Welcome. We hope this site will help you learn more about us and our witness for Christ. We strive to recognize and nurture the Christ in ourselves and each person that we encounter along the way. Our church is a thriving community of believers, and lovers of the word of God. First Presbyterian Church has a long tradition of outreach and service to its members and the community. We hope you will join us for service on Sunday to experience for yourself the fellowship of Christ.

 

                              

                  June 25, 2017                
Rev. Tim Soule 


 


 

 

"Transformed: Buried, United, Freed"

    

 

 

 

 

Monthly News

SOULE SEARCHING
In the churches that I have been part of throughout my life and ministry, the way Pentecost has been celebrated has varied greatly. One church had someone dance down the aisle with flame-like streamers flowing all around her. Some read a passage of scripture in multiple languages simultaneously, filling the sanctuary with a loud noise. There have been birthday parties with cake and singing of Happy Birthday to the Church and serious services where the leaders’ red stoles and the red paramounts were the only adornment permitted. Sometimes there was no mention of Pentecost at all. In many congregations everyone was asked to wear red as a reminder of the Holy Spirit’s decent on Jesus’ disciples. On several occasions Mothers’ Day and Pentecost Sunday were the same day. Worshippers all knew it was Mothers’ Day but far less knew it was also the Day of Pentecost. Just so you know, this coming Sunday, June 4th, is Pentecost Sunday. Easter is now a full fifty days behind us! Jesus has ascended to heaven and the disciples are awaiting the promised gift of the Holy Spirit.
On that first Pentecost the disciples were gathered again in a locked room. Jesus had left them once more and it sounds like they were still very frightened and feeling alone. The pain of having loved and lost must have made them question what they had risked to follow and trust in this man Jesus. Could they ever leave this locked room again? Henri Nouwen said that we have to trust that the risk of loving is always worth taking.
The risk of love is a big one. The disciples have said good-bye to Jesus on two occasions; first at his crucifixion and then at the ascension. Was the love worth the risk? When I found myself saying good-bye to my dad, it was over a period of three months. The journey was to seven different patient rooms in two hospitals and a rehabilitation center. I was stressed and uptight and would not admit that my dad was slowly dying, but, I developed a way of praying that I still find myself using when loving and living are difficult.
It is a simple breathing prayer. When I breathe in I remember, “God is here!” When exhaling I say, “Share God’s peace.” If I was going in to visit my dad I would pray that prayer as long as it took to feel a change come over me. My deep hope was that Dad would get better; the deeper truth was that no matter what, my dad was being held in God’s hands.
On the day my dad died I went into the sanctuary of the church where he and my mother had been part of the body for over thirty years. Fourteen of those years he had been their beloved pastor. Now I was the pastor of the same congregation, but my life felt out of control and I was
overwhelmed with grief. As I walked to the pulpit I brushed against the baptismal font and ran my fingers across the Communion Table and I heard the words of my often repeated prayer. “God is here.” “Share God’s peace.” The deep, deep promises of God spoke to me as I walked across that room. We are children of God, baptized as God’s own, fed and nourished at the Lord’s Table to share this peace which passes all understanding. When I most needed to be reminded of these promises the Holy Spirit was faithful, just as the Holy Spirit was faithful in coming to the disciples as Jesus had promised.
Debbie and I will not be with you this weekend. We will be in Greeley, Colorado to participate in the baptism of our grandson Simeon. You will be led in worship by Rev. Don Wilson and Elder Rick Nichols. Communion will be served. God will be with all of us in different places but bound by the deep, deep promises that we are God’s beloved people, sustained by the power of God’s Holy Spirit.
The Pentecost message is a call to courage and to testify to God’s grace at work every day. It is an invitation into a life of loving-kindness. I believe it is well worth the risk to love. 

 


 

 

              10 DOG-TRUTHS

(that may help us be a little more God[dog]like in our living) from the sermon on May 21.


1. Greet loved ones with wagging tail. Nothing is more important than feeling loved, and there's no creature on the planet that does it better than a dog. The wagging tail affirms that this is where we belong: This is our home, where we live, where we're safe and where we're loved.


2. Eat with gusto and enthusiasm. You know how dogs eat: slobber flying everywhere, and licking the dish clean until every last scent of gravy is gone. Dogs know that eating is a celebration of life. Breaking bread together is holy. To nourish the body is not a chore, but a sacrament. Animosities are dissipated at meals, barriers broken down, friendships renewed and strengthened. So, eat with gusto. Enjoy all the flavors and spices of creation.


3. On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree. Relax, slow down and enjoy. Give yourself a time out. Opt out, unplug, and get lazy.


4. Run, romp and play daily. Physical exercise is as important for the soul as it is for the body. No disciple of Christ can be as faithful and effective when the body is run down and health is unnecessarily poor. When we learn how to play and stretch and get in some exercise we'll feel better from the inside out.


5. Be loyal. Loyalty is a good thing, and if your dog is nothing else, he is loyal to fault. Loyalty has fallen on hard times. Loyalty is a critical element of discipleship, for it speaks to our relationship with others: our spouse, our vocation, our community and our friends.


6. When you're happy, dance around and wag your tail. Thankfulness and celebration are powerful dynamics for successful and healthy living. Gratitude is a gift we give ourselves that enables us to affirm the essential goodness of life. Even when adversity strikes, gratitude helps us maintain our perspective and carries us through the low moments.


7. If someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by and nuzzle gently. We all have bad days. That's why we need encouragement and affirmation. When we are depressed, we know that it takes only a quiet word, a gentle touch to bring us around. A dog has this instinct that tells it when to be dancing and jumping around and when to just be there beside you. Words are not always needed, or even helpful, to convey empathy. A gentle nuzzle will do.


8. No matter how harshly you're scolded, don't pout - run back and make friends. Carrying grudges makes life a drudgery. Make friends and keep them. Overlook faults and assume the best. Don't keep a scorecard of rights and wrongs. Don't take offense.


9. Avoid biting when a simple growl will do. We do not need to injure others by what we say or do. We can be strong with love; firm with kindness.


10. Bark with your buddies. Barking is an act of commonality. Barking says we belong in this together. We are one.

 

 JOHNNIE CASH PATRIOTIC TRIBUTE
Join members and friends of First Presbyterian Church for a dinner and show by Bill Forness as he entertains at a show “Johnny Cash Patriotic Tribute” on Saturday, September 9th. The event will be held at the Heritage Center, 109 Delaware. Dinner at 6:30 p.m. with the show at 7:30 p.m. Dinner and show will cost $25, show only is $15. All membership and outreach committee mebers plus Arlene will take your reservation and money. Checks may be payable to the Heritage Center. Please sign up in the month of June, as the Heritage Center has reserved three tables of 8 for us.

HOME COMMUNION
Deacons will be taking home communion to those that would like on Wednesday, June 28th. If you would like to be on our schedule please call the church office or contact Marge Grafke-Doby.


 VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL
This year’s Vacation Bible School will center on the theme of Healthy Bodies, Healthy Communities, Healthy World and will take place July 25, 26, and 27 from 5-8pm. A light meal will be provided each night with Tuesday night’s meal being the Community Meal. The children will assemble upstairs for a lesson and songs followed by outdoor activities, crafts, and small group discussion. We are excited to welcome children aged 4-12 (3 years old if potty trained).
We are looking for interesting pictures of the life of First Presbyterian Church to use in a brochure for legacy gifts. Pictures of people, worship services, kids and children programs, music programs, the building and building windows, mission activities (community meal, Back Pack Buddies, ESL etc.). Please contact Carl Johnson or the Church office.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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