Monday, September 25, 2017

sermon, "Making Room For Hope . . . ", by Pastor Ruth Foss, Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church, Patten, ME



September 24, 2017
Stetson Memorial UMC
Sermon Series: This Living Hope
 (Adapted from Marcia McPhee’s
A Future With Hope”)
“The Releasing”
Psalm 145
Luke 9:57-62 AMP Bible
2 Corinthians 5:17
Galatians 2:20 ESV Bible

“Making Room For Hope…”

The Lord be with you…let us pray… (prayer for the Spirit’s indwelling as bring God’s words of hope this morning…)

Please stand for the reading of the Gospel according to St. Luke, chapter 9, verses 57-62. Listen to words of caution from God to the people of God as we seek His will…


As Hope knocked on the door of Ms. L.’s house, she thought to herself “what am I doing here? I know this is all going to end up like before with me being even more confused than before. But I do like Ms. L. and she seems to be concerned for me…genuinely concerned. I must try. I have way too many questions right now and they are going to drive me crazy of I don’t try to get some answers.” As if she sensed Hope at the door, Ms. L. opened the door before Hope even had a chance to knock a second time. “Oh Hope, I am so glad you came. Come on in, I have someone I want you to meet,” Ms.L.as she grabbed Hopes hand and pulled her in before she could change her mind.

“Hope, I want you to meet Patience. She has had lots of her own questions about God and I think that you may v=be able to relate to her answers a little better than mine since I think you both have probably had the same kind of experiences in life. I will be right back. I have a batch of muffins to take out of the oven. Sit and get to know each other a little.” Ms. L. said…almost as if she was up to something.

“Hi, I’m Patience nice to meet you. I am sorry for my aunt. She seems to think that I can relate to the whole world since I have had worldly experiences that she never did. Did you know that she has never had any real issues in her life? She was brought up in the church so she has never really had any doubt about her beliefs. I envy her sometimes…” Patience brought up in the church said as she could see Hope was a little nervous being alone with her.

“Hi, I’m Hope. Nice to meet you. Your aunt used to take care of me when I was little. It is really nice to have her back in my life again. I didn’t know that she was brought up in the church and had a pretty untroubled life. She never told me she had a niece. I am glad you are here…I think” Hope nervously laughed. “I am too. I hope that I can help in some way. But there is one thing you need to remember through all of this. One of the main things you have to do is to let go of the past. In order to make more room for Jesus, I have found you need to let go of those things that have happened in your life before Jesus so that you can have hope and be happy in the future you now have with Him.” Patience advised Hope. “Well that sort of makes sense. You have to let go of the old for the new, right?” Hope asked, trying to make sure she understood what she was talking about. “That’s right but it is easier said than done. You will spend the rest of your life doing it because just because you have accepted Jesus…it doesn’t mean life is going to be easy…as a matter of fact it may get harder but you will always have Jesus to help you. It is all about letting go and letting God…so to speak.” “Oh boy…this is going to be hard” Hope said with a little apprehension. “It will be but life eternally with God is well worth the price…” “How are you two getting along” Ms. L. asked as she entered the room. “Just fine aunty. I think we are going to be awesome friends” Patience answered. “I think so too” Hope agreed. “Well good! Now help me eat these cookies or I am going to commit the sin of gluttony as I eat them all” Ms. L. laughed as the three believers sat together to have conversation and laughter with each other.

In what do you find hope? We live in a chaotic world full of hopelessness and despair, how can we have hope? As I have said, we need to cultivate hope in our lives...and have enough to share with a broken world. This doesn’t happen overnight, it is a process. When we begin to have a living hope in us it is as if a light is turned on in our lives, a bright light. But …how do we hold on to this hope we have?

Over the past few weeks, we have been farming…so to speak. To recap…we have plowed the fields and germinated seeds. They sprouted and we have planted them in the good and cultivated soil, that is sustained by God and His word…the seedlings hopefully have taken root and has gone deep down into the ground and watered by the Living Water. Remember, if the seedling…if hope is not planted, there is no grounding…no growth. It is shallow and when trials of life some scorching in it is dried up and withers…  The only way to withstand the pressures of life our hope has root itself in good soil where it receives water…Living Water.

We have tilled the soil so that the seeds of love and hope could begin to grow and sprout new hope within us and within those who Go calls us to plant within. There are times that we may even want to move on because of a painful…fill in the blank. But…God says, not just yet…you need to stay put where you are. So, we bloom where we are…the fruits are shared within our community of the church and out into the larger community of the world. Hope becomes evident in our lives and the lives of others… (If it isn’t evident…is there really any hope to be found?)

We may become weary at times…you can’t just keep putting out and not run out. We become tired, discouraged, exhausted, and disappointed. We need to revive ourselves with the word of God…go to the well that will give us rest and rejuvenate us to continue. We also are to help others revive as well… And we remember all those victories we have had in and through Jesus…that keeps us going forward and hold on to the hope within us. We are living in a building site as we build hope within ourselves and within others. We are always building until that glorious day that we are called home…

Now all of the sudden we have this stand still. It as if we have no room for hope in our lives. We have all this stuff going on that we are unable to recieve any more hope. Why do you think this happens to some people who are trying to live in the Living Hope? Give time to answer. Sometimes, we have to make room for hope in our lives. Sometimes we have to get rid of in order to receive.

The “would be followers” in the scripture this morning said they wanted to follow Jesus. And then they put the “but” in the condition. The wanted to take care of the worldly first then come and do the eternal…to be Christ followers. Jesus told them that you need to let go of the world…to make room for the kingdom in their lives in order to follow Him.

There are times that we need to let go of the worldly…to let go of the past…in order to usher in the present and the future in our lives. In order to have the hope in our lives we need to make room by letting go of past…fill in the blank… to make room for hope in the present and for our future… This is not an easy task at all. Sometimes we don’t even realize what we are doing to ourselves.

2 Corinthians 5:17 tells us “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has passed away, the new is here.”  The old is gone and the new creation has begun. No longer does your past define you in Christ. You are defined as a child of God and being such, you have a new name and a new life. You become a Christ Follower… I choose the name of “Christ Follower” rather than Christian. Only because the word Christian, the title of Christian, has become almost a four-letter word to a lot of people these days. They see Christians not being very Christ like and put all who believe under that “umbrella” name. I find myself defining myself not as a Christian but one who follows Christ.
Galatians 2:20, Paul states that”
“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” 
Our old self was buried in the Cross of Jesus. We now live for Christ and not for the world and all its messed up, fleshly desires…or at least we try to. But we are imperfect and we are Works In Progress…and being such we will fail but thank God for His marvelous grace, we are given a chance to get up and try, try again. It’s all about faith in Jesus and Faith in the promises we are given. That is what gives us hope…that is what gets us out of bed each morning to try again…God’s mercies are new each morning …our hope is reborn with each day dawning…

Is there room in you for the Hope God wants to give you or is there no room at the inn.  Are you living in the past or are you looking forward to the future… Oh by the way, others are trying to find their way to hope, and in as such…we who are followers of Christ need to help them get past the past by not making them live in their past mistakes they have made…past bad decisions and lifestyles they chose? We have all made mistakes and have fallen short of the grace of God. We are all works in progress. We are all imperfect with a piece of the perfect…the Divine…living in us. Why don’t we look for that Divine in others and help them move forward in faith instead of causing them to stay stagnant in sin.
Remember the words of Paul in Philippians 3:13-4-14 as we move forward in hope and helping others find that same hope that won’t disappoint us…
“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider that I have made it my own yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the [heavenly] prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

 Beloved remember that you and I are a construction site, forever being built up in Christ Jesus. We are works in progress and in being such, we have room for improvement and growth…expansion...maybe even a whole renovation project. But we need to make room for this renewing hope. If not, we will have a “no vacancy” sign upon our hearts. But know this…there is hope, to be found by you and me. Where there is hope…there is possibilities…

Amen!


edited/combined September 24, 2017
we need to breathe in the word
September 24, 2017
no room for hope
September 24, 2017
always building
September 24, 2017
breathe in the word
September 24, 2017
just breathing out
September 24, 2017
if hope is not planted
September 24, 2017
making a space
September 24, 2017
not one of us is righteous
September 24, 2017
Making Room for Hope
September 24, 2017
Stetson Memorial UMC
Sermon Series: This Living Hope
 (Adapted from Marcia McPhee’s
A Future With Hope”)
Week 10
“The Releasing”
Psalm 145
Luke 9:57-62
2 Corinthians 5:17
Galatians 2:20
and sermon, “Make Room for Hope …”
text:

video:

by Pastor Ruth Foss
sermon blog
meditation blog
“God’s Whisper” blog
Children’s Message

by Jarrod M. Cunningham
Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church
September 24, 2017
&
September 23, 2017
the Spirit abides
September 23, 2017
a Spiritual house - 3
September 20, 2017
Building my house
September 20, 2017
dig deeper
September 20, 2017
push away the soil
September 20, 2017
the solid rock of Christ
September 20, 2017
one line in the book
September 20, 2017
one stone at a time - 2
September 19, 2017
one brick at a time
edited/ new name September 19, 2017
built with each step, each choice
September 19, 2017
built as we walk
September 17, 2017
buried in the good soil, planted
September 17, 2017
I remember everything you taught me
September 17, 2017
she remembered every lesson
September 17, 2017
the student became the teacher
September 17, 2017
she had found her hope
September 17, 2017
on the rock, on the foundation
September 17, 2017
start building your house
September 17, 2017
Stetson Memorial UMC
Sermon Series: This Living Hope
 (Adapted from Marcia McPhee’s
A Future With Hope”)
Week 9
“”
Psalm 103:1-17
Luke 6:47-49 (The Voice Translation)
1 Peter 2:4-6 (The Voice Translation)
Psalm 127:1 (The Voice Translation)
and sermon, “W.I.P. (Work In Progress) …”
text:
video:
by Pastor Ruth Foss
sermon blog
meditation blog
“God’s Whisper” blog
Children’s Message
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church
September 17, 2017
&
edited September 16, 2017
there is life in this hope – v2
edited September 15, 2017
the hope of America must not die – v2
edited September 15, 2017
the dream of America must not perish – v2
edited September 15, 2017
hope reminds us – v2
edited September 15, 2017
life is in this hope – v2
edited/new name September 15, 2017
there is life in this hope
edited September 15, 2017
we must hold onto hope – v2
edited September 15, 2017
Hold hope tightly – v2
edited September 15, 2017
don’t let go of hope – v2
September 12, 2017
life is in this hope
edited September 12, 2017
hope grows – v2
September 12, 2017
hope grows
September 12, 2017
hope reminds us
September 11, 2017
the hope of America must not die
September 11, 2017
the dream of America must not perish
edited September 11, 2017
the seed of hope must not die – v2
September 11, 2017
the seed of hope must not die
edited, new name September 10, 2017
don’t let go of hope
September 10, 2017
Hold hope tightly
September 10, 2017
we must hold onto hope
September 10, 2017
Stetson Memorial UMC
Sermon Series: This Living Hope
 (Adapted from Marcia McPhee’s
A Future With Hope”)
Week 8
“The Remembering”
Psalm 119:33-40
Luke 22:14-19
and sermon, “Hope’s Little Reminders…”
text:

video:
by Pastor Ruth Foss
sermon blog
meditation blog
“God’s Whisper” blog
Children’s Message
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church
September 10, 2017
&
Matthew 18:18-20
Matthew 18:15-20
The Upper Room Disciplines for 2017
“Searching the Scriptures”
September 4, 2017 to September 10, 2017
by Mark H. Stephenson
devotion for September 10, 2017
read September 10, 2017
&
edited September 10, 2017
we can have hope – v2
September 4, 2017
we can have hope
September 4, 2017
it is hope that sustains us
September 4, 2017
it is hope that ignites us
September 4, 2017
hope fuels us
September 3, 2017
Stetson Memorial UMC
Sermon Series: This Living Hope
 (Adapted from Marcia McPhee’s
A Future With Hope”)
Week 7
“The Sustaining”
Psalm 105:1-6
Isaiah 46:4
Psalm 54:4
Psalm 55:22
Isaiah 50:4
Matthew 11:28-30
Revelations 22:17a
and sermon, “Hope’s Sustaining Power”
text:
video:
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Children’s Message
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church
September 3, 2017
&
August 30, 2017
there is power in our words
August 30, 2017
there is power in God’s grace
August 30, 2017
there is power in our prayers
August 30, 2017
there is power in our hope
August 30, 2017
our words have impact
edited August 29, 2017
our hope cannot stay hidden – v2
August 29, 2017
our hope cannot stay hidden
August 29, 2017
we are called to witness – 2
August 29, 2017
we each are the witness
edited August 29, 2017
only Christ can redeem us – v2
August 29, 2017
only Christ can redeem us
August 28, 2017
none of us are worthy - 2
August 28, 2017
he told her about Jesus
August 27, 2017
he shared his faith
August 27, 2017
offering her hope
August 27, 2017
Stetson Memorial UMC
Sermon Series: This Living Hope
 (Adapted from Marcia McPhee’s
A Future With Hope”)
Week 6
“Bearing Hope”
Psalm 138
John 15:1-8 GNT
Philippians 1:9-11 GNT
and sermon, “Hope Bearer…”
text:
video:
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Children’s Message
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church
August 27, 2017
&
August 20, 2017
Help me go grow
August 20, 2017
before I gave my life to Christ
edited August 20, 2017
August 20, 2017
I have been you
August 20, 2017
whatever your station
August 20, 2017
slave or free
August 20, 2017
grow there
August 20, 2017
give to them willingly
August 20, 2017
show them compassion
August 20, 2017
offer mercy, grace
August 20, 2017
do not resist them
August 20, 2017
strip them of power
August 20, 2017
may hope find a home
edited August 20, 2017
may hope abide – v2
August 20, 2017
may hope abide
August 20, 2017
Stetson Memorial UMC
Sermon Series: This Living Hope
 (Adapted from Marcia McPhee’s
A Future With Hope”)
Week 5
“Residing with Hope”
Psalm 133
Luke 3:10-14
1 Corinthians 7:20-24
Jeremiah 29:4-7
and sermon, “Where Hope Resides”
text:
video:
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Children’s Message
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church
August 20, 2017
&
August 19, 2017
nurturing hope
edited/ new name August 19, 2017
if the seedling isn’t planted
August 19, 2017
if the seed isn’t planted
August 19, 2017
It is hard to believe
August 19, 2017
Hope begins to sprout and root
edited August 19, 2017
Hope germinates and grows – v2
August 19, 2017
Hope germinates and grows – v1
August 19, 2017
hope is like a seed
August 19, 2017
a flickering of something
edited August 19, 2017
a kernel of hope – v3
edited August 19, 2017
a kernel of hope – v2 (2)
August 19, 2017
a kernel of hope (2)
August 19, 2017
seeds of hope within us
August 13, 2017
Stetson Memorial UMC
Sermon Series: This Living Hope
(Adapted from Marcia McPhee’s
A Future With Hope”)
week 4 - “This Living Hope”
Psalm 105:1-6
Mark 4:1-8 NIV
Ephesians 3:16-19 NIV
John 4:13-14
Zephaniah 3:17
Romans 12:12
Romans 15:4
and sermon, “Nurturing Planted Hope”
text:
video:
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Children’s Message
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church
August 13, 2017
&
August 10, 2017
our roots are anchored in Christ
August 10, 2017
we are grounded in Christ
August 10, 2017
our hope is grounded
edited August 6, 2017
we must accept the seed – v3
edited August 6, 2017
we must accept the seed – v2
August 6, 2017
we must accept the seed
edited August 6, 2017
for hope to grow – v2
August 6, 2017
for hope to grow
edited August 6, 2017
Hope is planted – v2
August 6, 2017
Hope is planted
August 6, 2017
the roots going deep
new name/ edited August 6, 2017
the seedlings planted
(editing “the young plants planted”)
August 6, 2017
let your roots grow down
August 6, 2017
cultivate the hope inside
August 6, 2017
plant the seeds of grace
August 6, 2017
plant the seeds of love
August 6, 2017
get them in the ground
edited August 6, 2017
germinated seeds – v2
August 6, 2017
germinated seeds
August 6, 2017
the seed growing
August 6, 2017
living in hope
August 6, 2017
may our hearts be open
edited August 6, 2017
that we might understand – v4
August 6, 2017
the young plants planted
August 6, 2017
Stetson Memorial UMC
Sermon Series: This Living Hope
(Adapted from Marcia McPhee’s
A Future With Hope”)
week 3 - “Planting Seeds of Hope”
Mark 4:1-8
Parable of the Sower
Psalm 145:7-8; 14-21
Jeremiah 17:7-8 NLT
Ephesians 3:16-19 NIV
Colossians 2:6-8 NLT
Sermon, “Planting Seeds of Hope”
text:
video:
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Children’s Message
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church
August 6, 2017
&
August 2, 2017
hidden in our flesh
August 2, 2017
growing in our soil
edited/ new name August 2, 2017
growing in the good soil
August 2, 2017
growing in the ground
August 2, 2017
hidden in the ground
edited August 2, 2017
After the planting – v2
August 1, 2017
We must water and feed
August 1, 2017
Like seeds, like yeast
August 1, 2017
that we might understand – v3
August 1, 2017
we must understand
August 1, 2017
not in riddles but parables
edited July 31, 2017
that we might understand – v2
July 31, 2017
that we might understand
July 31, 2017
we must hear God’s word
edited July 31, 2017
we are seeking, searching – v2
July 31, 2017
We are seeking, searching
July 31, 2017
We have the seed planted
merged July 31, 2017
Before the planting – v2
July 31, 2017
After the planting
July 31, 2017
Before the planting
July 30, 2017
We want to be the good soil
July 30, 2017
we need that hope to work within us
edited July 30, 2017
we must embrace the seeds – v2
July 30, 2017
we must trust in God
edited July 30, 2017
a little more hope – v3
(editing original again)
edited July 30, 2017
we must embrace the seeds
edited July 30, 2017
embrace the seeds
July 30, 2017
embrace the seed
July 30, 2017
hope is alive within us
July 30, 2017
hope planted within us
&
July 29, 2017
we are the soil – v2
July 29, 2017
do we nurture the seed – v2
July 16, 2017
do we nurture the seed
edited July 16, 2017
do we care for the message – v2
July 16, 2017
do we care for the message
July 16, 2017
do we welcome the seed
July 16, 2017
are we the soil
July 16, 2017
we hold the seed
July 16, 2017
we are the sower
July 15, 2017
we are the soil
edited July 15, 2017
held by the thorns – v2
July 15, 2017
held by the thorns
July 15, 2017
choked by the briars
Matthew 13:18-23
Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23
The Upper Room Disciplines for 2017
“The Promise and Work of God’s Word”
July 10, 2017 to July 16, 2017
by John Adcox
devotion for July 15, 2017
read July 15, 2017
&
edited July 29, 2017
a miracle in the seed – v2
July 29, 2017
searching, seeking - 2
July 29, 2017
a miracle in the seed
edited July 29, 2017
seeking treasure – v2
edited July 29, 2017
Finding Treasure – v2
merged/edited July 29, 2017
Seeking treasure, Finding treasure
July 29, 2017
seeking treasure
July 29, 2017
Finding Treasure
Matthew 13:44-52
The Upper Room Disciplines for 2017
“Treasures from God”
July 24, 2017 to July 30, 2017
by Chris Folmsbee
devotion for July 29, 2017
read July 29, 2017
&
July 28, 2017
tiny acts of love
edited July 28, 2017
out of God’s great love – v2
July 28, 2017
the kingdom of God growing
Matthew 13:31-33
The Parables of the Mustard Seed
the Parable of the Yeast
Matthew 13:31-33, 44-52
The Upper Room Disciplines for 2017
“Treasures from God”
July 24, 2017 to July 30, 2017
by Chris Folmsbee
devotion for July 27, 2017
read July 28, 2017
&
edited July 27, 2017
Germinating Seeds of Hope – v2
July 27, 2017
Germinating Seeds of Hope
July 30, 2017
Stetson Memorial UMC
Sermon Series: This Living Hope
(Adapted from Marcia McPhee’s
“A Future With Hope”)
week 2 - “This Living Hope”
opening prayer
video
Psalm 128
Matthew 13:1-9
Parable of the Sower
Matthew 13:18-24
Christ explaining the Parable of the Sower
Psalm 139:13-16
Matthew 13:31-33
Parable of the Mustard Seed
Parable of the Yeast
prayer before sermon
and Sermon, “Germinating Seeds of Hope”
text:
video:
by Raymond A. Foss
Children’s Message
by Raymond A. Foss
closing prayer
video
Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church
July 30, 2017
&
edited July 26, 2017
a little more hope – v2
July 26, 2017
a little more hope
July 26, 2017
we are imprisoned by our fears
edited/ new name July 24, 2017
we are strangled by anxiety
July 24, 2017
immobilized by fear
July 24, 2017
freed by hope
July 23, 2017
Hope is Trust
July 23, 2017
why are we so anxious
July 23, 2017
Stetson Memorial UMC
Sermon Series: This Living Hope
(Adapted from Marcia McPhee’s
“A Future With Hope”)
week 1 - “This Living Hope”
Psalm 139:1-12, 23-24
Jeremiah 29:11-14 Amplified Bible
Romans 5:1-5 Amplified Bible
John 3:16-17 Amplified Bible
and Sermon, “This Living Hope”
text:
video:
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Children’s Message
by Pastor Ruth Foss
Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church
July 23, 2017

All of my poems, photographs, and videos are copyrighted by Raymond A. Foss, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017. All rights are reserved. Contact me at Ray Foss (raymondafoss@gmail.com) for usage. See all 45,000 of my poems at www.raymondafoss.blogspot.com Poetry Where You Live.

Christ, Spirit, God, Faith, love, grace, hope, prayer, Pastor Ruth Foss, Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church, poem, seed, home, Psalm 145, Luke 9, 2 Corinthians 5, Galatians 2,

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