16 May Pastor Cherie’s Message
My dear friends,
Topic: St. Giles Coffee time
Time: May 17, 2020 10:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
“Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” – John 20:29
Greetings my dear St. Giles family!
As I write this, it is a beautiful, sunny, early spring day…for all that we are approaching the May long weekend. The warm weather is just around the corner, we may just have to wait a little longer than we want for it. In the meantime, enjoy the sunshine when we can get it!
Speaking of sunshine… we are invited to bask in the warmth of God’s ‘sun’, and God’s ‘son’. Jesus Christ’s presence among us is as real as the balmy rays that we feel on our faces. For all that we cannot see warmth, we can feel it and it is the same with Christ in our lives. We cannot SEE Him, but we know he is with us because we can FEEL Him, surrounding us with His comfort, His strength, His guidance, His healing.
This week I will be back in the pulpit again!!! Ruth and I will be in the sanctuary for this one Sunday, and there will be lovely music and prayers and scripture. Be sure to tune in on Facebook Live Sunday morning at 10 or look for us on our website later on that day. Following our worship time, you are invited to a “Virtual Coffee Hour” on Zoom and the link to the meeting is in your email.
Also this week I will have an opportunity for us to come to a Zoom coffee time each afternoon at 1 pm. Pick a day (or 2 or 3) and log on to get together with our church family. You can invite other friends too! I will send you the link on Monday morning and that link can be used ANY day at 1. Don’t worry about the technology, we will help you get on and get involved. I hope you will take some advantage of these opportunities to stay connected as we travel through this time of social distancing together.
For those that you know that are not tech-savvy, please assure them that I am happy to send this out via Canada Post, I just need to know who would like it.
As the work of ministry continues during this time, I would invite you to continue to support the ministry of St. Giles. You can donate on our website, or send an e-transfer to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also drop your envelopes at the church, in the front mail slot, or on Sunday morning, there will be a ‘donate’ button on our Sunday morning Facebook post. Thank you for your care of our family.
Remember that I am with you in this. I’m as close as a phone call or text (905-401-7641) or an email (email@example.com). Or call your Elder if you need some support or if you have something we can help you with. Missing all of you…
Be well, be safe, you are beloved,
Sharing Church, Being Church, Together
To give you a fuller experience of worship and connecting, I am including a prayer for you, the scripture reading for this week, and a devotion for your day.
Our passage today talks about healing and how our faith leads us into healing. We are in need of so much healing in our world right now and prayer is our sure conduit to God’s healing for ourselves and others. I hope you will take some time with this either before or after Sunday’s service to pray to our amazing God, the one who is the source of all healing and comfort. I invite you to take some time to bask in God’s warm presence in prayer.
Great is your faithfulness, O God our Father. Gracious and ever-present God, you are so faithful to us, your mercies are new each day. We take the time to feel your presence, to have faith in YOUR faithfulness. We take comfort in the truth that our Lord Jesus Christ is the Wonderful Counselor. There is no heartbreak, sorrow, misery, grief or loneliness that we experience which is beyond your understanding. In Him we have healing for our bodies, minds and souls.
In this season of pandemic where lives are anxious and sadness of heart runs deep, teach us to run to the comfort you offer in the midst of the struggles we face. We also have great confidence because our Lord Jesus is one with the Everlasting Father. You are truly a father who never leaves us – never forsakes us – never fails us – always acts toward us in love. You know every need we have. You know every problem we face. You are present in these things doing good for all who love you. Your care for us is beyond understanding, and because of this we can face life with the confidence that we are never alone. In your Son’s strong, healing name we pray, Amen.
Matthew 8:1-13 New International Version (NIV)
Jesus Heals a Man With Leprosy
When Jesus came down from the mountainside, large crowds followed him. A man with leprosy[a] came and knelt before him and said, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.”
Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!” Immediately he was cleansed of his leprosy. Then Jesus said to him, “See that you don’t tell anyone. But go, show yourself to the priest and offer the gift Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.”
The Faith of the Centurion
When Jesus had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to him, asking for help. “Lord,” he said, “my servant lies at home paralyzed, suffering terribly.”
Jesus said to him, “Shall I come and heal him?”
The centurion replied, “Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”
When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him, “Truly I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith. I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the subjects of the kingdom will be thrown outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go! Let it be done just as you believed it would.” And his servant was healed at that moment.
2 Corinthians 5:7, tells us, “For we live by faith, not by sight.” It is hard to have faith in something we cannot see, but when we dwell on God’s faithfulness and let it nourish our hearts, our faith and trust in Him grows. When we focus on doing good things, our thoughts won’t stay parked on the things we don’t like. Instead of allowing our minds to wish things were like they used to be or feeling discouraged or upset over a hard season of life, we can place our trust in Him and live with peace and joy, not stress and distress.
Psalm 37:4 says, “Delight yourself also in the Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.” Being delighted with God means our hearts find peace and fulfillment in Him, regardless of our season of life or the challenges we’re facing. When we look back to see how He has been faithful and trustworthy in the past, which delights us, we can better trust He will be faithful now and in the future, too.
“For I will restore health to you, and your wounds I will heal, declares the Lord” we read in Jeremiah 30:17. If you or someone you love is facing emotional or physical pain, turn to God in prayer. Fill your mind with the healing power of His Word today.
Questions to consider:
What do I need healing from? Is it physical, emotional, mental or spiritual pain?
Who in my life needs God’s healing?
Do they know God? Or can I pray for them without them having faith?
If they don’t know God, how can I share my faith with them?
As we will have our dear friend Ruth playing our hymns this Sunday on our Facebook live service, you are invited to sing along at home. The words follow. And you can come back to these on our website www.stgilesstcatharines.ca or on our YouTube channel St Giles Church stgiles1954 or you can click this link https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCUT2B7FCAdn6RYxGORud7g
324 Great is thy Faithfulness
1 Great is thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
there is no shadow of turning with thee;
thou changest not, thy compassions, they fail not;
as thou hast been thou forever wilt be.
Great is thy faithfulness!
Great is thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see:
all I have needed thy hand hath provided–
Great is thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!
2 Summer and winter and springtime and harvest,
sun, moon, and stars in their courses above
join with all nature in manifold witness
to thy great faithfulness, mercy, and love. [Refrain]
3 Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide,
strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside! [Refrain]
651 – Guide Me O thou Great Redeemer
1 Guide me, O my great Redeemer,
pilgrim through this barren land;
I am weak, but you are mighty;
hold me with your powerful hand.
Bread of heaven, bread of heaven,
feed me now and evermore,
feed me now and evermore.
2 Open now the crystal fountain,
where the healing waters flow.
Let the fire and cloudy pillar
lead me all my journey through.
Strong Deliverer, strong Deliverer,
ever be my strength and shield,
ever be my strength and shield.
3 When I tread the verge of Jordan,
bid my anxious fears subside.
Death of death, and hell’s Destruction,
land me safe on Canaan’s side.
Songs of praises, songs of praises
I will ever sing to you,
I will ever sing to you.
371- Love divine, all loves excelling
1 Love divine, all loves excelling,
Joy of heav’n to earth come down:
fix in us thy humble dwelling,
all thy faithful mercies crown:
Jesus, thou art all compassion,
pure, unbounded love thou art;
visit us with thy salvation,
enter ev’ry trembling heart.
2 Breathe, O breathe thy loving Spirit
into ev’ry troubled breast;
let us all in thee inherit,
let us find the promised rest:
take away the love of sinning;
Alpha and Omega be;
End of faith, as its Beginning,
set our hearts at liberty.
3 Come, Almighty to deliver,
let us all thy life receive;
suddenly return, and never,
nevermore thy temples leave.
Thee we would be always blessing,
serve thee as thy hosts above,
pray and praise thee without ceasing,
glory in thy perfect love.
4 Finish, then, thy new creation;
pure and spotless let us be:
let us see thy great salvation
perfectly restored in thee;
changed from glory into glory,
’til in heav’n we take our place,
’til we cast our crowns before thee,
lost in wonder, love, and praise.
373 – Jesus loves me
1 Jesus loves me, this I know,
for the Bible tells me so.
Little ones to him belong;
they are weak, but he is strong.
Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes, Jesus loves me!
Yes, Jesus loves me! The Bible tells me so.
2 Jesus loves me he who died
heaven’s gate to open wide.
He will wash away my sin,
let his little child come in. [Refrain]
3 Jesus loves me, this I know,
as he loved so long ago,
taking children on his knee,
saying, “Let them come to me.” [Refrain]
298 – Glory Be To god the father
1 Glory be to God the Father,
glory be to God the Son,
glory be to God the Spirit,
God Almighty, Three in One!
Glory be to him alone.
2 Glory be to him who loved us,
washed us from all sin and stain!
glory be to him who bought us,
made us kings with him to reign!
Praise the Lamb that once was slain!
3 Glory to the King of angels,
glory to the church’s King,
glory to the King of nations;
heav’n and earth your praises bring!
To the King of glory sing!
4 “Glory, blessing, praise eternal!”
Thus the choir of angels sings.
“Honor, glory, power, dominion!”
Thus its praise creation brings.
Praise the mighty King of kings!
290 – Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise
1 Immortal, invisible, God only wise,
in light inaccessible hid from our eyes,
most blessed, most glorious, the Ancient of Days,
almighty, victorious, thy great name we praise.
2 Unresting, unhasting, and silent as light,
nor wanting, nor wasting, thou rulest in might;
thy justice like mountains high soaring above
thy clouds which are fountains of goodness and love.
3 Great Father of glory, pure Father of light,
thine angels adore thee, all veiling their sight;
all praise we would render; O help us to see
’tis only the splendor of light hideth thee!
619 – Aaronic Blessing
The Lord bless you and keep you.
The Lord lift his countenance upon you,
and give you peace,
and give you peace.
The Lord make his face to shine upon you,
and be gracious,
and be gracious;
the Lord be gracious, gracious unto you.
Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen,
Amen, Amen, Amen.