Monday, July 31, 2017

The (NEW) Mustard Seed Song

(Matthew 13:31-33, 44-52)

Heaven’s like a little mustard seed
            You planted in the field,
It grows up from a tiny shrub
            To the tree with the greatest yield.
The birds and squirrels
            They make their nest
The boys and girls
            Have a place to rest
A tree to climb where all are blessed
All from a little mustard seed

Heaven’s like a little pinch of yeast
            You add to your recipe
Of all the parts it is the least
            But it makes the rest complete
Your bread will rise
            When you bake your loaf
Before your eyes
            God gives the growth
Taste and see how good it goes
All with a little pinch of yeast

Heaven’s like a little treasure box
            You bury in the dirt
You buy the whole entire lot
            Cause you know what it’s worth.
You dance with glee
            When the treasure’s yours
The box, contents,
            And the whole outdoors,
When heaven reigns it surely pours,
What’s in your little treasure box?

Heaven’s like a little shiny pearl
            That sits in the jewelry store
Of all the things in all the world
            You’ve never seen it’s like before
So you sell your house
            To buy that jewel
The world thinks you’re
            A perfect fool
But none of them owns such a cool
Perfect little shiny pearl.

Heaven’s like a great big net of fish
            You pull up from the sea
They’re caught and cleaned and sorted out
            Like God caught you and me
You may be prone
            To worry, but
You and I
            Will make the cut
Cause we’ve been washed in Jesus’ blood
Caught in God’s big net of fish.

Heaven’s like a bunch of wondrous things
            We see from day to day
And yet we wonder what God means,
            And what He’s trying to say.
The master brings
            The new and old
And gives them to
            The whole household
The love of God is truly told
When we share God’s wondrous things!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

The Well-watered Life

“Shower, O heavens, from above,
And let the skies rain down righteousness,
Let the earth open, that salvation may spring up,
And let it cause righteousness to spring up as well,
I the Lord have created it.”

-- Isaiah 45:8

Dear Friends of Atonement,

          It’s been tough keeping up with the growing grass as the summer rains keep falling.  It seems the day after you mow, it needs it again.  Our grass stays healthy thanks to all that good Florida sunshine and those brisk summer showers.  The skies open like clockwork almost every afternoon, and drench our lawns with life-giving water.  All that is green and growing owes its vitality to that which comes from above.

          Just like the grass, faith grows best when well-watered.  God’s Word, loving Christian friends and teachers, a caring faith family, and a life filled with prayer and worship all play their part in nourishing the spiritual life. 
           This week at Atonement we are hosting children from the community at our yearly “Day Camp” Vacation Bible School.  Once again we have a record number of children signed up, with 34 attending for the week.  Some of these children are not used to being in a church.  Some have never learned how to pray, or sing Bible songs.  Some don’t know that God loves them and that Jesus gave His life for them.  Thanks to you, this is their chance.
          Because of your support for Atonement, we are able to make outstanding Sunday school, confirmation, adult Bible study, youth and outdoor programs available to our congregation and community.  We know each of us needs the daily rain of God’s Word in our lives, and we strive to make it available in many forms to people of all ages.  For those who know our need for God every day and for the little ones just learning, I thank you for all your support and hope you are able to witness firsthand some of what your financial commitment makes possible.  Your regular giving supports all the ministries we do, touching not just the families in our pews, but those in our local neighborhoods and around the world. 

          God’s righteousness comes down to us so that salvation may spring up!  Together we stand under the rain of God’s grace and imagine a world well-watered with love.  Imagine the skies opening, pouring out hope and healing everywhere.  Imagine us all together becoming the kind of faith-filled people Isaiah described…

“The Lord will guide you continually,
And satisfy your needs in parched places,
And make your bones strong;
And you shall be like a watered garden,
Like a bubbling spring,
Whose waters never fail.”

-- Isaiah 58:11-12

Pastor Scott