Are you joining us this #Advent?

Semper Paratus

Pastor Dale E. Austin                                                                               Mark 13:24-37

The Coast Guard motto, Semper Paratus, is often interpreted as “Always Prepared,” probably because we associate it with the well-known motto of both the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts.  Semper Paratus really means “Always Ready”. . . . .   Continue reading

Giving Credit Where it’s Due

Pastor Dale E. Austin                                                                                  Luke 17:11-19

We’ve been hearing a lot recently about income inequality.  The idea isn’t that everyone should share in the wealth of the country equally, but that everyone should be able to share fairly.  Of course, that isn’t happening  Continue reading

Riddle Me This

Pastor Dale E. Austin                                                                      Matthew 22:34-46

Riddles come in all shapes and sizes.  Some are relatively simple; others case be incredibly complex.  Some can be solved quickly utilizing a small amount of common sense.  Others may require a great deal of time, some detailed notes and a lot of frustration before we can solve them.  Some riddles occur naturally and we are constantly challenged to find the answers.  Others flow from our imaginations, usually in an attempt to stump our neighbor.

Jesus was often confronted with this latter type of riddle.  Continue reading

Who does “one another” mean?

Pastor Dale E. Austin                                                                                   John 14:15-21

In my somewhat limited travels throughout the state, as I move from appointment to appointment, I’ve come across some common characters who seem to be everywhere. I find some of them in the congregations I’ve served; others in the larger community. Continue reading

Show Me The Way

Pastor Dale E. Austin                                                                                     John 14:1-14

There are very few verses in the Bible whose meaning is more hotly debated and even argued than when Jesus responds to Thomas’ question in the sixth verse of today’s reading. When the disciple asks to know the way to God, Jesus responds by telling him that he is “the way, the truth and the life.” Then he adds that most controversial of all comments, “No one comes to the Father except through me.”

Now just what did he mean by that? Continue reading

The Leadership Portal

Pastor Dale E. Austin                                                                                     John 10:1-10

One of the catchphrases which we hear batted around in our churches in recent years is “Servant Leadership”. Supposedly, it’s leadership based upon the model of Jesus Christ’s life and example, who by his own admission came to serve and not to be served. Unfortunately, for as much as we hear this phrase voiced over and over, I don’t see it being modeled very much among our denominational hierarchy. It reminds me of a conversation which I had with our District Superintendent not long ago, in which he was reflecting upon some of our churches where there is a lot of activity. He noted that a lot may be going on, but he couldn’t help wondering aloud, “is it being done in the name of Jesus Christ, or is it just a country club pretending to be a church?” Continue reading

With Open Eyes

Pastor Dale E. Austin                                                                                Luke 24:13-35

As we study the scriptures, sometimes our familiarity with the text can actually keep us from seeing what’s really there or from gaining a new perspective. We start to listen or to read, but then we realize that we already know this story. . . so our minds fill in the details and we don’t realize that we aren’t really paying attention anymore. We’re just hearing the same story that we thought we’ve heard for years and years. Same old, same old. Continue reading

What Did They Talk About??

Pastor Dale E. Austin                                                                              John 3:1-17

 Good morning!   My name is Jedediah, but most of my friends just call me Jed.  That’s what I prefer.  I was asked to speak to you this morning about my next-door neighbor. . .  Continue reading

Happy first Sunday of Lent!