus.”  But if we want to improve our ministries and our relationships with each other, changes are necessary.

Sir Isaac Newton once wrote, “Any object at rest tends to remain at rest.  An object in motion tends to remain in motion.  Every action gives rise to an opposite reaction.  Force equals mass times acceleration.”  As people of faith, we have no option but to change.  Change is not for the sake of change, but for the sake of following Jesus Christ.

We affirm that God has been active in our lives and in the life of Nardin Park throughout the years.  For that, we give thanks.  We also believe that God is present in our lives and in the life of Nardin Park today.  For that, we celebrate every expression of God’s presence with us.

Yet, none of us, or Nardin Park, can say, “We are now everything God ever intended for us to be.”  So we embrace the changes that technology can afford us.  I can even learn how to blog.

Monday Musings

One of my church mothers used to sing “Count Your Blessings” all the time.  It’s an old hymn, usually reserved for Thanksgiving and old-time hymn sings.  It pops up and gets stuck in my head often.  Written by Johson Oatman, Jr. in 1897, it tells us to count what God is doing and reminds us that we will be surprised by what we discover God has done.   

When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
And you will keep singing as the days go by.

Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.

When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings—wealth can never buy
Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.

Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.

So, amid the conflict whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.

Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.

The typical response regarding the arrival of “Monday” isn’t usually cheers.  Monday is a back to work, back to the grind kind of day for many people.  I don’t know about you, but I can’t imagine feeling that way–feeling dread about a fresh new day.  I thought I would cheer about today and share a few reasons for being excited about a Monday morning:

  • the sunshine and birds singing
  •  remembering all the people who walked up to me on Sunday and offered to volunteer to work on the Middle School Service Week
  • thankful for the Appalachia Service Project Team 2010 and how well everyone worked together serving the Cass Community Social Services community in Detroit over the weekend
  • experiencing “body farkling” at Common Ground youth group last night (you’ll just have to ask someone about that!)
  • having the best Youth Council volunteers anyone could hope for
  • having a freshly painted bathroom in the parsonage (thank you Dennis!)
  • getting a request from a granddaughter to make cupcakes for her classmates to celebrate her birthday in October (she likes to plan ahead)
  • watching a nest of robins hatch, grow, and move on under the protection of our front porch awning
  • thinking about two babies baptized in worship yesterday and how they will grow and move on in God’s grace
  • rejoicing at the opportunity to share in this grace journey with my Nardin Park church family, and now with the addition of Leon, Carolyn, Patti, and Cathy!
  • preparing for a trip to Adrian this week to participate inthe Detroit Annual Conference and connecting with friends and colleagues
  • celebrating my husband’s birthday before I go
  • not knowing exactly what today will bring!

Here’s hoping you’ll find God’s blessings in your Monday list, even a to-do list!

Yours in the journey, Susan