Current Message Series

Becoming the Beloved Community

In the church calendar, the season between Easter and Advent is known as Ordinary Time.  What is ordinary for a church?  How are we to live together in such a time as this, which feels anything but ordinary?

With this message series, we are dreaming together about God’s call on our lives to allow God’s welcoming nature to transform us — that we might also be open to the ways that others might change us.

Through this transformation, we come closer to becoming the beloved community God calls us to be!

SEPTEMBER 24 – STORIES FROM THE OTHER SIDE – Rejected by the Church – Mark 6:1-6
Pastor April Blaine, in dialogue with Lisa Robinson
Jesus was rejected in his own home town. Too often the church is not ready to hear and receive the fullness of who we are.

OCTOBER 1 – LIVING OUT GOD’S DREAM FOR US AS A CHURCH – 1 Corinthians 12: 4-11
The apostle Paul often writes of the many different gifts that come through the Body of Christ. This week, the service will be shorter than normal (no sermon) so you can use the time to explore the various ways that you can pray for and serve God here at Hilliard UMC.

OCTOBER 8 – STORIES FROM THE OTHER SIDE – Is There a Third Way? – Matthew 5:38-42
Pastor April Blaine, in dialogue with Atifa Malik
God invites us out of the pathways that tell us there is only either/or, that expect that the only way to respond with violence is with more violence. This third way approach invites us into a new space, a space that calls us to consider that there may be a third way to live in the world that we hadn’t considered.  We will dialogue with our Muslim friend, Hilliard resident, and mom, Atifa Malik, about the ways she sees this invitation all the time in the world.

OCTOBER 15 – STORIES FROM THE OTHER SIDE – The Church God Dreams About – Youth Sunday
Youth will share stories of the church that they feel God is calling us to become from their own perspectives.

BECOMING THE BELOVED COMMUNITY: Simple Rules for Money

John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist movement, believed that the task of the church was to demonstrate by its visible life that the Gospel is not an idle dream but a truthful prescription that transforms reality.  He knew that nothing could be more destructive to the life of faith than the acquisition of wealth. At the same time, he knew that used with great wisdom and prudence, money could be the vehicle of food for the hungry, drink for the thirsty, and clothes for the naked.  For him, it was a matter of great concern that we enter into this place of tension and become wise stewards in how to employ this valuable gift and ensure that we are using it in ways that create true prosperity for all of God’s people. For Wesley this meant an utter transformation of our relationship to wealth, property, and the poor.

OCTOBER 22 – EARN –  Money as a Tool to Become the Church God Dreams About – Proverbs 3:13-16
Pastor April Blaine
Drawing this week from the wisdom tradition in Proverbs, we will seek to understand this abundant and rich life that we are called to, that invites us to work with diligence to earn all we can to build up the beloved community of which God invites us to participate.

OCTOBER 29 – SAVE –  Matthew 6:19-21
Pastor Karen Muntzing
Saving is hard today. So we are invited to a reordering of priority in the direction of deciding to live on less. This discipline of living on less helps us in our life, and in our life of discipleship, and gives us breathing room and room to share with others out of the generosity of our hearts.

NOVEMBER 5 – GIVE – Becoming the Church God Dreams About – Luke 19:1-10, All Saints Day & Commitment Sunday
Pastor April Blaine
For John Wesley, earning and saving are nothing if you do not become a person who gives all they can. Wesley says that a conversion that does not turn us toward the poor, a redistribution of wealth, cannot plausibly claim that there is any relation between saving persons and changing society. We will explore the conversion of Zaccheus, a wealthy tax collector whose encounter with Jesus calls him to redistribute his wealth in ways that will build up the community around him. What does it mean to honor this tool God has given us by holding it loosely enough to share it with great generosity?

NOVEMBER 12 – Preschool Appreciation Sunday

The Season of Advent: The God of Surprises

Embracing the mystery and beauty of a God who shows up in the places we least expect…

NOVEMBER 19 – First Sunday of Advent – We Know Not the Time – Mark 13:24-37
God is consistently a God of surprises.  A God who defies our expectations and our black and white, either/or ideas.  This is a God who shows up when we aren’t expecting it in places where we may not be looking.  Where is God showing up in your own midst this season?

NOVEMBER 26 – Second Sunday of Advent – In the Wilderness – Isaiah 40:1-11
This God of surprises has a knack for showing up right in the midst of our times of greatest struggle and suffering, making a way in the wilderness.

DECEMBER 3 – Third Sunday of Advent – Out of Nazareth – Luke 1:26-38
The last place people expected the presence of the incarnate God to show up was to a poor unmarried teenager in the working village of Nazareth.   We do not always expect extraordinary things to come out of places that others have forsaken.

DECEMBER 10 – SPECIAL MUSIC SERVICE: CHRISTMAS CANTATA, special worship times: 9:30am, 11:00am, 6:30pm.

DECEMBER 17 – Fourth Sunday of Advent – Honoring the Lowly – Luke 1:46b-55
Pastor Karen Muntzing
God’s choosing of Mary tells us a story about the larger work of God. This is a God who delights in lifting up the vulnerable, weak, and powerless and giving them a powerful role in the story of redemption.

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 21 – Blue Christmas – Healing Service – 7pm, The Sanctuary

DECEMBER 24 – Christmas – The Ultimate Surprise – Luke 2:7-20
Who expected a baby?  And yet, perhaps in the land of war torn strife, this was the only gift that could disarm and surprise people enough to let down their guard and receive it with vulnerability and joy.

CHRISTMAS EVE WORSHIP SCHEDULE

11am – Traditional, The Sanctuary
3:30pm – Family, The Sanctuary
5pm – Family, The Sanctuary
7pm – Contemporary, Warehouse 839
8:30pm – Contemporary, Warehouse 839
11pm – Traditional, The Sanctuary