Coffee Break With Vic

MFMC BLog - July 26, 2017

Wow, who knew prayer was so complicated! We pray and God works through his spiritual influence on the hearts of people and spiritual beings and the circumstances of our world. It's quite a convergence of factors. We rest in a confident vision of God as our loving heavenly father who has called us to rest in his extravagant love and eternal vision of a just peaceable holistic kingdom or reign which has already started.  Check out the message from last Sunday to get the whole idea. 


This coming Sunday we continue looking at the parables of Jesus in Luke 18.  It's a an eye-opening story of two men, two prayers, two attitudes and two outcomes which remind me  how easily I can become an "Accidental Pharisee."  What's an "Accidental Pharisee"?  Come find out on Sunday. 


By the way thanks to our "summer hero's" who help out during the summer. Thanks to Craig Degerness for power washing our upper and lower sidewalks!  Thanks to Alex Vander Griend, and Bill Henley, for getting some "on-the-job" training to help as media techs.  Thanks to Colton Lindstrand for his trumpet duet with Melanie for a offertory! Thanks to Caleb Vander Griend for leading the worship band last Sunday.  I'll mention others of you during August. Thanks!


MFMC Blog - July 21, 2017

"Happy Christmas", was the greeting I heard on a movie filmed in England. I thought of the difference between our use of Merry and their use of Happy. This is not right I thought. Then I remembered the meaning of the bible word for blessed. Looking up the word blessed in a bible dictionary I was reminded of how our Old Testament was written in Hebrew and the word "Blessed" can be translated "Happy".  Maybe, Happy really gets to the meaning of wishing one a blessed Christmas. Well, so, now I've written a Christmas in July meditation!


But, what I want to wish you is a happy weekend and see you Sunday as we continue to our study of how Jesus transforms our personality . We'll look at Luke 18 and learn how to think when it seems like God isn't acting like God and when we think God is unfair. It's going to be good. Bring your bible and see you then. 


Happy are the people whose God is the Lord!  Psalm 144:15 NKJV


MFMC Blog - July 13, 2017

VBS was a fun innovative play on the video game theme MINECRAFT. Our creative team came up with the theme of MINDCRAFT with the focus verse from 1 Corinthians 2:16, "but we have the mind of Christ." Kids and volunteers enjoyed working with blocks of scripture to develop the mind of Christ and to submit the work of God in our lives. Isn't it interesting how the so-called secular world and the sacred world work hand-in-glove. This really all is our heavenly Fathers's world, where all is sacred when our senses. eyes, ears and mind tune in.  As W.B.Yeats wrote, "

“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.”

Way to go Dawn Zook, Pastor Greg Zook and VBS team.




MFMC - July 5, 2017

Did you know there is a Jesus Prescription for a Healthy Life? There is. OK, it's the title to one of my favorite books by author Leonard Sweet. It's a book I review almost every summer vacation. Mr. Sweet writes, "Jesus provides his followers a different model for discipleship than "growth."  It is a "health" model of discipleship ... a healthy relationship with God, and a healthy lifestyle of wholeness, where spirit, mind, and body function synergistically." With all the talk and fear our nation is experiencing around the issue of health care it's good to be reminded of 10 things Jesus did to promote personal and community health. I encourage you to read it. 


Jesus came to show to transform our capacity to love God, self and others. Come on out for the Sunday worship services to refocus on this purpose of God and learn how God transforms our personalities to be like Jesus Christ our Lord. See you on Sunday!


MFMC Blog - June 14, 2017

What a great Sunday we had baptizing several persons a few weeks ago. It was a privilege to baptize a couple of grandsons on that day. Check out the video testimony and photos linked to pastor Harv's blog.


We're in a study of how Jesus transforms our personality. Bring your bible and dig in on Sunday mornings as we search out some traits which God uses to extend his Kingdom rule in our world through our life.


This story of the good news of Jesus Christ has changed our lives and we want everyone to know the saving name of Jesus Christ. There are many thing in this world to get intense about and at the core of the Christian life we are passionate about this relationship with Jesus.  See you Sunday. 



MFMC Blog - April 18,2017

Friday Jesus was the victim, Sunday Jesus was the victor! Sunday was an uplifting celebration of how Easter changes everything. Listen to the message on the sermon link part of our website. I mentioned two movies in my sermon and hope I didn't ruin them for you to watch. I recommend them both.  My heart-felt thank you and deep appreciation to each of you who volunteered to make this a wonderful season of resurrection hope. Come out in the weeks ahead to see how the grace of Jesus works to save us and transform our personality. Learn with us how we now live in the Risen Way!


MFMC Blog - April 5, 2017

What do you think of when you celebrate communion? What do you feel as you hold the bread and the cup?  Jesus transformed the commemoration of a cultural feast into the greatest memorial ever. The sermon message is available on our web site. We enjoyed celebrating this memorial last Sunday. It's a joy to see our youth serving communion.  Thank you for being involved in you church. By the way, $759 was raised at the bake sale for the youth trip to the FM Youth Convention in July.  It was a fantastic Sunday.  


April 9 we look at Luke 22 - 23 to be inspired and challenged by the resolve of Jesus in going to the cross. Check out the passages and come to feel what Jesus endured through the many trials he went through on his last night of life.  Remember, the Seder service in the evening at 6pm. Pastor Fain will enlighten us on the symbolism of the Jewish Seder Passover Meal and it's hidden meanings for followers of the Messiah Jesus Christ. 


MFMC Blog - March 7, 2017

How you affirm the identity of Jesus impacts your life.  This past Sunday we started Lent with a sermon series looking into the last week of Jesus life on earth. In the triumphal entry Jesus accepted the accolades of the crowd as King. Then he showed himself as a brokenhearted savior weeping over the people of Jerusalem. When he cleansed the temple we see the angry stern but judge. During this Lenten season we can start by letting Jesus ride into our life as the forgiving judge, the compassionate savior how loves us and as a life-giving king. Let Jesus ride into your life. Follow him as Lord.

You can listen to the message by a link on our website. Prepare yourself for next Sunday by reading Luke 20 and how the authority of Jesus was challenged. How we view his authority affects our decisions.  Stretch your thinking and challenge your soul with our Lenten sermon series, Jesus: Our Atoning Savior.


MFMC Blog - February 22, 2017

God is One but multi-dimensional in the way he works.  This goes without saying since he is the divine creator and ultimate being.  This past Sunday we looked at Luke 11:14-28 where verse 14 says simply, "Jesus was driving out a demon that was mute." No big deal to Jesus! The crowd is amazed but it's a tough crowd. They question the motive of Jesus and some ask for more signs. Jesus responds by telling a couple of stories and reminding them that true blessing or happiness comes from hearing the word of God and obeying it (vs.28).  The emphasis of Jesus is on the power of God and the presence of the Kingdom of God in their midst (vs.20).  He stresses a unitive approach to life. It's not the supernatural sphere played off against the natural world. He reminds them that even their religious leaders were exorcising. Exorcisms vs. medicine or counseling. This is not a clinic on exorcism or fighting off demons. The work of evil in our world is something Jesus recognizes and so do we.  But, his approach is not either/or. We're not even told how Jesus went about this healing.  We are told Jesus heals and brings change physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually into the life of this mute man.  Jesus restores a voice to marginalized man.  Jesus conquers the evil which affected this man. And Jesus came to heal humanity from the ways evil affects each of us. 


He calls us to pray for healing and work for healing of persons in a multi-dimensional approach.  And we are reminded the glory of all healing, of all spiritual transformation goes to God. In Luke 10:17-20 the 72 disciples returned from apprenticeship work for Jesus. They and Jesus are filled with joy because they have displayed the power of God over the work of Satan and his demons. But, Jesus reminds them to not glory in their work but in the fact that their names are written in heaven.  


Lesson to us, we pray and work in multi-dimensional ways against the broad spectrum of the evil one knowing that above all, no matter the results, we are thankful for the eternal saving grace of our Lord Jesus. 


MFMC Blog - January 19, 2017

Does God care about our attitudes? Ephesians 4:20-24 tells us God does care. Philippians 2:5 implores us to have the same attitude as Jesus.  What a model? What a life-goal? Looking closely at the narratives in Luke 9 we see that Jesus lays down the challenge of a new vision and of a new kingdom.  In fact, God at the transfiguration tells the disciples and in effect the church which is us to "Listen to Jesus" instead of the old ways of the law and the prophets. Jesus teaches us the new Royal Law found in James 2:8-13 and Matthew 5:21-48. So, we look at Jesus and listen to what he says in how to live. Luke in chapter 9 says if Jesus is the Messiah or Lord Christ then we need to take up the cross daily and follow him (Luke 9:23) and this includes our attitude.   So, Jesus tells his disciples to have an attitude of servanthood toward their families, friends, and others in the church family.  Jesus tells his disciples to have gracious tolerance toward followers of Jesus outside of our networks of faith.  And Jesus tells his disciples to even be bridge-builders with those we consider hostile to our faith.  Seriously?  Seriously!  Following Jesus has it's challenges and sometimes they are heavy crosses to bear. But we need to look forward not backward with our old thinking and excuses. God wants to do a new thing. Listen to him.  The link to the sermon is on our website. By the way, if you missed the testimony by Dennis Frazier on January 8 you can listen to it on our website as well. Dynamite!  Reminded us that Jesus is a friend of the desperate!


MFMC Blog - January 5, 2017

It's cold outside! So, it was great to see so many of you at Sunday worship for Christmas Sunday as well as New Year's Day Sunday. The singing at the combined services was powerful. It was fun to have some humorous, playful and yet insightful Skit Guy video clips included. CHISEL is a great theme for letting God work his grace in our life in  2017.  This coming week we look at how God works desperation to celebration in our most desperate life situations. Read Luke 8:40-56 and come ready to receive encouragement.  We'll have a testimony of God's sustaining strength from Dennis Frazier and we'll hear a mission update from Bethany Kanehen. "Faith is not for overcoming obstacles; it is for experiencing them - all the way through!"  Richard Rohr.  


And a big thank you for helping us raise almost $7000 for our Christmas Missions Offering.  We want to be a church which is creating and nurturing transformative environments!


MFMC Blog - November 29, 2106

Our missionary to Rwanda, Julie Yerger, was with us on Sunday. It was great to get to know her better and she gave us a marvelous Thanksgiving message based on 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18  Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.  We heard how Julie and the hospital staff and clients are able to live this verse out in very trying circumstances.  To hear their stories motivates us to pray for them, to give to missions and to live in this mode of joy-prayer and thanksgiving! 


Join us this coming Sunday as we explore the following scripture in our Because of Bethlehem Advent message series.  Pick up a book and get in one of the 5 study groups.

For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness, made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God's glory displayed in the face of God.  2 Corinthians 4:6  


MFMC Blog - November 22, 2016

2 Peter 2:19 says, "people are slaves to whatever has mastered them." Sunday past we looked at Luke 8:26-39 and came to realize the similarities between demonic oppression and addictive possession. I love how Jesus does not judge the man in this narrative but rather sets him free to be transformed from glory to glory.  There is a spirituality of failure there.  We come not in any goodness of our own to God but rather we come from our brokenness and failure. God wants to ultimately transform us not just informs us.  Look at 2 Corinthians 3:17-18 to be encouraged by this beautiful vision and mission God has for us.  We are ragdolls or ragamuffins as it were.  But, God values us and sees us of inestimable worth!  Jesus is the friend of the addicted.  The true friend who loves us as we are and helps us  become what God created us to be.  Check out the rest of the message on our media player. We found out the message outline didn't get printed so contact  the office if you'd like a PDF copy.  Happy Thanksgiving!  See you next Sunday to hear from our  missionary Julie Yerger and to start lighting our Advent Candles. 


MFMC Blog - November 15, 2016

My verse for this week is Psalm 46.  A great Psalm to pray as we move into the post-election transition period in this great country. As always our hope is in the Lord as we use the mind and skills the Lord has endowed us. Jesus as a friend of the fearful and The Spirituality of Fear was what we looked at this past Sunday. Quite timely for many in our country this week as well.  The Spirituality of Failure and Jesus as the friend of the addicted is where we will explore Luke 8:26-39 this coming Sunday. The drama troupe will be presenting in both services and the Youth Band will be playing at 10:30AM. 


This is our season of generosity. Two of our musicians will be playing and I will be ringing the kettle bell for the Salvation Army at Fred Meyer this Friday, November 19th at noon. Come on by and say "Hi."  The Operation Christmas Child shoe boxes are due back here this coming Sunday.  The Mission Marketplace for Heavenly Treasures works miracles in social justice world-wide and this is the last Sunday it will be opened. The Emergency Cold Weather Shelter will be opening soon.  These are several ways we pass on the love of God in our world.  Thanks for your generous love expressed in prayer, giving , serving, and involvement.




MFMC Blog - October 18, 2016


MFMC Blog-October 18, 2016  Jesus is our compassionate friend. He is the friend of the doubter as we saw this past Sunday.  His very own cousin John the Baptist ends up in a dungeon and begins to question if Jesus is the Messiah.  Is Jesus the one bringing in the Kingdom of God?  Well, turns out that John had a fire and brimstone vision of what God was going to do.  And Jesus ends up with befriending people and loving people and forgiving people.  It's easy to have a different view of what God is supposed to be doing.  Some people think the church is too loving and kind.  Others think the church is too harsh and unjust. We each have our perspective of what we think God and his people should be doing.  Maybe, these are the questions which bother us and we can be paralyzed from action in our dungeon of self-pity or criticism. Jesus does not criticize or judge John the Baptist for his questions or doubt. In fact, Jesus calls John the greatest and then tells a story about how the religious leaders of the day are behaving childishly. Could it be that when we bring our doubts and questions to Jesus we follow in the tradition of what Jesus calls greatness? Rather, than engage in childish name calling or condescending behavior we come to God in child-like humility asking our father for help, realizing we do not know it all. Jesus honors John the Baptist for his message but also because he was a man who dared to deepen his trust in Jesus through a process of questions and intercessors even as he was going through some difficult times in his life. What a lesson for us. We don't understand all there is to know about Jesus and God all at once. There is a progressive journey and it would be childish to think we know it all. What God wants is for us to come to him as little children trusting the father who comes to us in Jesus.  Jesus who is a friend of the doubter. 




MFMC Blog - October 11, 2016


MFMC Blog - October 11, 2016  -  God is your friend especially when you hurt. In hurting situations God holds you as a parent holds a child and gives comfort. God is there for you as a friend who is near but doesn't have to say a word.  The narrative we looked at this past Sunday have three comforting lines.  Jesus saw the woman's despair on the worst day of her life.  Jesus' heart went out to her. He touched her dead son. He touched her pain.  And Jesus returned her son to her.  Jesus revived her hope. In the pain of our hurts it's way to easy to forget that God is with us. He promises to never leave us or forsake us.  Let this story remind you that even when you can't see God in your hurt he sees your pain, he touches your hurt and he will revive your hope. Jesus is a friend of the hurting. He is your friend. Sermons are linked to this website.  Next Sunday we continue in Luke looking at Jesus who is a friend of the doubting. 



MFMC Blog - October 4, 2016-

Following Jesus is personal but not private. On Sunday mornings we're seeing this truth jump out at us from chapter 6, 7 and 8 of The Gospel of Luke.  Jesus shows how spirituality is part of everyday life. He goes to people and shows compassion for their hurts.  He befriends and cares. He converses and answers questions. He shows a range of emotion from compassion to amazement! God came to earth in Jesus to affirm and enter into our humanity.  Jesus shows us how God's presence is experienced and lived out in everyday ordinary life. Explore how Jesus is our compassionate friend each Sunday morning through Sunday, November 20th. You can also hear the Sermons on the Connect page of this website.  

I'm also recommending two books for your spiritual growth this year. You can order these through the Amazon Link on our start page. Our church gets a small percentage from any of your Amazon purchases through the Amazon smile link. Thank you.



The books I recommend for reading this fall are: Beyond Loneliness, The Gift of God's Friendship by Trevor Hudson; and also a daily devotional Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His Presence by Sarah Young. Remember, to order using the Amazon link. Thanks.


MFMC Blog  - August 16, 2016  - What fun thing did you do this summer?  I had fun trying out some new hikes, doing some home projects, and helping my grandkids try paddle boarding. Share your summer fun thing stories with me. it's good to take a vacation. Years ago I heard a well known pastor say he never missed a Sunday preaching at his church.  i was amazed but bothered.  It was a pride thing and I searched the bible and guess what? There is no commandment which says "Thou shalt not take a vacation". In fact the gospels only give us like 10% of the life of Jesus.  The other 90% or so percent of his life is unknown to us. But we assume that he lived an ordinary life like you and me in relationship with his disciples and friends. Jesus showed us a healthy life-work balance as he did all to the glory of God. And he took breaks or vacations. In one of his most stressful times he didn't take out his stress on others or God the father. Rather, he took off and let nature replenish his flagging spirit.  He came apart so he wouldn't come apart.  And he did this often getting out into nature. Check out Mark 6:31 following the death of his cousin John the Baptist and a heavy season of life. "Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, "Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest." Even in this process he ends up with the miracle of feeding 5,000. Our staff has been getting in their summer vacations and we are looking forward to the ministry opportunities of this coming fall. Our mission is to "Lead people to Jesus Christ and enfold them into a community of growing Christians."  I hope you are rested up and looking forward to being involved in the marvelous work God wants to do through us here at MFMC.  I am. We are.

To keep with the summer theme here is an Islander prayer from Melanesia.

O Jesus

Be the canoe that holds me up in

  the sea of life;

Be the rudder that keeps me in

  the straight road;

Be the outrigger that supports me

  in times of temptation,

Let your Spirit be my sail that

  carries me through each day.

Keep my body strong, so I can

  paddle steadfastly on

  in the voyage of life.  Amen.


MFMC Blog - July 14, 2016 - The past few weeks have seen shootings and deaths of people across the spectrum of life. As followers of Jesus we are to be students and not "knee-jerk" reactive critics. Life is complex and we need to listen attentively, seeking first to understand, then to be understood. We don't know what we don't know. But we do know that that there are many hurts in our country and many who are hurting deeply due to the death of loved ones who will never come home again.  Now more than ever we need to walk our talk as we follow Jesus. Take a look at chapter 4 in the biblical book of Esther. The entire Jewish community was in a perilous place. People feared for their lives. Leaders were in disagreement and disarray and hopeless. Finally, one leader, Mordecai, said to another leader, Esther, this is not the time to quibble, be quiet, or quit. “Maybe it was for a moment like this that you came to be part of the royal family” (Esther 4:14 CEB).

Centuries later a young teen in hiding, Anne Frank, said, “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” We don't need to be royalty nor a "leader" to act in improving the world.  We no longer need to wait for the "right" time. It is always now.

But what can a person do?  It is helpful to know what to do. So, I've gleaned some ideas to pass on as seeds for our next steps. 
Acknowledge that there is a lot of good in our country and yet everything is not right.  We are a country always improving. And there is room to improve.  Ourselves first, and then with our systems and our world. Affirm the pain which other people feel.  Understand their pain is real.  Understand that the pain of others is also our own pain. This is part of being a nation of many as one. Act in ways that bring healing and hope to places of pain.  More specifically you can do the following. 

1. Move from the private and macro level to the public and macro level. Preach and live grace.  What steps can you take to align yourself and those in your sphere of influence with the fact that grace is real, unmerited, for all, for always? Use your influence for good!
2. Be relational.  Get out of your box and get closer to the points of pain. Talk with people you don’t know. Get to know them and their reality. Greet police officers. Greet people of other ethnicities. Now is not the time to sit back.
3. Find ways to weave people together. Start with friends or persons of different ethnicities within our church community or communities of faith. 
4. Be a student not a critic. Explore and examine the civic structures and policies and systems. Read and listen to comparative opinions to get a larger picture.  Work cooperatively and productively with others for positive changes. Invite people you know to join you in this exploration and work. 
5. Bring light and life to every day. Daily do things in your personal and public spaces to lift yourself and others up. Enjoy creation. Love life. Make joy. Don’t stay in the heavy pessimistic and cynical zones. The founders of this great American experiment thought, talked and trudged forward.  Think, pray and act for the common good.

MFMC Blog - July 12, 2106 - I listened to Marquis Laughlin present a solo dramatic recitation of Revelation 12-22 this past Sunday in our worship services. I imagined how followers of Jesus have listened to these words through out the centuries.  The blessed promise of Revelation 1:3 coming true in the encouragement received in the face of persecution.  No matter the tragedies which come and the trials we face God triumphs in the end!  The garden is reestablished an incredible  incomprehensible new city is built and the banqueting table is set for eternity! Keep on trusting and keep on trekking.  The Grace of Jesus is with you just as it has been with his followers through out the centuries.  Amen and A-men!


MFMC Blog - July 5, 2016 - God's Politics involve what is best for people. The actions of Jesus speak louder than bible stories or Jesus sayings. When Jesus said that we had to love God with all our heart, mind, soul and strength he was making sure that we understood that love is more than belief. Love is shown. Love is action. God is personal but not private.  The life of Jesus becomes our filter to process our thoughts and actions and views. In this process we form our views and opinions. Just remember don't trade your influence for winning an argument over your opinion.  We are fortunate to live in a great nation where your vote counts and your vote is more important than you opinion. So be a disciple/learner.  Be a student and not a critic.  Be an inluencer for Jesus.  Be salt and light and make love a verb. Think, Pray, Vote!


Next Sunday Marquis Laughlin is presenting the Book of Revelation. Come and listen and be blessed. 


 "Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near."   Revelation 1:3






MFMC Blog - June 28, 2016 - God is extravagant and generous with his WORD!  On Sunday June 26 we started a summer preaching series on THE GREATEST STORIES JESUS TOLD!  Matthew 13 is a unique chapter in the bible. Some scholars say there are up to 7 parables within it. Parables are the way Jesus chose to bring a twist of freshness and insight into our hearts and minds. Each of our pastors will be bringing a sermon on a parable through the summer Sundays. You will be blessed by the variety of our teaching team.  


Next Sunday is the 4th of July holiday weekend and I'll be preaching on the topic of God's Politics. How does the life of Jesus in whom we see what God would like us to know about himself inform our views on politics. Come ready to think and grapple with some theological and biblical material and ideas. 


Mark July 10 on your calendar and plan to join in hearing the latter part of the book of Revelation presented in dramatic fashion by Marquis Laughlin. "Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near."   Revelation 1:3


MFMC Blog - June 21, 2016 - What do you do when behavior doesn't meet your expectation? When she didn't do what he said he would? When he is late, again?  Where do you go in your mind and in your heart? Do you believe the best? Do you draw toward the person and build in some margin? Do you assume the worst?  Do you close up and in essence push the person away? We looked at 1 Corinthians 13:7 which is an interesting verse. Maybe, it's the master key to the most excellent way of this love chapter. Maybe it's the thing we have to do to bridge the gap between living out the love characteristics mentioned in verses 4-6 and the word of verse 8, Love never fails.  This doesn't mean we don't get mad. It doesn't mean we don't have tough times. It doesn't mean we don't look within ourselves to our true self.  It doesn't mean we don't have honest conversations. Verse 7 means we do what we can to believe the best and work for the best until the evidence is otherwise. This is a great gift for fathers and mothers. It's the gift of our heavenly father to us.  Check out the rest of the message on our web page sermon archive. 

Next week we start the Greatest Stories Jesus Told series. Come and learn about the one story in each of the synoptic Gospels which starts the stories of Jesus and maybe how we misinterpret it and tend to live in fear from its lessons when it's a powerful story of God's strength and power for us and our world. Join in on Sunday. Oh, and pray for our Vacation Bible School this coming Friday evening and Saturday morning. 



MFMC Blog - June 14, 2016 - We had the joy of baptizing three persons this past Sunday. We are on mission to make more and better disciples. So, it's great to see three folk give public notice of their start in following Jesus. Everyday may we each live in the covenant of baptism. Just like a marriage we promise some things and God promises some things. God promises to: forgive us, to adopt us, to give us a spring of living water  welling up to eternal life each day in purpose and meaning, and that streams of living water will flow from in side of us through the dynamic energy of his Spirit working through us. We promise to love, follow and serve God. What a beautiful vibrant and verdant relationship. This is a most profound theological thought and truth. May you and I live out of our baptism covenant today and each day the Lord gives us. 

This coming Sunday we look at 1 Corinthians 13:7 and how to have an Always Kind of Love. Also, you'll want to see the Father's Day skit guys video!
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MFMC Blog - June 7, 2016 - Jesus began with the end in mind. He knew there would have to be a group to carry on his good news message. So he formed his team of 12 with the end goal that this team would reproduce what they were taught, tooled up and trusted with. They would be be apprentices to a message both taught and caught.  These 12 were disciples of the master and this method has continued to multiply through the centuries via the church.  Why did he pick those 12?  To show his leadership in bringing out the best with such a diverse team?  We do not know the reason Jesus chose those particular guys. We do know that they did not choose him in the normal process of student and rabbi.  Jesus chose them and the wonder of it all is that Jesus chooses you too. His desire is that everyone would follow him. Are you responding to the call to be his witness?  And as we learned this past Sunday that call means to do things the way Jesus would and to be a walking billboard for Jesus.  both a "martyr" and a "marquise". Jesus is a real leader worth following. 

Next Sunday we celebrate the baptism of some folk in our fellowship. We'll be reminded of what God does in baptism and what we do as well. Join in this celebration! 



MFMC Blog - May 31, 2016 - Courage was the message this past Sunday. In three narratives we saw the courage of Jesus in his willingness to talk about and show how radical and new his presence and agenda is.  It's a time to celebrate and rejoice. His presence is fresh and effervescent. The main thrust of his message is how it would not fit with the "old time religion" of Judaism. It was not about doing something new or saying something 'rad' and calling it courage. Rather, the courage of Jesus challenges us to let the fresh thoughts and ways of Jesus work in our life so God may work in us to complete the work he desires to do in us.  May God finish the work he's started in us. 
This coming Sunday we look at the group which Jesus chose as his disciples. Amazing what he did with this diverse bunch! The message will give us hope as to what God may be doing in and through us. See you Sunday. 



MFMC Blog - May 24, 2016 - Compassion is feeling your pain in my heart. When people came to Jesus they saw compassion. Lepers, the paralyzed, the tax collectors they came to him. They felt compassion. People who were not like him like him. He was not like them but they knew he liked them. When we get the balance of grace and truth in our life like Jesus the same thing will happen. The compassion of Jesus will flow through our life and the good news of Jesus will be shared. Hear more about Jesus our compassionate leader at the sermon archive on our web page and our Faithlife group. 

Hey guys join in prayer at our group on Thursday evening this week at 6pm. There is also a 903AM breakfast group at Denny's on Friday morning.  If you are not out on Memorial Day weekend join in our Sunday worship as we look at Jesus our Courageous Leader. With grace and truth Jesus introduces change to rigid, inflexible, and threatened leaders. Courage is a virtue we remember on this weekend and one we can learn more about from our Lord and savior.



MFMC Blog - May 17, 2016 - Washingtonians vote in our state's presidential primary this month. There is a lot of drama around having to select a party affiliation in order to vote. So, it's rather engaging to look at Jesus and see him as a real leader we can follow. Jesus didn't need a badge or some other credential to prove his suitability to lead. He didn't even need a party to lead. His vision about the Kingdom of God here on earth he made practical and it was  winsome. His life, his teaching, his style lends credence to his leadership as one we can trust and follow. I bow my knee and vote to follow him.  If you missed the message this past Sunday you can get to it under the CONNECT tab on this web site which will take you to the SERMON tab. 

The choir sings in the 8:45AM service this coming Sunday. This is their final performance for the first half of the year. They end with an afternoon  performance at the Warm Beach Retirement Center. Thank you to choir director, Belle Miller, pianists Carol Osborn, Kathy Larson, Melanie Martin and each and every one of the choir members for a wonderful year of sharing their unique talents in our worship services. You may want to get in on this fun and inspiring ministry when they start up in September. 



MFMC Blog - May 10, 2016 - When you say above all else it means this is most important. King David passed on the gift of wisdom to his son Solomon and when Solomon passed his gems of wisdom to the world he wrote that there was one gem which was above all else. That gem is found in Proverbs 4:23, "Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it." The next few verses feather out this verse. It's not saying to insulate your feelings but rather to pay attention to your thoughts, emotions, feelings and choices. Name them and share them in positive ways which make for level paths. Watch out for stuff which corrupts.  In the Methodist movement we speak of the three rules for Christian Living: Do no harm, Do Good , and Stay in love with God. There is a lot of freedom in a life which flows from these habits. I think this is what Solomon had in mind when he said this was a priority in life. 

This coming Sunday we continue looking at Jesus as a real leader worth following. One of the key questions we have for any leader is what are the leaders credentials?  Often the best credentials are results not references or actions instead of ID cards. Read Luke 4:31-5:11 and ask what might be some credentials of Jesus as our leader to follow. See you Sunday. 



May 3, 2016 - Hometown boy makes good; Is he God in the flesh?  Could have been the headline of the Nazareth Herald when Jesus opened up his ministry in Nazareth. Jesus preaches to his hometown crowd about the focus of his God given mission (Luke 4:14-30) and gets seriously rejected. I can imagine him saying, "God has given me the keys to his kingdom. The ball is in my hands so get out of my way."  With these words of confidence he makes his way through the killing frenzied crowd and continues in ministry. The town of Nazareth misses out and as far as we know he never returns to that village.  Let Jesus instill your life with confidence. The apostle Paul did and wrote in Philippians 4:13 what he felt in these words, "I can do everything through him (Christ) who gives me strength."  Today, let those words work for you. 

This coming Sunday we look at the words of the wisest man who ever lived according to the Bible. He wrote a Proverb which he said was a teaching "above all else."  You'll learn some things you can do to guard your heart and encourage love. You won't want to miss this as we also honor moms with two drama skits. One by adults and one by our children's ministries. See you Sunday. 



MFMC Blog April 26, 2016 - Jesus is NO Superman. He doesn't dress up like Clark Kent and in crisis turn on his superpowers to deal with temptation. Jesus is like us in his humanity as he deals with the temptations, complexities and messes of everyday life. And the writer of Hebrews wants us to know this powerful truth.  Read these verses aloud slowly and let them sink in as you think of your situation:  Hebrews 4:15-16: For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our  weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are - yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.  And Hebrews 2:18, Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted. Jesus is with you in any situation you face today.  Breath this truth in and let it permeate you.

This past Sunday we saw Jesus listen to the voice of temptation and we saw him keep his integrity through each situation. Integrity is being a consistent character.  And character is who you are when no one is looking. Jesus kept his integrity. Psalm 25:21 reminds us: May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope is in you.  Jesus is a leader whose character is full of integrity and uprightness. Jesus calls us to follow him and by his spirit abiding in us he empowers us to live as he did.  Jesus is a real leader we can follow. Follow him today.



MFMC Blog April 19, 2016  -  Jesus never allowed his religion to get in the way of his ministry. He lived every situation in life to the glory of God almighty but with compassion for people as the filter rather than religious conviction.  A powerful thought for us as we do good by the grace of God in our daily living. This thought wrapped up our series of learning some practical reasons on Why Jesus Came to Earth.  Well, this coming Sunday we look at Jesus: A Real Leader Worth Following! With all the characters running for political office it will be refreshing to look at the dynamic and honest character of Jesus. Read Luke 4:1-13 and ask yourself what you learn about God the father and about character from Jesus.  As N.T. Wright wrote: "Jesus is not super man."  However, as a human being Jesus deals with temptation and shows us he is a real leader worth following! 



MFMC Blog April 5, 2016 - I could hear God laughing. God has a great sense of humor! Sunday morning service we had a fantastic drama on God's invitation to go out and invite all to his banqueting table. Here I was preaching on how God sees everybody as somebody whom he loves. How Jesus lived knowing what was in the hearts of humankind yet looking beyond labels and categories to see people as people God loves. How Jesus came to elevate the dignity of humankind. And in comes a man with a story of coming to Seattle for surgery and of a lost wallet and return ticket home to Colorado. He said he attended an FM church. OK. What would you do? Well, as a general rule we handle benevolence with gift cards. Evaluative thoughts, even distrustful or cynical thoughts as well, swirled in my mind and I laughed at the humor of this "coincidence". Do I believe my own sermons and will I practice what I preach. In heaven I'll ask about this incident. In the meantime I thank God that we are invited to the Lord's banquet. Oh, and we did help get this brother back on his way home. Just as we all journey home.

This coming Sunday we hear the voice of Pastor Greg Zook preaching. We have a great team of pastors so bring your bible and come prepared to let God speak to you as Greg opens up God's word to us. 



 MFMC Blog March 29, 2016 - He IS Risen! He IS Risen, Indeed! Our annual but never tiring joyous greeting and proclamation for followers of Jesus. What a joy to worship our risen Lord together and be reminded of the transforming Before and After Easter Effect from 1 Corinthians 15:1-11.  Everyday our Lord continues the gracious work of effecting change in our lives. Look for it, listen for it and do it.  As the apostle Paul wrote in v.11, "This is what we preach, and this is what you believed."

Join in on Sunday next as we explore how God came to this world to raise the dignity of each individual. This is a God-ethic or value which motivates us in our care and compassion for others and our world. Your EASTER offerings help us do this work of mission and compassion here in our city. Thank you for giving and thanks to each of you who helped make Easter special at MFMC. Back to our two service schedule of 8:45 and 10:30 AM services. See you then. 



MFMC Blog March 22, 2016 -  On Palm Sunday we celebrated how Jesus came to set us free through his love and grace. The rest of this week follow Jesus to the cross through the following daily gospel readings
  • Tuesday read John 12:20-36.
  • Weds read John 13:21-32.
  • Thurs read John 13:1-17 & 31b-35.
  • Friday read John 18:1- 19:42.
  • Sat read 1 Peter 4:1-8 & Luke 24:1-12.
  • Sunday read John 20:1-18. 
Lean into the feelings of Jesus as he suffered for the joy of what he was to do for humanity, for us, for you and me on the cross.  The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.  Good Friday is the starkest day of the Christian Calendar as we commemorate the work of our Lord Jesus for us. Join in our Good Friday service at 7pm and let it deepen your appreciation for the life-changing impact of the Easter message! 



MFMC Blog March 15, 2016  -

https://faithlife.com/marysville-fmc-wa/activity This is the web site for the message presented this past Sunday by Emily Spores. We post our messages at our Faithlife group site. We're building up a dialogue group. Let us know if you want an invitation to join in.  We were astounded by the stories Emily shared which had the sweet scent of the book of Acts.  The heart of a hardened neighborhood leader softens and he opens an opportunity for Emily and team to preach to hundreds of teens at a neighborhood meeting.  Bibles are needed but there are none in the needed language available and no funds. The next day a fellow bicycles up and has a couple of dozen of the exact bibles needed for free. Foodstuff is needed for the team on their mission to the mountain people and a chicken arrives and delivers an egg each day the team is there. Sounds like the answered prayer stories of George Mueller! Amazing coincidences or the working of the spirit of God?  Easter reminds us that we follow and worship the God of the universe who can work circumstances in ways which surprise us and glorify him.  Would you try prayer first this week?

 

Palm/Passion Sunday is coming up and it's one of the most important Sunday's of the year. Why? Because it starts us on the final week, Holy Week, before Easter Sunday. Savor these days and enjoy the parade with Jesus to the cross on Good Friday and the Day of Resurrection!



MFMC Blog March 8, 2016 - What a weekend full of encouragement at our Men's Advance weekend. Ted DiBiase, the pro wrestler known as the, "Million Dollar Man" was the speaker and had a moving testimony. It was powerful to be in a small group and hear the stories of what God is doing in the lives of men and the needs of men at so many levels. We are all broken and in need of God's daily presence. Join in the men's new prayer time on every other Thursday starting this week in portable #1. Come and go as you want between 6 and 7pm

As we progress on the Lenten Journey we realize how the cross and the resurrection deal with the justification or rectification of ungodly humanity, which is us. Judgment of God and self-condemnation isn't the last word though. The first and last word are alway the goodness, graciousness, righteousness and mercy of God. We are transformed from sinner to saint. From fear to faith. From hopeless to hopeful. In a few Sundays we'll continue answering the question, "Why did Jesus come to earth?"  In the meantime we'll celebrate mid-wife missions to the Philippines with Emily Spores this week. The drama group will perform as well. Then we travel through Holy Week; Palm Sunday, Good Friday and Easter. Bring a friend to join in sharing this truly Great News which continues to shape the hearts and lives of many!
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MFMC March 1, 2016 - Thanks for Celebrating Freedom Sunday here at MFMC. Freedom and Justice are major plots in the story of God. Freedom is part of our denominational DNA as the Free Methodist roots go back to our formation in 1860 with freedom for slaves as one of our start-up values. Hearing Kevin Austin the director of the Set Free Movement was inspiring. He reminded us that this is a mission of hope.  We partner with SFM to spread this hope by creating new futures for people around the world. Your special offerings added up to $600 which will help in the 3 projects: Providing Childcare through ICCM in Ethiopia for 50 children; Creating a safe home for the Roma girls in Bulgaria; and creating Set Free movements in Wichita, Portland, and Atlanta. MFMC you are making a difference. We support Kevin as one of our MFMC missionaries. You can give to his support through your mission offerings. Thank you very much!
See you this coming Sunday as we celebrate Communion and start looking at scripture to see why Jesus came to earth. 





MFMC Blog 2-23-16
Yes, Jesus transforms us. Yes, when we walk with Jesus it can be called the transformed life, the holy life, the sanctified life, the abundant life, the exchanged life among other other descriptives. But, let's not forget we are still living in a world where there are circumstances and choices and freedoms and wills beyond our control.  Even as Christ lives in us we hear the scripture speak to us. We are not a cream puff with some infused puffy filling baked and done once and for all at the time of our salvation experience. We are living human beings who reflect the character and freedom of God. We grow and develop physically, emotionally, mentally and yes spiritually.  The bible talks about this so plainly. Scripture uses descriptive words to call us to learn about Christ, to change our attitudes, to control our emotions, to consider, to think, to act, to go, to do, among other things. We are not robotic drones. So, enjoy the reading in Philippians 2:1-8 and ask what would the spirit of Jesus dwelling inside me want me to work on this week as I grow and develop to be more like Jesus in this world.

Join in the celebration of FREEDOM SUNDAY this coming Sunday with Kevin Austin. Human Freedom and anti-slavery is part of our Free Methodist DNA. Let's see to end human trafficking and create new futures in partnership with The Set Free Movement!  See you on Sunday!





MFMC Blog 2-17-16
Falling in love is easy, staying in love is hard. In this year's season of Lent we focus on the essential commandment of "loving one another."  In the upper room, the night before his betrayal, Jesus gave his disciples a new commandment saying, "Love one another."  See John 13:34.  And Jesus connected his words to his actions. In a world where marriages were arranged, and wives and children were seen as property; love was more of a philosophical category, idea or noun; Jesus came along and made love a verb, an action, for his followers. He gave his followers a priority and he modeled a plan. 1 John 4 tells us that God is love and that God shows his love in the actions of Jesus. God's love is both noun and verb. St.Paul expanded on the great command of Jesus and in the coming weeks we'll explore how to make this imperative practical in our marriages and relationships. We started this past Sunday. Join in on Sunday mornings and on the post-sermon discussion at our FaithLife group.
Some helpful resources:
What makes love last? How to Build Trust and Avoid Betrayal by John Gottman, Ph.D and Nan Silver
The Nature of Love: A Theology by Thomas Jay Oord
The Three Hardest Words: In the World to Get Right by Leonard Sweet



MFMC Blog February 7, 2016

On this super bowl Sunday we tackled a big topic as we wrapped up our 6 week series on Honest Questions Thinking Christians Ask.  The question was: "What does the Church teach about Homosexuality?" Our denominational answer is that we are welcoming but non-affirming.  We follow the words of Jesus in John 13:34 -35 and of the Apostle Paul in Romans 13:10 and we work at loving our neighbor whoever they be. 

If you would like to read what our bishops have written on this topic you might want to go to www.fmcusa.org.

If you would like some additional papers to read and ponder please let me know and I'll be glad to share some copies with you. In life we acknowledge God as love, as creator, who calls us as fallen creation to redemption and comes alongside us in the walk of transformation through the power of love, his very essence.

A few resources for reading might include:

Straight & Narrow by Thomas E. Schmidt

Homosexuality and the Church by Richard F. Lovelace

Same-Sex Partnerships by John Stott

if you want to tackle a heavy duty search into the interpretation of key bible texts here are two hefty volumes you need to read for sure. Good Reading. 

The Bible and Homosexual Practice: Texts and Hermeneutics by Robert A.J. Gagnon

Homosexuality and the Bible: Two Views by Robert A.J. Gagnon


MFMC 2-2-16

"If I knew that tomorrow was the end of the world, I would plant an apple tree today!" This is a saying attributed to Martin Luther the Protestant Reformer in the 1500's. It was also a saying quoted by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  The phrase encourages us to live out our calling today and trust tomorrow to God's just and righteous care. This past Sunday we looked at the question, "Is the Rapture Real?"  We learned that our Wesleyan Methodist view on the end times is much like Martin Luther and John Wesley.  They didn't have the labels we give to our Interpretative Systems we have to understand the future return of Jesus.  Wesley's view would be described as Post-millennialism or even Amillennialism. Bottom line for our life today is to do what Jesus and Christians have done for 2,000 years; Be Ready, Be working, Be Hopeful. As Eugene Peterson in The Message translated the words of Jesus in Acts 1:7, "You don't get to know the time. Timing is the Father's business."

 







MFMC Blog January 26, 2016 -  Our question this past week: Why does God allow suffering?  We reviewed a concise theology of suffering which some of the resources below will help you delve deeper. Bottom line is that although God can and does bring good results out of tragedy, God does not cause tragic events to happen. Is the rapture real? is the question we delve into this coming Sunday. Whatever you believe about the end times you'll find this Sunday's sermon enlightening and encouraging for your everyday life right here and right now.  Don't get left behind!

Resources for:
January 24, 2016  Why does God Allow Suffering?

Creation Untamed: The Bible, God and Natural Disasters by Terence E. Fretheim
Is God to Blame? Beyond Pat Answers to the Problem of Suffering by Gregory A. Boyd
Suffering and the Search for Meaning: Contemporary Responses to the Problem of Pain by Richard Rice
The Problem of Pain by C.S. Lewis

January 31, 2016  Is the Rapture Real? 

Left Behind or Left Befuddled? by Gordon L. Isaac
The Rapture Exposed: The Messianic Hope in the Book of Revelation by Barbara R. Rossing. 
Rapture Culture: Left Behind in Evangelical America by Amy Johnson Frykholm,
In God's Time: The Bible and the Future by Craig C. Hill



MFMC Blog January 19, 2016 - Suffering through the dismal first half of the Seahawks vs. Panthers game this past Sunday is not anywhere near the suffering which goes on in life and in our world. The question we tackle this week is often framed as "Why Does God Allow Suffering?"  It's a huge question but we'll look at some simple answers in broad strokes. Take a look at Luke 13:1-5 and you'll see Jesus interacting with the idea of suffering. The bottom line and end score is that although God can and does bring good results out of suffering, God does not cause tragic events and suffering to occur.  As God tells a grieving father in the bestselling novel The Shack, "Just because I work incredible good out of unspeakable tragedies doesn't mean I orchestrate the tragedies."



MFMC Blog January 12, 2016
Fear not doubt or questioning is the enemy of faith. Over and over in our bible we hear the words, "Do not be afraid." When Mary was told she would become the mother of our Lord Jesus she asked, "How will this be?"  Then she said, "I am the Lord's servant, may it be to me as you have said," So, we walk with Jesus in trust and seek our Lord's guidance and wisdom as we wrestle with honest questions Christians ask.  I appreciate your feedback and questions.  Here are some book resources i have read and which have been helpful to me in answering some of the questions we are looking at. 
January 3, 2016 - Can a growing and good Christian Doubt?
  • Benefit of the Doubt: Breaking the Idol of Certainty by Gregory A. Boyd
  • The Myth of Certainty: The Reflective Christian and The Risk of Commitment by Daniel Taylor
January 10, 2016 - What about People in Other Religions?
  • Four Views on Salvation in a Pluralistic World, Dennis L. Okholm, general editor
  • Who will be saved? by William H. Willimon
  • A Passion for Truth: The Intellectual Coherence of Evangelicalism by Alister McGrath
  • Christianity and World Religions by Adam Hamilton
January 17, 2016 - Can a Christian Believe in Evolution?
  • Three Views on Creation and Evolution, J.P. Moreland, general editor
  • Nazarenes Exploring Evolution by Sherri B. Walker
  • The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief by Francis S. Collins
  • Origins: Christian Perspectives on Creation, Evolution, and Intelligent Design by Deborah B. Haarsma
  • The Evolution of Adam: What the Bible Does and Doesn't Say about Human Origins by Peter Enns
  • The Lost World of Genesis One: Ancient Cosmology and the Origins Debate by John H. Walton
  • I Love Jesus & I Accept Evolution by Denis O. Lamoureux




MFMC Blog January 5, 2016
Disciples of Jesus learn from the Master. We learn by asking questions and seeking out answers. Sometimes we doubt or wonder or question how somethings we read in scripture work. Sometimes we are uncertain about ideas which we've learned because as we read scripture seriously and study it deeply. Through study we can see how other ideas might also be true.  There is good wisdom in the saying of the early church father Augustine who wrote: "In essentials unity.  In non-essentials liberty.  In all things charity (love, grace)." This month we're looking at several questions and seeing what scripture and our church in Wesleyan theology teaches in answering them. This coming Sunday we look at a passage in the bible where Peter in Acts 10:34-35 learned a profound truth about how God sees people in other religions. Look at Romans 3:28-30 to see something that the apostle Paul came to grip with. Paul made the stunning theological discovery that God is not only the God of the Jews but also of Gentiles.  Would not the group of Gentiles include those from other religions, like Muslims, and Buddhists, too. We in the 21st Century reverse the question and ask, "What about the Jews?" Paul was asking what about  those "other" people who didn't know the "real" God. Paul was not moving toward Gentiles out of some mushy liberal theory of pluralism. He was moving toward them because of what he had personally experienced of God in Jesus Christ and the words of commission the Lord. In Romans 15:14-16 he speaks about this motivation to reach gentiles with the gospel of God. Paul believed that the trust in Jesus was for including those of our cultures and religions not to exclude them. God's love is extravagant,  all embracing, inclusive, and cosmic. Find out more on Sunday.




MFMC Blog 12-29-15  "When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I am not afraid what can flesh do to me? Psalm 56:3,4  Throughout our Advent message series we learned to trust in God because he loves sinners and he works through sinners.  This past Sunday we looked at how God worked through Mary, the mother of Jesus. She had an incredible unexpected burden to bear. A burden not of her making. She had a lot to fear. However, we learned that: No matter who you are God can use you; No matter what you face, God is with you; and Whatever God says, God will do it.  What we see God do in our times of crisis or major decisions is proportional to how much we depend on the Lord. This is the working out of trusting in God.  Each day brings us such opportunities. These opportunities are times when we can become aware of God's presence and greatness in our life as we depend on the Lord, seek the Lord, and follow the Lord. May you grow in trusting God throughout the New Year to come!



MFMC Blog 12-22-15  -  When we sing the words "O little Town of Bethlehem" we'll remember the promise of God's forever love was given to King David around 3000 years ago. It came true in the same town when Jesus was born 2000 years ago and this promised love of God is still available to each of us. You can't earn it or negotiate for it. You can only accept it as a gift. Too good to be true? You are right! That's what makes it amazing! It's the Christmas gift of God's love and peace. Have you unwrapped it yet. It's a gift which grows and a gift which develops each and every day. 

This coming Sunday we wrap up our series on Awkward Christmas Stories with Mary. What would you call her story about her pregnancy?  

Remember our two worship service options for Christmas Eve.  Fun family service at 6pm and the traditional readings, music, carols and candlelighting service at 9pm.  A joyous and Merry Christmas to each of you!



MFMC Blog 12-15-15
A sermon on Rahab? During Advent even? Pastor Vic what's going on at MFMC during this Advent season?  Well, ask the apostle Matthew after all he's the one who wrote these names into his genealogical listing of Jesus' ancestry. As we take the bible seriously for the literature it is we see that Matthew gets our mind going off in tangents on the stories attached to these names. And this genealogy is his lead into the birth story of Jesus. So, do some discovery learning and help me out this coming Sunday. Here's the questions I'll ask:  What ancestral name is most attached to the name of Jesus?  What was the motto of the city of Bethlehem? What positive things did King David do? What negative things was King David known for? What promise did God give to King David? Advent reminds us of our expectation of God. The good news is God comes with the gifts of grace, mercy, forgiveness and acceptance. His gifts come to us in spite of our: past, shame, secrets, sin, regrets, labels, and evil.  Get rid of this stuff and accept living in the gift of God's grace, mercy, love and acceptance. All of which comes to us through Jesus Christ. This makes for a truly Merry Christmas. 

In January I'm planning on preaching on controversial issues. Help me out. Let me know what topics, issues or questions you are interested in hearing about.  We'll look at what the Bible says about a select group of topics which you'll help in selecting. Email your ideas to me asap. Thanks.



MFMC Blog 12-8-15
A sermon on Tamar and Judah! No way! It's a very rare topic to hear in a Sunday sermon. But, we did it and in our Advent season to boot. Why? Because this is where the apostle Matthew set the mind of a first century Jewish reader with his document on Jesus Christ. Little did he know his writing would become what future followers of Jesus would call the "gospel" and that his first chapters as it were would be called the Christmas story or Nativity narratives. But more importantly, as we've learned, Matthew wanted to convey that God came to make "outsiders" like Tamar "insiders" in his family.  And that anyone with a shame, secret or past could be redeemed. An awkward story?  Yes. But one filled with the amazing grace and mercy of our Lord God. Start digging out facts about Jericho and Rahab for this coming Sunday. Check out the bible book of Joshua 1:1 -7:1. I'll give a $5 Starbucks Gift Card to the first person on this coming Sunday to show me the scripture which tells specifically where Rahab lived within the town of Jericho. I'll also give a similar card to the first person who can tell me on Sunday what happened to the lineage of Zerah.  Learn much and see you on Sunday. 



MFMC Blog 12-1-15
After seeing the Taproot Touring group present their play this past Sunday I'll never think of the nativity announcement story in the same way. I have new ways of thinking of God and the angels Gabriel and, yes, even one who may be named Harold.  If you can have a Gabriel or Gabrielle why not a Harold? There is a thought that says God has no negative emotion and cannot change. This is called the impassibility and immutability of God. Yet, if Jesus reveals all of God to us as it says in Colossians 1:15 then maybe God and the angels have a lot more emotion and changeability than we have traditionally thought. Isn't it a marvel that God created us with this incredible capacity to imagine and think and develop? Every day we learn a bit more about our true self and our relationship with our Lord and others. Plays, art and music move and shape our reasoning to develop even more constructive and comprehensive understanding. Thank you Taproot for helping us start off the Advent season in a humorous and thoughtful way. See you Sunday for as we look at the Point of Christmas through the awkward story of Judah and his brothers in Matthew 1:3.





MFMC BLog November 24, 2015
This Advent season we're exploring awkward stories from Matthew chapter one.  Could it be that the writer Matthew started his document trying to prove Jesus was a candidate for Messiah/Christ through his genealogy of Jewish Davidic lineage and ancestry? But, along the way Matthew discovers and throws in the names of some shady ancestors of Jesus.  Why? Maybe because the stories of these ancestors show that Jesus didn't just come for sinners Jesus came from sinners like Matthew and like us.  People who have gotten away from walking with God and off his path.  And before Matthew starts with the story of the birth of Jesus he gives us this back-story.  Matthew didn't know his document would be known as gospel.  He didn't know what he wrote would be known as The Nativity or the Birth of Jesus narrative or The Christmas Story. Matthew was just trying to make a point of why Jesus came in the flesh, Emmanuel.  And Matthew's genealogy of Jesus makes the point of Christmas. He came to love and "save" sinners.  To restore us, to heal us, to accept us, to forgive us, to make us whole, in essence to love and save us.  It's good news of this Advent season as we light the prophet's candle of Hope.  It's great news to share with family and friends. 




November 17, 2015

The work of God is growing in Asia and we were blessed to hear about this from Eric Spangler our Asia Area Free Methodist Missions Director this past Sunday. Check the sermon archive section if you would like to hear his message. As you participate in ministry here at MFMC you build a strong base. This base allows us to support and partner with people like Eric to invest in local leaders and churches around the world with the good news of Jesus Christ.  Thank you for what you do and your regular giving. 


We start to look at our Advent season this coming Sunday with a sermon series on The Point of Christmas in Awkward Bible Stories!  


Also, we pray for peace in our world. We pray for Paris and the families of those who suffered injury and death in the recent terrorist acts.  I have family travelling through France this week and we have a former church member who with his family lives and works in Paris.  So , this situation is of deep concern.  We cast all our cares upon God who cares for us and trust in Philippians 4:6-7 for God's transcending and sustaining peace. 


November 10, 2015

What a great job pastor Greg Zook did in his sermon this past Sunday as he taught on Humility as the Key to Leadership. In my humble opinion. OK enough fun. Some excellent points are: Share your mistakes as teachable moments; engage in dialog not debates; embrace uncertainty; role model being a follower.  We continue with mission focus with Eric Spangler here next Sunday. Eric is our Asia Area Missions Director.  God is at work in your life and all over the world. 


November 3, 2015

God promises that the glory of his present care, love and strength are with us no matter what. When we feel that God  should do something about this or that we can look at John 11 and the story of Lazarus and remember the promise of Jesus.  God entered the human experience and knows just what we feel in these times. Jesus recognized illness, death and grief. I've actually heard pastors pray for resurrection of the dead based on this story of Lazarus. How misled they are.  The purpose of that narrative was so the glory of God through Jesus might be seen and attested to in those times and in our times of grief as we trust in Jesus.  During disasters when people scornfully ask, "Why doesn't God do something about that? or Why doesn't God do something about this?"  You can answer: I don't know why God doesn't do something about that or this.  That's why he is God.  But, based on scripture, I do know that God can do anything God wants to do.  I know that God sometimes waits to influence and do what God desires through us. And above all I know I can trust God no matter what!  


October 27, 2015

Making a difference is the encouraging message from Acts 11:19-26 given to us from our superintendent matt Whitehead this past Sunday. At MFMC you are making a difference to our community. You responded with extravagant generosity to the need for fencing due to fire damage for three ranchers in our Oroville FM church. A few of you went over to help on work parties and to worship with the brothers and sisters there. You threw a grand Harvest Carnival for disAbled adults at the beginning of October.  You are providing Awana cost free to kids.   You are giving for Thanksgiving baskets via Fred Meyer gift cards.  You are filling Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes. You are signing up to ring the kettle bell for Salvation Army. And you're giving to our Christmas Offering. Along the way you are praying and showing the love of Jesus. You are Making a Difference. 


October 20, 2015

Kudos to pastor Greg Kanehen on being named a Family Values recipient by the local ward of the church of the Latter Day Saints. Yes, this is the Mormon Church. Part of Greg's role has been to forge partnerships and alliances in our community for the greater good of the church and the Kingdom of God. We call this missional and though we differ on certain beliefs we agree on worship of God the father and the call of Jesus Christ to love God and others as self. The Lord has been working through our corporate efforts as we working hand in hand with many churches in Marysville. 


Join our Marysvillefmc group at Faithlife.com and we'll start discussing the messages and any other conversations you'd like to engage in.  This week we reflect on the message from  2 Corinthians 12:7-10 when God says or implies NO as an answer to prayer. I know a lot of people think God never says NO. Well, has the answer to your prayers always been Yes or maybe later?  What do you think. 


Remember the WALK OF STRENGTH AT MARYSVILLE PILCHUCK HIGH SCHOOL at 10:20am this coming Saturday, October 24.  Gates open at 9AM and program at 10:20 to reflect on the horrific tragedy of a year ago. Help plant 10,000 Tulip bulbs to remind us of new hope and life!  See you there.  


October 13, 2015

Enlarge your view of who God is! God is not silent when God is absent. Your circumstances do not define God's care for you. The life script of John the Baptist, Jesus' cousin, shows us these truths. Jesus even tells these truths to his cousin. What painful but maturing lessons to learn from the life of this great prophet John the baptizer. Let's look at JB's life and beyond our circumstances to not get hung up on what Jesus does or doesn't do in our life as we continue to walk and trust God daily in whatever we are going through. 


October 5, 2015

God is our ROCK!  God is our BIG ROCK!  We seek God and his kingdom first when we prioritize his lead and his action in our life (Matthew 6:33).  A kingdom is a government. And a government leads and rules and acts. When we seek the kingdom of God we seek the lead, rule and action of God in our daily life. Check out the sermon from last Sunday.  Like the illustration of "Rocks, pebbles and sand"  when we put the BIG ROCKS in first you allow for productivity. Productivity is still up to you. And you may not get everything on your "To-Do" list done in a particular day. But, I guarantee you will feel the blessing and joy of getting the big stuff done.  It will also be easier to say "yes" and "no" to the urgent "pebbles" and the "sand" activities which can often crowd out the important.  Hey, and this big rock is prayer done early in the morning. Just praising God and praying for his presence, power, provision, protection, pardon, prioritization of your schedule, and the same for the people you pray for.  Then follow up with  reading  scripture following some plan and listening to the promptings which follow. It only takes a few minutes each morning but it will change how you "number you days so that God will give you a heart of wisdom" (Psalm 90:12).  Don't add  more to your day. Just put the BIG ROCK in first. Try this throughout October and let  me know how it's going. Best to you. 


September 29, 2015

Loosen your grip. Tighten your belt. Open your hand. This a vivid picture of how the early "believers were one in heart and mind." (Acts 4:32-35).  They enlarged their giving beyond duty to devotion to one another.  Giving sacrificially to people in their group of people who alongside them were following Jesus. Thank you for your giving to MFMC as your church family. And thank you for your giving to needs which arise where we can help fellow brothers and sisters in crisis. The wildfires in central Washington threatened our church in Tonasket but did not damage it.  However, we did learn of some cattle ranchers who attend and lead in our Oroville FM Church who lost cattle and fence line. Thanks for giving for fence supplies. Also, a group from MFMC and Arlington FMC will be going up in October to help put up new fence line.  I love our church in the way we connect, the way we serve, the way we share, the way we give, and the way we love God as we love one another. 


September 22, 2015  "You are the salt of the earth and you are the light of the world. Let your light shine before men, that they many see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven." Matthew 5:13-16. Not advice but a charge from our leader, savior, Lord God, and King, Jesus. We each have a different variety of salt and a distinct kind of light. So, shake the salt out of the saltshaker this week and shine the light! Next Sunday I invite you to come hear what God is doing in Asia.


September 15, 2015 Thank you to Marysville Police Chief Rick Smith for sharing his story with us this past Sunday. Pray for Rick and our first responders. This coming Sunday we look at seasoning and shining. We love Jesus and his bride, the church, as we live like Salt and Light. Come get saltier and brighter! By the way our fall Sunday schedule starts this week. Kids will join us in singing at 10AM then head down to a new program for this Fall quarter called Jesus Rangers. Look for the Ranger escorts!


September 8, 2015  Jesus replied, "They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat." (Matthew 14:16). Listen. Since Sunday have you heard our Lord calling you to do something you can do for his Kingdom and trust him to do what only he can do? This is how you grow your confidence in God. It's stretching your faith muscle. You'll look back someday and say, "I didn't think I could but I offered God what I had and let me tell you what he did." Listen. This coming Sunday listen to our police chief encourage the church to face challenges!


September 1, 2015  Autumn is in the air. What a wind storm we had on Saturday. Changes visible and felt! Same at church. This month we start to develop some new family and children's ministries at church. Greg and Dawn Zook are leading this development along with Heather Lundberg and a team of volunteers. Find out how you can be part of giving this ministry new visibility and feel as we reach out to families with children. 


  August 25, 2015  Our vision is to creatively lead people to Christ and embrace them into a community of growing Christians. We do our vision by creativng environments to develop passion for Christ, His call, His community , and His causes. In the next few weeks the fall ministries get rolling, the two service schedule starts up and more discipleship growth activities get going. It's an exciting time with several changes. No matter how things change our vision remains constant and I invite you to give me your feedback. What have you enjoyed in the summer worship? What would you change? Let me know. Thanks!


August 18, 2015  Happy Anniversay to my in-laws Don and Georgia Anderson on their 65th anniversary. A loving long-term relationship like this is something to celebrate! This coming Sunday we'll look at How to love my church and experience its fullness. Coincidently, I just read that a new study in the American Journal of Epidemiology suggests that joining a religious group could do more for someone’s “sustained happiness” than other forms of social participation, such as volunteering, playing sports or taking a class. So, check it out on Sunday. See you then. 


August 12, 2015   I recently read this poem and thought to pass it on. It reminds me of our call to follow Jesus and live for him in our being and our doing. Whose you are and what you do are important. Song of the Builders by Mary Oliver On a summer morning I sat down on a hillside to think about God - a worthy pastime. Near me I saw a single cricket; it was moving the grains of the hillside this way and that way. How great was its energy, how humble its effort. Let us hope it will always be like this, each of us going on in our inexplicable ways building the universe.