Words From the Pastor

Human Relations Day

Renewal of the Church

Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter,

You will restore my life again, from the depths of the earth

You will again bring me up. You will increase my honor

And comfort me once again.


Psalm 71: 20 – 21

God speaks to us in many different ways. He can use others to deliver a message that comes from the most unexpected sources. We are caused to be ever alert and mindful that God is always in our midst and always working for our good.  I believe I heard such a message recently and I have discerned it’s meaning and message for God’s Church and the people he calls his own. Our Community Partner LEAP Forward, Inc. sent a recruitment flyer to be read in the morning announcement. One line stuck in my mind. It went something like this. The COVID 19 Virus is not a reason to stop, it is a reason to change.


Passing the Torch

“No one shall be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will not fail you or forsake you. Be strong and courageous”  Joshua 1:5-6a NRSV


As the Spirit of God continues to move in this season, we have recently witnessed him calling home many, but in this writing, I will refer to three giants in their fields, whose imprint will long endure in our society. Their legacies speak to us today and remind us that their work is not complete. Yet, the Spirit of this Age is offering a hope that must be embraced. I am referring to Congressman John Lewis, the Rev. C.T. Vivian, and Gospel Radio Host Patrick Ellis. Their lives each speak to the ages.


Freedom and Justice for All

The rich inheritance of justice, liberty, prosperity and independence, bequeathed by your fathers, is shared by you, not by me. The sunlight that brought life and healing to you, has brought stripes and death to me”…If I do forget, if I do not faithfully remember those bleeding children of sorrow this day, [may my right hand forget cunning, and may my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth—Psalm 137:5-6]  Abolitionist Frederick Douglass, July 5, 1852 — ”What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?”


For one to go forward, they must look back. As people of African descent, we call that Sankofa. I submit to you that America of 2020 would do well to look into the annals of its complex history to secure


The Reason Why We Sing

But I will sing of your might, I will sing aloud of your steadfast love in the morning. For you have been a fortress for me and a refuge in the day of my distress. O my strength, I will sing praises to you for you, O God, are my fortress, the God who shows me steadfast love. Psalm 59:16-17 (NRSV)


June is Black Music Month. Music is a cultural expression of art that allows for a reflection of society and serves to remind us who we are, what we are experiencing, and how the journey called life is impacting us. Whether it is Anita Baker, Tupac, 50 Cent, Prince, Luther, or Hubie Blake, the music they have produced is reflective of their era and expresses sentiments of segments of their lives.


Sheltering with God

Much is being written and said about our new lifestyle. We are in an era of staying at home. One of the most mobile societies on the face of the earth has been caused to slow down and shelter in place. Terms like that, before mid-March, were reserved for events of the magnitude of a tornado. Rightfully so, given that the current pandemic has the same type of negative impact on us as such a catastrophic event has. Lives, jobs, and much more are being lost. The silent and invisible enemy has turned this world upside down. Our defense; stay at home. While this seems to be a relatively easy assignment, for many it isn’t.


A Message of Hope

Thoughts from Tuesday, March 31, 2020

“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


This morning’s prayer call provided insight on how personal this COVID-19 pandemic is. In addition, to the two of us who have relatives quarantined, we now have a member of the Church family whose son is dealing with the virus. Our hopes and prayers are with him. These are challenging times and if we have ever experienced a period in our lives where the need to be bonded together in love of neighbor, this is it. Our acts of social distancing should not feel like self-imprisonment, but rather, acts and deeds of self-love and love of neighbor. Remember the Christian faith is based on the Christ-Centered Love Ethic; loving God, loving your neighbor as you love yourself.


Lent – A Season to Deal With Us

It is fitting that the Lectionary for 2020 offers the Gospel of Jesus Christ, according to Matthew, as the lesson for the first Sunday of Lent. In the fourth chapter verses, 1-11, we find Jesus in the wilderness being tempted by Satan. Jesus has just completed a 40 day fast. As soon as he makes his commitment to God, the Spirit leads him into the wilderness. Why?