Mike's Monday Message

Mike's Monday Message

Epiphany Stars

At our service for Epiphany Sunday, I pulled my star and received the word “knowledge.” There are all kinds of knowing. If I had known I was going to be in a car accident on Monday, I would have taken a different route. Alas, I was creeping  along on the Ravenel bridge in bumper to bumper traffic when an elderly lady rammed my rear end and did major damage to her car…

MY PEOPLE

“Comfort, comfort my people, says your God.”  Isaiah 40:1 Yesterday, in Terri’s sermon about relationships she talked about family reunions and how her granddaughter always looks around when the family is gathered and says, “These are my people.” Even if I don’t say that phrase to myself each Sunday in worship, sometimes I look out and think as your pastor, “These are my…

Joy

“And the angel of the Lord said unto them, Fear not: for behold, I bring you good tidings of great JOY, which shall be to all people.” Luke 2:10 Each year, during the four weeks of Advent, we light the candles of Hope, Peace, Joy and Love. If I had to pick one theme for our ministry in 2019 it would be JOY. We have been blessed in so many ways, and for me personally…

The Candle of Peace

On the second Sunday of Advent we light the candle of Peace. Of the four candles—Hope, Peace, Joy and Love—this one holds the most irony, for it seems our world is in a constant state of, if not war, then unrest. In our busy, overly-scheduled lives peace is fleeting at best. Who among us doesn’t long to sing “let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me.” I find…

The First Sunday of Advent… HOPE

Each year during Advent special groups or families in the church light the Advent Candles of Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love. Yesterday, representatives of the Amazing Grays lit the candle of Hope. During this week, I invite you to reflect on the things, people and circumstances that give you hope. Reflect also on ways you might offer hope to someone else. Not surprisingly,…

Being Thankful at Thanksgiving

This year our congregation has so much to be thankful for: we continue to grow exponentially, our giving exceeds our expenses, we are doing more missions, we have a wonderful hardworking staff and there is a wonderful spirit in our worship services. In short, we are thankful for everything! May this short prayer/poem I found on the internet at learnreligions.com  inspire…

WORK Out Your Own Salvation 

“. . . continue to work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” Philippians 2:12 As I was preparing the sermon for Sunday on our text from 2 Thessalonians 3:6-13, I thought, FINALLY . . . something I know a lot about! You see, the theme of this passage is work. Make no mistake—ministry is work. Yesterday afternoon, we had a work day at church and WOW . . . what a…

Politics and Pews

Tomorrow is Election Day, and our church is the precinct for our area, so today they will be here setting up the voting machines. Even though we see political ads constantly on TV and the Moultrie news has done a good job informing us about the local races, you may have noticed I have been silent in the pulpit regarding politics. It is not because I am afraid of sharing…

What will legacy will you leave behind?

This past Sunday was Stewardship Dedication Sunday and next Sunday, November 3rd, we will recognize our Palmetto Saints, following All Saints Day November 1st. When I was preparing the bulletin for next Sunday and going over our Necrology, I reflected on those very special folks who, while they were members of our church family, contributed so much to our ministry. Have…

Mike’s Monday Message – October 21, 2019

Each Sunday in October we have had “Stewardship talks” during worship. Yesterday, Matt Turner gave an inspiring talk using a unique definition for stewardship. “Stewardship is organizing your life so God can spend you.” I was so intrigued by this that I went online to see if I could find out more…

Let Your Light Shine

Sunday’s text was that short passage in Mark 4 about light and giving, which at first glance, the two “themes” don’t seem to go together. I admit the sermon yesterday was not a deep theological treatise. But based on the responses I received, the simple idea of each of us bringing a little light into the world seemed to resonate with our congregation. During stewardship…

The Call to Follow Jesus

Sunday’s sermon from Luke has the disciples asking Jesus to increase their faith because by chapter 17, which was our text on Sunday, the disciples realize it is HARD to follow Jesus—frankly, Jesus demands too much of his followers. Today I attended a luncheon at First Scots Presbyterian, where Dr. Tony Campolo was the guest speaker. He, too, was talking about following…

Ministry Together

This coming Sunday is World Communion Sunday, the day we gather with other (but certainly not All) churches around the world to celebrate the Lord’s Supper. At our church we will also have a congregational meeting to elect elders to serve in the class of 2022, and we will elect five persons to serve on the 2020 nominating committee. In addition, we will be lining up…

Wheeling and Dealing for Jesus 

This past Sunday we examined the parable of the shrewd manager (steward), and even after reading the commentaries and preaching on the text, I am still not sure what Jesus was teaching with this story. I do know talk of money, especially when it involves wheeling and dealing makes some folks in church uncomfortable. I wonder if even those of us who are good and faithful…

Responding to the Hurricane

In response to Hurricane Dorian, offerings collected during our 9:00 Faith Formation classes from September through December will go to PDA hurricane relief. We had a special offering yesterday in worship and our generous congregation gave $4,045.00 which will go directly to PDA. In addition some of our members gave directly to PDA’s website. Helping local hurricane…

Hurricane Dorian Leaves Winds of Gratitude

I hope you all survived the storm without too much damage. I think it is safe to say that even though there has been a LOT of minor wind and water damage, and many of us are exhausted from the hard work of cleaning up after the storm, we have much to be grateful for. The question now is “How do we show our gratitude?” Certainly we offer prayers of gratitude on our own…

Faith Formation for All Ages

I am holding the fancy brightly colored handout Gloria has just printed out listing all the MANY faith formation opportunities Palmetto is offering for fall beginning this coming Sunday, September 8th. There is literally something for all ages during different days and times on Sunday and throughout the week. This brightly colored handout is more than just an attractive…

When you don’t know what to say . . .

Saturday I attended our annual Presbytery gathering STEPS, where the whole presbytery comes together at MPPC for workshops, worship and fellowship.    One class I attended discussed what to say and not to say in challenging situations. Too often, even though we care, we don’t say or do anything because we are afraid we will say or do the WRONG thing. In a congregation…

Thoughts and Prayers

In this age of “political correctness,” I guess it is no longer meaningful to tell someone you care about and who has experienced some set back, like illness or the loss of a loved one, “they are in your thoughts and prayers.” I am a card writer and note sender and I pay attention to the ‘”complementary close,” that phrase that comes before the signature. I don’t toss…

Proclaiming the Good News

“After this, Jesus traveled about from one town and village to another, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God.” Luke 8:1 “I bring you good news of great JOY that will be for all people.” Luke 2:10 Last week, we took our grandchildren to Atlanta and went to the World of Coke. At the beginning of the tour, we saw a brief six minute video. I have to tell you it was…

Why Religion?

In Christian Century magazine there was a review of Elaine Pagels’ book, “Why Religion?”  It is a great book title, but more importantly it is a question each of us in the church, each of us who identify ourselves as Christians, should ask. Why religion . . . In a time when we hear over and over again the phrase “I am spiritual but not religious,” those of us who ARE…

Undercurrents

I was out boating with friends a few weeks ago, and we rode by the breach inlet between IOP and Sullivan’s Island. Every time I go by there, I think of the dangerous undercurrents, even when the water “appears” to be calm. Those undercurrents remind me of our church this summer.  One may ride by Palmetto and think things are “calm”—but man, the undercurrent is moving…

Are WE Good Samaritans?

This Sunday the sermon is the story of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37). A man helps someone in need from a different culture. Often when this story is told the question asked is “Who is my neighbor?”  We are now in the midst of our SOS mission for July (Sunday of Socks), collecting books and socks for Hands of Christ. We will be hosting this mission…