MEMORIAL UMC’s MISSION…
We are CALLED by Christ to GROW in faith, BUILD relationships, and SERVE all people.
MONDAY – FRIDAY
10:00 a.m. “10@10” Weekday Devotions via Facebook
8:00 a.m. Men’s Prayer Meeting Online via Zoom (contact Brian Russell)
5:30 p.m. Outdoor Yoga in the Church Back Yard (Weather permitting)
If you or a loved one would like to be added to the prayer list, please contact Lorna McCullough at 336-259-5814. If you put a name on the list, please keep in touch to let us know how that person is doing, as names are removed after three weeks.
During the coming week, please pray for…
George and Florence Highsmith
Peace and justice in our nation, state, and city
Grant Brinkley and Family
Finley Price Family
Our First Responders, Medical Community, and Essential Workers
All those affected by Coronavirus/COVID-19
Andrea Cain and Family
Our UM Missionaries
All Military Personnel
The United Methodist Church
R.L. POPE CLASS NEW ONLINE LESSONS
SUNDAYS AT 10:00 A.M. on WGOS
The R. L. Pope Class is excited to announce the return of new, weekly online lessons. Tune in to WGOS on your radio or computer.
August 2 Richard Herman
August 9 Allen Brown
August 16 Harold Vannoy
August 23 Kyles Wallace
August 30 Stan Styers
REV. KELLY CARPENTER TO SHARE ON ANTI-RACISM
Join us for our first congregation-wide Zoom discussion on Anti-Racism. Pastor Kelly Carpenter of Green Street UMC in Winston-Salem will lead us in dissecting the definition of racism so that we can all begin to listen and learn together. Green Street’s work and learning around anti-racism is ongoing. You can read about it on their website.
Zoom Call Details (And more information on accessing this call will be forthcoming!)
Time: Aug 12, 2020 07:00 PM Eastern Time
Join Zoom Meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/9185537002
WE NEED YOU!
School will begin for the Thomasville City Schools on August 17, but the school buildings will remain empty. Students will learn remotely for a while. It will be imperative for children to have access to the Internet and there are some who do not. We are pleased to partner with TCS to provide an Internet access site for remote learning for students. We will open the church for two-hour periods on select days during the week for students needing Internet access.
In order to accomplish this, we will need church folks who will give a couple hours of their time to be present. This is not a tutoring service. Students will sign up, and we will limit the number of children at each session. All safety precautions will be followed. Tables will be set up to ensure social distancing, and students will be expected to wear masks, wash their hands prior to entering, and have their temperature taken. Children K-8 must be accompanied by an adult.
The church will be open on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday 9-11 a.m. and 5-7 p.m. Two volunteers will be needed for each session. To sign up please use the Signup Genius link here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/70A0545A8AF28A02-remote
SERVICE OF CELEBRATION OF LIFE FOR FRANCES COOK
There will be a Service of Celebration for the life of Mrs. Fran Cook on Saturday, August 1, at 11 a.m. Fran died on May 1 following a brief illness. Her service will be aired on Facebook Live on the church’s Facebook page for those wishing to participate. Condolences may be offered to Jessica Phelps (Fran’s daughter) at 3490 Wellfleet Ct, High Point, NC 27265.
AUDIO VISUAL VOLUNTEERS NEEDED FOR WORSHIP
Do you enjoy photography? Interested in the latest information technology? We need a few good men and women to train as video camera operators. If you have any interest in helping us take this step forward in virtual broadcasting, please notify Susan Frye (email@example.com or 336-472-7718) or Harold Vannoy (firstname.lastname@example.org or 336-240-9524) who will get you in touch with the right persons. We will need this help in the near future to execute this critical outreach mission. Thank you!
CLERGY AND STAFF ARE AVAILABLE
You may contact members of the staff directly or by calling the church office at 336-472-7718 and following the instructions on the recording. Here is a list of staff phone extensions and email addresses, for reference:
Danny Leonard, Senior Minister – Ext. 16; email@example.com
Rodney Denton, Minister of Youth and Young Adults – Ext. 18; firstname.lastname@example.org
Lynda Hepler, Minister of Children and Families – Ext. 11; email@example.com
Brian Russell, Director of Contemporary Worship – Ext. 20; firstname.lastname@example.org
Danny Frye, Director of Music – Ext. 12; email@example.com
Susan Frye, Secretary – Ext. 14; firstname.lastname@example.org
Peggy May, Financial Secretary/Treasurer – Ext. 13; email@example.com
Jarry Oldaker, Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds – Ext. 17; firstname.lastname@example.org
FINANCIAL GIVING OPTIONS WHILE THE OFFICE IS CLOSED
Thank you for your ongoing generosity to Memorial. While the office is closed, there are three options for making gifts to Memorial:
The address for mailing checks is:
P.O. Box 428
Thomasville, NC 27361-0428
Online gifts can be made securely at https://onrealm.org/mumctville/give/now which can also be accessed from our website homepage.
Electronic funds transfer (EFT) giving can be set up for your recurring tithe. For information on how to arrange this, please email or leave a message for Peggy May, Financial Secretary, at email@example.com or 336-472-7718.
We close this week’s eNews with a 10@10 devotion shared by Rodney Denton on June 19, 2020.
Well, this Sunday is a very special day. As many of you probably already know, it’s Father’s Day. Just like with Mother’s Day, the vast range of positive and negative experiences that have been had as a result of our male role models are often a mixed bag. Some of us have had great dads; some have had absent dads; some have had dads that fall somewhere in between. But the one consistent thing that connects us all with our dad-stories is that we have all been shaped in one way or another by those men in our lives. In other words, I want us to think today about how the people that we are connected with, including our dads, as well as so many other people in our lives, often leave lasting impacts on us that shape who we are and how we react to the people around us.
One interesting story about how we are able to impact the lives of others happened to me when I was in middle school surrounding a situation when I was getting picked on by an older kid on the school bus. At first, I saw riding the bus as a rite of passage. I hadn’t ridden the bus while in elementary school because we lived so close to the school, so my parents picked me up. But when I entered the sixth grade, the school was farther away, and I got my chance to ride the bus home—every day. At first, it was great. I got to hang out with my friends, and the extra responsibility made me feel so independent and grown up. Then, about two weeks into the school year, the bus driver gave us all assigned seats. Not only did that mean that I was separated from most of my friends, but, unfortunately, I was moved to a seat positioned directly in front of an eighth grader named Ricky. I guess that I was an easy target for kids like Ricky, who were always trying to show off in front of friends by being loud and obnoxious and maybe a little bit of a bully.
So, for a little while I had sort of been flying under Ricky’s radar. Then, he found out that by thumping the back of my ear he could really get under my skin. I mean that he would thump it hard, and often. No matter how much I would tell him to quit, he would just keep on thumping my ear every time I turned around in my seat. Some days were worse than others, but every single day, my ear would get a good thumping. Well, this went on for a few weeks, and finally I came home one day in a really bad mood, simply angry at the thought of being pushed around by a bully. I started taking my frustrations out on my parents, yelling for no apparent reason, and acting out. Finally, my dad just asked what was going on. After some skirting the issue and not really wanting to admit what was happening to me, I finally told him about Ricky and confessed that I had no idea of how to make it stop. My dad offered to get on the bus with me and have a talk with Ricky, but I really wasn’t very comfortable with that idea, so I told dad to just stay out of it and I would have a talk with Ricky myself. I told him I would handle it, but I had no idea how.
At this point, I realized that I was on my own in this situation. I didn’t like my dad’s solution. The bus driver was too busy driving, and he was the one who had assigned the seats in the first place. My friends on the bus were no help; they were probably just glad that Ricky wasn’t picking on them. So, if this thing was to end, I was going to have to do it myself! I was going to have to stand up to Ricky! Unfortunately, I was too scared and unsure of myself to do anything about it!
So, in those days the buses would pick up all the riders at the middle school, then drive over to the high school to pick up any riders there. In essence, the two schools were sharing the buses. Most of the high schoolers drove, so not many rode the bus. As I waited for the situation to miraculously correct itself, a new high school student began riding the bus. The new person’s name, I found out, was George. George was kind of a rough looking guy. He wore faded, ripped jeans (that was before they were cool), big leather boots, and a leather vest with fringe hanging all over it. He a scraggly beard and long black curly hair that sort of covered most of his face. He was really intimidating and, instead of getting an assigned seat, he just went to the back of the bus and sat down, no questions asked. Apparently, George had gotten his driving privileges taken away for some unknown reason (not that anybody was going to ask) so he was riding the bus for a while.
Well, after a couple of days of watching me get thumped in the ear and watching me ask Ricky to just stop, I guess George got tired of it. And all of a sudden, he stood up, grabbed Ricky by the collar, pushed him down in the seat, and said, “I believe he asked you to stop!!” A hush fell over the entire bus, and Ricky turned bright red and didn’t say a word. And from that day on, Ricky never thumped my ear again. At the end of that week, George stopped riding the bus and we never saw him again.
Miracle received! It was certainly not the way I had imagined miracles happening, and George did not appear to be what I expected when I imagined an agent of God, but the result was effective, nonetheless. I have never forgotten George, but do I regret that I never had a chance to thank him for taking up for me that day. But isn’t it funny how people leave these lasting impressions on our lives? Even people who are in and out of our lives for the briefest of moments can impact us and change the course of our attitudes, our understanding, and even the way we approach life. I learned from George that often God can send rescuers in strange and unlikely forms, and it is dangerous to make assumptions about people, based solely on the way they look. But my point is that we leave an impact, good or bad, on every person that we encounter during the day. Both Ricky and George left very different impacts on my life. We should keep this in mind as we interact with people around us, because something as simple as a smile could make a person’s day, and something as innocent as an inadvertent horn honk in the drive-through could sour someone’s attitude. This leads me to one of my favorite proverbs, found in Proverbs Chapter 27:17. It says:
“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”
I love this proverb so much because of the imagery that it contains. In order for a dull lump of unfinished iron to be properly sharpened and turned into something more useful than a paperweight, a certain amount of refinement, shaping, and even friction needs to take place to sharpen it. As a piece of iron is rubbed against a steel file, a whetstone, or another piece of iron, an edge is eventually formed. For a Christian, this process of refinement typically takes place in a community of faith, where we gather alongside one another, build one another up, and encourage one another to participate in good works. In other words, just as a piece of iron can be sharpened and made better and more useful, the same process of refinement can happen to people as well.
George and Ricky may have had a very small hand in my process of refinement, because they were only in my life for a very brief moment. But we also have people who have poured lots of energy and refining into our lives over years and years of exposure and sharpening. I have been in the fortunate recipient of more than my fair share of wise and willing people who have invested countless hours in me over the years, and at this point in my 10 @ 10, I want to take just a moment to thank one of these folks for all the patient hours of listening to me whine and complain and “share,” and for all of the advice given, guidance offered, and lessons taught. For over 16 years now, I have had the privilege of working with Rev. Peggy Finch and have learned so much. She has helped me to grow and develop as a person and as a pastor. Peggy, as you stand at the next step in your journey, I wish you the very best in your retirement. My hope is that somehow our time in ministry together may not necessarily be over, but I also do not take for granted all the time that I have spent plopping my butt down in the leather chair in your office, in need of a sounding board! I swear that chair probably has a permanent, Rodney-shaped indention in it from the cumulative hours that I have spent there. I will miss you, I am very excited for you, and I thank you so much for all the patient sharpening and honing you have done in my life! Happy retirement!
With that said, sometimes it is clear and easy to see how the actions of people like Peggy, George, and Ricky stand out in the shaping and sharpening parts of our lives. However, you need to know that sometimes we, may be getting sharpened and shaped “behind the scenes” in ways that we do not even recognize or appreciate until years later. You see, I haven’t told you the whole story about my run-in with Ricky. The truth is that I didn’t even know the whole story myself until a few years ago when I was talking to my mom. I had shared the memory of how George had protected me that day and helped me through that very difficult time. Then my mom added, “Yeah, it was really cool how your dad worked that whole situation out.” I sort of looked at her in a confused way and said, “What are you talking about?”
As it turns out, my dad knew the teacher who oversaw the buses at my school. And it just so happened that this same teacher maintained relationships with a number of the high school kids who had come through the middle school who were sort of rough around the edges. This would include George. As my dad explained the situation to the bus monitor, he, in turn, set it up so that George, who actually had lost his driving privileges for a week at the high school would take care of my problem with Ricky in order to have his privileges reinstated.
As my mom was telling me the rest of this story I couldn’t believe it! I simply asked my dad what to do, and even though I didn’t like his original plan, he still found a way to care for me as well as preserve my dignity. This sort of reminds me how I have found that God operates and shapes our lives behind the scenes, despite even our own unwillingness to cooperate with Him. God always finds a way to protect us, show us love, extend grace to us and sharpen us. This can happen through a variety of people and situations, and we may not even realize or understand how all of it is working together behind the scenes until many years down the road. But God’s care is always present, always faithful, and always good.
On this Father’s Day, try to remember all the ways that God has intervened in your life to shape and sharpen you and make you a better person. He may have used unexpected people like George. He definitely uses obvious people like Peggy Finch. Or he may have simply been hanging out behind the scenes in ways that we just haven’t identified yet. Just be thankful for these people, and when you have a chance, commit yourselves to be these special pieces of holy iron for other people in your own life! In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, Amen.
YOU CAN WATCH AND READ ALL 10 @ 10 DEVOTIONS HERE.