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While COVID has kept us apart, check here for activities and ways to stay connected with your KFUMC Church Family!


On the Left, you'll see sections for Children and Adults. Junior High and High Schoolers, take a look at the KFUMC Youth Group Page for more fun ideas!


Contact the church office if you have any questions or suggestions!


In Touch - July 11, 2021

Please see below for this week's edition. Pastor Kevin's Prairie Dog Blog can also be found on "From PK's Desk"... click here

In Touch: The sEventy-Second Weekly Publication from First UMC

From: Pastor Kevin Drane, 309-525-3863                                                                Date: August 1, 2021


Announcements

-         THE CHURCH ELEVATOR is still out of order. The repair attempts were not successful, and our Insurance Carrier has authorized us to seek replacement bids.  We appreciate your patience and understanding as we work through this issue.

-         CHANNEL 13 BROADCASTS have resumed. Join us at 9am, 11:30am, and again

-         at 1:30pm and 3pm on Channel 13 each Sunday.

-         THE AWAKENING SERVICE has resumed. Join us at 11:30am in Fellowship Hall.

-         ADULT SUNDAY SCHOOL is meeting on Sunday beginning at 10:30am in the Sanctuary. It will run until approximately 11:15am.

-         CHILDREN’S SUNDAY SCHOOL HAS RESUMED on Sunday at 10:30am in the Gym. It will run until approximately 11:00am.

-         THE POTTERS MEN’S GROUP will meet on the second and fourth Thursdays of the month at 6pm in Jonah Room. Contact Don Hendrick with questions.

-         VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL:  Wednesday, July 28th – Sunday, August 1st.  

-         BACK 2 SCHOOL BASH will be held on Saturday, August 14th. Check our Facebook Page and website for more details!

  • -         The 2021 HENRY-STARK COUNTY RELAY for LIFE luminary forms are available at the Church.  The form and money can be mailed to Marcia Dragolovich, Luminary Chair, or leave it with the church office to be picked up.
  • -         The 2021 CROP WALK will be held Sunday, October 3. More information to come.
  • -         CHOIR If you are interested in participating in choir, please let the church office know. Plans are to start rehearsing in September.
  • -         M&M’s will be meeting the first Monday of each month, 2 p.m., in Fellowship Hall.  Any and all are welcome to join us.  Currently we have a couple sewing projects ongoing, and at August 2nd meeting we’ll make plans for visiting our shut-ins and delivering gifts we have made for them.  We need cutters, sewers, and even welcome those who just enjoy warm fellowship!

Upcoming Saturday Night Worship Schedule

You are invited to join us in the Chapel beginning at 5:30pm Saturday Evening.

 

Saturday, July  31 – Donna Boardman

Saturday, Aug    7 – Pastor Kevin

Saturday, Aug  14 –  Donna Boardman   

 


 

 

Thoughts from my burrow to yours…   A Prairie Dog Blog…   08.01.21

Final Appalachian Trail Update


Our daughter, Cait, and her friend Robert decided to come off the AT.  They were about 800 miles into their hike of 2100 total miles.  Think about it; 800 miles is like walking from Kewanee to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (772 miles) or Houston, Texas (about 850 miles).  I think they had some really tough days and some really glorious days.  They have memories that will last them a lifetime and met a lot of really good people.  The “people” part of it is always a blessing… mostly.  They met a unique blend of folks.   Some, like them, hoping to make the entire 2100 mile hike and others that were just trying to hike a particular section of the Trail.  Lots of “day” hikers; folks that are just out for a day of hiking… 1-2 miles or maybe even 20-30 miles depending on their level of fitness and stamina.

          So, why did they decide to stop?   Good question…  Robert is from Hawaii.   He has lived there his entire life. Before joining Cait and Marlene on the Trail he had only been to the mainland a couple of times.  He needs to get back home (and back to work) by the first of October.   They decided it would be better to come off the trail so he can see/visit more of the continental United States.  They are currently hiking a two day trail in the Ozarks and will then cut through Kansas, Nebraska, the Dakotas, Minnesota and Wisconsin.   Then they will head to Michigan, Ohio, West Virginia, the Carolinas, Florida and then over to New Orleans circling back to the west coast where Robert will catch a plane back to Hawaii.

          I guess Cait could have said, “No, I want to finish this walk” but Robert might have missed an opportunity to really see more of the U.S. mainland.  I guess from that standpoint I’m proud of the 800 miles they accomplished on the trail but prouder of her for wanting Rob to have his chance to experience other things & places.  It was nice of her to think of his needs too.

          So, to all of you that prayed for them… Thank You very much.  Maybe your prayers kept them safe, or kept them hiking or anointed their time with fellow hikers… we never really know, do we?   And thanks to Marlene who’s planning and preparations enabled them to be as successful as they were…  BUT we know that many of you had a part that you were willing to play in an Appalachian Trail experience.  

 

Thanks and God Bless,

Pastor Kevin & Marlene

 

Kewanee First UMC Prayer List & Prayer Community


Our prayer list for the week: E mail or call us with updates and requests.

PRAISES:  Thank You, God!!!  WE praise your Holy & Righteous name…

-        For a God that never leaves us or forsakes us!!!

-        Less COVID restrictions

-        Praises as our worship continues to grow

CONCERNS:  Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayers…

-        Pray for our country to seek justice for ALL…

-        Essential workers; love, service, and care. (Pray for their safety & their family’s)

-        Heidi Shimmin as she continues to be monitored after Cancer treatment

-        Everly (three-year-old great-niece of Rich & Kelli Murphy) is currently in maintenance treatment for Leukemia.

-        Dan Fairbanks has been on dialysis for two and a half years and is now in need of

          a kidney transplant.

-        Ralph Senteney as he continues with home chemotherapy treatments.

-        Harold Anderson, wife Pat, and family. He has been diagnosed with cancer.

          Pray for Harold and family as they minister to him.

-        Lee Lehman and wife Gladys as Lee undergoes chemotherapy treatments.

-        Jay DeValkenaere as he deals with some physical issues.

-        Pray for a young child battling cancer, and his family.

-        Please lift up an anonymous family that is struggling with dissension between parents and older sibling(s).

-        Pastor Bob Herath who was just diagnosed with cancer.

-        Dorothy Jontz as she recovers from knee surgery.

-        Linda Billiet as she recovers from knee surgery.

-        The Currier family as they grieve the loss of both Dan Currier and Donna Culler.     

-        The Crabtree family as they grieve the loss of Kay’s mother, Pearl Duncan.

-        Mitzi Nanninga as she recovers from back surgeries.

-        Garnet Kremzow as he recovers from leg surgery.

-        The Williams and Hasse families as they grieve the loss of Laura McKee. 

-        The Jeanne Ouart family as they mourn Jeanne’s passing.

-        The Thomson family as they grieve the passing of Shirley’s brother. 

-        A teenage niece and all teenagers who struggle with severe anxiety/depression.

-        Family & friends with addictions.

-        All our service men & women.

-        Bishop Frank Beard (and his wife Melissa) as he recovers from major eye surgery.

-        A woman named Kay, as she struggles with physical issues in her legs.

Cancer battles:

-        Heidi, Everly, Drew, Harley, Harold, Janet, Jean, Lee, Nancy, Ralph, Pastor Bob Herath

Those who grieve:

Coronavirus losses, other deaths, lost freedom, jobs, income, routines, social health…

 

Last Week’s Sermon
7.25.21 Eph 3.14-21 Geared up for Life: Rooted and grounded in love

INTRO (me-us) In his book, Who Needs God, Harold Kushner writes:  The next time you go to the zoo, notice where the lines are longest and people take the most time in front of the cage. We tend to walk briskly past the deer and the antelope, with only a passing glance at their graceful beauty. If we have children, we may pause to enjoy the antics of the seals and the monkeys. But we find ourselves irresistibly drawn to the lions, tigers, elephants, and gorillas.            Why? I suspect that without realizing or understanding it, we are strangely reassured at seeing creatures bigger or stronger than ourselves. It gives us the message, at once humbling and comforting, that we are not the ultimate power.

          Our souls are so starved for that sense of awe, that encounter with grandeur which helps to remind us of our real place in the universe, that if we can’t get it in church, we will search for it and find it someplace else.

          CS Lewis used to say that we are born with a hole in our soul and most of us spend our life trying to fill the hole in our soul.  I know I spent too many years looking for things that would fill the hole I felt and came up empty over and over again.  Some of us try to fill the hole in our soul with alcohol or drugs, some with money or things, others with power and control.   The list could go on and on, couldn’t it?   But the fact is; only God can fill the hole in our soul.  Yet, so many of us waste so much time trying to fill that God shaped hole within us with a plethora of others things.   What a waste of time.   Why won’t we understand the power of God’s love and grace?

There was a lady who lived out in the boondocks. She did not have electricity, but she wanted it. She called the electric company and they made arrangements so that a line could be gotten out to her so that she could have the benefits of electricity.  After delivering electricity to her home for almost six months, someone at the company noticed that only one unit of electricity was used. A serviceman was sent out to check and make sure there was no problem. He knocked at her door, and when she answered, he asked, “Hello, Miss. Are you using your electricity?”  She said, “Why, yes, I am!”   “May I ask what you are using it for?”  “Well, when it gets dark I turn it on long enough for me to light my kerosene lamp.”  Isn’t that just crazy?   This woman was using her electricity to help her light her kerosene lamps!

This woman didn’t understand the power she had. She had all this power that could keep things illuminated all night long, but she was settling for a kerosene existence.  Sadly, many of us, as Christians, are settling for taking this great power that God has given them only to light their own human efforts. They are not maximizing the power of His presence.  Let’s see what God has for us today.

BODY(God says) Eph 3.14-21 NIV   14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, [The opening statement — “For this reason I kneel before the Father” — may not get our attention, especially if kneeling is part of our normal prayer discipline. But, in fact, it is remarkable because it was not customary for Jews to kneel in prayer. The ordinary posture was standing, just as we see pious Jews doing today before the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem, rocking back and forth as they intone their prayers. Kneeling indicated an extraordinary event or an unusual passion. For example, when King Solomon prayed at the dedication of the Temple, he knelt on a wooden platform before all the people and lifted his hands to Heaven in prayer (2 Chronicles 6:13). In Gethsemane on the eve of his death Jesus fell to the ground in agonized emotion as he prayed to his father (Mark 14:35, 36). And when Paul made his tearful good-bye to the elders of Ephesus, he knelt with them and prayed (Acts 20:36–38).  This first phrase was significant.]

 14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name. [Some of you have the cutest kids or grandkids, but I have to say, that next to mine yours are probably the cutest… after mine.   Isn’t that the way it is.   We tend to be and feel closest or best about OUR family, Amen?   Well, God wants you in the family.   What do you think that says about how God FEELS about you?]  16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. [Paul is praying for you to be strengthened. RK Hughes states; The main idea is this: just as the sick, diseased or infirm need to be strengthened so they can take in all that life has to offer, so also God’s children need to be inwardly strengthened to receive all the blessings God desires for them. Paper bags are not proper containers for valuables and weak humans aren’t the best containers for the Spirit of God.

This is all so logical if you have been following Paul’s exposition of the wonderful things God wants to do for his family. We need to be like the little boy who was about to dunked in a barrel of molasses.   He looked up to the heavens and prayed; Lord, give me the tongue to match this opportunity!”

And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, [“Rooted” is agricultural, and “established” (literally, founded) is architectural, but their significance is perfectly parallel. Like trees, our lives are to send down roots deep and wide into the soil of love. Like buildings, the edifices of our lives here on earth are to have deep, solid foundations of love.  If we are properly rooted and properly constructed on a foundation of love, nothing will be able to shake us.]

 18 may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ [wide, length, height, depth] suggest that God’s love is:

1) A love which is wide enough to embrace the world. John 3:16 tells us, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

2) A love which is long enough to last forever (1 Corinthians 13:8). As Spurgeon said, “It is so long that your old age cannot wear it out, so long your continual tribulation cannot exhaust it, your successive temptations shall not drain it dry; like eternity itself it knows no bounds.”

3) A love which is high enough to take sinners to Heaven (1 John 3:1, 2).

4) A love which is deep enough to take Christ to the very depths to reach the lowest sinner (Philippians 2:8).

  19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

[We are frail containers pulsating with divine power!  In this way we become full of Christ. He “dwells in [our] hearts through faith.” This is a beautiful upward spiral: our capacity is strengthened according to his riches so we can appropriate more of his life; his life thus fills us and thus enlarges our capacity so can we hold more of him within. And so it goes onward and upward with Christ.  This prayer for inner strengthening was not a mere wish, but the petition of the Apostle Paul for the Church. It is my prayer for myself and my church too.]

20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, [Years ago Dr. Barnhouse pointed out that love is intrinsic to all the fruits of the Spirit listed in Galatians 5:22. He said, “Love is the key. Joy is love singing. Peace is love resting. Long-suffering is love enduring. Kindness is love’s touch. Goodness is love’s character. Faithfulness is love’s habit. Gentleness is love’s self-forgetfulness. Self-control is love holding the reins.” There are no fruits of the Spirit without love! We must be rooted and founded in love with all the depth and symbolism of these examples.

          21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen.

NT Wright says; “The danger here is that it’s easy for people, particularly when they are soaked in the culture of Western-style individualism, to imagine that being a Christian consists simply in being able to feel, or believe, that Jesus has somehow taken up residence within. In fact, Paul speaks far more often of Christians being ‘in Christ’ than of Christ being ‘in Christians’.”  

 

CONCLUSION(us-you)

Many of us, in the Western church, have sometimes allowed ourselves  to be lulled into thinking that prayer and action are at opposite ends of the scale of Christian activity. On the contrary. Those who want their actions to be effective for God’s kingdom should redouble their time and effort in prayer. Prayer brings together love and power: the relation of love that grows up between God and the person who prays, and the flowing of power from God to, and especially through, that person.

          We have learned that there are three things the third race must put on its prayer list: 1) prayer for an inner strengthening so as to enhance our capacity to hold what he has for us, 2) prayer for love so our practical lives will be rooted in love and so we will further understand and experience his unfathomable love, and, 3) prayer for ever-growing fullness in this life and in eternity.

A little boy one day was trying to pick up a rock. He said “Dad, it’s too heavy.”  He said, “Son, you can do it.”  The boy strained and tried, but he said, “Dad, it’s too heavy.”  The father insisted, “Son, you can do it.”  He tried again. “Dad, it’s too heavy.”  He said, “Son, you’re not using all your strength.”

“Dad, I am. I am. It’s too heavy.”  “Son, you’re not using all your strength.”

“Dad, why are you continually saying I’m not using all my strength? It’s too heavy.”  “I know you’re not using all your strength, because you haven’t asked me to help yet.”  IS THAT HOW WE ARE AS CHRISTIANS?  There is more strength available to you than what you have. Be strong in the strength of His might.  Eph. 6:10; Col. 1:29 If it’s the true God we’ve been worshipping, we should be filled with a sense of new possibilities: of new tasks and new energy to accomplish them.

 Read verse 20 carefully. 20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us. So, think of what God might do in you and through you—you as a community, you as a church and you as an individual. Now reflect on the fact that God is perfectly capable of doubling or tripling that… going so far beyond it that you would look back at the present moment and wonder how you could be so short-sighted.

When Robert Morrison, the first missionary to go to China, disembarked from his ship in a Chinese port, the captain sneeringly said, “So you think you are going to make an impression upon China.”  Morrison quietly replied, “No, sir, but I believe God will.”   Did you hear that?  When Robert Morrison, the first missionary to go to China, disembarked from his ship in a Chinese port, the captain sneeringly said, “So you think you are going to make an impression upon China.”  Morrison quietly replied, “No, sir, but I believe God will.”   The question today is what will you do for this church as God works through YOU?  What will YOU do for the Kingdom of God as God works through YOU?  And all Gods people said.   Amen.



May God keep you firmly in the grip of His GRACE!!!