Today I was able to get the full sermon.
Remember that you can come to the church on Sunday’s while practicing social distancing.
Weekly Home Worship 16 (July 05- July 11, 2020)
Call to Worship
Leader: Return to the Lord your God,
People: for God is gracious.
Leader: Confess to the Lord your God,
People: for God is merciful.
Leader: Repent to the Lord your God,
People: for God is slow to anger.
Leader: Praise the Lord your God,
People: for God abounds in steadfast love.
All: Worship the Lord your God.
Together, let us worship God!
In times of weakness and hour of need,
yours is the strength by which we carry on,
the shoulder we rest our head upon.
When our load is heavy and too much to bear,
yours are the arms stretched out to help us
the grace that we depend on.
In times of weakness and hour of need,
your voice is heard, ‘Come… find rest.’
This is grace divine, the path we tread to wholeness
of body and spirit, the path that leads to you,
and for which we offer our offering of praise. Amen.
Opening Hymn: I Need Thee Every Hour UMH 397
1 I need thee every hour,
most gracious Lord;
no tender voice like thine
can peace afford.
(Refrain)I need thee, O I need thee;
every hour I need thee!
O bless me now, my Savior, I come to thee.
3 I need thee every hour,
in joy or pain;
come quickly, and abide,
or life is vain. (Refrain)
Prayers & Concerns of People
For justice and peace of America
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, Ila Schuster,
Joe Goeman, Paul Birkett.
Charlie Birkett(For healing and recovery)
Dan Thorne(For healing and recovery)
Joann Richards(For healing and recovery)
Greg Staskal(For healing and recovery)
Joe Orton(For healing and recovery)
Jacob Kavicky(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)
Janice’s friend Nicole Sullivan(For healing and recovery)
Lon’s wife Judy Weber(For healing and recovery)
Karen Slaght’s nephew, Bob Clark (For treatment and recovery)
Cuba City UMC (Safety of Congregation & Financial Health)
@@ Please share your prayer concerns, if you have or know, with pastor and congregation.
New Testament Lesson: Romans 7:15-25
15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.
19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. 21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!
Leader: The word of God for people of God.
People: Thanks be to God.
Sermon: May the Crisis be an Opportunity for Conversion
We, Christians, need to meet some moment of conversion and change to be a true believer, a faithful disciple of the Lord. If you had such an experience, I hope that this time will be a chance to look back on it. The experience may come as dramatic as Paul and John Wesley, and for some, in prayer, during preaching, in meditation or praise. There are various moments when people experience God's presence and reign as much as people's multiple personalities. I am looking forward to hearing someone will experience a conversion during this sermon today. Why? Because today's Scripture text is full of fantastic confession and grace enough to bring transformation. Today you and I will review the Word and think about what the truth is. Let's ask the inner heart this time. What am I pursuing? Where do I come from and go? And who is leading me? Let's think deeply. In today's words, we will see how anxious he was as the great saint of Christianity and the great teacher of our faith, the apostle Paul, as a weak man. Let's learn the lesson from Paul's conflict appeared in the text today.
First, Paul's confession was a fierce inner conflict of a weak man who could not escape sin. Verses 17-18 describe that the sinful nature in Paul frustrated his desire to do good. Paul, the man of great faith, is also saddened by his condition that he wants to do good but cannot. Paul met Jesus Christ personally and was full of the emotions that Jesus saved him from dying because of sin. However, Paul could not avoid many conflicts in his heart because of his flesh's greed, the sinful nature, captivating him, and broke the right spirit to come to Jesus. How about you, ordinary believers? So don't give up or be frustrated too soon. We dream of becoming a perfect Christian, but we may not be complete while living in this world. Everybody's life is a series of conflict that seeks heaven, the peace that frees you from sin while living surrounded by the sinful nature. Since the pilgrim's progress is the essence of our lives, we should not stop trying to renew us day by day, hoping for heaven. Such a breath of change is a converted life that is reborn as a true Christian. My sisters and brothers in Christ, one conversion, is not enough for us. I pray in the name of the Lord that you will be aware and converted every moment.
Second, Paul confesses how terrible conflict is the sinful nature in him. In V 22-23, Paul describes sin as a mighty army. According to Paul, we are struggling with the law of God, the act of my heart, and the rule of sin. Paul's inner man rejoices in God's law, but in reality, Paul confesses to the conflict between the law of the heart and the law of sin and whether he will go this way or that way, but unfortunately, the law of sin has won and controlled Paul. You struggled to escape from the harness of wrongdoing, but there are countless memories you eventually yielded? How miserable was the feeling at that time? In V 24, Paul expresses guilt and suffering as a genuinely desperate scream. "What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?" It is a holy moment when Paul finds himself unable to do anything and confess honestly before God. Those who seek the truth as faithful disciples of Jesus find Jesus who will save themselves and wholly depend on him only when they find themselves as destined to die of sin.
This morning I pray that, like Paul, "Lord, deliver us from this body of death," and sincerely cry that you will be in the moment of conversion. This moment is when a reborn life honestly confesses that 'Jesus Christ is my Savior' is born. In today's text, we see ourselves in the confession of Paul. As a believer, we are now in the shape of Paul, who struggles with sin, struggles with alter ego, and frequently falls because of sin, but rises and struggles again like a tumbling doll. Who saved Paul from this muddy battle? It is Jesus. I pray Jesus will serve as the Savior, who will lead you to the final victory in this fierce battle. V 21 says: "So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there." There is evil for me who wants to do good. I am a kind being, but I have a sinful nature without my knowledge. I want to escape, but it is not easy to avoid. Paul's inner man enjoys the law of God. He loves God and wants to live according to God's will. He wants to be controlled by God's law. However, Paul frankly confesses there have been times when he behaved under the law of sin.
My brothers and sisters in Christ; this is an inevitable war within us. Either side is supposed to win in the conflict. I pray that you are on the side of winning righteousness. In us, there are fierce conflicts in every moment of life. We call this war the spiritual war. How is your spiritual war? Have you already knocked out in the fight against sin? Did you give up the fight? Or are you winning with Jesus Christ? Why don't you leave your burdens to the captain Jesus entirely? That is the way to victory. We know whether or not we confessed like Paul, whether or not we left us entirely. Paul's sincere confession said, "What a wretched man I am!" It is a confession that gave up his pride. This confession means, "I have no way to do it with my strength, and I cannot control the fight of the two natures within me without the help of the Lord. Only the Lord can do it." Only after a sincere confession does the problem appear, and the solution becomes clear. We must lean on Jesus' power in Jesus' way to solve the problem.
But here, confession must lead to another. It is a confession to receive the Holy Spirit. My Sisters and Brothers in Christ! What is the symbol of our United Methodist Church? It is the cross and the flame of the Holy Spirit on the right. The first axis is the cross, the confession of self-denying, and the other must be the Holy Spirit. Based on that, our conflict and spiritual war must end. Receiving the Holy Spirit as the commander-in-chief of our spiritual warfare so that the Holy Spirit can liberate us from the law of sin and death can guarantee the victory of the spiritual war.
My Sisters and Brothers in Christ! Why can't our faith grow stronger? Why is the assurance of salvation often shaken? Why do we become a doubting Thomas or a Peter who fell into the water of doubt? It is because it was a fake confession. It is because we imitate Paul's confession without removing our pride, selfishness, and greed. Let's lie down and confess that I am a sinner. Indeed, let's confess that I am a wretched one. So I hope that you will receive the Holy Spirit as your true master in your heart.
It is the conversion that the Trinity God desires. It is where the assurance of salvation and a new life begins. And the joy beyond description is filled with overflowing blessings. I pray that your faith will be renewed with a new conversion, away from the faded memories of old conversion.
My Sisters and Brothers in Christ! Do you live in extreme frustration and shrinking during the corona pandemic? Don't you realize how unrestricted we lived without corona? If we consider this crisis, on the other hand, it is an opportunity for us to draw near to God and confess our helplessness. It is also an opportunity for conversion to depend entirely on God.
My Sisters and Brothers in Christ! This nasty coronavirus targets us persistently. I pray that you will be the child of God who endures and wait, following the precautionary rules thoroughly, and renew your soul and body daily in God. I bless all of you in the name of the Lord that God's comfort, blessing, glory, and recovery be with you forever. Let us give thanks and praise God for this glorious Gospel to us. Hallelujah! 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: O Jesus, I Have Promised UMH 396
1 O Jesus, I have promised
to serve thee to the end;
be thou forever near me,
my Master and my Friend;
I shall not fear the battle
if thou art by my side,
nor wander from the pathway
if thou wilt be my guide.
2 O Jesus, thou hast promised
to all who follow thee,
that where thou art in glory
there shall thy servant be;
and, Jesus, I have promised
to serve thee to the end;
O give me grace to follow,
my Master and my Friend.
May the God of creation breathe on you,
May the God of all life sustain you,
May the God of all gods grant you forgiveness. Amen.
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name;
you are mine.”