Thursday, March 26

Palm Sunday Celebration

Come join us this Sunday in worship at 8:15 or 11 AM as we celebrate the entrance of our Lord into Jerusalem with a joyful procession,  festive song featuring our choirs and brass, and the singing of "The Palms."  Then come see and hear an account of the last week in the life of Jesus Christ with a dramatic retelling of the Last Supper, betrayal, trial, and crucifixion.

Our Music Director, John Rea, who also designed a new "Walk Through Holy Week" experience for our Sunday School this year (which you are welcome to experience at 9:30 on Sunday), composed original music for this experience. Our time together will also feature percussion and sound effects from Adam Chantry as well as leadership from readers and choirs of St. Andrew's Church.

We hope that you will be able to join us as we begin our Holy Week journey from despair to hope, from darkness to light, and from death to life.  


Tuesday, March 24

Change of Plans

Dear Friends,

Perhaps you are facing a season of change in your life.  Ecclesiastes 3:11 says that God has made everything "suitable for it's time."  That is to say that God has designed our lives into seasons, but there is a time limit on each one.  Some seasons are wide open doors for our passions and calling and some seasons are closed doors when God calls us to grow professionally, spiritually, or emotionally.  Some seasons are open doors where the changes are obvious: changes in employment, residence, or family life,   Some seasons are closed  doors where change is very subtle as we are challenged to look beneath the surface as we see changes in relationships, perspectives, attitudes, spiritual practices, and better self care.

If you are in an open door season of your life, may God give you the strength, flexibility, and patience to navigate the challenging changes ahead.  If you feel like you are in a closed door season, may you have wisdom and discernment to know what time can make possible in this season, new ways in which you might pray, offer your talents, encourage others, reconcile relationships,  worship, learn, and serve.  

This Wednesday evening in worship, we will recall a dramatic change of seasons and plans in the life of Jesus and his disciples.  And we will continue to walk through that season of change throughout Holy Week, with changes that will ultimately bring light out of darkness, hope out of despair, and life out of death.  See you in church!

Peace,

Pastor Mueller


Tuesday, March 17

A Change of Heart

Dear Friends,

It is far easier when life is going reasonably well to not embrace change.  It is far easier to stay entrenched in the same attitudes, behaviors, and belief systems that have defined our daily lives.  We are far more inclined to stay in our comfort zones, whether it's healthy or not.  However, when there is disruption, challenge, or loss, we are often called to a change of heart, to turn around and look at ourselves and the world around us in a different way.  It is in those difficult, unpredictable times that blessing can be found when we have a change of heart: to find the good in others, to affirm the way God is working in their lives, to be more willing to forgive others, to be more generous with our time, talent, and money,  and to count the blessings we have.

This Wednesday evening in worship, we will be looking at the story of Israel, through the eyes of the prophet Ezekiel, not only looking at matters of the heart for God's faithful (and sometimes unfaithful) people but also the heart of God which changes out of his great love for us.  Hope many of you will be able to join us.  

Also, if you have not already done so, search your inbox for the most recent copy of St. Andrew's newsletter and save it to your desktop.  It contains some really important information about Holy Week and Easter events yet to come.  See you in church!

Peace,

Pastor Mueller


Monday, March 9

Navigating Winds and Waves

Dear Friends,

What an amazing production of The Fiery Furnace this past weekend! Thanks be to God for John Rea's incredible creativity and vision for this performance as well as for all of his direction to bring it home.  Many thanks to Jennie Rice for her hard work, communication, and  organization in managing the details of this production.  Thanks to an incredible cast that was truly intergenerational and amazingly talented, a crew who worked through many challenges behind the scenes, and to everyone who in a matter of hours converted the sanctuary back into a beautiful space for worship, just in time for a funeral this morning.  So many hearts were touched by this team effort and. on a personal note, it was a real honor and a lot of fun to play a small role in this performance. (I wear white most Sundays in worship, but not like that!)
Many of you know that this production did not come without it's challenges.  The learning curve was steep, schedules were hard to manage, and the weather presented all kinds of obstacles.  Well, as it goes with musicals, so it often goes in our daily lives.  I am reminded of a "Peanuts" cartoon depicting Snoopy in rain gear on the deck of a storm blown ship.  The caption reads, "There is nothing I can do to control the winds of the world.  All I can do is adjust my sails."  Indeed, as many of us have discovered, even when change is minimal, even when people and circumstances stay the same, our attitudes and perspectives can change, in order to bring about helpful transformation.
This Wednesday at 7:30, our focus of our Midweek Worship, a service of Holy Communion, is change of circumstances.  The Rev. Thomas Kochenderfer (Pastor K)  will be sharing the chancel with me and will be sharing the Word with us.  Hope many of you can join us for worship and that some of you will even be able to join us for dinner at 6:30.  See you in church!

Peace,

Pastor Mueller



Monday, March 2

Change in Habit

Dear Friends,

As we continue our Midweek Lenten series on "Changes in Daily Living," this Wednesday evening we will be looking at "Change in Habit."  As the world changes around us, sometimes we need to change as well.  However, often habits can't change until identity changes.  For example, if someone likes to think of himself as the life of the party but also would like to cut back on how much alcohol he consumes, that is going to be harder to do.  Often identity is incompatible with a change in habits.  So to break or adopt a habit, sometimes we have to change the story we tell ourselves about ourselves.  The disciplines of Lent, fasting, bible study, devotional reading and prayer (including online resources), servant projects, and additional worship opportunities, can be great ways to remind ourselves of what God already sees in us and the only identity that really matters and lasts, that is beloved child of God blessed to be a blessing to others.
We hope that many of you will be able to join us on Wednesday evening as we are shaped by God's grace and empowered to see Christ's presence and promises in our daily lives.
Also, we hope that many of you, along with family and friends, will be able to join us to hear the story of how Daniel and his three friends kept their identity and faith strong, through very challenging times, through our presentation of "The Fiery Furnace."  This musical, composed by John Rea and performed by a very talented cast of St. Andrew's members, will be performed here at St. Andrew's this Friday and Saturday night at 7 PM and Sunday at 1:30 PM.  (There is no charge for tickets but a free will offering will be taken).  Remember that there will be no Saturday Worship at 5 PM.  Also remember that daylight savings time begins this weekend, so before you go to bed on Saturday night, spring forward (turn your clocks ahead by one hour).  See you in church!

Peace,

Pastor Mueller