Sunday, February 27, 2005


Church offices in the old fellowship hall?

PROPOSED CHURCH OFFICES IN THE OLD FELLOWSHIP HALL might look something like this sketch, above, handed out to the congregation today by Trustee Chair Randy Stanley. Tinney Chapel's Board of Trustees now wrestles with this sensitive issue after requesting and receiving input from last week's congregation. Following that congregational input, the Trustees voted last Sunday against walled offices in the old fellowship hall, but the possibility was reintroduced today. See related article, below, in Chapel News Section of this Blog post. Posted by Hello



Tinney Chapel Trustee Chair Randy Stanley today presented the congregation with a revised proposal for church office space located in the old fellowship hall.

His proposal follows last Sunday’s vote by the Board of Trustees against locating those offices in the old fellowship hall.

That vote came on the heels of input to the Trustees from members of the congregation earlier that same day, February 20, in response to Randy’s presentation explaining the office space quest, and urging members of the congregation to share suggestions and concerns with individual Trustees during the fellowship break preceding Sunday School.

Among the suggestions the Trustees received: (1) Keep the old fellowship hall open as an area for small group meetings and receptions. (2) Keep the old fellowship hall flexible for possible future expansion. (3) Combine open office space, without walls, and a functional church library, including wall-to-wall-to-ceiling bookcases all around the hall. The latter suggestion would permit church offices to function as do many newsrooms, open, while remaining flexible for future options, including anticipated library growth at Tinney Chapel.

Meanwhile, Randy’s presentation today reintroduces the old fellowship hall as a candidate for walled offices to be used by Senior Pastor Rev. Duncan Graham and church secretary Elaine Knoop.

“The reason the Trustees have chosen the old fellowship hall is that it is more affordable, [and offers] better access to visitors looking for the office,” Randy said in today’s written handout. “The old fellowship hall can still be used for small groups and children.”

Randy’s presentation and handout today also addressed the issue of estimated utility costs for the proposed walled church offices that might be located in the old building, some unspecified arrangement in the new building, and also included one scenario for church options in the event that future expansion might become necessary should the proposed walled offices eventually be located in the old fellowship hall.

“Utility cost for [proposed offices located in] the old fellowship hall is around $20.00 a month. Utility cost for heating two rooms in the new building is around $60.00-plus a month, since the new building is zoned [meaning] you would have to heat more than one room.

“In the future, if we decide we need to expand, then we can always take the wall down and incorporate new offices in the new constructing.”

In addition, Randy’s handout estimated the total construction cost for the proposed new walled offices in the old fellowship hall at about $500.00.

Today’s presentation and handout did not address last Sunday's vote by the Board of Trustees, or the possibility of open church offices, located in the old fellowship hall, but without walls, a concept currently exampled by the office already located in the old fellowship hall, and already in use during church business hours by church secretary Elaine Knoop.

No discussion or question-and-answer period followed Randy’s presentation.

Next scheduled meeting for Tinney Chapel’s Board of Trustees is at 11:30 a.m., Sunday, March 13, in the Conference Room.



Greeters: Randy Stanley, George Jordan, Matthew Stanley and Danny Lake.

Soundman: Bob Deitering.

Ushers: George Jordan & Randy Stanley.


Pianist: Pat Hollingsworth.

Songleader for hymns: Angela Wylie.

Songs: This Is My Father’s World; Great Is Thy Faithfulness; He’s The Savior Of My Soul; His Name Is Wonderful; There’s Something About That Name; Sanctuary; Only Trust Him.

SPECIAL MUSIC BY TINNEY CHAPEL CHOIR, directed by Pat Hollingsworth.

The Passover Lamb

Choir singers included: Judy Spears, Sadie Jordan, Linda Hallman, Mollie Stanton, Alice Deitering, Emmaline Hallman, Angela Wylie, Angel Hensley, Stacey Stanley, Clay Spears, Ronny Ellison, George Jordan, David Stanton, Derrell Hollingsworth.

Call to Worship & Opening Prayer: Rev. Gene Miller.

Morning Prayer & Lord’s Prayer: Pastor Duncan Graham


Offertory Prayer


Gloria Patri

Apostles Creed


Senior Pastor Rev. Duncan Graham briefly played a game, apparently called Rock, with the children today. He told them it was an international game, played all over the world. It was the Pastor’s way of leading the children into a discussion about getting water out of a rock, itself a symbol of the way God provides for His children in our times of need. Pastor Graham told the children that today’s sermon was based on Exodus 17:5-6:

17:5 And the Lord said to Moses, "Go on before the people, and take with you some of the elders of Israel. Also take in your hand your rod with which you struck the river, and go.

17:6 Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock in Horeb; and you shall strike the rock, and water will come out of it, that the people may drink." And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. ---New King James Translation

“This happened when Moses was leading the children of Israel through the desert,” explained Pastor Graham. “But it tells us that when we don’t know what to do, God will provide for our needs. He knows our names, He cares for us and He wants the best for us.”

In his concluding prayer, the Pastor said: “Oh, gracious heavenly Father, we thank You for this day. You are a wonderful Lord, who can even bring water out of a rock. Keep refreshing our memories that You can do the impossible and that it is not difficult for You to do it. We pray that we stay close to Your direction, and that if You ever tell us to do something that seems impossible, help us to do it with faith! Amen.”


Today’s sermon by Senior Pastor Rev. Duncan Graham was titled, “Jesus In The Temple,” and was based on Mark 11:11-33:

11 And Jesus went into Jerusalem and into the temple. So when He had looked around at all things, as the hour was already late, He went out to Bethany with the twelve. 12 Now the next day, when they had come out from Bethany, He was hungry. 13 And seeing from afar a fig tree having leaves, He went to see if perhaps He would find something on it. When He came to it, He found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. 14 In response Jesus said to it, "Let no one eat fruit from you ever again." And His disciples heard it.

15 So they came to Jerusalem. Then Jesus went into the temple and began to drive out those who bought and sold in the temple, and overturned the tables of the moneychangers and the seats of those who sold doves. 16 And He would not allow anyone to carry wares through the temple. 17 Then He taught, saying to them, "Is it not written, 'My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations'? But you have made it a 'den of thieves.' " 18 And the scribes and chief priests heard it and sought how they might destroy Him; for they feared Him, because all the people were astonished at His teaching. 19 When evening had come, He went out of the city.

20 Now in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots. 21 And Peter, remembering, said to Him, "Rabbi, look! The fig tree which You cursed has withered away." 22 So Jesus answered and said to them, "Have faith in God. 23 For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be removed and be cast into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. 24 Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them. 25 "And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.

26 But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses." 27 Then they came again to Jerusalem. And as He was walking in the temple, the chief priests, the scribes, and the elders came to Him. 28 And they said to Him, "By what authority are You doing these things? And who gave You this authority to do these things?" 29 But Jesus answered and said to them, "I also will ask you one question; then answer Me, and I will tell you by what authority I do these things: 30 The baptism of John--was it from heaven or from men? Answer Me."

31 And they reasoned among themselves, saying, "If we say, 'From heaven,' He will say, 'Why then did you not believe him?' 32 But if we say, 'From men' "--they feared the people, for all counted John to have been a prophet indeed. 33 So they answered and said to Jesus, "We do not know." And Jesus answered and said to them, "Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things." ---New King James Translation

“Today’s Scripture is interesting from a number of points,” emphasized Pastor Graham. “For instance, why would Jesus curse a fig tree? Obviously, Jesus knew that it was not the season for figs. Over there, they have two crops of figs: One in June and early summer, and another, the biggest one, in the fall. There, they grow figs in vineyards, and care for them very carefully. Figs were important in the diet at that time, and the Israelites sometimes wore them around their necks, like beads on a string. This allowed them to sustain themselves from day to day.

“In this Scripture, Jesus comes, probably in April, and has just made His triumphal entry into Jerusalem, riding on the colt of a donkey,” adds Pastor Graham. “What we need to remember also is that the fig itself is symbolic of the nation of Israel, and this Scripture is a Parable of the position of Israel. This fig tree represents Israel, which Jesus condemns for non-belief and non-acceptance of the Messiah. Here, we see Israel portrayed as a fruitless nation. Since nothing is more important than bearing fruit, it’s a message both for Israel and for us.

“How does this Scripture impact our lives?” The Pastor’s answer to this is that when Jesus returns, we want all to be well with our souls. Here, Pastor Graham referred to another Scripture: Matthew 24:32:

24:32 "Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. ---New King James Translation

“In this Scripture, we see that the end is near when the bud is gone and the tree gets ready for the fig season,” explained the Pastor. “When you see Israel bud again, you will know the end is near. It is a prophetic prognostication. One recent development is the reinstatement of the Sanhedrin in Israel about two months ago, along with serious plans to re-build the Temple on the Temple Mount, right beside the Dome of the Rock.

“I’ve walked on the Temple Mount, and thought that I could see the ideal spot to re-build the Temple,” added the Pastor. “It’s where you can look out through the Eastern Gate, sealed now, but will be unsealed when Messiah returns. Israel is definitely looking at an area to re-build the Temple. If all this comes to pass as now appears possible, then some who seriously study prophecy in the Book of Daniel are also plugging in some of the possibilities for a rapture of the church: pre-tribulation, post-tribulation, etc. God does have a plan, and we will go before, during or after the tribulation.

“We definitely live in a time period when we need to be as ready for Jesus as ever,” cautioned Pastor Graham. “You can’t go wrong by being prepared, by being the one Jesus wants us to be, as suggested in today’s Scripture. He finds people more interested in self than in worshipping the Lord of Lords. When we go astray, we cease being fruitful. People can become so wrapped up in themselves that their worship goes astray. We need to keep a sense of righteousness toward each other, and avoid the me and my attitude at the expense a God and you attitude. Otherwise, that is a sure-fire formula for the wrath of God!

“And, these people in today’s Scripture thought they were religious,” said Pastor Graham. “They were so self-satisfied that Jesus got a little angry with righteous indignation, and He overturned the tables and booths in what He called a den of thieves where people had no business doing business of that kind. Those people were shocked, chagrined and no doubt went to the authorities to complain about Jesus upsetting their businesses. So, Jesus is ultimately asked by what authority He did the things He did, to which He responds with the counter question about John’s baptism.

“On that point, Jesus had them at a disadvantage,” suggested the Pastor. “If they answer that John’s baptism was from Heaven, then they must also accept John’s statement that Jesus was sent by God. If they say that John’s baptism is not of Heaven, they risk the anger of a population that widely regarded John the Baptist as a prophet of God. They are in a dilemma, and so refuse to answer the question. We, too, face what may, for some, be difficult choices: To please us or to please God? Are we wrapped up in self or in God?

“During this Lenten Season, we should take seriously the call of God for us to serve and worship Him, to get rid of sin, to repent. What did Rick Warren say: It’s not about us! It’s about Him, and what He would have us do and be. This is a time of serious self-reflection.

“As I said earlier, the Sanhedrin has been re-established,” reminded Pastor Graham. “The red heifer is ready for sacrifice. Israel is ready to re-establish animal sacrifice. It’s significant. A lot of people today don’t think that animal sacrifice will happen again, but you watch: It will. It’s important that we have our lives in line with the Lord. If necessary, we should re-establish our relationship with Him and live our lives in ways pleasing in His sight: Bear fruit!

“If Israel is expected to bear fruit, you can be sure the church is also,” added the Pastor. “I don’t know about you, but I want to be ready. I will examine myself very carefully as we welcome the risen Lord.”

In his closing prayer, the Pastor prayed that we all might have spiritual eyes to see, spiritual ears to hear, and that we be granted an understanding of the service that is expected of us during Lent: What we must do! That the signs be revealed to us, and that we may hear it. That the fruit be revealed to us, and that we be empowered to bear it. Amen.



WISE ONES, Frankie Brewer: Overcoming Prejudice.

LADIES BYKOTA CLASS, Peggy Boyd: The Risen Savior.

TINNEY CHAPEL MEN, Bill Knoop: The Case For Christ, a study by Lee Strobel.

OVERCOMERS: Jenna Nelson: The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren.

YOUTH: Ronny Ellison: Life Lessons from 1 & 2 Peter, a study by Max Lucado.

CHILDREN: Linda Hallman: Who Am I?

THE REMNANT CLASS, Joe Dan Boyd: Healthy Churches Transforming The World, Part 4.

The Renmant Righteousness handout is below:

Life Lessons # 256 from the recent “First Nationwide Healthy Churches Transforming the World” for the United Methodist Church held in Houston, Texas.

Quotes from Bishop Gregory V. Palmer:

1. I am persuaded that God is reclaiming the United Methodist Church.

Healthy churches are filled with healthy individuals.

3. We have been beating ourselves into bad health through the worship wars.

We are warring with ourselves and others about how we ought to do worship. Monographs are written about it.

5. First, let’s get our worship lexicon together! This won’t be solved until competing forces get together.

Stop the war & do the work to create space for all.

7. When the Apostle Paul says: “I have become all things to all people, so that I might by any means save some,” in 1 Corinthians 9.19-23, it does not seem to be a charade, but rather it seems his duty and high privilege to relate to different kinds of people.

As Paul moved into different settings and contexts, he seems to say that he had to see himself in solidarity with those he sought to reach.

Perhaps this is a way for you to think about your mission and witness as you struggle for ways to do ministry in this extraordinarily complex and pluralistic world?

Perhaps our first goal should be this: To get over ourselves! People of faith have been there.
Our goal is not to feel good about ourselves, but rather to proclaim the Gospel of God’s Christ.

If you are willing to understand yourself, or your ministry: It’s not something way out there. Rather, where we are [here and now] is a ripe & hungry mission field that hungers for spiritual fulfillment.

There’s no evidence in the Holy Writ that we are offered a choice between social justice and personal piety. We are called to do both!
Speak up and do something: Look up and imagine the Triune God looking at you and saying, “Go for it!”
15. The only thing that keeps us from finding the Gospel center is fear: Our orientation of heart, mind & body!

TODAY’S DATE: 02-27-05

The Remnant

Sunday School Class

Tinney Chapel UMC

Winnsboro, Texas


Healthy Churches, Part 5 (Based on the book, Becoming A Healthy Church, by Stephen A. Macchia.) We will do this study on each First Sunday, eventually covering these topics: Essential ingredients of a healthy ministry; God’s empowering Presence; God-exalting worship; Spiritual disciplines; Learning & growing in community; A commitment to loving and caring relationships; Servant-leadership development; An outward focus; Wise administration and accountability; Networking with the Body of Christ; Stewardship and generosity; The process of becoming a healthy church.


Readings for Third Sunday in Lent: Exodus 17:1-7; Psalm 95; Romans 5:1-11; John 4:5-42.

Sunday, February 20, 2005


New Senior Adult Fellowship Ministry

New Ministry Founders: Carolyn Beavers, left, and Linda Stevens, center, are shown visiting with Mollie Stanton. Beavers and Stevens, along with husbands Dick Beavers and Bill Stevens (neither shown here), founded the newest ministry at Tinney Chapel, a fellowship group for senior adults. A contest is underway to name the new ministry group. Photo by David Stanton.



“A prize will be awarded to the winner of a recently announced contest to name the new Seniors Fellowship Ministry, kicked off on Feb. 15 by the Beavers and the Stevens.

Names already submitted include Lifelight and Primetimers (by Joe Dan Boyd), Wise Ones After Hours (by members of the Sunday School Class) and The Swingers (by Emmaline Hallman). Pass on your contest submissions to either of the four founders: Caroline, Linda, Dick or Bill.

To help you a bit, here are some of the activities now under consideration by this new Seniors Fellowship Ministry, either collectively or individually by some participants: Speakers on a variety of subjects, various games, support each other and those outside the group or even outside the church, gospel singing events, trips (Arkansas and Alaska are at the top of the current list), skydiving, pan for gold. Well, you get the idea.

The new group’s next meeting is March 17 at Vaughan’s Catfish Place. To participate, be at the church parking lot by 4:00 p.m.Don’t forget the contest (and PRIZE) to NAME this new group!


Wanda Hardin and Betty Asbill, both recipients of Tinney Chapel Building Committee Service Jackets this morning. (Betty’s jacket bears both her name and that of her late husband, Jim.)

Tinney Chapel Children, who are soon to start a fundraiser drive by selling cannas*, obtained for Tinney Chapel UMC by Bill Knoop. Go for it, kids! Thanx, Bill! * Canna. Any of various perennial tropical herbs of the genus Canna, having clusters of large, showy flowers and including an edible variety (Latin canna, cane).



Greeters: Danny Lake & Roger Schneider.

Soundman: Bob Deitering.

Ushers: Roger Schneider & Danny Lake.


Pianist: Pat Hollingsworth.

Songleader for hymns: Angela Wylie.


Joyful Joyful We Adore Thee; Freely Freely; God Is So Good; Great Is Thy Faithfulness.

Call to Worship & Opening Prayer: Rev. Gene Miller.

Morning Prayer & Lord’s Prayer: Pastor Duncan Graham


Offertory Prayer


Gloria Patri

Apostles Creed


Today, Senior Pastor Rev. Duncan Graham passed out pictures and puzzles to the children after he had engaged them in some evangelistic butterfly banter: “Butterflies are pretty,” he declared. “But caterpillars are hairy, bristly and not so pretty, as I view them. Still, keep in mind that a caterpillar spins a cocoon in which it remains for several weeks, then breaks the shell to emerge as a beautiful butterfly, a different creature.”

The pastor related this portion of the butterfly life cycle to the story in Chapter 3 of John’s Gospel. There, Jesus told Nicodemus that, to see the Kingdom of God, he must be born again:

John 3:5 Jesus answered, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God..." --- New King James Translation

“When Jesus is the Lord of our life, we become a new creation in Christ Jesus,” added Pastor Graham. “Some days you may feel like a caterpillar, inching along, trying to do your best. But Jesus can make a butterfly of you, a new creation, in short order.”

In his closing prayer, the Pastor said: “May each of our lives be like that of the beautiful butterfly, a new Creation in Christ Jesus, each and every day. Amen.”


Senior Pastor Rev. Duncan Graham’s sermon topic today was The Shaking Of Jerusalem. It was a continuation of his series on the last days of the life of Jesus. This sermon dealt with The Triumphal Entry, an event recorded in all four of the Gospels, reminded Pastor Graham, who said this suggests to him that this is an event of tremendous importance, which shook Jerusalem to its foundational core, although not in the sense of war or an earthquake. Today’s sermon was based on John 12:12-19:

12 The next day a great multitude that had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, 13 took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out: "Hosanna! 'Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!' The King of Israel!" 14 Then Jesus, when He had found a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written: 15 "Fear not, daughter of Zion; Behold, your King is coming, Sitting on a donkey's colt." 16 His disciples did not understand these things at first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things were written about Him and that they had done these things to Him. 17 Therefore the people, who were with Him when He called Lazarus out of his tomb and raised him from the dead, bore witness. 18 For this reason the people also met Him, because they heard that He had done this sign. 19 The Pharisees therefore said among themselves, "You see that you are accomplishing nothing. Look, the world has gone after Him!" ---New King James Translation

“In the Scripture, we see some important things,” added Pastor Graham. “This was a shaking that attacked the religious power of all Israel. Jesus riding on the colt of a donkey was prophecy fulfilled. Those who were in the know realized it was a prophecy from the ninth chapter of the Book of Zechariah:

9 "Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, Lowly and riding on a donkey, A colt, the foal of a donkey. ---New King James Translation

“We see the meekness of Jesus in this Scripture,” said Pastor Graham. “He is a King of the people who is for and with the people, a radical departure from anything the world had seen about Kings and Kingdoms. But, this all started back in Bethlehem when Jesus was born in a manger. The story of Jesus would be kind of like saying to us: See, the President of the United States is driving up! We would think something was wrong. Presidents don’t do that! And, if they did, would be covered by Secret Service agents, and we could not get near him.

“It’s the same with Kings and Queens, except in fairy tales and nursery rhymes,” added the Pastor. “Their guards do what they can to protect the Kings and Queens. But, Jesus did not need or require protection from the people. Rather, Jesus desired to be with them. It’s why He came down to where we are, to be a part of our lives, assure our salvation. Never before had a King like this been seen, and never since: One who really wants to be with you and be a part of your life.

“Jesus once said, ‘Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.’ In this case, the meek are not the weak. The word refers more to a kind of humility. Jesus did not think He was better than others, and He served others. He lived out that lifestyle before us, so we could see for ourselves that the King of the World does not isolate or tax us. Rather, He desires to share the daily fare that you and I enjoy. That speaks volumes to those who have faith in Jesus. All this in today’s Scripture, took place just a few days after Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. Many came to Jerusalem on Palm Sunday to see Him, hoping that maybe he would do something.

“They were curious, and came to be part of the event,” added the Pastor. “Many believed, and waved their palm branches, shouted Hosanna, the King comes, Hosanna! But the religious leaders were shaken and nervous, probably thinking: We’ve got to do something. The whole world is going after Jesus! They see Him as the Messiah. But the religious leaders were jealous, envious. So Jesus sent a message, loud and clear: The King of Glory has power to raise the dead and so He will raise you in a time to come, some to judgment, some to rewards.

“When we live in Jesus Christ, we have assurances of that,” emphasized Pastor Graham. “That’s why we want all to know that He has the power to raise to Eternal Life. His desire is that all be saved and live with Him forever to enjoy the best that He has. But, the choice He leaves to us. We can be like the Pharisees: Get upset, and bring and end to a precious life. Or, we can be like those on the road, and wave palms, paving the way for the King to enter the Temple.

“The most of the Holy Spirit you will ever experience is Jesus through your heart,” said the Pastor. “Your heart fills to overflowing. We do not serve a Lord who does not care about the difficulties of our lives. He is not distant from us, but comes in the most humble of circumstances, to live with us, to offer us life. In one of the other Gospels, Chapter 19 of Luke’s, we are told that Jesus was asked to quiet the crowd:

37 Then, as He was now drawing near the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works they had seen, 38 saying: "'Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!' Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!" 39 And some of the Pharisees called to Him from the crowd, "Teacher, rebuke Your disciples." 40 But He answered and said to them, "I tell you that if these should keep silent, the stones would immediately cry out." ---New King James Translation

“I don’t want a rock to take my place in praising God,” declared Pastor Graham. “I want to Praise God for myself. Meanwhile, Jesus said that, if the crowd kept silent, then the stones would cry out. Jesus also had other things to say about Jerusalem: That He would like to gather them as a mother hen gathers her brood, and He even spoke prophetically about the coming destruction of Jerusalem, which did not occur until 70 A.D. when thousands were killed.

“What a difference it makes for those who believe and accept Jesus Christ as Savior,” added the Pastor. “What a wonderful future they have assured. You have to be overwhelmed with the greatness and the humility of it. His Life, so precious, so divine, and yet He came to be a part of the suffering and misery of mankind. All that to offer the opportunity that we might become sacred. This needs to shake the foundation of every person born into this world, to accept the King.

“If you have not done so, seek His faith until you have one,” said the Pastor. Nothing is more precious in this life than having an encounter with Jesus Christ. Changing our lives is what He is all about! He changes us, looks upon us, evokes a promise from our mouth, eyes, lives. My prayer is that this Triumphal Entry happen all over again, with as great an impact as then in Jerusalem. The day will come when the Temple Gate will open and Jesus will enter: A King who is of the people, Son of Man, with people along the way, assessable. What a joy. What a mystery. But all Glory!”

In his closing prayer, Pastor Graham said, “Oh, gracious Lord, there is no way we can adequately grasp all that You are or are about, but we know you require something extra-special to you. Grant that we may re-live a Triumphal Entry into our lives, refreshed, renewed. You are exalted above all. If there is one here today who has not found Eternal Life in You, may they do so. All to your praise and glory forever and ever. Amen.”



WISE ONES, Frankie Brewer: Overcoming Uncertainty.

LADIES BYKOTA CLASS, Peggy Boyd: The Crucifixion.

TINNEY CHAPEL MEN, Bill Knoop: The Case For Christ, a study by Lee Strobel.

OVERCOMERS: Jenna Nelson: The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren.

YOUTH: Ronny Ellison: Fellowship.

CHILDREN: Linda Hallman: The Love & Healing of Jesus.

THE REMNANT CLASS, Joe Dan Boyd: Healthy Churches Transforming The World, Part 3.

The Renmant handout is below:


Life Lessons # 255 from the recent “first nationwide Healthy Churches training” for the United Methodist Church, held in Houston, Texas.

Quotes from the Rev. Juanita Rasmus, wife of Rev. Rudy Rasmus, both of St. John UMC, Houston.

1. Healthy churches need leaders that are healthy: mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually.

2. Being mentally healthy refers to a psychological state of well-being: You need to build your well-being!

3. Always be learning something.

4. Seek purpose and meaning (God’s Will) in your life.

5. Achieve a sense of personal independence.

6. Ask what you most want to do, then consider doing it.

7. Physical health is the ability to function with vigor and alertness.

8. Drink plenty of water. Most of us are often dehydrated much of the time (our bodies are 70% water).

9. Eat well-balanced meals & walk for exercise. (Walking was good for Jesus and His Disciples!)

10. Endurance, not speed, is your goal: It’s Scriptural!

11.Emotional health involves a sense of well-being. Have you checked your emotional health?

12. Always ask for what you need.

13.Pursue tasks to completion.

14. Adapt to handle stress.

15. Always value family relationships.

16.Keep anger at bay or under control.

17.Spiritual health involves a sense of knowing God and being known by God.

18.Crucify the false self that we present to the world: the mask, the one we pretend to be!

19. Christ, who lives & dwells in us, invites the false self to die.

20. When you get to know God, you get to know you!

21. Who I am is revealed in God.

TODAY’S DATE: 02-20-05

The Remnant

Sunday School Class

Tinney Chapel UMC

Winnsboro, Texas


Healthy Churches, Part 4.



Afterwards, reflect upon thoughts from the above link:

*How do I experience the presence of God in my daily life? Isa 6:1-8, Ps 51, 100, Acts 7:30-34.

*How does God answer my questions through the Bible? Ps 119:97-105, 2 Tim 3:14-17.

*What is the meaning and purpose of my life? Esther 4:13-16, Ps 28:12-18, Mat 5:13-16, Acts 26:12-18.

*How do I relate to God in prayer? Dan 9:17-21, Mat 6:5-15.

*In what ways do I love, respect and help my neighbors? Lev 19:11-18, I Cor 13:1-13.

*How does God heal my anger, fears and disappointments? Isa 41: 8-14, Eph 4:25-32.

*What shows that I have joy and inner peace in my life? Isa 26:1-4, Phil 4:4-9 and other sources.


Readings for Second Sunday in Lent: Genesis 12:1-4a; Psalm 121; Romans 4:1-5, 13-17; John 3:1-17.

Posted by Hello

Sunday, February 13, 2005


New Ministries For Tinney Chapel UMC

THE LADIES BYKOTA SUNDAY SCHOOL CLASS, led by Peggy Boyd (standing), was one of the new ministries initiated during 2004 at Tinney Chapel. Photo by Rev. Gene Miller.



· David & Mollie Stanton for leading the recent Residents Encounter Christ (REC) Walk at the Johnston Unit.

· Adler & Hearne, for a memorable concert Saturday night at the Trails Country Center for the Arts (TCCA) that was alternately a source of laughter and tears, before a (practically) packed house. A highlight: Lindy’s daughter, Kate, joined the former Tinney Chapel musical duo on one selection, to perform a stunning instrumental break, her fingers flying furiously up and down the guitar neck, on her father’s bluesy, up-tempo tour de force composition, Soup’s On. “Kate has been playing guitar only since last March,” reported the properly proud papa.

· The Beavers and the Stevens for their vision and courage to begin a new fellowship ministry for the elderly. If you’d like to help, attend the new ministry’s inaugural planning session at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 15, in (where else?) Fellowship Hall. The meeting concludes with LUNCH & if you need a RIDE, CONTACT CAROLYN & DICK BEAVERS OR LINDA & BILL STEVENS.


“Are you all familiar with the game, Simon Says?” asked Pastor Graham. Yes, the children knew that game. The Pastor then gave them a series of quick commands, according to the Simon Says rules. Pretty soon, the rapid pace of the commands proved a tad confusing, and the Pastor used that as an object lesson in how we can all be misled, moving quickly to the example of Jesus being tempted by Satan in the wilderness.

There, Satan tried to confuse Jesus in an attempt to convince the Son of God to perform actions that would have been contrary to the Will of God, the Father. In each instance, Jesus recognized the faulty logic used by Satan and quoted Scripture in His refusals to comply. Eventually, Satan gave up and left “for a more opportune time.”

“Jesus was keeping Himself in the Word of God,” explained Pastor Graham. “If we do that, we are less likely to stray. Our best defense is always to look at what God’s Word says. That tells us what we need to live up to.” In his closing prayer, Pastor Graham asked the Lord to bless these young people: “Make them obedient to Your Word,” he added. “And may they never be misled or side-tracked by anything. Amen.”


Senior Pastor Duncan Graham’s sermon topic today, “Lazarus Come Forth,” was based on John 11:1-57, but he read only selected passages during a paraphrase of the familiar story of what might well have been the most impressive of the miracles performed by Jesus: Raising Lazarus from the dead!

“Jesus has left Jerusalem and Judea to go back to Galilee,” explained the Pastor, who discussed the political ramifications. “Pontius Pilate was in charge of Judea and one of the Herods was in charge of Galilee. In Judea, some were already beginning to seek how they would arrest and kill Jesus. While Jesus was in Galilee, word got out that a friend of Jesus, Lazarus, was sick, and his sisters wanted Jesus to come and heal their brother.

“But Jesus continued His work for a while, eventually telling His Disciples that they would go to Bethany because of Lazarus,” said the Pastor. “The Disciples were immediately concerned for the safety of their Master. By the time they arrive, Lazarus has been dead four days and has been buried. Jesus is met by Martha, one of the sisters of Lazarus, and He asked where they have buried their brother. She takes Jesus to the burial place, but also tells Him that if He had come earlier, Lazarus would not have died.

“Mary, the other sister of Lazarus, also appears in the account, and we learn that a lot of Jews had come to mourn for Lazarus,” explains Pastor Graham. “Jesus asks that the stone be rolled away from the burial place, and prays in a manner intended to cause the Jews to believe in Him as the Son of God when He raises Lazarus from the dead. We are told that Jesus wept on this occasion, but I believe that his tears were because of the unbelief of those who did not accept His message and ministry as the Messiah, and thus they could not be led into His Light.

“We still have some of that mindset today,” said the Pastor. “Some of the ‘religious’ do not believe. Our claims to Christianity need to be lived.”

Here, the Pastor read from the Scripture:

11:38 Then Jesus, again groaning in Himself, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone lay against it.

11:39 Jesus said, "Take away the stone." Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to Him, "Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days."

11:40 Jesus said to her, "Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?"

11:41Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying. And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, "Father, I thank You that You have heard Me.

11:42 And I know that You always hear Me, but because of the people who are standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent Me."

11:43 Now when He had said these things, He cried with a loud voice, "Lazarus, come forth!"

11:44 And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, "Loose him, and let him go."

11:45 Then many of the Jews who had come to Mary, and had seen the things Jesus did, believed in Him.

11:46 But some of them went away to the Pharisees and told them the things Jesus did.

11:47 Then the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered a council and said, "What shall we do? For this Man works many signs.

11:48 If we let Him alone like this, everyone will believe in Him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and nation."

11:49 And one of them, Caiaphas, being high priest that year, said to them, "You know nothing at all,

11:50 nor do you consider that it is expedient for us that one man should die for the people, and not that the whole nation should perish."

11:51 Now this he did not say on his own authority; but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation,

11:52 and not for that nation only, but also that He would gather together in one the children of God who were scattered abroad.

11:53 Then, from that day on, they plotted to put Him to death.

11:54 Therefore Jesus no longer walked openly among the Jews, but went from there into the country near the wilderness, to a city called Ephraim, and there remained with His disciples.

11:55 And the Passover of the Jews was near, and many went from the country up to Jerusalem before the Passover, to purify themselves.

11:56 Then they sought Jesus, and spoke among themselves as they stood in the temple, "What do you think--that He will not come to the feast?"

11:57 Now both the chief priests and the Pharisees had given a command, that if anyone knew where He was, he should report it, that they might seize Him. ---New King James Translation

“This whole experience occurred close to the final Passover Feast that Jesus shared with His Disciples,” said Pastor Graham. “Soon, He will be flogged, tortured, crucified and killed. We have just entered the season of Lent. On Wednesday, we had the ceremony of the ashes and the oil. We are also beginning to approach the time for rejoicing in the resurrection of the Lord. But, beginning in the first or second century A.D., Christians began to use this as a time of preparation. As Christians, we prepare ourselves for that time of crucifixion and resurrection by a constant condition of repentance: Prayer, presence in service, dedication to the Word.

“As we fill ourselves daily with the Word of God, it will purify and guide us to a more righteous mode and make us more obedient to God’s Will and realization that we are saved by Grace through Faith in Jesus Christ. None of this necessarily means that we have achieved perfection. We need help from God to overcome sin and be pure and holy as Jesus was. To purify our hearts and minds. To live in that holiness that God has provided. If we think we are saved and are without sin, we are only fooling ourselves.

“The only thing we can do is root it out,” added the Pastor. “The Good News is that we are washed in the Blood. Here, we ask, with John Wesley: Is it possible? The answer is yes: Jesus came to tell us that. We are to think not of self, but of Him and of others. We are to let Him live in and through us. Then, we can become the kind of people He wants us to be, with an attitude of penance in our lives.

“Faith leads us to joy and victory in our lives,” said Pastor Graham. “We serve a wonderful God. He also commands that we be obedient, leading us away from sin and into righteousness. Though life, more and more I want to walk as He walked, out of gratitude: To live as He lived, do as He did by serving and blessing others. Jesus never did anything wrong! It’s interesting that the government found nothing wrong with Jesus, but the religious folks did. They, and their status quo, were threatened by Jesus.

“We need to ask ourselves if we have become so satisfied with our own world, that we don’t want it to change,” added Pastor Graham. “That we don’t want something better? That something would jerk us right side up and right side out! That’s drastic, but it may be what we all need if we are to avoid complacency. How do we get there? Well, I’m glad you asked. By an attitude of humility. If we say, Lord, deal with my sin, that’s the wrong attitude. Rather, we should say: Lord, deal with me, so I can be the person You want me to be. So that I can do that which pleases You.

“Help me realize that it’s not about me, my life and my family or the circle of friends I gather with in church,” said the Pastor. “It’s about which world is the right one. Say, if you want to change the whole world, one person at a time, start with me, not your neighbor! God is not interested in your recommendations about your neighbor. He knows them better than you do. He is interested in your willingness to present your life to Him: Here am I, use me, change me, work through me!

“That’s His desire,” emphasized the Pastor. “God is no respecter of persons. He does not care how great or how lowly we are. He is as interested in working through us as in anyone else in the world. Lazarus was not raised from the dead because he was such a great person. We hear no more about Lazarus and his effect on changing the world. All we know is that he was a friend of Jesus, and that he was raised from the dead. We can only hope that Lazarus did work for Jesus after this. But there’s nobody more special than you and there’s nobody Jesus loved more than you.

“Sometimes our own unbelief causes us to lose sight of the fact that God knows when the sparrow falls and He knows the number of hairs on our heads. He knows that much about you and me. He knows you intimately, and cares about you. The glorious thing about the characters in the Bible is that they responded back to God. They would give up everything to serve and follow God, and do His bidding, even to death. The Apostles and others did this. Nothing is more important than to do the Will of God as gratefully as the others did it.

“The truth is that we do not forsake all to follow Him,” declared Pastor Graham. “We still think of ourselves more than Him. But the greatest joy in life comes when we sell out to Jesus Christ, and give ourselves totally to His Will and service. The Lent season reminds us to prepare our hearts, our lives, in somber, serious remembrance that Jesus Christ sanctified it all for you and me.

“I believe with all my heart that if you had been the only sinner, He would still have died: To the least of these. He knows your name, where you live and your Social Security number. He wants you to follow and serve Him. This Lent season, we will look at some examples of the last days of Jesus, to prepare us for that celebration of joy, the celebration of our great Savior: Have Thine own way, You are the Potter, I am the clay. Mold me.”

In his closing prayer, the Pastor said: “We come in the Name of the Lord, Jesus. Do a glorious thing in our lives. Something special. We ask that, through Your help and strength, we be changed to the image of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. Yes, Lord, begin with me. Amen.”



WISE ONES, Frankie Brewer: Overcoming Pride.

LADIES BYKOTA CLASS, Peggy Boyd: Jonah: The Reluctant Prophet.

TINNEY CHAPEL MEN, Bill Knoop: The Case For Christ, a study by Lee Strobel.

OVERCOMERS: Jenna Nelson: The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren.

YOUTH: Stephen Graham: Fellowship.

CHILDREN: Linda Hallman: Valentines.

THE REMNANT CLASS, Joe Dan Boyd: Healthy Churches Transforming The World, Part 2.

The Remnant Class handout is below:


Life Lessons # 254 from the recent “first nationwide Healthy Churches training” for the United Methodist Church, held in Houston, Texas.

Quotes from the Rev. Rudy Rasmus, St. John UMC, Houston:

1. To pay our apportionments, because of our strong belief in the importance of the Methodist Connectional System, we have borrowed money in 2 of the past 3 years.

2. To be an effective church leader, know how to dream.

3. A church leader should be accountable to somebody: Start with God and move down. You are not a Lone Ranger or a Free Agent. You are capable of doing something stupid.

4. Be able to make other leaders: Bring other people in to leadership.

5. Worship is the gateway to our community: It is the one glimpse that some have of God.

6. The goal of worship is to entertain, quicken the conscience, image the beauty of God, elevate the will to the purpose of God.

7. To be effective, worship must be epic: People need to feel something.

8. To be effective, worship must be experiential: A means for experience is the transformation of the person who has the experience.

9. Welcome the experience!

10.Worship is more than a couple of prayers and a song. It is more than remote control.

11.To be effective, worship must be a participatory environment.

12.My goal is to reach those who are not even thinking about going to church.

13.Our survey of those who attend St. John’s UMC revealed their top three reasons for showing up: (3) Our music & worship. (2) Our preaching. (1) To feel the love.

TODAY’S DATE: 02-13-05

The Remnant

Sunday School Class

Tinney Chapel UMC

Winnsboro, Texas

ASSIGNMENT FOR NEXT SUNDAY: 02-20-05: Healthy Churches, Part 3.


Afterwards, reflect on thoughts from the above links:

1. When I am at church, I find that everyone else, from the Pastor on down the line, encourages me in my faith and strengthens my desire to serve the Lord with all my heart and soul and mind and strength. Likewise, I do what I can to have this effect on everyone else. This synergistic effect is amazing in that everyone, through the simple act of meeting together, can strengthen everyone else. --Ben Farrar

2. As St. Kreekor Narékatzee points out: “The greatest gift of prayer is not receiving that which we ask for, but being in the presence of God while we pray.” People with this understanding go to Church precisely because they want to be in the presence of God within a community of believers. They do not need to go to Church in order to be in the presence of God; they can do that at home as well. But being in the presence of other faithful while praying adds a greater sense of inspiration and enormity to prayer … it transforms prayer to worship! These are the people who have a relationship with God that is personal, direct, inspirational, and realistic. These are the faithful whose lives are truly enriched by the Faith! ---Rev. Fr. Stépanos Dingilian, Ph.D.


Readings for First Sunday in Lent: Genesis 2:15-17, 3:1-7; Psalm 32; Romans 5:12-19; Matthew 4:1-11.

Saturday, February 12, 2005


A Tinney Chapel Wedding for Kevin & Ashley Tinney

A WEDDING THIS WEEK AT TINNEY CHAPEL. On February 12, 2005, Ashley Nicole Crone became the bride of Kevin Ed Tinney. The wedding ceremony was performed in the sanctuary by Rev. Bobby Ganaway. The reception was held in the Fellowship Hall of the new Family Life & Christian Education Center. Photo by Shelley Hodges.

Sunday, February 06, 2005


The Tinney Chapel Consecration DVD Video

TOMMY BOYD PRODUCES A DVD OF OUR CONSECRATION CEREMONY, AND DONATES IT TO TINNEY CHAPEL UMC AS A FUND RAISER. Tommy, at left in photo with his wife, Georgia Ann, was born and raised in the Old Tinney Home Place, at the intersection of what is now FM 312 and CR 4620. He grew up attending Tinney Chapel from his earliest recollections, and considers his recent generous action a partial payback on his heritage from the quintessential country church. "I could have produced the DVD much sooner, but the software was brand new, and I had to do some tweaking as I learned how to use it," Tommy explains. The new DVD, packaged in an attractive display case, is decorated with four-color photos, and the title, Hey, Church, Do You Know Who You Are? is based on Bishop Rhymes H. Moncure Jr.'s powerful sermon for the Jan. 9, 2005 Consecration Ceremony. Posted by Hello



Attractively packaged, illustrated with color photos and produced with both technical skill and Christian love by Tommy Boyd, who grew up in the Tinney Chapel tradition, this video captures all the drama and inspiration of January 9, 2005, when the dream became a reality in the consecration of the new Family Life & Christian Education Center.

Titled, Hey, Church, Do You Know Who You Are? this video production preserves Bishop Moncure’s unforgettable, powerful sermon, the Tinney Chapel choir, the Tinney Chapel Children, District Superintendent Rev. Pat Beghtel-Mahle, North Texas Methodist Reporter Editor Rev. Dr. Joan LaBarr, our own two Pastors, the Tinney Chapel Building Committee, and everything else you will never forget from that special day. (Thanks also to David Stanton, from whose video Tommy produced the DVD.)

To preserve those images and those voices forever in your personal library, hand a $15.00 check (made out to Tinney Chapel UMC) to Church Secretary Elaine Knoop and pick up your copy of the DVD during church business hours (Mon-Tues, 9:00 am to 1:30 pm; Wed-Thurs, 9:00 am to 11:30 am).

Oh yes, this special first edition of the DVD is limited to 20 copies.

To order a DVD by mail, send your check to the attention of Elaine Knoop, TC church secretary/treasurer, at Tinney Chapel UMC, 449 County Road, Winnsboro, TX 75494.

By the way, Tommy Boyd contributed all his time, talent, materials, software use and overflowing love associated with this project FREE. One hundred percent of the purchase income from this very special DVD goes to Tinney Chapel.



Senior Pastor Rev. Duncan Graham told the children about the Transfiguration of Jesus, referring them to Matthew 17. He described the event as one involving Jesus and His three main Disciples: Peter, James and John. The Pastor told the children that Jesus’ whole being changed, with His shining face a blinding experience. He also told about Moses and Elijah appearing to talk with Jesus. By this time, the Pastor suggested to the children that the three Disciples were likely overwrought. He told them that Peter asked Jesus if they should build three tabernacles on the spot as a kind of commemoration or permanent memorial of the unique event.

“But, Jesus doesn’t actually answer the question,” said Pastor Graham, who then quoted Scripture:

Matthew 17:5 While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud, saying, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!" ---New King James Translation

The Pastor then switched the topic to today’s use of bumper stickers for instant messaging, asking if anyone had bumper stickers on the family car. “Yes,” said Matthew Stanley: “God bless our troops.” The Pastor recalled bumper stickers he had seen, including, “Honk if you love Jesus” and “God said it, that settles it and I believe it.” The Pastor said the last phrase of the latter was not necessary: “If God said it, what we believe makes no difference, because it is the Truth whether or not we believe it, although we are blessed if we do believe.”

In his closing prayer, the Pastor thanked God for the Truth in God’s own son, Jesus: “He’s Your only begotten son, divine, Lord, and He will come again because You said He would. Help us to always believe in what You say. Amen.”


Senior Pastor Rev. Duncan Graham’s topic today was “Gleanings,” and his Scripture was Ruth 1:4-8 and 11-17:

“Ruth is one of the five books that is read in public at certain services in Israel each year,” began Pastor Graham during the introduction to his sermon and Scripture. “Ruth, a Moabitess, married into a Jewish family during the time of the Judges, when they (the Judges) were the head people of Israel, spoke for the Lord and led the Israelites in battle. Our story takes place just before the time of Saul.

“This was a time when Israel was in turmoil, chaos and strife, within and without,” added the Pastor. “Elimelech went to Moab to find a better way of life during a time of famine in Israel. He and Naomi raised their two boys, Mahlon and Chilion, who later married Moabite women, Orpah and Ruth. But Elimelech died and left Naomi a widow, and then the sons died and left their wives as widows. After all this, Naomi decided to return to Bethlehem and live among her relatives, urging her daughters-in-law to return to the homes of their mothers:

4 Now they took wives of the women of Moab: the name of the one was Orpah, and the name of the other Ruth. And they dwelt there about ten years. 5 Then both Mahlon and Chilion also died; so the woman survived her two sons and her husband.
6 Then she arose with her daughters-in-law that she might return from the country of Moab, for she had heard in the country of Moab that the Lord had visited His people by giving them bread. 7 Therefore she went out from the place where she was, and her two daughters-in-law with her; and they went on the way to return to the land of Judah. 8 And Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, "Go, return each to her mother's house. The Lord deal kindly with you, as you have dealt with the dead and with me. ---New King James Translation

The Pastor explained that Naomi interpreted the turn of events as an indication that the Lord had acted against her.

11 But Naomi said, "Turn back, my daughters; why will you go with me? Are there still sons in my womb, that they may be your husbands? 12 Turn back, my daughters, go--for I am too old to have a husband. If I should say I have hope, if I should have a husband tonight and should also bear sons, 13 would you wait for them till they were grown? Would you restrain yourselves from having husbands? No, my daughters; for it grieves me very much for your sakes that the hand of the Lord has gone out against me!" 14 Then they lifted up their voices and wept again; and Orpah kissed her mother-in-law, but Ruth clung to her. 15 And she said, "Look, your sister-in-law has gone back to her people and to her gods; return after your sister-in-law." 16 But Ruth said: "Entreat me not to leave you, Or to turn back from following after you; For wherever you go, I will go; And wherever you lodge, I will lodge; Your people shall be my people, And your God, my God. 17 Where you die, I will die, And there will I be buried. The Lord do so to me, and more also, If anything but death parts you and me." ---New King James Translation

“One daughter goes back to worship idols, whether personal gods or national gods they were still idols,” explained Pastor Graham. “But, Ruth decided to go with Naomi, and remain with the family she had married into. We are not told why Ruth decided to do this. It may have been love for Naomi or honor for her dead husband or even possibly a relationship with the Living God of Israel. Perhaps a Hope had been transmitted to Ruth from Naomi. For whatever reason, Ruth decided not to return to idol worship.

“When Ruth made that choice, however, she knew nothing of the details as far as we know,” added Pastor Graham. “Ruth had not been to Bethlehem in Judah, but she was making a commitment to help provide for Naomi, her mother-in-law. In that day, Israel had no welfare program such as we have today. They did have a welfare program in Israel, but it required that you still had to work.

“Upon arrival in Bethlehem, the talk of the area was that Naomi had returned and brought her daughter-in-law,” said the Pastor. “They likely said things like, Poor Naomi, how terrible that the Hand of God has struck out against her, how sad, and the like. But, the first thing you know, it’s time for the barley harvest, and Naomi gives instructions to Ruth for gleaning the fields. That was, in fact, the welfare program in Israel at the time. It would not make you rich, but it would keep you from starving, and perhaps keep a few clothes on your back.

“By Mosaic Law, widows, orphans, the down-and-out could follow the paid harvesters and glean anything that was left,” explained Pastor Graham. “In fact, the harvesters were supposed to leave something for the poor to glean. Into this situation, Ruth happened on the field of Boaz, and Ruth’s work ethic during the gleaning process quickly made it clear to all who could see that she is a very industrious woman who is planning to take care of her mother-in-law. All this combines to create for Ruth the reputation of being a very virtuous woman.

“Eventually, Boaz arrives to check on the harvest of his field,” said Pastor Graham. “He notices Ruth, is impressed, asks about her and receives a good report. Boaz tells Ruth to remain in his barley field and for the subsequent wheat harvest, and promises that the harvesters will not trouble her. In fact, Boaz even tells the harvesters to leave a little extra for Ruth to glean. There were two reasons for Boaz’s actions: He sees that Ruth is industrious, and Naomi is his relative.

“Part of the Mosaic Law of that time was that the nearest kinsman had the responsibility of caring for his family in time of trouble,” related the Pastor. “If the relative had to sell land, the nearest kinsman had the right to redeem that land and also to marry the widow involved. When Naomi learns that Boaz is her kinsman, she has hope that God will bless them.

“To shorten the story, Boaz marries Ruth the gleaner,” said Pastor Graham. “Ruth started gleaning a few grains for survival, and ends up gleaning redemption for herself and her mother-in-law. All this is a definite reference to Christ and The Church. Jesus Christ is the nearest kinsman the Church has. He came and gave His life to redeem the Church. Boaz redeemed not only Ruth and Naomi, but also is symbolic of God’s people. Finally, the birth of the child of Boaz and Ruth, Obed, becomes the heir apparent:

Ruth 17 (b) ... And they called his name Obed. He is the father of Jesse, the father of David. 18 Now this is the genealogy of Perez: Perez begot Hezron; 19 Hezron begot Ram, and Ram begot Amminadab; 20 Amminadab begot Nahshon, and Nahshon begot Salmon; 21 Salmon begot Boaz, and Boaz begot Obed; 22 Obed begot Jesse, and Jesse begot David. ---New King James Translation

“So Ruth and Boaz become the great grand parents of King David, who ranks close to Moses in Isralite history, because he was anointed by God as King of Israel, was a man after God’s own heart and his heir would rule forever. All this because of what Ruth did during desperate circumstances.

“When we are in desperate circumstances, we should remember that God may be about to overcome our troubles and lead us to a greater place where He is the redeemer, the restorer,” added the Pastor. “We are promised these things in Jesus Christ, and when God says it, that settles it! Watch expectantly for blessings provided by God to befall us, for they surely will.”
In his closing prayer, the Pastor said to God that we are grateful for the examples of Ruth and Boaz, which shows us what a glorious redeemer we have in Christ Jesus our Savior: “All to His glory forever. Amen.”



WISE ONES, Frankie Brewer: Overcoming Grief.

LADIES BYKOTA CLASS, Peggy Boyd: Jesus Will Return.

TINNEY CHAPEL MEN, Bill Knoop: The Case For Christ, a study by Lee Strobel.

OVERCOMERS: Jenna Nelson: The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren.

YOUTH: Stephen Graham: Fellowship.

CHILDREN: Linda Hallman: Jesus’ Baptism.

THE REMNANT CLASS, Joe Dan Boyd: Healthy Churches Transforming The World.

The Remnant Class handout is below:



Life Lessons # 253 from the recent “first nationwide Healthy Churches training” for the United Methodist Church, held in Houston, Texas:

1. A healthy church prescription includes:

2. Great Commission Matthew 28:19-20.

3. Great Commandment Matthew 22:37-38.

4. Great Requirement Micah 6:8.

5. Great Commitment Matthew 16:24.

6. John Wesley died March 2, 1791, filled with wisdom and The Spirit.

7. John Wesley overcame his doubts when his heart was strangely warmed and he became afire from God.

8. John Wesley founded Methodism, which became the first denomination to meet the spiritual needs of a new urban population.

9. John Wesley would have nothing of a self-indulgent pietism that led to retreating into oneself and domesticating or sanitizing religion.

10. Methodism, as founded by John Wesley, has always believed in and acted upon open hearts, open minds, and open doors—centuries before this became a TV slogan.

The Wesley material in items 6-10 was gleaned from a presentation by Dr. Leslie Griffiths, Dean of Wesley Chapel, London.

TODAY’S DATE: 02-06-05

The Remnant
Sunday School Class
Tinney Chapel UMC
Winnsboro, Texas



Afterwards, reflect upon these things from the links above:

1. Begin, my dear brethren, begin now: else the impression which you now feel will wear off; and possibly it may never return! What then will be the consequence? Instead of hearing that word, 'Come, ye blessed. . . . For I was sick and ye visited me,' you must hear that awful sentence, 'Depart, ye cursed! . . . For I was sick, and ye visited me not' (Matthew 25:34, 36, 41, 43)! –Covenant Discipleship Quarterly

2. All who follow Jesus Christ and seek to obey his teachings to "love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind, and love your neighbor as yourself" have the potential to be pastoral leaders for their congregation. They are pastoral leaders because others see and experience the grace of Jesus Christ through their lives. They are spiritual, servant leaders who follow the example of Jesus. These are ordinary people. They are laity and clergy. They are people like you. -- Steven W. Manskar

3. "This great gift of God, the salvation of our souls, is nothing more or less than the image of God stamped afresh upon our hearts. It is a renewal of believers. The spirit of their mind is conformed to the mind of Christ. . . . Their hope is that they will see God as God is. It is in this hope that they purify themselves as God is pure. They strive to be holy, as God is holy. They live this out in the way they conduct themselves in the world. It is through the living out of this life, to which God has called them, that they grow and mature in faith and love. In this way they will someday become the people God created them to be."— From A Perfect Love: Understanding John Wesley's "A Plain Account of Christian Perfection," §13, p. 23

4. What matters most in any Covenant Discipleship group is the members showing up each week to be together and to build one another up in love. Your presence each week is much more important than your "success" or "failure" with any part of your group covenant. The group exists to build up the body of Christ by building up one another. --- Covenant Discipleship Quarterly

5. ... in the Christian faith, listening to God is very important, despite the pitfalls. We need to receive the guidance God offers to us as individuals and as groups if we are serious about working in the world on God's behalf. At the same time, we need to know that our ability to deceive ourselves is huge. Learning to discern when the voice we are hearing is God's and when it is not is crucial to our faithfulness. Since we are invited, even urged, to listen to God, we ought to do so with both excitement and caution. And we have been given guidance. We have both the Bible and the help of the faith community of which we are a part. We can check out what we think we have heard with mature Christian friends whose spirit we trust. -- Susan W. N. Ruach, Ed.D.

6. Recently, among the various notes I have stashed away for years in my files, I came across a quote purportedly from Howard Thurman, the great African American Quaker, teacher, and writer. It goes like this: "Don't ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and then go do that. Because what the world needs are people who have come alive!" I was immediately put in mind of the early Church Father Ireneus, who famously proclaimed "The glory of God is the human being fully alive." --- Marjorie J. Thompson


Readings for Transfiguration Sunday: Exodus 24:12-18; Psalm 99; 2 Peter 1:16-21; Matthew 17:1-9.

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