Meeting Times at 4th United Presbyterian Church

Cafe' Worship: 9:15 a.m. each Sunday in Gathering Hall (activities provided for children; coffee; snacks)
Adult Sunday School: 10 a.m.

Sunday Worship: 11 a.m.

Bible Study: each Thursday at 6 p.m.

Community Forum: last Thursday of each month at 6 p.m. with meal (no community forum in November, 2011)

About the 4th United Presbyterian Bible Blog

Posts on this blog are from me, Rev. George H. Waters, one of the two organizing co-pastors of 4th United Presbyterian Church. Our other organizing pastor was Rev. Sonya McAuley-Allen, who is now pastor of a church in Charlotte, N.C. Since June of 2011, Rev. Elizabeth Peterson has been our parish associate pastor for new church development. The earliest posts are sermon notes from the few I have typed the last two years. Then, there is a series of notes posted on the book of Romans. After that, it varies from week to week, sometimes church news, sometimes reflections on a happening, a passage of scripture, or even some pictures. This blog is meant to open the conversation we have going on in our church to others in our community.

The picture below is of our church's sanctuary, built in 1913.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Happiness and Faith: part one

If any of you have been is ear shot of my recent sermons, you will know that I have been preaching on what might be called the "darker side" of faith. Of course, the Bible itself is partly to blame for this, especially the New Testament emphasis on the crucified Jesus and the cross as a focus of Christian experience. Nonetheless, I do feel like we need to hear the whole message of the Gospel, which includes deliverances and celebrations. Our bibles also point us to the beauty and goodness of life in this world as well as the struggle of it.

And, thankfully, we have had the preaching of Rev. Peterson which has put some emphasis on the goodness of creation and focused our attention on being part of this ongoing and wonderful creation of God's.

What I am thinking about now as I write is "happiness" and where our desire for happiness is in this life of faith. Isn't it important to be happy in life? Surely faith cares about that.

As I think on this, I think about how the New Testament describes Jesus' life. And, I conclude that Jesus seemed to have been both happier and sadder than about anyone else. Now, I know that we don't have many biographical details of Jesus' life; we certainly don't have an autobiography from Jesus. But, there is strong evidence from scripture that he was deeply moved in both directions - both joy and sorrow - in this life. I will continue this on the next post.

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