3 State Route 321
(Corner Main and High Streets)
PO Box 2, Mowrystown, Ohio 45155
(937) 442.5685 Office
Studying the Word of God and Sharing it with others
Rev. Mark Mong, 937-661-4580
Tena Roler, 937-446-2460
Diana Stephan, President, 937-393-4906
Jack Richey, 937-393-9359
Jill Schelling, Treasurer, 937-393-4134
Deb Tissot, 937-442-2781
Daily Bible Readings
from the Lectionary
The Mission Yearbook
Book of Confessions
Book of Order
Wednesday Bible Study at 7pm
Study at 1pm
From the Pastor's Desk
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
As a boy, I went on a three day canoe trip in Southern Ohio. The first two days were spent on a lazy jaunt down a local river with the third to be spent on the Ohio River. As an impressionable young boy, I was dreadfully afraid of sinking in my canoe. We had all of our belongings in our canoe and I was afraid of tipping over and losing all of my things on the bottom of the Ohio. We never made it to the Ohio River though, as the second night some local drunks untied our canoes and sent them down river without us in them. But that is another story.
Just as I was afraid of my boat tipping over and/or sinking, so too were the disciples afraid of their boat sinking. Having embarked in their boat in an attempt to cross the Sea of Galilee, the disciples find themselves being bombarded by both wind and waves. Being threatened by the severe weather, the disciples fear for their lives. Will they take on water and sink? Will they tip over and drown? Fear gripped the hearts of the disciples stronger than any rope or strap.
Are we also not afraid of sinking? Maybe not a literal sinking, unless on a boat cruising down the Ohio River. But maybe a sinking nonetheless. Perhaps, your job is not providing enough means to live upon. Perhaps, your family relationships are not as healthy as you would like. Perhaps, your purpose in life is starting to decay. Perhaps you are suffering a loss or change of some kind. Whatever our life’s situation is are we not afraid of having all that we have and all that we are fall apart? Are we not all afraid of sinking?
But, God has given us a balm for our fear. God has given us a Word of Hope. To the disciples floundering on the Sea of Galilee, Jesus speaks, Take heart, it is I, do not be afraid. By walking on the water, Jesus not only terrified the disciples, who thought he was a ghost, but he also reassured the disciples, by having authority over the water and wind. God reassures his people that he still does have authority over all things. In plain terms, God says as Jesus Christ, relax, I got this.
If God said this to the disciples floundering on the Sea of Galilee, does God not also say this to the disciples floundering wherever they are? To all of us who are threatened by something, who are afraid, who are anxious, God speaks a Word of hope in Jesus Christ, by telling us, Take heart, it is I, do not be afraid. We who are sinking are recipients of a Word of assurance from God telling us that even while we might be sinking, God has authority over the things in this world dragging us under.
It seems then that is precisely when we are sinking and being dragged under, that we find ourselves being caught by the hand of Christ. Not only caught by the one who has power and authority over all things, but caught by the one who has the love to bother reaching out for us in the first place. In those moments of our sinking into the depths, we find ourselves being saved by the hand of God, the man Jesus Christ who loves us to the point of saving us.
My brothers and sisters in Christ, if we possess such a Savior, with love to match his power. Then let us be not disciples of little faith watching only the waves and the wind. Let us become disciples of a greater faith watching only Christ. Let us not sink into the depths of fear, but let us sink into the depths of Jesus Christ. Let us choose more faith, and less fear.
Daniel Frank's Prayer
May the Holy Spirit fill your minds
And release you from those evil binds
That contain us and stop us from loving God
Let Christ be seen, not through a facade
But in your church and in your lives
Love the Lord that strives
To live in your hearts forevermore
And flow over you like waves on a shore
So love the Lord your God deeply
And do not turn away so sheeply
That you miss God's love
Like just another morning dove
So go now with the Father's Word
And fly in the sky with God's herd
Of loving, following Christians