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Weekly Home Worship 10 (May 24- May 30, 2020)
Invitation to Worship
Leader: Happy are those who follow the ways of the Lord.
People: God’s ways are just and merciful.
Leader: Those who follow God’s ways are continually nourished in faith.
People: In all that they do, they prosper.
Leader: Come, let us open our hearts to God’s compassionate love.
People: Let us celebrate God’s mercy and justice. Amen.
God, Protector of the widow,
the orphan and the stranger –
in a world where many know despair,
you raised your Son Jesus
to give hope for humanity and renewal to the earth.
Continue to strengthen and unify your Church
in its struggles against the forces of death in the world,
where violence against creation and humanity
obscures the hope of the new life you offer.
This we pray in the name of the Risen Lord,
in the power of His Spirit. Amen.
Opening Hymn: A Mighty Fortress Is our God UMH 110 (1, 2)
1 A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing;
Our helper He, amid the flood of mortal ills prevailing:
For still our ancient foe doth seek to work us woe;
His craft and pow’r are great, and, armed with cruel hate,
On earth is not his equal.
2 Did we in our own strength confide, our striving would be losing,
Were not the right Man on our side, the Man of God’s own choosing:
Dost ask who that may be? Christ Jesus, it is He;
Lord Sabaoth, His Name, from age to age the same,
And He must win the battle.
Prayers & Concerns of People
Sue Kraus Family(For loss, comfort and healing)
Healing & Recovery from COVID-19 Pandemic emergency
Those who are employed in essential businesses (banks, gas stations, pharmacies and grocery stores, etc. )
All medical and laboratory workers who fight for COVID-19
(Our church’s Healthcare workers: Carolyn, Cassie, Deb, Jen, Kate, Kelsey, Kristi, Medley, Stacey, Polly….)
Nursing Home Residents: David Stephens, Dorothy Voss, Ila Schuster,
Joe Goeman, Paul Birkett.
Greg Staskal(For healing and recovery)
Jerry Evanoff(For healing and recovery)
David Stephens(For healing and recovery)
Joe Orton(For healing and recovery)
Jacob Kavicky(For healing and recovery)
Don & Lois Booth(For healing and recovery)
Bob Curtis(For healing and recovery)
Glen & Marge Curtis(For healing and recovery)
Tammy’s friends: Megan, Wendy (For healing and recovery)
Tim Noyce’ brother Tom (For healing from cancer)
Janice Morgan’s friend Pam(For healing from cancer and comfort from losing her mom)
Lon’s wife Judy Weber(For healing and recovery)
Karen Slaght’s nephew, Bob Clark (For healing and recovery)
WI UMC Conference (UM Churches)
Cuba City UMC (Congregation & Financial Health)
Nation and states’ leaders for their leadership and decisions.
@@ Please share your prayer concerns, if you have or know, with pastor and congregation.
New Testament Lesson: 1 Peter 5:6-11
6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.
7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
8 Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.
10 And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. 11 To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.
Leader: The word of God for people of God.
People: Thanks be to God.
Sermon: To Stand Firm in the Faith
Even if we are not persecuted, as in the Roman period, we are lonely and anxious during the coronavirus raid. Death doesn't seem to be far away. In this regard, Peter's preaching not to be afraid of suffering and to fight against it is what we need today. How should we fight to suffer? How can we overcome all kinds of fears?
The external and internal powers we have gained through our efforts help us struggle and overcome our fears. But that doesn't solve the underlying problem. Even if we are sure that we will receive answers from God in prayer, our lives still shake. No matter how hot moving we experienced in a sermon, the peace of everyday life does not remain. First, we become more obsessed with seeing something memorable. Why is that? There must be God at the center, but we are at the center in the faith.
Peter expresses it in other words. It is God cares. The expressions in verses 6 and 7 seem to be very literary. "Humble yourself under the mighty hand of God. In the time of God, you will be high. Leave all your worries to him. Then God will take care of you." Peter is telling us that being in God's powerful hands is a way to overcome suffering and fear. When people heard it, they would have laughed out, "What a strange sound?"
God's hand here refers to God's reign. That is invisible. Just because you can't see it doesn't mean it doesn't exist. Although the wind is hidden, it is a harsh reality that changes the world with great power. Although invisible, God's hand is an extreme power. To humble yourself under God's hands means to rely entirely on God's hands. Rather than shouting that you can do something, you are entrusting your future to God's rule.
This attitude of life may seem passive to some, but it is the most powerful because he is not trusting himself, but trusting God. As we all know well, human beings cannot be trusted. Trusting people creates a weak foundation for life. It does not mean that people should not trust unconditionally, but must acknowledge the limits of creation. Human is not the center of history but God.
Peter says that God takes care of us with powerful hands, but it is not easy to feel. First, it is more misunderstood. The human mind is subtle and rationalizes hypocrisy to be religious. We confess that God takes care of us through prayer and hymns, but the critical prejudice we have is that we are always good and center. To say that God cares for us with powerful hands is not just a testimony of faith. Nor is it content with psychological comfort. It's a very fundamental problem. God is the center of our history, even though we find the vaccine to cure COVID-19.
Peter says this more clearly in verse 10. The God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will restore and make you strong, firm, and steadfast. Peter made it clear that God made them whole, strong, firm, and trustworthy. It means that God cares thoroughly, and so he is the center of history.
We cannot make ourselves strong. That is what God does. No matter how well you believe in Jesus, there will be people who confess to you that there is no strength. I don't feel desperate to attend the worship service because I don't feel God in reality. Of course, as long as we live in this world, we cannot enter an absolute state. Even with strong faith, we can still shake. In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus was also very anxious for a moment, praying with the crucifix in front. Paul was not perfect; neither was Peter. What should we say about us? However, the direction for where the fundamentals upon which our lives go must be clear. Only then will our lives mature, and our souls will be free.
Here we come to the most crucial question. "Who is God to you?"
Anyone who can ask God and seek an answer who is God to him can receive God's help in any difficult situation. When your mind, heart, and soul are confused, focus more on knowing God. Everything other than knowing God first is temporary. Who is the God that Peter speaks? What is it? Are you curious?
The Scripture text this morning says that God has brought us into His eternal glory. God's glory has the same meaning as the word of God because God is a person who exists in honor. The Bible, Old Testament, and New Testament are all about the fact that it is the glory of God.
This Sunday's Scripture text says that the glory of God is in Christ. God's glory does not stop at being vague and unreal; it means that God's glory revealed to Jesus Christ as a concrete and historical person. Jesus Christ refers to the very man who died on the cross, died and was buried under the ground, but resurrected in three days. Paul said in 2 Corinthians 4:6, "For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God's glory displayed in the face of Christ." What is the glory of God revealed to Jesus Christ here?
I told you earlier that the glory of God is the deepest dimension of life that humans can experience. Those of all the Early Churches, including Peter, experienced that very life through Jesus. It was a salvation experience that could not happen with anything else. So they expressed it as eternal life. Salvation here is liberation from sin and death; those who believe in Jesus live with Jesus because they die with Jesus. In some sense, God allows us to participate in life to overcome the power that only the God of creation can do through our crisis. Those who have this kind of faith are free from despair and death: the fear of self-destruction.
My Sisters and Brothers in Christ! We are now struggling with an unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic. We have selectively searched for God in this world of life before COVID-19, where we have been the main characters. But right now, after COVID-19, God is telling us that the main character of this world history is God. Do you know what I mean? Do you agree with what I say?
May this amazing God meet you in this time of pandemic crisis! I pray that all of you will experience His infinite Love and Grace. If we confess God's care as Peter confessed, no matter what happens in front of us, we all stand still with strong faith. Do you believe it? Do you admit it?
I am sure you do both. Amen.
Prayer for Offering
Generous God, here are our gifts of time;
here are our gifts of talents; here are our gifts of money;
building stones for Your Kingdom,
awaiting shaping and placing within Your loving purpose. Amen.
## Your offering and contribution support our church and ministry. You may send to Financial Secretary Tammy Wilson, or you may use online giving if you go to church website www.cubacityumc.org.
Closing Hymn: Lift Every Voice and Sing UMH 519 (1, 2)
1 Lift every voice and sing,
till earth and heaven ring,
Ring with the harmonies of Liberty;
Let our rejoicing rise high as the listening skies
Let it resound loud as the rolling sea,
Sing a song full of the faith that the dark past has taught us;
Sing a song full of the hope that the present has brought us;
Facing the rising sun of our new day begun,
Let us march on 'til victory is won.
2 Stony the road we trod,
Bitter the chastening rod,
Felt in the days when hope unborn had died;
Yet with a steady beat have not our weary feet
Come to the place for which our fathers sighed?
We have come over a way that with tears has been watered;
We have come, treading our path through the blood of the slaughtered;
Out from the gloomy past till now we stand at last
Where the white gleam of our bright star is cast.
May the blessing of almighty God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
be with us now and forever. Amen.
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name;
you are mine.”
Hazel Green Food Pantry Hours: Tuesdays 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm and Saturdays 9:00 am - 10:30 am. The food pantry is closed all holiday weekends.
We support the Hazel Green Food Pantry every month by collecting a requested item.
The first Sunday of every month we take a mission offering. We chose projects throughout the year that touch the lives of either the local, national or world.
The monthly mission offering for
will be going to
Hospital Ministries Program
Dear leaders and congregations of Cuba City UMC,
Although none of us has a perfect manual for this public health risk of COVID 19, we as the church exist for such a time as this.
First and foremost, I wish you and your family good health, and pray that the peace of Almighty God will be with you in this situation.
What follows is my Ministry Plan for COVID 19 effective from this week.
This plan is intended to have us on the same page, to ensure critical ministry takes place, to help every congregation in church connection.
Ministry Plan for COVID 19 Emergency
1. Events & Building Closure:
-All in-person events, including worship, meals and other public gatherings, are suspended until further notice.
-The building and offices are closed.
-Staffs, unless ill, may access the building for necessary functions.
2. Plan for Communication
-We will utilize e-mail, Web-page (www.cubacityumc.org), SNS(if available), postal mail and telephone to connect with congregation & community. Please share any concerns and news with your pastor and congregation. We are helping and prayer community. Let’s be in connection by any possible communication tool and be the supporters one another.
Church Phone: 608-744-2538, church email:cubaumc@outlook,com
-We will collect all concerns and help-needed from congregations, and try to be helping hands as much as we can.
3. Plan for Spiritual Needs and Home Worship
-We are God's people and praying community of God. Let’s begin our prayer chain for all people. We utilized our prayer chain for urgent prayer requests. However, in this CORVID 19 emergency, I ask all congregations to pray for all other brothers and sisters in our church, community, and nation & world. We cannot meet in person but If possible, we can pray at the same time (at 8 AM and 8PM) in our different place.
-We will not make Sunday Worship service at the church until further notice. Because we have limitation to use online technology for all congregations, I will prepare a weekly news and messages for all to use for information and home worship service. It will be delivered to you by email or postal mail as you wish.
4. Plan for Children, Youth and Confirmation Class.
-We will not make ‘Wednesday Night Alive’ ‘Youth Program’ and ‘Confirmation Class’ until further notice.
-For the confirmation class, I ask all confirmation class students to study your text book according to our class schedule at home. And an important homework is to memorize what I assigned to you in class.
My Brothers and Sisters in Christ, all of you are precious God’s children to Cuba City UMC. I pray for your safety, health and wellness in God's care. Let’s keep in touch in healing power of Jesus Christ. Any ideas and recommendations to overcome this emergency is welcomed.
We will overcome this emergency situation in God’s Grace and Mercy.
God is always with you!
Pastor Hee Kwon Jung