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Update 10/26/2003
From the Pastor’s Desk

God
Does Not
Need YOU


OUR Spire usually announces: the church needs volunteers for the medical mission. A call for financial support to uphold the NOW (Nurture, Outreach, Witness) Ministries also requests our attention, as well as announcements to attend lay speakers’ seminars, counsellors training for our evangelistic crusades or one activity or ministry of the church.
Indeed there is no escape. You hear the familiar message resounding: “The church needs you!” How does this truth make you feel? Do you feel... ...Beaten down? “I have so much to do in the office, in school, at home and here’s another one!”
...Proud? “I guess I’m the only who can do it. They can’t do without me.”
...Nothing? “So what’s new? It is just another church responsibility. I suppose I should attend because I have to anyway.”
Can you relate to one of the said feelings? At times a valuable truth is forgotten--God does not really need you! We must take note that He created the earth and the heavens all by Himself. Only, the Good Lord, out of His love and grace decided to let you share the joy of doing His work.
He wants your joy to be complete (John 15:11). He is showing you that you have worth in His eyes (Matthew 6:25-26), that He values you and He trusts you. He wants you to discover the marvelous things He can do. Thus, He seeks to accomplish these works through you. The Almighty God chose to need you.
Do not think God had to choose you, that you deserve the call. Have you even realized that He chose you from among many not because you are good, not because you are smart and not because you are able? It is not due to any of your merits. Our abilities do not matter much when compared to what God can do. His choosing us to serve Him is simply an expression of His grace.
May these truths compel us to say, “Lord, I am not much. You can even do without me but since you have called me, I am giving my humble YES.”
Do consider another choice to the previous list of feelings we have noted regarding God’s call...
...Grateful. “Cause I am blessed enough to be needed.”


Pastor Norbing
REV. NORBERTO RAMOS
Associate Pastor

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Virtue
Exemplified

Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps.
-- I Peter 2:21

IN the late 1940’s, a young mother
was stricken with polio and be-
came an invalid. She astounded people by the way she accepted her affliction and ran her household from her bed. Her brother-in-law said to me, “I have heard a lot of talk about ‘supernatural grace’, but I never knew what it was until I saw it shining through her.”
We often do not know the full meaning of a virtue until we see it lived out in a person’s life. Think of how Jesus responded when the soldiers mistreated Him. They pressed a crown of thorns into His head, struck him repeatedly, and mocked Him by clothing Him in a purple robe and bowing before Him in jest (Mark 15:16-20). They were unaware that He had the power to kill everyone one of them by speaking a single word.
About 35 years later, Peter vividly remembered that scene. He told his readers that Christ had set an example for them as they faced persecution (I Peter 2:18-25). In Jesus, God became a flesh-and-blood human being to show what He is like. Because Jesus lives in us by His Spirit, He expects us to exemplify His goodness and grace.
Whether we suffer like that invalid mother or endure persecution like the Master, we can demonstrate the same virtue He modeled on the cross.


--Our Daily Bread

 

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last Update 10/18/2003
Helping Hand

If you take away...the pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness...(then) your darkness shall be as the noonday.
--Isaiah 58:9-10

AN 89-year-old man who enjoys creating new words to describe old problems calls a person who finds fault with every thing an againstovist. “Whatever you suggest,” he says, “that person is against it, and will find something wrong with everything you do.” I have pondered his words and too often find myself guilty of being the kind of person he describes. What I would like to call being a “realist” is, in truth, more like being an “against--ovist.” And that is not pleasing to God.

In the 58th chapter of Isaiah, the prophet said that the sacrificial life-style God desires includes: “to undo the heavy burdens, to let the oppressed go free” (verse 6), to “take away the yoke from your midst, the pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness” (verse 9).

If I’m oppressing someone by my critical spirit and stinging words, then God says it’s time for me to change. He doesn’t want me to find fault; He wants me to give freedom and release. Instead of pointing an accusing finger, I am to lend a helping hand.

I can’t think of a new word to describe the person who lifts burdens and gives freedom, but I’m sure my friend can. And I hope that word describes me.


It was only a sunny smile
And little it cost in the giving,
But it scattered the night like morning light

And made the day worth living.

-Our Daily Bread

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SOMETHING TO
THINK ABOUT....


What's distinctive about being a United Methodist?

THERE are no exclusively United Methodist doctrines. Although we have distinctive emphases, we have no affirmations that are not also believed by other Christian groups. United Methodists have traditionally proclaimed the following:

"The availability of God's grace for all;
"The essential unity of faith and works;
"Salvation as personal and social;
"The church as a community of Christ's disciples who seek to share in God's mission;
"The inseparability of knowledge (intellect) and vital piety (devotion to religious duties and practices) as components of faith;
"seeking holiness of heart and life both as individuals and in our society;
"A cooperative ministry and mission in the world, often referred to as "connectionalism",
"The link between Christian doctrine and Christian living.
--from the bishop's office
Beautiful people
reflect God in their lives.
They think His thoughts, speak His words and love
without end.

The church is not a company on a summer hotel porch; it is a life saving crew.

Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so i send you.
--John 20:21

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NEWS AND CONCERNS
 
CC Meet
THE regular Church Council meet-
ing is set today, after the English Service. All members please be advised. The host for today is Atty. Eladia Reyes.

Seminar
THE last session of the Lay Speak-
ing Seminar
series is set on November 15, 8 am at the Garcia Hall. The session’s topic is Sermon preparation and delivery. Do come and be blessed.

Hats off!
CONGRATULATIONS to Allan
Decena for passing the licensure examination for teachers. Allan is one of our FH kids.

Mind Your Bones
FREE
osteoporosis screening for
females 40 and above and males 50 and above on November 9, 10 am-2pm. See you at the Garcia Hall.

Prayers, Please
LET us pray for God’s healing for
our sister, Fredelina Baybayan who suffered a hip bone fracture. May God intercede for her fast and full recovery.

Newspapers for Books
DO you have old newspapers
at home? Are you willing to part with them to help a cause? The CMEC has an ongoing newspaper drive to raise funds for books for their library. If you want to lend a helping hand, please visit our church office and give them old newspapers to our church workers.

UMC Centennial Book
THE much-awaited Philippine
UMC-Centennial Book is now available at the church office for P1,500 per copy. This 272-page hardbound coffee table book in full color is a treasure for all United Methodists.

District Seminar
THE Southwest Metro Manila Dis-
trict holds its last session of the annual Integrated Church Leaders’ Seminar on November 8 at 8 am. The seminar is a must for officers of local church councils and lay organizations. Registration is at P150 per person and the handbook is P75 per church.

 
Today’s Double Event
Children’s Sunday

THE kids have a good cause to celebrate today as it’s their day... it’s Children’s Sunday! And as a treat, the Sunday School PTF in cooperation with the Family Ministry and Christian Education will hold a Children’s Party-Fellowship later at the CMEC Room. So kids bring your parents--or rather, parents bring your kids to the venue at 10:30 am (until 12 noon) and let’s have one rockin’ time. Fun, games and surprises await the little ones. And yes, the adults, too!

THE Flowers at the altar are from Edilberto Garcia, Jr. and family in commemoration of the fifth death anniversary of Espedita Garcia on
October 23.

Newspapers for Books
DO you have old newspapers at
home? Are you willing to part with them to help a cause? The CMEC has an ongoing newspaper drive to raise funds for books for their library. If you want to lend a helping hand, please visit our church office and give them old newspapers to our church workers.

UMC Centennial Book
JUST off the press!
The much awaited Philippine UMC-Centennial Book is now available at the church office for P1,500 per copy. This 272-page hardbound coffee table book in full color is a treasure for all United Methodists.

CC Meet
THE regular Church Council meeting, initially scheduled for today, is reset to October 26. Please be advised.

District Seminar
THE Southwest Metro Manila District holds its annual Integrated Church Leaders’ Seminar on October 18 (yesterday) and 25 and November 8. The sessions starts at 8 am. The seminar is a must for officers of local church councils and lay organizations. Registration is at P150 per person and the handbook is P75 per church.

OUR condolences to the Dugay family for the death of their mother, Veronica Dugay last October 14, 2003.

Communicate!
THE Communications Group is currently compiling stuff (articles, poems, inspirational stories) for the Central Spire’s special pre-Christmas issue. We want to hear your ideas. We want your input. Please write to us at thecentralspire@hotmail.com. And thank you to those who regularly write. Your letters are deeply appreciated

 Click here to visit the MEA UMC website - www.manila-umc.org.ph