West Burlington United Methodist Church
Thursday, November 21, 2019
Where Fellowship, Family, and Faith meet.



 Dear Friends in Christ,

It is good to be back and get in the “groove”.  Tidying up loose ends.  Clearing my desk for a new set of priorities.  Getting out of school mode and into working for God and his people.  Soon we will be entering the season of Lent. 

I had an interesting short discussion in my preaching class.  I told the teacher the time I went to Casey’s and found a woman sitting on the front sidewalk with bags.  She was dressed in hospital garb.  She had been at the Mt. Pleasant facility and then it closed.  She was speaking to the voices she was hearing in her head.  When I asked her if she would like some food her reply was “yes”.  When I asked her what she would like, she answered with I don’t care.  It made me think of all the times when I did ask other hungry people what they would like.  Instead of them saying I don’t care, I was always given a list of things they might want or just do without.  I used to judge these people.  In my mind I was thinking that if you are really hungry, you would eat anything that was offered to you.  I thought that until I heard what my teacher said.  He said it was a matter of pride.  Now I know that pride is one of those deadly things.  And it is if you have too much of it. 


But in this matter, it is really about dignity.  It is a sense that you are still significant and that no matter how down and out you may get, people still look at you like a decent human being.  Obviously, the woman sitting on the cold pavement was in a world of her own.  She had no place to go.  She may have even lost her identity through no fault of her own.  She probably had lost her real sense of dignity in spite of those that saw her who only showed her love and grace.  Her dignity came from others, not herself.

For those that want to matter despite how the world may judge them, we must care too.  They need to believe that the things in life that used to matter, still matters.  When we can see these people as human beings just like us, we tend not to judge.  If someone came up to me and asked if I would like a piece of chocolate pie, my answer would be, no thank you.  I don’t care for chocolate pie.  I can imagine that there would be no negativity given to me.  My dignity was in place.  Not liking chocolate pie was not a bad thing to reject even if I was hungry. 

All people need to feel appreciated.  All people need to have a sense of dignity.  No matter if we like them or agree with them.  We are all created in God’s image.  Because of my teacher’s response to my question in class last week, I look at people differently now.  And I am blessed with this knowledge.  May you be blessed as well.



                        Grace & Peace        Pastor Joyce