First UMC Gonzales

Pastor's Note
From the desk of Rev. Steve Berger, Senior Pastor

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“Cloud” Control ̋

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 ̋

We recently had one of those “smart” thermostats installed in our home. This device does so much more than just display the temperature and provide a way to control the heating or cooling. It will let you enter a complete schedule of when you are in or out of the house, when you go to bed and wake up, when you are going on vacation, leaving for the weekend and what temperatures you want during each time. It will remind you when to change the air filter and send alerts to your email and phone. It knows where family members are and tracks their movements, turning cooling and heating units on or off when you are within a ten-mile radius of the house. Boy, talk about overkill! You may live in a house that has this and other “smart” devices that control lights, fans, kitchen appliances, cameras, locks and yes, even toilets. So why are we so obsessed with controlling everything in our lives?

Maybe it’s because there is so much in our world that we cannot control, no matter how much technology we “throw” at it. Disease, cancer, predators who target children and youth, accidents, violent crime, terrorism to name just a few; fill our news channels, news apps and local papers with the dread of the uncertainty of life. Yet God’s people have the assurance that he is watching over us and walking with us even through the “fire and the floods” of life. Our goal then, is to keep our lives centered on him and listen for his purpose and plan for us. Worshiping God helps us do this. When we worship, whether by coming together for fellowship, music, prayer and proclamation or by the still, quiet moments we spend in a solitary place- we center our lives again in who we really are as God’s children and his love and grace that leads us like a Good Shepherd. We are truly “Called to Worship” each and every day. I hope this month you will renew your commitment to worship together even as we tend to travel at the end of the summer. I also hope that you will find time and realize the importance of worshiping each day, spending time praying, reading God’s Word and listening for His voice of love, forgiveness and grace. ̋

Pastor Steve