Monthly Archives

May 2020

Thankful Thursday 5-28-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 5-28-2020

Thankful Thursday offers contemplative time with the falling rain and our family dog modeling the benefits of being well-rested. My mind visit several conversations I have had the pleasure of sharing in this week. The topic of time consistently arose throughout the various conversations. As my mind pondered this frequent occurrence, it also recognized the musings of thoughts working together to grasp lessons and learning from the blanket pause button that has occurred on everyday life.

Shared observations include: what was everyday life in Mayberry, the 80s, and this past decade. Then conversations also shared a glimpse of life over the past two to three months. When visiting the impacts of these lifestyles and the good that has resulted from this pause, some common themes evolved. People getting outside and moving their bodies (I’ve even met many new neighbors on our walks with the dog!), pollution reduction opening views of Mt. Everest in India, and creative connecting of people and ideas becoming the seed of greatness for the future.

This great wake up to the importance of pausing and its impact on our lives beckons us to become more intentional with the gift of our time as we reenter the gathered community. As individuals and families begin to build new rhythms for their lives, remember this pause and its impact. Be intentional in curating space in your schedule. Pause. Get outside. Thoughtfully let an important person in your life know you are thinking of them.

Thank you Lord for your amazing gifts of time and space and connection!

Thankful Thursday 5-28-2020 Experience Opportunities:

All are invited to Sunday Online Worship at 8:00, 9:15, or 10:30 AM. To know more about these services, click here. Or want to revisit a message that really spoke to you? Check out our Sunday Sermons.

Wednesdays Be In the Light Activities at Gravel Hill are currently canceled; however, look for worship services online on our Sunday Sermon page.

On Facebook (Gravel Hill Church) and Twitter (@GravelHill): A Moment To Praise and A Moment To Praise For Kids! find postings from our worship leader, Joyce. She shares a small devotional, scripture, and worship song.

Weekly Wink 5.27.20

By | Weekly Wink
Weekly Wink 5.27.20

Special Video Announcement regarding Gravel Hill Yellow Phase: Click here to see video.

PDF version here

Sunday school participants: did you escape? Since you were so good at treasure hunting, you now can find an escape room each week (on Sundays). There are 2 levels for you to try. All ages are welcome. Want to be a part of the Sunday School group on Facebook? Search for: Gravel Hill UMC Sunday School. Click request to join.

You are invited! May 31: Sunday 8:00, 9:15, & 10:30 AM Worship (Sanctuary) Service will be available online under our Sunday Sermons. Sunday bulletin (Hill Highlights) via email – sign up here.

Weekly Wink 5.27.20 Ahead:

What day is it today? Our social media posts each day can help you answer this question!

Mondays: A Moment To Praise

Tuesdays: A Moment To Praise For Kids!

Wednesdays: Weekly Wink

Thursdays: Thankful Thursday

Fridays: Sermon/Message Title & Scripture Sharing

Saturdays: Pastor’s Pen/Reminders

Sundays: Online Worship

Tuesday 9:15 AM Ladies Bible Study (Room 201) continues its study of Discerning the Voice of God by Priscilla Shirer. Return TBD. Check in with Joyce for gatherings on Zoom during our time apart.

Current Missions:

Gravel Hill Tithing (Learn more here.) Say thank you for the blessings you have so the Gravel Hill body can support our missions.

Caring for our unemployed Gravel Hill Daycare workers and the Palmyra Postal workers. Find more info by clicking here.

On the Horizon:

July 11, 2020, Saturday 8:00 AM 10 Mile Summer Sizzler Learn more and sign up here.

Ongoing Opportunities

Gift Shopping Made Easy! You can shop for gift cards while at home and benefit Gravel Hill. Purchases support the off-site Ministry Fund. Learn more about Gravel Hill’s Scrip Program by clicking here. You can start shopping now. Create username and password. Gravel Hill’s Enrollment Code is: 21L936DB32931.

Have questions? Please contact Tony.

Email Sign Up (Sign up to receive emails by clicking here. For weekly emails, check: Hill Highlights; monthly emails, check: Beacon Newsletters; for messages from the pastor, check: Pastor’s Pen.)

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.26.20

By | A Moment To Praise
A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.26.20
Joyce Lochinger

Miss Joyce

Oh Moses!

Hi kids and parents! Hope you’re having a great week and had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend!

Today, I want us to remember the good things we have all around us and then, I want us to remember to thank God for them!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.26.20 in Scripture

Our scripture verse today comes from Exodus and it takes place immediately after God saved the Israelites, who were God’s chosen people led by Moses. The Israelites were saved from the Egyptians, who had enslaved and persecuted them. This story occurs after the story of the Parting of the Red Sea. Read what it says: Exodus 15:1

This passage is also called ‘Moses’ Victory Song’! God saved Moses from the attacking Egyptians and he immediately praised God for His goodness!

Do you ever do that? Do you ever just shout out a “Thank You, God”? It doesn’t have to be a 30 minute prayer, down on your knees in an empty room. It can be a heart whisper or a prayer inside your head. For example, when you’re on the playground and you see the school bully walk away from you, you can say; “Thank You God, You are good to me!” Or when you are taking a test and remember everything you studied, you can say: “Whew! Thank You God for helping through this!” You can even pray when you are facing something really scary. You can say: “God, I am going to thank You in advance for the good things You will provide for me”. God is always listening and always wants you to talk to Him in this way!

He wants your praise and your friendship! God wants you to call Him friend; it delights His heart!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.26.20 in Song

The attached song is a modern day ‘Moses’ Victory Song’ that comes straight from the Exodus scripture we just talked about.

It also is filmed on a beautiful lake. Watch it and then think about the ways we can rejoice in God’s goodness this summer.

I Will Sing Unto the Lord (Horse and Rider) | HLA Wilderness Escape VBS | Group Publishing

Enjoy the music…sing and dance along to the Horse and Rider music video from Holy Land Adventure Wilderness Escape VBS! SUBSCRIBE to get notified when new Li…

youtu.be

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.26.20 Learn More

After watching that awesome video, it made me think about this summer and how people will be staying closer to home for a “stay-cation” instead of a vacation. Here are some ideas for fun ways to spend the summer closer to home.

http://momsanity.com/25-ideas-amazing-staycation-kids/

Have a great day! Hugs and love to you all!

Miss Joyce

A Moment To Praise 5.25.20

By | A Moment To Praise

A Moment To Praise 5.25.20

Joyce Lochinger

Joyce Lochinger, Gravel Hill Worship Leader

Forgotten Photographs

I love photos.  I very much enjoy taking them – just ask my annoyed family! Looking at photos, making videos, and putting together scrapbooks from those photographic memories, I love.

Over the years, I have found that I don’t quite remember the facts of an event or occasion if I don’t have a photo or video from that particular time to look back on. I have also found that to be true for my kids; when they look at videos from when they’re little, they tend to remember that birthday party or vacation more clearly than without that photographic evidence.

Recently, I had a conversation with Shawn that reminded me of this. I asked him if he remembered our honeymoon when we visited Walt Disney World and whether or not we had watched a particular night time parade on that trip (I know: what a surprise that we honeymooned at Disney!). I know that I didn’t remember the parade and that I also have no photos of the parade, which I would have if we had seen it.  He said that he was sure that we probably watched it. In fact, he somewhat remembered where we stood and remembered some small details.

Given my love of photos, it bothered me that we had no photos of a good memory that we had probably shared. I pondered this for a while and then dawned on me that 1986 was “way back” in the good old days where there were no digital cameras, no mini camcorders, and no cell phones. For us, all that was available was my Canon Snappy 35mm camera. I loved that little camera because it used 35mm film and took relatively good pictures.

There were two problems though. The first was that you didn’t just snap unlimited pictures.  Film was expensive and not readily available all the time, and you had no idea if the shot you had just taken even was a good one. The second problem was that sometimes (many times, in my case) the person taking the picture didn’t quite know what they were doing. Maybe they used a wrong camera setting, forgot to use flash, or left the lens cap on. All of these issues I speak on from personal experience! Finally, I made the determination that all of those things led to no honeymoon parade pictures.  We also came to the conclusion that we probably saw the parade, we probably took pictures of it, and the photos probably came out blurry and unrecognizable for all of the above mentioned reasons!

For those of you who don’t understand what I’m talking about, here’s the scoop.  In those dark ages of photography you had to send the film to the local drug store for developing, wait a few weeks and then enjoy the surprise of what pictures came out well and what ones needed to be thrown away! Barbaric, huh? This whole process made me think about God and how he forgives and forgets the things that don’t turn out correctly in our lives; those things for which we ask God’s forgiveness. Our sin!

I am so thankful that He sees what we have done, watches it play out right before His eyes, waits for us to come to Him with the revelation that we’ve made the wrong choice, and then ask for forgiveness. When we ask Him for forgiveness with pure hearts and intentions, He grants it and tells us move on! Learn from this! Forgive yourself and erase the sin from your heart.  Don’t beat yourself up over it, don’t go back and revisit it – let it go! There’s another Disney reference, sorry!

A Moment To Praise 5.25.20 in Scripture

In all seriousness, this scripture version sums up exactly what I am trying to convey about God and His forgiveness.

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+John+1%3A9&version=AMP

Just like those old memories, all of our sins been erased and thrown out. God has removed the stain of your transgression and instead, has replaced it with His grace which has granted you freedom! Live into that freedom that He has so lovingly given to you and enjoy your day!

A Moment To Praise 5.25.20 in Song

Maybe take a stroll through your neighborhood and take some nature pictures. That’s what I’ve been doing! It makes me happy to think how amazing our God truly is! Have a good day and enjoy this song about God’s forgiveness! It’s by one of my favorite artists, TobyMac. It’s not your typical praise song, but the message is powerful! Give it a try!

https://youtu.be/xfkhqpl81NA

Have a peace-filled week in Him!

Thankful Thursday 5-21-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 5-21-2020

Thankful Thursday is Ascension Day! Forty days beyond the celebration of Easter, United Methodists celebrate Jesus’ ascension to heaven and enthronement at the right hand of God the Father. What does it represent? Read more details on the importance of the celebration of Ascension Day in the United Methodist faith in this article.

Hope, joy, comfort, and peace come to my mind as I think of what the scene in heaven of Jesus at the right hand of God the Father evokes from all creation. I know that my limited human mind will not even create, understand, or imagine the amazing experience the moment my soul enters heaven. But this day especially, calls us to put together all the amazing, wonderful goodness that we can to try and imagine the joy that awaits us in heaven.

I cling to the vision of hope and joy that await my soul. Hardships, obstacles, and frustrations will still present in this physical realm. But my spirit wills my soul to be tethered to my Lord and Savior.

Through my choice to accept Him as my Savior, I am a child of God. This also means I am: blessed, chosen, adopted, favored, redeemed, made for a purpose, and all to bring praise to His glory. One day by His grace and mercy through faith in Christ Jesus, I will join Him in heaven.

Thank you Lord!

Thankful Thursday 5-21-2020 Experience Opportunities:

All are invited to Sunday Online Worship at 8:00, 9:15, or 10:30 AM. To know more about these services, click here. Or want to revisit a message that really spoke to you? Check out our Sunday Sermons.

Wednesdays Be In the Light Activities at Gravel Hill are currently canceled; however, look for worship services online on our Sunday Sermon page.

On Facebook (Gravel Hill Church) and Twitter (@GravelHill): A Moment To Praise and A Moment To Praise For Kids! find postings from our worship leader, Joyce. She shares a small devotional, scripture, and worship song.

Weekly Wink 5.20.20

By | Weekly Wink
Weekly Wink 5.20.20

Sunday school participants: did you escape? Since you were so good at treasure hunting, you now can find an escape room each week (on Sundays). There are 2 levels for you to try. All ages are welcome. Want to be a part of the Sunday School group on Facebook? Search for: Gravel Hill UMC Sunday School. Click request to join.

You are invited! May 24: Sunday 8:00, 9:15, & 10:30 AM Worship (Sanctuary) Service will be available online under our Sunday Sermons. Sunday bulletin (Hill Highlights) via email – sign up here.

Weekly Wink 5.20.20 Ahead:

What day is it today? Our social media posts each day can help you answer this question!

Mondays: A Moment To Praise

Tuesdays: A Moment To Praise For Kids!

Wednesdays: Weekly Wink

Thursdays: Thankful Thursday

Fridays: Sermon/Message Title & Scripture Sharing

Saturdays: Pastor’s Pen/Reminders

Sundays: Online Worship

Tuesday 9:15 AM Ladies Bible Study (Room 201) continues its study of Discerning the Voice of God by Priscilla Shirer. Return TBD. Check in with Joyce for gatherings on Zoom during our time apart.

Current Missions:

Gravel Hill Tithing (Learn more here.) Say thank you for the blessings you have so the Gravel Hill body can support our missions.

Caring for our unemployed Gravel Hill Daycare workers and the Palmyra Postal workers. Find more info by clicking here.

On the Horizon:

July 11, 2020, Saturday 8:00 AM 10 Mile Summer Sizzler Learn more and sign up here.

Ongoing Opportunities

Gift Shopping Made Easy! You can shop for gift cards while at home and benefit Gravel Hill. Purchases support the off-site Ministry Fund. Learn more about Gravel Hill’s Scrip Program by clicking here. You can start shopping now. Create username and password. Gravel Hill’s Enrollment Code is: 21L936DB32931.

Have questions? Please contact Tony.

Email Sign Up (Sign up to receive emails by clicking here. For weekly emails, check: Hill Highlights; monthly emails, check: Beacon Newsletters; for messages from the pastor, check: Pastor’s Pen.)

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.19.20

By | A Moment To Praise
A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.19.20
Joyce Lochinger

Miss Joyce

Light Of The World

You can do a lot of things with light! You can see better, for one thing. The light of the sun can  warm you. You can make shadow puppets. Plug in a night light so you’re not afraid at bedtime. You can also shine a flashlight into the darkest of nights so that your path is clear and can be seen before you. Here’s a story about my favorite light!

When I was a kid, I had a glow-in-the-dark figurine of a little girl praying that I had gotten in Sunday school. It looked like this.

I grew up in a pretty rural area and when it was bedtime, it was dark! Really, really dark! Both outside and inside my room! When I received this little trinket for memorizing a Bible verse, I was thrilled. Every night when I went to bed I waited for my eyes to adjust to the dark and for it to start to shine. I never felt alone in the dark with that comforting praying girl nearby.

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.19.20 in Scripture

Now, I don’t have that little figurine anymore, although I wish I did for memory’s sake. However, I do have something much, much better: Jesus! Jesus tells us He is the light of the world. He has enough brightness for everyone on the entire earth to see and follow Him.
https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+8%3A12&version=NIV

Jesus came to this world so that we would not have to walk around in the darkness that sin causes.  He came to give us life – forever and ever.

Remember the next time you are in the dark: you are not ever alone. Jesus is right there beside you, brightly lighting the way.

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.19.20 in Song

Our song for the day is called, “Light Of The World” from VBS a few years back. Sing along and remember that Jesus is the Light Of The World!

https://youtu.be/eI302Av7vSI

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.19.20 Learn More

I always loved to make hand puppets in the dark with a flashlight. Here are some images for you to try for yourself.  Even the darkest of nights can be made bright!

https://etc.usf.edu/clipart/galleries/266-hand-shadow-puppetry

Hand Shadow Puppetry | ClipArt ETC

The Hand Shadow Puppetry ClipArt gallery offers 15 examples of animals such as a butterfly, dog, donkey, or elephant represented in shadow by one or two human hands. Hand-shadow of Butterfly. Hand-shadow of Camel. Hand-shadow of Chamois. Hand-shadow of Dog. Hand-shadow of Donkey. Hand-shadow of Elephant. Hand-shadow of Goat. Hand-shadow of Goose.

etc.usf.edu

Have a great week!

A Moment To Praise 5.18.20

By | A Moment To Praise

A Moment To Praise 5.18.20

Joyce Lochinger

Joyce Lochinger, Gravel Hill Worship Leader

Hope
I am a firm believer in the fact that God speaks to us in many ways. In my lifetime, He has spoken to me through scripture, life events, and most often through people. In particular, He speaks to me through respected and loved people in my life who are good and Godly examples that I trust. So when I am struggling with a problem or when I’m feeling insecure over a new endeavor, I have learned to wait for a little bit of time and see who God sends my way with a message of either affirmation or maybe with a message of, “not quite yet”.

Recently, I was talking to Jenna about the state of the medical crisis we are currently in. I was asking her and Victor’s (my son-in-law) professional opinions as healthcare workers. In general, our conversation jumped all over the place, both positive and negative thoughts came out about what’s going on right now in our state and in our world. My feelings after this conversation, all though I try not to feel this way, led me to feel a sense of hopelessness. Def: Hopelessness: a feeling or state of despair; lack of hope.  Yes, that’s the feeling!

Now  here’s where the beginning of the devotion comes back into play. A few days after my conversation about hopelessness with my daughter, I got a text message from her. All it said was – you should write your next devotion on Psalm 42:11.  My return text to her was – 🤔 hmmm! That meant, “I know what you’re doing here child! You’re trying to mother your mother!” But it was actually very sweet! However, I must say that I didn’t really act on her words. In fact, I went right on with my day and forgot about the scripture she had sent. Quite frankly, I was too busy letting that hopeless feeling I had been nursing for a few days continue to hold court in my head. Shame on me!

A Moment To Praise 5.18.20 in Scripture

Now – fast forward to the next morning.  I sat down and I opened my devotions for the day and the scripture caught me attention. Let me remind you that this was the very next day after I had heard from my daughter about Psalm 42:11. What was the scripture, can you guess? Yup! Psalm 42:11

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalm+42%3A11&version=NIV

Exactly the scripture that she had asked me to please look at and use! It became so very clear that God was actually the one speaking to me and He was actively pursuing my mind!  I immediately told Jenna, whose response held a little smug, “I told you so!” type of tone. But I didn’t care, because she was right. She was being led by a God who chases us down at every turn, every step of our journey.  I am so thankful for a God who loves me that way and for children who have grown to listen to God and nurture their mother when she needs it! Which is sometimes often…Yikes! Did anyone else just hear both of my daughters saying, “you got that right!”?😊

A Moment To Praise 5.18.20 in Song

Our song for the day is called, “My World Needs You” by Kirk Franklin. I have never been more sure of that statement than now. We all need God to fill up this place and show us His face. And we need to keep the hope and peace we have that is only from Him, ever present in our hearts and minds as we walk through this journey called life. He is our only HOPE!

https://youtu.be/UoOtqAus1YM

Have a peace-filled week in Him! And have hope!

Thankful Thursday 5-14-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 5-14-2020

Thankful Thursday welcomes the warmer weather. The sunshine greets us and beckons for us to step outdoors. Come into the space where the wind can kiss us, the sun warms, and our souls are renewed.

Here in these days of the stay-at-home order spring surrounds us with its erupting beauty. The plants reach for the sun after having spent time soaking in the rains from above and the nutrients from the ground. They use the resources provided for them to do what they are meant to do: GROW!

Currently, it feels as if we live underground like seeds. This time presents opportunity to gather nutrients of revitalization from outdoor time and drink from the well of rest to prepare ourselves. We prepare ourselves for the time of gathering in physical community again.

In the gathered community, we bring our gifts to purposes bigger than us. The results multiple beyond our comprehension from these gatherings. Our spirits and hopes renew by being together and sharing in something that is larger than us.

Soon. We will  gather soon. Until then, look around digitally. Do you see it?

Social media gathering is happening! Gravel Hill community shares information from our website, our Facebook page (go ahead and like our page so you can be notified of all the good postings!), our Twitter account (you can follow this too!), and our Instagram account. We would love for you to be a part of our gathered digital community.

When the sunshine of physically gathering occurs, this digitally connected community will also have magnified blessings beyond our imagination. God is awesome like that! He creates the most amazing connections and ways for His blessings to flow (and that includes through us and for us!)

Thank you God!

Blessings to you!

Thankful Thursday 5-14-2020 Experience Opportunities:

All are invited to Sunday Online Worship at 8:00, 9:15, or 10:30 AM. To know more about these services, click here. Or want to revisit a message that really spoke to you? Check out our Sunday Sermons.

Wednesdays Be In the Light Activities at Gravel Hill are currently canceled; however, look for worship services online on our Sunday Sermon page.

On Facebook (Gravel Hill Church) and Twitter (@GravelHill): A Moment To Praise and A Moment To Praise For Kids! find postings from our worship leader, Joyce. She shares a small devotional, scripture, and worship song.

Weekly Wink 5.13.20

By | Weekly Wink
Weekly Wink 5.13.20

Sunday school participants this is your final week for the scavenger hunt from your teachers. The answers will be posted shortly. Want to be a part of the Sunday School group on Facebook? Search for: Gravel Hill UMC Sunday School. Click request to join.

You are invited! May 17: Sunday 8:00, 9:15, & 10:30 AM Worship (Sanctuary) Service will be available online under our Sunday Sermons. Sunday bulletin (Hill Highlights) via email – sign up here.

Weekly Wink 5.13.20 Ahead:

What day is it today? Our social media posts each day can help you answer this question!

Mondays: A Moment To Praise

Tuesdays: A Moment To Praise For Kids!

Wednesdays: Weekly Wink

Thursdays: Thankful Thursday

Fridays: Sermon/Message Title & Scripture Sharing

Saturdays: Pastor’s Pen/Reminders

Sundays: Online Worship

Tuesday 9:15 AM Ladies Bible Study (Room 201) continues its study of Discerning the Voice of God by Priscilla Shirer. Return TBD. Check in with Joyce for gatherings on Zoom during our time apart.

Current Missions:

Gravel Hill Tithing (Learn more here.) Say thank you for the blessings you have so the Gravel Hill body can support our missions.

Caring for our unemployed Gravel Hill Daycare workers and the Palmyra Postal workers. Find more info by clicking here.

On the Horizon:

July 11, 2020, Saturday 8:00 AM 10 Mile Summer Sizzler Learn more and sign up here.

Ongoing Opportunities

Gift Shopping Made Easy! You can shop for gift cards while at home and benefit Gravel Hill. Purchases support the off-site Ministry Fund. Learn more about Gravel Hill’s Scrip Program by clicking here. You can start shopping now. Create username and password. Gravel Hill’s Enrollment Code is: 21L936DB32931.

Have questions? Please contact Tony.

Email Sign Up (Sign up to receive emails by clicking here. For weekly emails, check: Hill Highlights; monthly emails, check: Beacon Newsletters; for messages from the pastor, check: Pastor’s Pen.)