Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Orcas Island Postscript to WinterFest - Part 5

Sunday Morning Service, March 6
This was the end of WinterFest events.

Earl was to preach the sermon. 
We found out upon our arrival that he had been called home for a family emergency. We gasped and then prayed. Positive news came to us later that day.

Jeff and Brian were there to lead worship and Dick was well able to preach an amazing sermon using the text Earl had chosen.

Be Thou My Vision

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart,
be all else but naught to me, save that thou art;
be thou my best thought in the day and the night,
both waking and sleeping, thy presence my light.

Be thou my wisdom, be thou my true word,
be thou ever with me, and I with thee Lord;
be thou my great Father, and I thy true son;
be thou in me dwelling, and I with thee one.

Be thou my breastplate, my sword for the fight;
be thou my whole armor, be thou my true might;
be thou my soul's shelter, be thou my strong tower:
O raise thou me heavenward, great Power of my power.

“C.S. Lewis Timeless Words for a World in Crisis”

Sermon Topic Scripture
"We always thank God for all of you and continually mention you in our prayers. We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. For we know, brothers and sisters loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake. You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit." 1 Thessalonians 1:2-6

Key points/reminders in sermon.

Among the quotes that had come forth from Earl in reading Lewis was this one: “He knew his apostate”.  In context of that statement, the word, “apostate” meant that Lewis knew the audience to whom he wrote and in knowing that focus, he could stay in focus in the texts he penned. 

The message to us is that we look to the call God has on each of our lives and work toward accomplishing it - “be Thou our vision” will help us focus. 

The call to use our gifts is a daily one.

We are to be aware that spiritual warfare is real. We will run into obstacles. Keep focused but don’t let the reality of the warfare rule. Lewis addressed this beautifully in “The Screwtape Letters”. 

Aim at heaven and you’ll get earth (what Christ gives us on earth). Aim at earth and you will get neither.


Sunday Evening
Vespers Service

As I stayed on Orcas Sunday night, I was able to attend this beautiful service. Jeff stayed on to provide worship for us and Brian turned to his Associate Pastor role to preach the message on the text of the Prodigal Son.

As Rembrandts rendering of this scene is one of my favorites - a print of it hangs in my home - that it was the image on the Vesper bulletin and a framed print also on a stand for display, I immediately settled in to be inspired. 

A number of songs were sung in worship and prayers recited but Jeff’s song, “Home Again", set the tone for the message Brian brought to us. Vespers ended with much to ponder.

I was then blessed by time with Dick Staub who offered  his insights and some caring direction about my “soon to be printed” book! 

Monday, March 7
This scene, from my deck, greeted me on the morning I was  gearing up to catch the 12:55 ferry boat home.

Indeed, I had a lot to "think through and treasure"  and a thankful heart made full from all that occurred during this WinterFest.  Amen! 

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