Isaiah 49:8-16; Psalm 131; 1 Corinthians 4:1-5; Matthew 6:24-34; Song: God will take care of you - UMH 130; Theme: God will reemmber us in all circumstances
Isaiah: this scripture is from second Isaiah. These are the final days of the exile before the Isrealites venture to go back home. They are discouraged and think that nothing that they do will make a difference. God has served them a blow in their faith, obviously God does not care what happens to them. these words remind them that God has not forgotten about them. God has written the names of each faithful person on the palm of God's hand. God knows what we need. but we have to make a conscious choice to trust God with our lives, and things eventually get better. The Isrealites chose God, and the strength to go back home and start all over again. what will happen when you choose God in your life?
1 Corinthians: We have all heard Jesus words to judge not and be ye not judged. But let's all face it, we do it anyway. we are constantly judging others. We especially spend a lot of time judging our leaders. Abraham Lincoln said that if you ever want to challenge yout character, become a leader. Paul always encouraged us to pray for those in leadership even when we don't always agree with them. Once people are put into positions, we need to engage them, but we also have to trust that God is doing the same. God will judge them for what they are doing, we have to take care of ourselves.
Questions: Has there ever been a time in your ilfe when you felt abandoned by your friends? or by God? what did you say to God about it? What did you do for support? What happened tht finally turned things around to realize that God was with you all of the time? Have you ever criticized church leadership or the pastor? What criteria are you using to judge? the Bible, the Book of Discipline? your expereince? Do you really undersatnd any of those things well enough to judge anyone else but yourself?