News and views of the First United Methodist Church in Cross Plains, Texas

Sunday, October 22, 2006


I hope that you have checked progress on the parsonage. It will have a distinctive color metal roof that looks good. I hope it will progress more rapidly, but I am sure there is a labor shortage in CP and we have to move as fast as labor is available. The church building committee hopes to choose a contractor by October 30.

I wanted to share the following devotional from my Saturday reading with you. It struck a note with me.

See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many" (Hebrews 12:15).

Bitterness and a bitter spirit should never characterize a person who has experienced the saving grace of God through Jesus Christ. No matter how seriously one may have been wronged, if he has known God's forgiving grace for his own wrongdoings, he should manifest that same grace in his life toward others, even though they do not merit it (for neither did he merit God's forgiving grace himself).

Bitterness is a characteristic of the ungodly "Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness" (R0mans 3:14). A Christian must never try to rationalize it as "righteous indignation" or to think that certain injustices give him the "right" to be bitter and resentful. "If ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. This wisdom descendth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish" (James 3:14-15). Rotted bitterness will soon "spring up," not only robbing the bitter believer of joy and true fruitfulness, but bearing bitter fruit whereby many others will "be defiled".

The antidote, of course, is never to "fail of the grace of God." That is, we need to be "looking diligently" moment by moment, at the wonderful grace of God by which we weere saved through faith and in which we continue to live each day. Therefore, "Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you" (Ephesians 4:31-32). Otherwise, we not only hurt both ourselves and others, but we also grieve "the Holy Spirit of God" (v30).
Written by Henry M. Morris

Thursday, October 19, 2006


The parsonage has the metal roof being installed and Rev. Senkel said the brickwork will start today. Next week the sheetrock and painting will progress. Hutton won't give a completion date but it should be before Christmas. The Church Building committee met with one contractor Monday, will meet with another one tonight with several others to be scheduled next week. More work will be required to modify the plans to build a church within budget, but decisions should be made soon.

Our Lord's Acre project this year is to feed families from any church that needs food and to deliver to the rest home residents. Members are asked to contribute what they would have planned to give at the auction to the church.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006


I enjoyed the 120 Year celebration including the most unusual communion service that celebrated world wide communion Sunday. I got to eat a nice piece of pumpernickel for the bread and had my choice of intinction or the wine cup. The catered meal and program was great because both Jimmielee Payne and Lois Garrett joined us. The program by Rev. Bennett on the history, the special music by the choir and the singing by everyone with the children were all great. I missed a lot of people including Hollis Shults, who couldn't come due to physical problems. Lou didn't feel up to it either.

Rev. Senkel reported that Del Pope is in Abilene Regional with congestive heart failure problems. Hollis had biopsies taken from his kidneys that are not functioning properly and is waiting for the results. He may have to start dialysis. Jim also said for the church building committee to be ready to hear from contractors soon. As of today he hasn't announced a meeting yet.