Going Deeper with the Message:

God Doesn’t Give Bad Directions
by: Michelle Lemley, Nursery Coordinator

My husband loves to tell the story of getting directions from a friend in college. She told him to go to her hometown, and turn left at the Sheetz. The only problem was, her hometown had four Sheetz stations. Not to mention the fact that she hadn’t told him which direction to enter town from, so “turn left” became problematic, especially after trying and failing at several intersections. When my husband finally gave up and called the friend’s father to ask for clarification, her dad apparently laughed and said, “Oh no, never take directions from her.  I’ll come find you and lead you in.”

Giving directions can be hard. You have to think of everything from someone else’s point of view; someone who hasn’t been to that place and isn’t familiar with the landmarks—someone who may be scared and lost. And as humans, we make mistakes. Lots of them. So, it’s not surprising that sometimes we give bad directions. We can’t always imagine what the other person will need or how to guide them. 

On Sunday, Pastor Tim introduced a new sermon series by starting from the beginning—as in, Genesis. And in his introduction to Genesis 1, he discussed the importance of our belief in God. Without this belief, we are alone in the universe. There is no objective right and wrong. Every decision or moral question is left up to the individual who may have a different viewpoint and therefore may make mistakes. There is no purpose or hope. Everything is left up to fate.

But because we believe in God, we have someone to pray to, and we can have faith that those prayers are being heard. Because we believe, we know that God is there to tell us right from wrong, and He has given us directions in the form of His Word. Because we believe that we were made in His image, we know that He has given us an innate sense of right and wrong. Because we are connected to Him in this way, we have the opportunity to learn the purpose He has for us, and to make a true impact on the world.  

With God giving us directions, we will reach our destination as He has designed, and if we ever get lost and have trouble following these directions, all we have to do is call upon Him and ask for help, and our faith ensures that He will be there to show us the way.

Living out the Message:

Responding to the Greatest Story
By Barb Barnhart, Preschool Coordinator

Do you love stories? I do! I love children’s books! They are some of my favorites. I love sharing stories with children. Children become so engrossed in listening that they do not realize they are responding to the story. Sometimes the response is with joy, or fear, or hope.  There is always a response.

The preschool children of Ridge Kids will happily share with you that The Greatest Story is the story of God! His book, the Bible, is filled with truth. It is His love story to us! They will tell you that the true story of the Bible teaches that God Made Us, God Loves Us, and Jesus wants to be Our Friend Forever.

Early in the book of Genesis, we learn that God created man and woman in His image. He walked and talked with them in the Garden of Eden. Only people were created in God’s image so that we might enjoy a relationship with Him. What a great reason to be created! God gives us purpose. Unless we are connected to God, this purpose will not be complete. Just like a light bulb will not light until it is plugged into the proper power source, the impact of our story will not be a light to others until we are connected to the proper power source, God.

My question to you this week is “What will you do with this story?” God’s story is to be heard and allowed to make an impact in one’s life.  In Isaiah 55:10-11, the statement is made,

For just as rain and snow fall from heaven
and do not return there
without saturating the earth
and making it germinate and sprout,
and providing seed to sow
and food to eat,
so My word that comes from My mouth
will not return to Me empty,
but it will accomplish what I please
and will prosper in what I send it to do.”

God’s Word, His Story, is not empty. It will accomplish in our lives what God has intended. He desires for us to know Him, talk with Him, listen to Him, love Him, trust Him. God desires a relationship with us. Once His Story impacts our lives, we can’t help but respond to the story.

A great response is to share your story with someone. This week, let someone know that God Made Them, God Loves Them and Jesus Wants to Be their Friend Forever.