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Coming Events

August 20, 2019

Mae Vann Circle

6:30 pm

August 21, 2019

Choir Practice

7:00 pm

August 25, 2019

Early Worship Service

9:00 am

Sunday School

10:00 am

Traditional Worship

11:00 am

MYF

5:30 pm

Evening Program w/

6:00 pm

Christmas Letter From the Pastor

…”Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. “She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus… (Matthew 1.20b-211a).

The Gospels tell us that, besides Mary, Joseph, and a handful of sleepy shepherds, no one knew that God had come to stay in the little one they named Jesus. Imagine, everyone in Bethlehem going about their business like any other day, and God Almighty- the Lord of Hosts, shows up in a manger, complete with an angelic choir… and no one notices. There was no news flash; no announcement on the Emergency Broadcasting System. The world simply did not notice.

During the recent Wednesday night devotions at our church we read a piece by Thomas Kelly who uses a phrase to describe us all as, “time-blinded” people. Essentially, Kelly is making reference to that fact that we are so caught up in the machinery of passing time that we have become blind to eternity. We are either captured by the nostalgia of our fading memories or we are holding our breath for some imagined future. Seldom are we caught alert and aware in the present moment.  After all, we are busy people. In fact, most people consider being busy as the sign that we are worthwhile and not willing to lay down and give up just yet.

That’s a problem for us, given the fact that eternity cannot be measured by time. For us, eternity- God- exists as the ever-present moment beyond the tick of a clock or an orbit ‘round the sun. In other words, according to the Gospels (and Thomas Kelly), busy people wouldn’t recognize God if God came and stood right in front of them. Much less would they notice his arrival out back in a small town cattle stall; or, for that matter, hanging on a cross down by the town dump. We simply do not expect to see the eternal right now in the otherwise avoided and ordinary places of our lives. God is far off in heaven or in our future. Or, God is in our past speaking through Old Testament prophets or the saints of our childhood.

Yeah, well… not so much, says the Christmas in our Bibles. Christmas is God’s way of saying, ‘I’ve come to you in person. So, stop whatever it is you’re doing and take time to welcome me. You won’t regret it.’

Get it? You are worthwhile and important, not because of all the things you busy yourself with, but because God Almighty- the Creator of time itself, chooses to come in person- to you- to us all. You just have to sit with that for a while before you discover how profound this demonstration of God’s love is and can be: that God would even bother with us at all, let alone come in person.

It is very difficult for the world around us to notice this God. What with all the “wars and rumors of war,” the tears and fears, the shame and corruption, the self-serving bluster, and the constitutionally guaranteed anger of entitlement which seems to be all the rage nowadays, it’s no wonder no one notices God when God comes. They’re too busy pursuing their own interests, blinded by the times.

So, our congregation, Swainsboro First United Methodist Church, is offering two events this Christmas. On Sunday, December 20, there will be a choir cantata at the 11:00 A.M. service entitled, “Light, Out of Darkness” by Randy Vader, Jay Rouse, and Rose Aspinall. Then, on Christmas Eve we are holding a brief Holy Communion and Candlelight service at 6:00 PM.

You are welcome to join us. You are invited to come and take time for the wonder of God; to welcome the One who comes to us all- in person- bearing gifts of eternity. Whether you attend our services or another congregation’s, whatever you do, don’t let Christmas pass you by. According the scriptures his name is Immanuel, “God with us”, but as you may have noticed, we just call him Jesus.

Bro. Scott, Pastor
Swainsboro FUMC