All Saints' Blog

All Saints' Episcopal Church, Lakeland, Florida.
Kathy Hulin

Teaching to Love

If you've been paying attention to national news since Friday, you know that our country (and our world) needs Christ and his love more than ever. My response to the displays of civil unrest, hatred, and violence has been to pray for Jesus to intervene and bring healing to a broken world. I have also responded by personally sharing lessons and encouraging our midweek teachers to share lessons on loving others as Jesus would want us to do.

On Sunday I asked myself the question, what does it look like for our children to love others as they start a new school year? Perhaps they are in classrooms with children of different ethnicities and skin color? How should they respond to other children but find ways to be loving, kind, and welcoming...to go the extra mile to get to know every student's name as soon as possible so that they start building relationships and help to create a loving, family atmosphere among their peers and classroom.

Our Epistle lesson from Romans 10 this past Sunday reminded us that the feet of those who share the good news are beautiful and I encouraged our children to be those "beautiful feet" who share Christ's love with every one in their classes. Perhaps for our young children, they might be asked to share crayons or markers and they might not always get what they want, but that gives them an opportunity to love a classmate? Perhaps our older children might have to show a new classmate how to do a classroom task and that gives them an opportunity to love and grow in responsibility? Perhaps our teens have the opportunity to invite new students into their friendship circles and they can grow in showing Christ's love to others? There are so many opportunities for us to teach our children to make this world a better, more loving place in which to live. My prayer and hope is that we all continue to reflect on how we can pay attention to the needs of others as we love our neighbors as ourselves.

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Dr. Rickey Cotton

Tender, Humble Love for One Another

Philippians 4:1--“Therefore, my brothers and sisters, you whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm in the Lord in this way, dear friends!”

When we think of the Apostle Paul, we may think only of his forceful, brilliant, intricate pronouncements. But I think it is important that we first think of his tender, humble love for God—and for God’s people. We don’t want to forget these words of his: “…my brothers and sisters, you whom I love and long for…” (Philippians 4:1). We need to make it a priority to cultivate this kind of tender, humble love among us, for one another. If we don’t, we could be very successful, very efficient in worship planning or Christian education, but have failed on the main thing. In Revelation 2, Jesus said this to the impressive church of Ephesus, “Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first.” May our lives be marked by a tender, humble love where we often say to one another, “My brothers and sisters, you whom I love and long for.”

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Kathy Hulin

Human Being vs. Human Doing

I recently heard a pastor friend mention this idea that we are called human beings and not human doings. What a fun play on our English language, I thought! A day later, I was attending a centering prayer gathering where one member of the group mentioned that she was praying about how she was "being" before God. Then, I reflected upon a billboard that had been up around town which asked, "Who do you want to be?" with the idea that the institution would help you develop your qualities of being rather than specifically focus on how to help you do something as a career. It seems to be a good word that I need to hear this week. How does this thought resonate with you? Let me explore a little bit...

So much of our lives are focused on doing projects, whether it is for work or home, or whether it is for getting our family members to activities and to support them, or perhaps for organizing activities and studies for schools and churches. We are a project-oriented society! I cannot deny that I enjoy having projects and find fulfillment in "human doing"! And I also cannot deny that God does indeed want us to be doers of the word (James 1:22), but that drive in us to be active in our faith needs to be balanced with a deep sense of who we are as God's children .

So I, in addition to being a "doer", also realize the deep need for simply being. I think about my family members and friends who know me well and how I can enjoy being myself when I am with them. I can take that for granted, but I receive a huge blessing when I am aware of the love and peace that comes by simply being who I am with and for them. It's a true gift from God and one that comes when I take time to slow down and quiet my doings to simply be. I know that my family and friends value that from me, and I know that when I slow down to be quiet before God (Psalm 46:10), I am able to know God better and to know myself better, too.

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Dr. Rickey Cotton

Ordinary Time Is Not Ordinary

John 10:10: “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”

We are now in Ordinary Time according to the Church calendar. Ordinary Time occurs outside of special Church seasons, like Easter or Advent, in which specific aspects of the mystery of Christ are celebrated. But Ordinary Time is far from “ordinary.” All time is God’s time. The General Norms for the Liturgical Year and the Calendar declares that the days of Ordinary Time "are devoted to the mystery of Christ in all its aspects." That’s pretty exciting. But it’s even more exciting that all time is God’s, and it’s in the dynamics of everyday life, with its challenges as well as satisfactions, that we are to come to consistently experience and manifest God’s presence and action. The promise of God is that we can. The calling of God is that this be our practice.

 

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The Rev. Dr. Reid Hensarling

What is the Gospel? Part 10

The theological and biblical doctrine of inerrancy explains that the Scriptures claim to be true because God always speaks the truth and does not lie (Psalm 190:160; John 17:17). The Scriptures themselves and a variety of scholars tell us that the Scriptures do not and cannot err, deceive, or speak falsely and are a dependable and reliable source of God's revelation. They bear the stamp and imprimatur of truth and lead us into truth. The Scriptures are without error in what they affirm regarding the will and purposes of God and are the only infallible guide to living. Their primary content is the living Word, Jesus Christ, and the gospel proclaimed by him and his disciples (Mark 1:14-15; Acts 2:37-39). No greater truths exist. 

The inherent, transcendent truths of the Scriptures are normally not readily received, but only understood by the illumination and guidance of the Holy Spirit (John 8:47). Donald Bloesch defines illumination as "the inward awakening of the believer to the truth that is revealed." Unfortunately, man is particularly susceptible to his sinful nature and swayed by lies, untruths, and heresies. Without the Holy Scirptures in our lives and a proper understanding of the gospel, we have a tendencey to embrace error and wrong thinking. FitzSimons Allison astutely observes: "We are susceptible to heretical teachings because, in one form or another, they nurture and reflect the way we would have it be rather than the way God has provided, which is infinitely better for us. As they lead us into the blind alleys of self-indulgence and escape from life, heresies pander to the most unworthy tendencies of the human heart." Because the Scriptuees are inerrant and true, when they are correctly interpreted, they can be relied upon in their teaching and instruction and are a sure and trustworthy authority.  

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Scripture Readings for Sunday, August 27

First Lesson Deuteronomy 8:6-20
Psalm Psalm 146
Second Lesson Acts 4:32-36
The Holy Gospel Matthew 19:16-26

bible reading

Upcoming Events

22
Aug
Date: 22 August 2017
Outing to Chef T's on Gary Rd.

22
Aug
Date: 22 August 2017
John Classroom

23
Aug
All Saints Episcopal Church
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Lakeland
Date: 23 August 2017
Wednesday Morning Bible Study with Fr. Reid

23
Aug
Lakeland
Date: 23 August 2017
OSL Healing Service

23
Aug
Date: 23 August 2017
We will meet from 6-7 p.m. on the children's floor with group times Bible story and activities (kid's club)

23
Aug
Date: 23 August 2017
Our 3 year olds through 1st graders will meet for choir during 6:35-7 p.m. 

24
Aug
Date: 24 August 2017
Ladies nights starts back up!

25
Aug
All Saint's Episcopal Church
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Lakeland
Date: 25 August 2017
Friday Morning Men's Bible Study with Fr. Reid

26
Aug
Date: 26 August 2017

27
Aug
Date: 27 August 2017
We are hosting CPR/AED training on Sunday, August 27 at 1:00 p.m. youth floor. The cost for certification is $34 per person. If you are

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