Thursday, August 07, 2008

Pastor's Corner

Pastor's Corner - Ojai UMC - August 2008

Throughout Scripture we are reminded of the command to offer hospitality, whether with food or drink, or rest. Some scriptures to remind us of this command are:

Matthew 10

40"He who receives you receives me, and he who receives me receives the one who sent me. 41Anyone who receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet's reward, and anyone who receives a righteous man because he is a righteous man will receive a righteous man's reward. 42And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones because he is my disciple, I tell you the truth, he will certainly not lose his reward."

Ojai UMC has received Anna and me so very kindly. We have brought along Anna’s mother and a new baby on the way, and you all have made sure to welcome us each week with greetings and food. You have checked in on our comfort and progress. You gave us water (Harriett and Alan brought us two gallons and a little more), and have proven again and again through your willingness to serve and offer hospitality that you are God’s Disciples in the Ojai Valley.

Mark 9

41”I tell you the truth, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to Christ will certainly not lose his reward.”

Thank you for all that you offer, in love, grace, food and water, and your gifts of service in ministry.

Hebrews 13

1”Keep on loving each other as brothers. 2Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it.”

Anna and I have been so blessed by the hospitality of the people of Ojai and the Ojai United Methodist Church. It is a real testament to the leaders of the church, and the pastors who have cultivated the ministries and life of the Ojai people. I am reminded of part of the rest of the passage from Hebrews 13:

Hebrews 13

7”Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith. 8Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”

The uncommon gift of food, care, baby “telephone showers”, understanding for the transitions we are undergoing, the love for each other and for us have all been a god-send. I am amazed by the general happiness of the people of Ojai United Methodist Church and the Ojai Valley. You all are ripe with excitement about the ministry you are currently doing and expect to do in the months and years ahead.

Now we have the opportunity to practice hospitality to a new baby girl, Sophia Anabella Crews Camphouse, born July 28, 2008, Ventura Community Hospital, 6:54AM, 8lbs. 13oz., 21 in. We also get to teach her by practicing the same hospitality you all have shown to us back with you and the whole Ojai Community.

Thank you for being such an outstanding group of people, and I look forward to our continuing journey together.


Pastor David


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