Devotionals
Sunday Worship Service begins at 10:30 AM
Third & Adams Street, PO Box 9774, Moscow, Idaho USA | (208) 882-3715

Pastor Debbie's E-Spire - September 22, 2016

At my second church, they had a tradition of doing family camp over labor day weekend. Since it was a church thing, I went that first summer (and each one after). We had spent July and August together in worship, but I remember being struck by the thought when I saw them in jeans and sweatshirts, playing games, and sitting around the campfire, "They're real people, who are so much more than what I see on Sunday morning." I was clearly a bit naive, but I've also found that it's easy for any of us to only see people for who we know on Sunday mornings and not know their real selves.

I've had lots of grocery store encounters where a parishioner doesn't recognize me because I'm shopping in sweats instead of a robe and stole. :)

Which is the long way of saying, it's important that we make time to be with our church family in fun and casual ways, to get to know each other as "real" people.

Rick and I want to reiterate our invitation for you to come to the parsonage (2214 Henry Ct, behind AB McDonald) this Sunday from 4-7pm for a potluck, softball, yard games, the bounce house, and casual fellowship. We'll be BBQing burgers and hot dogs and would love for you to bring a dish to share.

Please feel free to bring your family or invite a friend. You don't need to RSVP to come, but if you can send a quick note if you're coming and/or what you might bring it'll help us plan.

In Christ,
Pastor Debbie

 

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Read more: Pastor Debbie's E-Spire - September 22, 2016

Pastor Debbie's E-Spire - September 15, 2016

This last week when we were in California to help my dad sort through my mom's things. While we were there we also visited my home church for Sunday worship. It's the church I was born into, baptized in, and confirmed in. It's the church that welcomed me back as a youth leader after my first year of college and encouraged me through seminary and for special travel/learning trips. The people of this church were my extended family—my "adopted" grandparents, Sunday school teachers, and trusted friends. They were critical in my faith formation and the people mean the world to me.

I know when we go on a Sunday that we can't just show up for worship and head out, there are too many people to greet. We can easily plan on an extra half an hour to say hello to people and that won't even include everyone we should greet.

When I walked in last Sunday I began saying hello to people I knew immediately (always hoping it didn't take me too long to remember their name!) And then there were others I didn't recognize. Naturally, I was inclined to look right by them. I know it sounds bad, but they weren't "my" people or "my" community (the one I grew up with...15 years ago). But then I had to remember, it's not just my job to "be the church" (meaning welcoming, attentive, and kind) when it's "my" church or "my" people; I am responsible to be a friendly face regardless of whether we go back 20 years, or 2 years, or 2 minutes. So I said hello to strangers and I thanked the college students who'd worked in the community all week.

And as I reflected on my experience, I became aware that I'm probably not the only one who slips into these patterns. I'm not the only one who tends to focus on greeting friends rather than strangers (after all, I've been the stranger in a church who was ignored because I wasn't a familiar face). And I'm probably not the only one who struggles to remember that my role on Sundays isn't just to come for me and "my" people, but I am there as a follower of Christ who is to offer the hospitality, warmth, and grace of Christ to all who walk through the doors.

That's not always easy. Sometimes I'm stuck in my head. Sometimes I'm teary. Sometimes I've had a rough morning with the kids and I'm amazed we made it to church alive and without injury. But Christ doesn't call us to what is easy. Christ calls us to radical hospitality which includes being the one to say "welcome" even if it's only our second week. Or the one to acknowledge a job well done, even if we don't know the ins and outs of the work that was done.

We can be the church in so many different ways, each according to our gifts. And at the same time, it's important to step outside of ourselves and look out for those who might be new, or alone, or the ones to whom God is pointing on any given Sunday.

I'd encourage you this Sunday to look beyond your circle of friends and look for a new face—greet them and welcome them in the name of Christ.

See you Sunday!

Pastor Debbie

 

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Pastor Debie's E-Spire - September 8, 2016

When we first moved to Moscow, there was a fair amount of road construction between downtown and the parsonage. We couldn't take D St, or Blaine, or Hayes, or part of Third...and probably a couple others I'm not even aware of because we simply couldn't drive that way. We learned F St, B St and Sixth (and the quirks that go with each).

And then last week, they re-opened D st for the start of school. And I'll confess, I didn't think twice about it. I took my left and went toward B, because that's what I'd been doing for months. It literally took me a couple days to realize it was an option. It's right there in front of me--the most direct route and more often than not, I ignore it.

Now, we've only lived here a couple of months, but imagine how we might be if D had been blocked for years and then finally opened. I'd practically be blind to it!

Habits can be hard to break, whether they're on the road, in our home, or in the church. Sometimes we learn something a certain way because there's an obstacle of some sort. Sometimes it's because that's how our mentor did it. Sometimes it was the only way we could manage. Whatever the case, it's what we learned and what we know, and being asked to veer from that path can be challenging.

But if we're willing to take the risk (or simply push ourselves to break our routine), it can also be really rewarding as we meet new people, see new sights, and maybe learn new things.

Where might God be inviting you to try a new way?

In Christ,
Pastor Debbie

 

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Current Church News

  • Family Promise of the Palouse

    Moscow First United Methodist Church is honored to be an active participant of the Family Promise of the Palouse providing temporary, safe housing for families in our community who are facing homelessness. Our next opportunity to host is June 11-18, 2017.

Get Directions

Sunday morning parking at the church is available in the high school parking lot on Third Street across from the church and in the city lots west of the church. These lots are available only on Sunday mornings. A small lot for handicapped parking is available just off of Adams Street on the north side of the church, with an accessible entrance directly into the sanctuary. A lift operates between the Fellowship Hall (3rd Street level) and the Sanctuary . William Sound System Receivers and Headsets are available to assist with hearing problems.

Church Mission

The First United Methodist Church of Moscow, Idaho takes as our mission to be the body of Jesus Christ, ministering to a community which draws strength from its diversity. Our mission centers on the worship of God, expressed through varied forms of prayer, preaching, music, and ritual.  See more...