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Thankful Thursday

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.

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.

Thankful Thursday 5-7-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 5-7-2020

Thankful Thursday comes back to the basics. Today we will pause with a prayer most of us know (with interspersed reflective thoughts). Hopefully shared love of it exists too.

God is great. God is God. We are not. He has time, space, and all things under His control.

God is good. The riches of His goodness abound in the creation that surrounds us. The fruit of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control) radiates His goodness too. And to each of us, shines brightest through the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ.

And we thank Him for our food. From manna to His Word to love, we give thanks. He cares for all aspects of our lives providing the nourishment we need.

By His hands we all are fed. He equips us with gifts, talents, situations, and more. We are given both sight and insight as we seek the Lord.

Give us Lord our daily bread. He provides our time on earth, the breath we breathe, and everything we need to live a life that glorifies Him. Let us rejoice and be glad and give Him the glory!

Amen.

Blessings to you!

Thankful Thursday 5-7-2020 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.

Thankful Thursday 4-30-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 4-30-2020

Thankful Thursday falls on the final day of April. Here in central PA, the cloud-filled skies drop various rates of rain to the earth’s surface below. The gray skies offer eyes a dismal view, but the old adage: “April showers bring May flowers” comes to mind and gives hope of the beauty we will see in the near future.

So while the rain falls outside, I hunker down inside to tackle tasks on my computer. This tool provides the platform to be a gift of communication. While the ability to share information and inspiration is only a click away, so too are the distracting rabbit holes of Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, and so on. When clicking into one of these application, the responsibility lies upon my shoulders to remember why I am using it. What am I looking for? Links for work? Ideas for personal inspiration? Or filling time without intentionally thinking about it?

When I think about each of these scenarios, I know it is all too easy for me to lose my focus. I need gentle reminders to snap me back into focus to accomplish the task at hand and the goodness of God before me. At the beginning of each day, I wake with a prayer of gratitude at the gift of another day and make time to read God’s Word (usually-I am human after all and it doesn’t always happen). Today’s verses were really good. Check them out: James 1:2; 2 Corithians 12:9; John 8:31-36. I choose to start this way with the goal of steering my thoughts, actions, and words to be aligned with how God wants me to live. Does alignment always match up and does my focus always stay there? No.

Adages, remembrances, and God moments mercifully nudge me back into focus. I reconnect with my why. Choosing to align with God’s Will for my life, I allow His glory to shine through my weakness.

I am grateful for God’s redirect when my focus and actions go awry. Eyes on Him. Praising His abundant goodness, guidance, and blessings.

Blessings to you!

Thankful Thursday 4-30-2020 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.

New on Facebook and Twitter: A Moment To Praise and A Moment To Praise For Kids! posts from our worship leader, Joyce. You can search for our page by typing: Gravel Hill Church beside the magnifying glass. She will be sharing a small devotional, scripture, and worship song.

Thankful Thursday 4-23-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 4-23-2020

Thankful Thursday musings drift to artistic creations that bring beauty and blessing to life. Most specifically, music. As I sit here typing, stands of melodious notes drift to my ears. My body relaxes so my brain can focus on the task of communicating my thoughts.

For that music to get to my ears, pause and consider the composer who crafted the tune I’m hearing and all of its refinements. Next the musicians who learned how to read musical compositions and apply the years of practice spent honing their craft. Also think of the sound crew (forgive me – I don’t know all their technical terms.) The ones that know the proper settings to record the best possible version of a song for the future listener to enjoy. All of these people (and more that I don’t even know I missed on the pathway to the production of a well-recorded song) bring together their gifts to create a blessing for another life.

Their creation blesses my life. Often times when different songs play, I instantly revisit an earlier moment in my life. The songs that come together to create the soundtrack of my life bring me many happy memories.

And times like now, their creation helps me focus. Hopefully to share some inspiration for you to pause and consider the creations of others that bless your life. From those blessings, thoughtful pauses allow space for creation from our own talents and gifts. When those creations are shared, the flow of blessings continues to abound in goodness. We continue to be #GHEasterPeople.

Thankful Thursday 4-23-2020 STILL #GHEasterPeople

Be inspired. Keep creating. Share your blessing. Record your daily movement with a picture or a video. Post your pictures and videos and tag them: #GHEasterPeople . Follow the hashtag: #GHEasterPeople to see all who participating in the virtual worship.

Blessings to you!

Thankful Thursday 4-23-2020 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.

New on Facebook and Twitter: A Moment To Praise and A Moment To Praise For Kids! posts from our worship leader, Joyce. You can search for our page by typing: Gravel Hill Church beside the magnifying glass. She will be sharing a small devotional, scripture, and worship song.

4-16-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 4-16-2020

Thankful Thursday has us another week along under our stay-at-home order. Feelings of restlessness, frustration, and irritation slowly build. News of the loss of loved ones or people we actually know getting sick with the virus call for our prayers. How do we handle all of this?

In a great book by Tommy Newberry, he shares the wisdom that “emotion” is eighty six percent “motion.” So if we choose to remain in our current physical position, mental state, and spiritual status, we will not grow to the place God calls us. To grow, we must move!

How do we do this under a stay-at-home order? Look for workouts online. Do yoga or Pilates. Break out in a dance party for some physical movement. To exercise your mind, try an online class. Complete crosswords, puzzles, sudokus, or Ken-Kens. Lastly, but most importantly, moving in spirit. The Word awaits us with wisdom and direction. Several apps online make the Bible accessible if you don’t physically have a Bible in front of you. God anticipates your prayers. Lift them up including all your areas of life you want to share. Cover your friends and acquaintances too- God love hear his children pray for each other! In positively connecting with others, we become the hands and feet of Christ. We do this by sending cards, typing a text, or calling the one on our mind.

4-16-2020 STILL #GHEasterPeople

After Christ was resurrected, He remained on the earth for forty days before Ascension. As the Gravel Hill community follows the stay-at-home order and parallel to Christ’s time on earth before ascension, I encourage you to move your mind, body, and spirit as each day we continue on as STILL #GHEasterPeople . Be the hands and feet of Christ.

Record your daily movement with a picture or a video. Post your pictures and videos and tag them: #GHEasterPeople . Follow the hashtag: #GHEasterPeople to see all who participating in the virtual worship.

Move towards God each day. Your consistent movements will grow you. Use your motion to create a new emotion. Through our actions, we praise God and give glory to Him!

Blessings to you!

4-16-2020 Experience Opportunities:

All are invited to online worship this Sunday Sunrise at 6:45 AM and Easter Celebration 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.

New on Facebook and Twitter: A Moment To Praise and A Moment To Praise For Kids! posts from our worship leader, Joyce. You can search for our page by typing: Gravel Hill Church beside the magnifying glass. She will be sharing a small devotional, scripture, and worship song.

4-9-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 4-9-2020

Thankful Thursday grieves my heart today. The official announcement occurred today: Pennsylvania schools will not physically return for the 2019-2020 year. Our oldest is a senior this year. Today’s news solidifies the loss of expected year end special activities: finishing courses with classmates, prom, spring sports season ended, and usual graduation steps currently left to the unknown.

This reality takes a hard turn from the usual excitement of senior year. Acknowledging this grief and loss of anticipated expectation allows living through the sad and moving forward. It hurts. After processing the grief, the challenge of using our current situation to celebrate our senior in a new way awaits. Parents of seniors will creatively find ways to show them love and support while helping to launch them into a new chapter of life.

During Holy Week, the disciples went through a roller coaster ride of emotions. Experiencing a triumphant entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, the palpable excitement filled the air with crowds anticipating Jesus to take his on the title, King of the Jews. Little did they know in the way in which this would be fulfilled. Christ on the cross sent a blanket of grief across humanity. Christ would not be a king as humans understood it. On Easter morning through the resurrection, Christ broke the mold of human understanding on how kings rule. Christ is Lord! He rules and reigns over all creation beyond human understanding.

On Maundy Thursday, we pause to remember the gift given to each and every one of us: eternal life through Jesus Christ. He took our place on the cross.  He did this so we may live forever in heaven with Him. The gift awaits you. You can not earn it. It is freely given. You simply choose whether you accept it.

4-9-2020 #GHEasterPeople

The “Becoming Easter People” sermon series causes me to review my choices. When my life is looked at, is the joy of Easter morning seen through the way I am living? Do I praise God through all the twists and turns life throws at me? Do I see the changes that need to be made as a loving nudge from my heavenly Father growing me more fully into the person He intended? In this growth while sometimes painful and others invigorating, do I give thanks for the strength He gives me to experience it all? Do I use that strength to create love and support for others?

Gravel Hill invites you to celebrate Easter differently this year. Watch this video to learn about the celebration. Post your pictures and videos and tag them: #GHEasterPeople . Follow the hashtag: #GHEasterPeople to see all who participating in the virtual worship.

As we move through the grief toward the glorious joy, may each of us pause for awareness of the blessings in our lives. Faith, hope, and love. The greatest gift from our Heavenly Father awaits you:

LOVE.

Blessings to you!

4-9-2020 Experience Opportunities:

All are invited to online worship this Sunday Sunrise at 6:45 AM and Easter Celebration 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. Lent occurs now through Easter, April 12.

New on Facebook and Twitter: A Moment To Praise and A Moment To Praise For Kids! posts from our worship leader, Joyce. You can search for our page by typing: Gravel Hill Church beside the magnifying glass. She will be sharing a small devotional, scripture, and worship song.

4-2-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 4-2-2020

Thankful Thursday praises change. Good news comes from the origins of the virus. The horizon holds light for us: an end in sight. In America some challenging days await us, but blessings of hope do as well.

Knowledge of what has happened in other countries puts to rest the fear of an unknown end. Other countries flattened the curve, slowed and stopped the spread of the virus. A known path of overcoming this virus has been modeled for us. Established protocols and safety guidelines direct the protection of all.

As we follow these guidelines and protocols during these challenging days, compassionate stories rise up highlighting care while respecting the boundaries for social distancing. Helpers shop for groceries for those at-high-risk. Retired medical personnel work again. Front lines workers protect their families by living apart from them. Grocery stores cleaning, stocking, and preparing for the public. Families switching to work and learn from their homes. And all of us washing our hands!

We are built to face challenges. Collectively we rise. Meet needs of each other. Give space and grace as we all grow through this time frame.

#GHEasterPeople

The Gravel Hill sermon series over Lent is called “Becoming Easter People.” As we journey through the final days leading to Easter, we anticipate a joyous celebration. This year looks different from others. Praises remain.

Gravel Hill invites you to join in a virtual celebration to bring joy to our hearts, homes, and the world. Watch this video to learn about the celebration. Post your pictures and videos and tag them: #GHEasterPeople . Follow the hashtag: #GHEasterPeople to see all who participating in the virtual worship.

As we give space and grace to each other, may we use it to grow stronger. Try something new. Choose the challenge of change. Bring blessing to your day and others. Through all our actions, praise the Lord!

Blessings to you!

4-2-2020 Experience Opportunities:

All are invited to online worship this Sunday 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. Lent occurs now through Easter, April 12.

New on Facebook and Twitter: A Moment To Praise and A Moment To Praise For Kids! posts from our worship leader, Joyce. You can search for our page by typing: Gravel Hill Church beside the magnifying glass. She will be sharing a small devotional, scripture, and worship song.

3-26-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 3-26-2020

Thankful Thursday finds me pausing to remember who God is. He is the great I AM. The Alpha and Omega. He has and continues to create the world and each and every human in it.

He offers each of us the gift of salvation. And calls us each to live into the gifts with which He has blessed us. When we choose to act aligned with His will, we fulfill and obey both the greatest and the second commandments:

Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” ~Matthew 22: 38-40 Read the full chapter here.

 

Looking at who God is, who we are in relation to Him, and the gifts given to us and those around us, I give Him praise! He is bigger than the virus that is currently in this world. Medical personnel, the medical supply chain support, grocery store workers, and the food supply change support currently live into their gifts to care for our world. So much love being lived out today!

The gift of time lays before those of us not in these fields. I invite you to live out love as you stay at home and use that time to lift others in prayer, explore gifts and interests you put to the side when too busy with life, and simply be still. When we try these other options, we observe new perspectives. Praise God!

Blessings to you!

3-26-2020 Experience Opportunities:

All are invited to online worship this Sunday at 8:00, 9:15, or 10:30 AM. If you would like to know more about these services, click here. Or want to revisit a message that really spoke to you? Check out our Sunday Sermons. Currently, we will also be having the Wednesday evening Lenten services posted to our YouTube channel.

Wednesdays Be In the Light Activities at Gravel Hill are currently canceled; however, look for worship services online on our Sunday Sermon page. Lent occurs now through Easter, April 12.

During this new normal, you can also look for Facebook A Moment To Praise posts from our worship leader, Joyce. You can search for our page by typing: Gravel Hill Church beside the magnifying glass. She will be sharing a small devotional, scripture, and worship song.

3-19-2020

By | Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday 3-19-2020

Thankful Thursday greeted me with a lovely group text message from a friend. She shared her thoughts of each of us and our families. Wished us well, encouraged us to wash our hands, and stay healthy. Then ended with anticipation of getting together with everyone again when permitted and God bless!

This small, simple act immediately brought a smile to my face. My smile continued as we each began to reply with gratitude, shared well wishes, words of support, encouragement in healthy actions, and excitement for future allowed gatherings. The power of this connection triggered my gratitude and my thoughts for how we can safely connect and support each other with the current health boundaries in place.

Here is your challenge: Make A Connection. Think of someone you are grateful to have in your life. Then give them a call, send a text, or reach our via video chat. Let them know they are in your thoughts.

Bring a smile and a blessing to the one of whom you are thinking. Simple and small, but powerful in love. You and your actions matter.

Blessings to you!

3-19-2020 Experience Opportunities:

All are invited to online worship this Sunday at 8:00, 9:15, or 10:30 AM. If you would like to know more about these services, click here. Or want to revisit a message that really spoke to you? Check out our Sunday Sermons. Currently, we will also be having the Wednesday evening Lenten services posted to our YouTube channel.

Wednesdays Be In the Light Activities at Gravel Hill are currently canceled; however, look for worship services online on our Sunday Sermon page. Lent occurs now through Easter, April 12.

During this new normal, you can also look for Facebook posts from our worship leader, Joyce. You can search for our page by typing: Gravel Hill Church beside the magnifying glass. She will be sharing a small devotional, scripture, and worship song.