Dear church family -
I hope you have had a good week and are enjoying this incredible, mild weather we've been having!
This Sunday, I'll be continuing my sermon series looking at the Lord's Prayer. I'm calling it, Lord, Teach Us: The Lord's Prayer & the Christian Life. We've been walking through the prayer that Jesus gave his disciples, paying attention to what this prayer has to offer us, what Jesus is asking us to pray and how it helps us think about what it means to be Christian.
In the first sermon, we talked about how Jesus invited the disciples---and us---to approach God in a very personal, intimate way and to make God's name holy (hallowed) in the way we live out our lives. Last week, we talked about how Jesus invites us to be a part of bringing the Kingdom of Heaven down to Earth. If you missed either of those sermons and want to catch up, you can find them here.
This week, we are going to look at the third part of the prayer: "Give us this day our daily bread." In the original Greek, the prayer here would be "for the bread we need to survive." Now, I'm fairly confident that most of us in our community of faith don't have to worry about where our next meal will come from. But if you are poor, the bread you need to survive is real bread.
When we pray the Lord's Prayer, some are praying for food---real food---that is needed to survive. But for those of us who have enough food, this becomes a metaphor for something else. We'll talk about what we might truly be hungry for; what might satisfy our hungry hearts.
We'll also be celebrating another successful week of Vacation Bible School. There has been so much energy and excitement each morning as our building has been teeming with excited kids---over 150 children and countless volunteers. They'll be sharing some of their excitement and the songs they've learned this week at the 11:00am service.
I hope you'll join us this Sunday. But if you can't be there in person, I invite you to join in via the livestream on our website or on Facebook live for both services. Or join us for the Simple Worship service at 9:30am in the chapel led by Rev. Shannon Moore. This is a short, simple, come-as-you-are service that includes communion.
Finally, I hope you are planning to join us on Sunday, June 23. It will be Rev. Cyndy Twedell's final Sunday with us before she retires. There will be a reception in Walker Hall following both worship services as we express our gratitude for Rev. Twedell's years of service and ministry and to wish her well in her retirement. At that time, we would love to surprise Cyndy with a love offering. If you wish to contribute, checks should be made payable to UCC and designated "Love Offering" and forwarded to the Business Office. Gifts also can be made online by visiting www.universitychristian.org/giving. In addition, if you'd like to bring a card or personal note to give to Cyndy, we encourage you to do that as well.
As we make our way through this series on the Lord's Prayer, I am encouraging us to all say the Lord's Prayer every day this week. So, I hope you'll pause whatever you are doing in this moment, take a deep breath, and say with me...
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed by thy name.
Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on Earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, and power, and glory forever.
As always, it is my sincere joy to serve as your pastor. I look forward to seeing you on Sunday!
Rev. Dr. Russ Peterman
University Christian Church
Fort Worth, TX