One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. ‘The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. ‘There is no commandment greater than these.”
Do you ever find yourself overwhelmed by the complexity of life?
Perhaps I’m alone in this, but it seems to me that life can be tremendously confusing. And between complex social issues, ambiguous decisions we face, and overwhelming problems, life often isn’t straightforward or simple.
And sometimes, our own faith can lead to even more confusion. I mean, how many of us ever read a confusing passage of scripture and thought to ourselves afterward: “What on earth does that even mean?!?” And on top of that, our own faith leaders often take entirely different stances on various hot-button issues. What a complex mess life can often be.
Perhaps, it’s due to this dislike for confusion and complexity that I’ve always appreciated our gospel reading for this week. In this passage, Jesus is asked what the most important commandment is in the bible. And without skipping a beat, Jesus gives a very simple and memorable answer which can be boiled down to “Love God and love people.”
Now don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot to unpack about what loving God and loving people look like in a given situation or moment. And indeed, loving God and people is often hard. But I appreciate how in a complex world, Jesus simplifies matters and lets us know what God wants to aim for in how we live and who we become as people.
Love God and Love People.
Operation Christmas Child
We are kick starting our annual Operation Christmas Child ministry! For the next few weeks, our church will be gathering Christmas presents to be distributed to children who find themselves in need around the world. Here’s how are the various ways you can be a part of this ministry: You can financially contribute to this ministry by making a check to the “Samaritan’s Purse” and putting “Operation Christmas Child” in the memo section. Our church will send those checks in with the gifts that we collect to Samaritan’s Purse, the organization that leads and oversees this ministry.
You can take an OCC box from the back of the sanctuary, fill it with gifts, and bring it back to the church.
You can purchase individual gifts and leave them in the box. We will be packing all of these gathered gifts into our OCC boxes after worship on Sunday, November 21st.
Click the link for more details on what ideal gifts to purchase: https://www.samaritanspurse.org/operation-christmas-child/what-goes-in-my-shoebox-suggestions
All Saints Day
Join us this Sunday for worship as we observe and celebrate “All Saints Day.” Pastor Chris’ will be exploring what Methodists believe and don’t believe about who saints are and how this special day can encourage us as disciples of Jesus Christ.
Youth Group Gatherings
The next Youth Group gathering will be on Sunday, November 7th. If you have a middle schooler or teenager who might be interested in joining youth group, you can connect with Pastor Chris or reach out to us at email@example.com for more details.
Our dart team has started back up. If you are interested in joining or have questions, feel free to connect with our Lay Leader, Bruce LaPenta.
Leadership Council Meetings
Our next Leadership Council meeting is on Tuesday, November 9th at 6:30 pm in the conference room in A-Wing. Also, the minutes from September’s meeting have been formally approved and are now available for anyone who wants to read them. You may email Gretchen for a copy at firstname.lastname@example.org
Sharing Prayer Requests
If you have a prayer request, you can fill out a prayer card in the back of the sanctuary or email our Office Manager, Gretchen, at email@example.com. We will be sure to add it to the list on the back of our bulletin. You can also email Gretchen to take off any prayer requests that are no longer relevant or needed.
You will find every newsletter, worship service, devotional, and additional material posted to our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/FlemingtonUnitedMethodist/
Even if you don’t use Facebook, you can access everything we have there. If you do have a Facebook account, “like” to follow our page and be notified when new things are posted or when videos are about to go live so you don’t miss anything.