Join us sundays at 8:00 & 10:30 AM

Friday, February 4, Devotional from Pastor John Hartman

“Reputation Record”
There were two brothers who ran a business together. They were wealthy men and they used it to intimidate and bully others. They were notorious for belittling their employees, threatening their enemies, and for shamelessly promoting their own self-interests. They also happened to be regular church-goers! One day their minister retired and a new one was brought in. Unlike his predecessor, this new minister wasn’t intimidated by the brother’s bullying, and she saw right through their tricks. At the same time, the church was also going through a new building campaign, so money was very tight.
Well, one of the brothers died suddenly. The surviving brother sought out the new minister the day before the funeral and handed her a check which covered the “entire” amount of the building project. The man said to the minister. “You can keep the check for the building fund on one condition. Tomorrow, at the funeral, you must say my brother was a saint.” The minister, who up till now hadn’t ever been intimidated by the brothers, thought hard for a moment. This was precisely the kind of manipulation they were known for. How could she agree to say such a thing when she knew it wasn’t true? On the other hand, how could she turn down the money the church needed so desperately? At last, she agreed.
The next day at the funeral she began by saying, “We know old Charlie here was a complete scoundrel. He was mean, nasty, selfish, and rude to his family. He cheated his customers, and was not well liked in this community. He was a hypocrite of the worst kind, and an evil, evil man.” Then looking over where the surviving brother was sitting, she added, “But, compared to his brother, he was a saint!” Reputations can be a funny thing, can’t they?
This Sunday, February 6, I am continuing my sermon series, “Letters from Heaven,” from the book of Revelation. We will be looking at the fifth of the letters to the churches, Sardis, which had a reputation that may surprise you. It is also Boy Scout Sunday, and we will be celebrating around the Lord’s Table for Holy Communion. We will resume our regular worship schedule, so please join us in the sanctuary at either 8:00 am or 10:30 am. For the 10:30 am service, we will also be broadcasting on Zoom, Facebook Live, and YouTube.
Pastor John
See Links Below: