Monthly Archives

August 2020

A Moment To Praise 8.31.20

By | A Moment To Praise

A Moment To Praise 8.31.20

Joyce Lochinger

Joyce Lochinger, Gravel Hill Worship Leader

Hardships

I grew up in a small town, and I must admit to the fact that I hadn’t thought of hardship too much, because not too much happened in my little corner of the world. I think that there were a few reasons for that. For one, my dad fought in World War II and had seen so much hardship and battle. Not only that, but he was severely wounded twice and received a Purple Heart for his efforts during the Battle of the Bulge. He saw hardship and despair firsthand.

For another, both of my parents grew up during the Great Depression. Their families had absolutely nothing, so they knew true hardship in terms of personal life. I know that they felt that we were beyond blessed to be a part of the family they had created. As children, we reflected that feeling.

Lastly, we didn’t focus on hardships because my parents just didn’t allow it. They always reminded us that our lives were good, that we had family, fun, and God and that was all that mattered. I can truly say that growing up, I didn’t know how our neighbors lived compared to us. There was no “keeping up with the Joneses” in my house. I was perfectly content and happy in my life.

The Guest

Then, one Sunday morning, instead of our usual worship, we had a guest worship leader. I cannot remember his name, but I remember his story. He had been blind from the time he was born and had lived a very difficult life. He knew all about hardship, but had decided that he was going to be a servant for Christ.

Our guest leader played the guitar and sang, and when he wasn’t singing, he then played the harmonica, which was attached to his neck. He led worship and told his story that day, which had the entire congregation mesmerized. His only form of income was selling his albums. My parents purchased his album and we listened to it often – it served as yet another reminder to us that life is what you make it, and in Christ, it can be so good, even if it might seem otherwise on the outside.

A Moment To Praise 8.31.20 in Scripture

Philipians 4:11-13

We never talked about this man or his ministry in the usual way you might discuss something for effect or as a life lesson. My parents were much more “live by example” types of models in my life. But, when we played his record, there was a deep reverence and care exuding from my folks that naturally rubbed off on me. It was clear that this person had an understanding that he could do anything through Christ from whom his strength came.

I pray for that same strength for myself every day, as I also pray that my family and all of you would experience it, too. We CAN get through all things of this life, because we have the Word and promise of the Lord.

A Moment To Praise 8.31.20 in Song

Have a great week! Enjoy this song, “Yet Not I But Through Christ In Me”.

CityAlight – Yet Not I But Through Christ In Me (Live)

“Yet Not I But Through Christ In Me” recorded live at St Paul’s Castle Hill. Spotify: https://spoti.fi/2T15n2J Apple Music: https://apple.co/2PRW8mL Words an…

youtu.be

Have a great day!

Thankful Thursday 8-27-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 8-27-2020

Thankful Thursday tests the oven throttle today by cranking the the temperatures to the mid-90s here in central Pennsylvania! Quite the difference from one week age! And as the temperature has risen, so too have the wind speeds.

Plants

As I peek outside, the green vegetation is showing off its flexibility and spectrum of color as it dances in the wind and the sunlight. At times moving rapidly enough to create quite a sound effect (and a spectacle!) These wonders of nature stop me in my tracks as I pause to take in the awesomeness of Creation.

People

These wonders and gifts receive sprinkles of joys each and every day. The small joy of your first cup of coffee warming your hands. Or the quiet backdrop of your home as you take in God’s Word while preparing for your day. (This morning’s for me: John 14:27.) Sprinkled joy reaches the realm of connection: a shared smile with a stranger on the street, a “pay-it-forward” kindness given in the drive thru, or letting another know they were on your heart and lifted in your prayers.

Perspective

Wrapped in wonder, sprinkled with joy, our lives brim with blessing. As you step forward through your day, may your eyes see the beauty and blessing of Creation. May your heart receive the little sprinkles of joy tucked throughout your day. And when the day ends, reflect on the sweetness of the experience and care that surrounded each moment of your day with the joyful dashes too.

Blessings!

Thankful Thursday 8-27-2020 Experience Opportunities:

All are invited to Sunday Online Worship at your chosen time. 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 8.26.20

By | Weekly Wink
Weekly Wink 8.26.20

Welcome Back Video (click here to watch). We have been working hard to prepare for in-person worship. Check out the video to get a peek at our plans to welcome you to worship.

August 26: Youth Group is OFF tonight and next week. We will see you Sept. 9th @ 6:30 pm!

August 29: Saturday 9 AM – 12 PM Back To School Wish List Items Drop Off Donations received under the porch at church’s front doors. We are supporting local students with their return to school via their teachers.

August 30: Sunday 8:00, 9:15, & 10:30 AM Worship. (Online) Service will be available online under our Sunday Sermons. Sunday bulletin (Hill Highlights) via email – sign up here.

August 30: Sunday 11 – 3 PM Texas Roadhouse Fundraiser *Must show the graphic to your waiter.

September 14: Monday 3 – 6 PM Kauffman’s Chicken BBQ For tickets, contact Tony.

Canceled: Charity Motorcycle Ride

Weekly Wink 8.26.20 Ahead: Look for us online!

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: 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.

Coming September 6th: Sunday 8:00 & 10:30 am Live Streaming (Online) with Limited In Person Worship. To maintain appropriate social distancing, spaces are limited and RSVP is required for each person attending. To RSVP, click your attending time below:

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.

Aluminum can donations are being accepted to support the youth group. Donations may be placed by the pavilion doors in bags. Collection occurs the 3rd Sunday of every month.

Community Garden Volunteer Opportunities (through Sat. Oct. 17th): click this link (impact-palmyra.org) to sign up.

Volunteers needed for the Fall Feeding Frenzy 5K on Oct. 31. To volunteer, visit our Volunteer Page.

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.)

A Moment To Praise For Kids 8.25.20

By | A Moment To Praise
A Moment To Praise For Kids 8.25.20

Moving!

Joyce Lochinger

Miss Joyce

A Moment To Praise For Kids 8.25.20 in Song

Take a moment to watch this video, then read the scripture below it.

A Moment To Praise For Kids 8.25.20 in Scripture

Acts 17:28

I thought we could all use some fun today and this song is fun!

I challenge you to try the dance moves. Just get up in your living room and dance in joy because of Jesus’ love! Maybe you can get your parents to try too! A video of that would be a great family memory.

I know that there are apps on our phones that send out challenges, especially ones asking us to duplicate the dance moves of the creator of the challenge. Instead, why not duplicate the dance moves of a song that is giving praise to God, the real Creator, instead? God is all around us. He gave us the ability to move, breathe, and live our lives. It is only right to give Him back your praise and joy. He delights in and gets a kick out of you!

I pray that you enjoy this day, and I also pray for all of you and your parents as you go back to school, whether it is in the school itself, or in your dining rooms. Sending prayers for a great year!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 8.25.20 Learn More

Take a moment and visit the church’s website and help donate to your local school by buying needed supplies to get the year started off right! Check out the needs here: https://gravelhillumc.org/share/ministry/

Have a great day!

Miss Joyce

A Moment To Praise 8.24.20

By | A Moment To Praise

A Moment To Praise 8.24.20

Joyce Lochinger

Joyce Lochinger, Gravel Hill Worship Leader

Who Walks With You?

As a kid, I was part of a musical through two combined churches in my hometown. It was called “It’s Cool In The Furnace!”. It was a very 1970’s-style production about the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abendego under the rule of King Nebuchadnezzar. The whole story is found in the book of Daniel. Being in this musical made me very aware of a Bible story that I had not been familiar with before. And it also made me very aware of the great strength of God and His readiness and willingness to use his power to protect His faithful people.

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abendego

The three Jewish boys in the story, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abendego, had been captured into slavery. While enslaved, they never went against their upbringing and their faith in God. Because of this steadfastness to God, the boys absolutely refused to listen to King Nebuchadnezzar’s demands.

The king had requirements for them to eat certain foods, which were not permitted by Jewish law, that they would not follow and he wanted them to bow down to a golden idol he had built when they heard the sound of all kinds of music. True to their character and Jewish heritage, they would not under any circumstances kneel before the King’s statue. Once they were caught being insubordinate, the King angrily demanded that they kneel before his image on command, to which they said absolutely not!

They told the king that they would not bow before anyone or anything except the Lord, their God. The not-so-desirable outcome of their behavior was to be thrown into a fiery furnace. The King watched this punishment with great joy, because no one had even been bold enough to deny the King or his desires.

In his mind, they deserved a slow tortuous death. But as he looked into the furnace, he was astonished when he noticed not three, but four people moving about freely among the flames. He was shocked and scared, because he knew that only the God of all the universe could do that. He was there walking among these faithful boys.

Upon seeing this sight, He immediately became a believer! He exclaimed – Praise be to the God of Shadrach. Meshach, and Abendego! After that, he released them from the furnace immediately.

With Us Today

For today, we should say – Praise be to the God of __________(insert your name here!). What fiery furnaces has God walked through with you?

I know that we are not confronted daily with rulers telling us to bow down to them, nor are we confronted with having to walk through literal fiery furnaces. However, we are confronted with decisions that have the power to either break us and lead us into sin, or give us the opportunity to trust and move forward through faith into service of God.

My desire for today is to know that God walks through all the fires and storms of life right beside you. If you don’t see or feel that, then maybe you need to pay closer attention to His presence all around you. And remember, never bow to any other authority or ruler. There is only one true God who deserves your reverence and praise. Keep your eyes firmly fixed on Him and only ever give Him the praise that He deserves!

God Bless!

A Moment To Praise 8.24.20 in Scripture

Here’s the Bible story to read for yourself.

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Daniel%203:8-25&version=NIV

A Moment To Praise 8.24.20 in Song

Once you read that, here is a beautiful song describing how there is always another one in the fire with you!

https://youtu.be/a1wvgLkyVfQ

Have a great day!

Thankful Thursday 8-20-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 8-20-2020

Thankful Thursday started with cooler temperatures here in Pennsylvania. As I ventured out for our morning walk with Cooper, our chocolate lab, he happily greeted the coolness with many tail wags and a spring in his step! Cooper’s joy magnified at the end of the driveway as we greeted one of his fellow dog “friends” and her owner.

We joined them for a portion of their walk and the beginning of ours. What a pleasant treat to begin our day! The gifts of cool temps and shared conversation were delightful. (Don’t get me wrong- this girl LOVES the warmer temperatures!) But the change from warm to cool and solitary time to shared conversation enhanced my appreciation and gratitude for all the these experiences.

No matter the situation or experience our lives become blessed and have the potential to be a blessing to others. The key is in keeping our eyes on Christ with gratitude. It is in Him we find our strength, our guidance, and yes even, the impossible.

So grateful that He delights in making a way when we can see none and providing beauty in the most unexpected ways. From the really big situations to the little pieces of everyday life, like temperature changes and conversations, God’s graces abound! Enjoy them!

Blessings!

Thankful Thursday 8-20-2020 Experience Opportunities:

All are invited to Sunday Online Worship at your chosen time. 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 8.19.20

By | Weekly Wink
Weekly Wink 8.19.20

Tonight! August 19: Wednesday 6:30 – 8 PM Youth Group Church Holy Grounds & on August 23: Sunday 4 PM Pool Party @ the Kennedy’s. Email Judy to RSVP and get directions.

August 23: Sunday 8:00, 9:15, & 10:30 AM Worship. (Online) Service will be available online under our Sunday Sermons. Sunday bulletin (Hill Highlights) via email – sign up here.

August 29: Saturday 9 AM – 12 PM Back To School Wish List Items Drop Off Donations received under the porch at church’s front doors. We are supporting local students with their return to school via their teachers.

August 30: Sunday 11 – 3 PM Texas Roadhouse Fundraiser *Must show the graphic to your waiter.

September 14: Monday 3 – 6 PM Kauffman’s Chicken BBQ For tickets, contact Tony.

Cancelled: Charity Motorcycle Ride

Weekly Wink 8.19.20 Ahead: Look for us online!

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: 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.

Aluminum can donations are being accepted to support the youth group. Donations may be placed by the pavilion doors in bags. Collection occurs the 3rd Sunday of every month.

Community Garden Volunteer Opportunities (through Sat. Oct. 17th): click this link (impact-palmyra.org) to sign up.

Volunteers needed for the Fall Feeding Frenzy 5K on Oct. 31. To volunteer, visit our Volunteer Page.

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.)

A Moment To Praise For Kids 8.18.20

By | A Moment To Praise
A Moment To Praise For Kids 8.18.20

Summer Guidance

Joyce Lochinger

Miss Joyce

Hi kids and parents! Hope you’re enjoying your summer!

I definitely remember being a kid during the summer months! I couldn’t wait for vacation during which we would go camping and boating. Boating in our little aluminum boat was an activity I loved.

My dad would fire up the fifty-horsepower Firestone engine and we would putt out to the middle of the lake or river where we would fish, swim, sunbathe and inevitably get stranded! Yes, we would almost always get stuck! Our boat’s engine was very efficient in getting us to the middle of the water with no problem.

However, without fail, it would never start back up for the return trip and we would all have to pitch in to paddle ourselves back to shore! I’m sure this was annoying to my father, who spent many evenings prior to vacation at home working on the engine so that we wouldn’t get stranded in the middle of the lake. However, to me, it is a great memory of fun times.

My dad, always a hands-on kind of guy, would take the opportunity to guide us on how to use the oars or direct us as to who should get out and pull. All of us were working together towards a common goal! That common goal was to reach our mother, who very intelligently never went into the boat with all of us. She was always waiting on the shore, calling us to come back for dinner!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 8.18.20 in Scripture

Even though it was challenging, we learned what to do in this sort of situation by listening to the guidance of and knowledge of our father. We should emulate this scenario in living out our Christian lives. As young kids learning to love the Lord, we always must remember to lean on Him for guidance.

We should learn to live our lives as Jesus wants us to. We must also listen to God’s Word so we can navigate the waters of life in a positive, God-loving way. God is always watching out for us no matter which direction we turn; He promises to lead us wherever we are.

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Isaiah%2030%3A21&version=NIV

A Moment To Praise For Kids 8.18.20 in Song

Enjoy this fun song about guidance from our great God.

Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah | HLA Wilderness Escape VBS | Group Publishing

Enjoy the music…sing and dance along to the Guide Me O Thou Great Jehovah music video from Group’s Wilderness Holy Land Adventure! SUBSCRIBE to get notified …

youtu.be

A Moment To Praise For Kids 8.18.20 Learn More

If you and your family are looking for some fun boating opportunities nearby – take a look at these water activities.

Cumberland Valley Water Activities | Fishing, Kayaking, Swimming

Cumberland Valley has world renowned fly fishing streams, peaceful kayaking rivers and lakes, as well as swimming options for all ages and abilities.

www.visitcumberlandvalley.com

Enjoy!

Miss Joyce

A Moment To Praise 8.17.20

By | A Moment To Praise

A Moment To Praise 8.17.20

Joyce Lochinger

Joyce Lochinger, Gravel Hill Worship Leader

Calls With God

I love to read devotional books. There are quite a few of them scattered around my house…and when I say a few, I mean about ten different ones! Sometimes, they are by the toaster so I can read something inspirational as I start my morning. Sometimes, they are on the end table so while I’m relaxing, I can pick one up and read something to empower me through the rest of my day. Of course, the nightstand has its share of books as well!

Calls To God

I have found a huge benefit to having all of these different books readily available. It seems that every time I pull out a devotion and read it, it speaks directly to me. It’s as if I was meant to see that particular meditation and scripture on that particular day.  Isn’t it funny how God works like that? He gives us little nudges frequently, and it’s up to us to either pay attention to His whisper in our ear or ignore it and move on to some other activity that we deem more important.

I have to say, as I get older, I try to listen for Him in all situations. In the little moments, where I find a meaningful devotion just when I need it, right to the big ones; when He urges me to call a friend, when I get an uncomfortable feeling and decide to take a different path home than I normally would or when He leads me to stop and pray for someone. I’m not just spouting off about things that I don’t have experience with, I have lived through all three of these examples and many more.

Calls From God

When I was on vacation many years ago and my best friend was expecting her first child, I got the most persistent urge to call her because my heart felt as though something was wrong. Unfortunately, my feeling was right and something was very wrong – but I was able to immediately come home and be with her and her husband in the hospital. I was able to pray for them as well as with them as they went through a very difficult loss.

Choosing a different path has happened to me several different times in several different ways. Each of these times resulted in keeping me safe from a bad accident or, in my college years, a very bad situation. Of course, prayers have also been immeasurably valuable to me. I can’t even keep a tally of the countless times in which I was reminded to pray for a friend or family member, anticipating God’s goodness to help all involved through their struggle and to pray for protection or healing.

As you can see, it has been made clear to me over the years that God is always calling on us. Sometimes, we are just not in the listening mood! That being said, I would encourage you to start practicing your answer to Him when He calls on you. First, maybe start with the small things, like reading your devotions and scripture. Then, you can begin watching and waiting for God to speak to you through this time of delving into His Word more diligently. Look for Him in the bigger things too! Keep your ears and hearts open to His constant leading! He promises to answer you!

A Moment To Praise 8.17.20 in Scripture

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah+33%3A3&version=GW

Jeremiah 33:3 GW – Call to me, and I will answer you. I – Bible Gateway

Jeremiah 33:3 GOD’S WORD Translation (GW). 3 Call to me, and I will answer you. I will tell you great and mysterious things that you do not know.

www.biblegateway.com

His word will light the way before you so you can have a close and enduring relationship with Him for all of your days!

Psalm 119:105 (Click to read the verse.)

A Moment To Praise 8.17.20 in Song

Check out this beautiful song: Your Word by Hillsong Worship!

Have a great week!

Thankful Thursday 8-13-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 8-13-2020

Thankful Thursday is move-in day! Finally here: the day our oldest moves into college. The vehicle is packed. As departure time creeps closer, the final tidbits list sits on the counter marking the countdown to leaving.

This milestone of life carries many emotions. Each of our minds wonder about the unknown possibilities ahead. Entering into new roles (parents of a college kid?? We can not be that old, right?). We look to engage in learning new information. Using that information combined with  our abilities, we approach this adventure with positive support.

Our Mindset

The feeling of “butterflies in the stomach” or “nervous energy” resides in our household today. We choose to guide that energy toward the emotion of excitement. We look for the new and fun opportunities that await us this day.

This fact grounds us: God is good all the time. We choose to joyously accept the moments to come today because God will be in each and every one of them. If I may humbly ask for your prayers not only for our family, but also for all the families and individuals embarking on the new adventure in their lives. The changes to comes are different for all and exciting goodness awaits just as Jeremiah 29:11 and Ephesians 2:10 tell us:

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. – Jeremiah 29:11

For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. – Ephesians 2:10

Thank you for your prayers!

Blessings!

Thankful Thursday 8-13-2020 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.