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The latest at Irvington United Methodist Church

Stay up to date with the happenings of Irvington United Methodist Church by visiting our blog. You'll find information such as announcements, sermon notes and thoughts from our pastor to encourage and challenge your walk with the Lord.

Ponderings for Lent: Listen

by: Denise Robinson

03/21/2023

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Our word for today is "listen," and it's one of the most important - and overlooked - words in the Christian faith. It's a word that is central to our understanding of God. How can we have a relationship with someone, including God, if we never listen to what they have to say? How can we know what someone, even God, wants from us or for us if we don't listen? Deuteronomy 6:4 says, "Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one." This verse forms the basis of what is kn...
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Ponderings for Lent: Rest

by: Denise Robinson

03/20/2023

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Our first word for this week is "rest." Lent is a time for reflection, repentance, and renewal, and one of the ways we renew our hearts and minds and faith is through rest. One of the ways we can draw closer to God is by focusing on our need for spiritual "rest." Rest is one of those words, as used in the Bible, that has a range of meanings as used in differing contexts, but at its core it's an invitation to trust in God and find peace in God's presence. When we rest in Go...
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Ponderings for Lent: Time

by: Denise Robinson

03/15/2023

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Our meditation word for today is “time.” Just a few days ago, we changed our clocks and “lost” an hour – we experienced a time change. The New Testament, in Greek, has two different words for time. One is “chronos,” which refers to clock time or chronological time. The Gospels written by Matthew, Mark, and Luke generally follow Jesus’s life, death, and resurrection in chronological order, that is, they track Jesus’s life in real-time. The second word for time is “kairos,” ...
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Ponderings for Lent: Water

by: Denise Robinson

03/14/2023

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Today’s meditation word is “water.” Jesus, as we learned yesterday, referred to himself as the bread of life. He also, on another occasion, referred to himself as the living water, and then, in John 4:13-14, said: “Everyone who drinks of this water (that is, actual water from a well) will be thirsty again, but those who drink of the water that I will give them will never be thirsty. The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life...
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Ponderings for Lent: Bread

by: Denise Robinson

03/13/2023

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Our first word for this third week in Lent is “bread.” The Gospels tell us of a day when the disciples asked Jesus to teach them how to pray. It was an interesting request because as Jews each of the disciples had been raised with prayer in the synagogue and at home. But in their time with Jesus, something about the way he prayed caught their attention. In their tradition, they prayed as a matter of ritual. In contrast, when Jesus prayed to God his prayers were personal, h...
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Ponderings for Lent: Words

by: Denise Robinson

03/09/2023

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Our word for today is “words.” Words carry power. Words matter. The old saying that words can’t hurt us isn’t true … it’s a lie, and we know it. Words hurt. But words also heal. Words can discourage and encourage. Words can spew hate, create division, or show love. Jesus said these sobering words in Matthew 12:36: “I tell you, on the day of judgment you will have to give an account for every careless word you utter.” We will be judged by the words we have spoken. I don’t k...
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Ponderings for Lent: See

by: Denise Robinson

03/08/2023

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Our Lenten meditation word for today is “see.” Have you ever felt as though you were invisible? There are times in our lives when we want to curl up and be left alone, but all of us want to be seen. We want others to notice when we are absent and when we hurt. We want someone to speak a kind word that acknowledges our worth. Feeling unnoticed, ignored, or unloved is not only painful; in the long term, it can be devastating. The Gospels make numerous references to sight and...
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Ponderings for Lent: Light

by: Denise Robinson

03/07/2023

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Today’s word is “light.” Light and love often go together in the Bible, but "light" is also often paired with darkness. Darkness surrounds us and lies within us. Some of the darkness is part of the human experience and some we bring on ourselves. Pain and suffering, loneliness and grief, and death are all part of the human condition. The same is also true of sin, but often sin is a matter of individual choice. Being overwhelmed by darkness causes more pain, suffering, lone...
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Ponderings for Lent: Love

by: Denise Robinson

03/06/2023

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Welcome to the second week in Lent. This week we continue with our focus on a “word for the day” and today’s word is “love.” How would you define love? It’s often more of an “I know it when I feel it,” a word that defies precise definition. Feelings are hard to define. But if we wait for loving feelings, we may never get around to loving. The Bible encourages us to love – whether we “feel” like it or not. 1 John 3:18 says, “Let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth ...
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Ponderings for Lent: Repent

by: Denise Robinson

03/03/2023

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Our last Lenten word for the first week of Lent is "repent." At the beginning of his ministry, Jesus said (as recorded in Mark 1:12-15): "Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, 'The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.'" Jesus came to make another kind of life available to us, not just in the future but for now. It's about living, not for this world but for the kingdom. We live in this w...
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Ponderings for Lent: Still

by: Denise Robinson

03/02/2023

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Our word for today is a good meditation word. It's the word "still." "Be still," God says through the psalmist in Ps. 46:10, "and know that I am God." Finding stillness and silence in this world of noise and distractions isn't easy, but it's important. The psalmist is saying that to really know God, we need to be still. We need to pause, shut out the noise that surrounds us, and listen. Desmond Tutu wrote: "Each one of us wants and needs to give ourselves space for quiet."...
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Ponderings for Lent: Choose

by: Denise Robinson

03/01/2023

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Our meditation word for today is "choose." Belief is a choice. Living one's faith is a choice. Joining in these meditations is a choice. We all make numerous choices every day - what to do, who to spend time with, what to eat and drink, what telephone call or text to answer, and what route to travel when going somewhere. Some choices we think about and others we don't, but we all make them. I read this quote in a book by Trevor Hudson, "You are free to choose to do anythin...
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Ponderings for Lent: Return

by: Denise Robinson

02/28/2023

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Our second word for Lent is the word "return." Lent is a time to remember who we are as people of faith and that our true home is in God's presence. It's easy to get distracted in this life, give in to the temptations of this world, and focus on ourselves and our desires. The forty days of Lent serve as a reminder that at the beginning of his ministry on earth, Jesus endured forty days of temptation in the wilderness. Jesus relied on the love of God and on the words of Scr...
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Ponderings for Lent: Dust

by: Denise Robinson

02/27/2023

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Yesterday was the first Sunday in Lent and, so, for the next forty days of Lent our Monday through Friday meditations will be an invitation to pause, focus on one word for the day, and reflect on the meaning that the word has for us - and for you - during this season. Lent actually began with Ash Wednesday, a day when many people come to the church to have their foreheads crossed with ashes as a reminder that from the moment of birth, we begin the process of dying. Our wor...
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Ponderings: The Face of God

by: Denise Robinson

02/24/2023

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The meditations on faith have been pretty challenging this week. I hope you haven’t been discouraged but instead have been encouraged … by remembering that through it all we can be continually refreshed by God’s love and grace. I want to end the week with some uplifting words from Psalm 31: “Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am in distress … My life is spent with sorrow, and my years with sighing; my strength fails because of my misery (okay, that isn’t the uplifting part b...
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