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Blog: Forest Lake Talks

O Love That Wilt Not Let Me Go

April 2, 2019

The hymn, “O Love That Wilt Not Let Me Go,” was written by George Matheson in 1882.   It was included in the Scottish Hymnal in 1885.  According to Matheson, “I was at that time alone…Something had happened to me, which was known only to myself, and which caused me the most severe mental suffering.  The hymn was the fruit of that suffering.”  (William J Reynolds) The tune was composed by Albert L. Peace, specifically for Dr. Matheson’s hymn text. The words of each verse are poetic and evoke powerful images.  Can you envision a love so great that it will…

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Fourth Week of Lent – Monday

April 1, 2019

From Presbyterian Outlook Devotions, Jill Duffield, Editor Luke 4:31-32 31 He went down to Capernaum, a city in Galilee, and was teaching them on the sabbath. 32 They were astounded at his teaching, because he spoke with authority. Jesus teaches in synagogues wherever he goes, meeting with those gathered for worship on the sabbath. The folks of Capernaum are astounded at this teaching, as he teaches with authority. What, do you imagine, did he teach? What is Jesus teaching you when you gather week to week? Are you astounded at what he has to say and the way he says it? Teacher, you…

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Fourth Week of Lent – Jesus Teaches

March 31, 2019

From Presbyterian Outlook Devotions, Jill Duffield, Editor Luke 4:14-15 14 Then Jesus, filled with the power of the Spirit, returned to Galilee, and a report about him spread through all the surrounding country. 15 He began to teach in their synagogues and was praised by everyone. Jesus teaches throughout Luke’s Gospel. He teaches in formal settings like synagogues. He teaches outdoors to crowds gathered eager to hear his words. He teaches with stories, telling parables that invite listeners to reach their own – often surprising, yet inevitable – conclusion. He teaches by asking questions. He most certainly teaches by example, modeling for his…

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Third Week of Lent – Saturday

March 30, 2019

From Presbyterian Outlook Devotions, Jill Duffield, Editor Luke 9:37-43 37 On the next day, when they had come down from the mountain, a great crowd met him. 38 Just then a man from the crowd shouted, “Teacher, I beg you to look at my son; he is my only child. 39 Suddenly a spirit seizes him, and all at once he shrieks. It convulses him until he foams at the mouth; it mauls him and will scarcely leave him. 40 I begged your disciples to cast it out, but they could not.” 41 Jesus answered, “You faithless and perverse generation, how much longer must I be with you and…

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Third Week of Lent – Friday

March 29, 2019

From Presbyterian Outlook Devotions, Jill Duffield, Editor Luke 8:26-37 26 Then they arrived at the country of the Gerasenes, which is opposite Galilee. 27 As he stepped out on land, a man of the city who had demons met him. For a long time he had worn no clothes, and he did not live in a house but in the tombs. 28 When he saw Jesus, he fell down before him and shouted at the top of his voice, “What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, do not torment me”— 29 for Jesus had commanded the unclean…

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Third Week of Lent – Thursday

March 28, 2019

From Presbyterian Outlook Devotions, Jill Duffield, Editor Luke 7:11-17 11 Soon afterwards he went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went with him. 12 As he approached the gate of the town, a man who had died was being carried out. He was his mother’s only son, and she was a widow; and with her was a large crowd from the town.  13 When the Lord saw her, he had compassion for her and said to her, “Do not weep.”  14 Then he came forward and touched the bier, and the bearers stood still. And he said, “Young man, I…

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Third Week of Lent – Wednesday

March 27, 2019

From Presbyterian Outlook Devotions, Jill Duffield, Editor Luke 6:17-19 17 He came down with them and stood on a level place, with a great crowd of his disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea, Jerusalem, and the coast of Tyre and Sidon.  18 They had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases; and those who were troubled with unclean spirits were cured.  19 And all in the crowd were trying to touch him, for power came out from him and healed all of them. Jesus stands on a level place with a multitude from a vast region surrounding…

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In The Cross of Christ I Glory

March 26, 2019

This hymn text is written by Sir John Bowring (1792-1872), a Unitarian world traveler who could reportedly converse in 100 different languages.  The title of this hymn was engraved on his tombstone. In the cross of Christ I glory, towering o’er the wrecks of time; All the light of sacred story gathers round its head sublime. We tend to associate the cross with darkness, but this hymn is full of references to light.  The cross, which has outlasted and outshone all civilizations, is the focal point of hope for all generations.  As an extensive world traveler, the hymn author would…

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Third Week of Lent – Monday

March 25, 2019

From Presbyterian Outlook Devotional, Jill Duffield, Editor Luke 5:12-13 12 Once, when he was in one of the cities, there was a man covered with leprosy. When he saw Jesus, he bowed with his face to the ground and begged him, “Lord, if you choose, you can make me clean.” 13 Then Jesus stretched out his hand, touched him, and said, “I do choose. Be made clean.” Immediately the leprosy left him. The pain of this person comes through the page all these thousands of years later. His disease caused physical pain and it also separated him from community. Pain upon pain. Jesus…

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Third Week of Lent – Jesus Heals

March 24, 2019

From Presbyterian Outlook, Jill Duffield Editor Luke 4:38-40 38 After leaving the synagogue he entered Simon’s house. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever, and they asked him about her. 39 Then he stood over her and rebuked the fever, and it left her. Immediately she got up and began to serve them. 40 As the sun was setting, all those who had any who were sick with various kinds of diseases brought them to him; and he laid his hands on each of them and cured them. “They asked him about her.” This simple sentence represents compassion, connection, communal care. Consider how…

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Second Week of Lent – Saturday

March 23, 2019

From Presbyterian Outlook Devotion Luke 22:39-46 39 Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives, and his disciples followed him. 40 On reaching the place, he said to them, “Pray that you will not fall into temptation.” 41 He withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed, 42 “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” 43 An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him.  44 And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground. 45 When he rose from prayer and went back to the…

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Second Week of Lent – Friday

March 22, 2019

From Presbyterian Outlook Devotion Luke 11:1-4 1 He was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.” 2 He said to them, “When you pray, say: Father, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come.  3 Give us each day our daily bread.  4 And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us. And do not bring us to the time of trial.” Jesus responds to the disciples’ request and teaches them to pray. Jesus gives them this simple, expansive, beautiful prayer we call the Lord’s Prayer. Consider…

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When I Survey The Wondrous Cross

March 21, 2019

This beautiful hymn was written by Isaac Watts, the “Father of English Hymnody,” for communion.  Of the hundreds of hymns Watts composed, this is one of his most beloved texts. When I survey the wondrous cross on which the Prince of glory died, My richest gain I count but loss, and pour contempt on all my pride.  To survey something is more than to simply look at it.  When we survey something we appraise it – we measure its value.  How can we possibly put a value on the cross?  Philippians 3:7-8 says, “But whatever was to my profit I…

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A Message from Andrea Paschal

March 20, 2019

March 20, 2019 Dear Friends, Do you, as members of the church of Jesus Christ, promise to guide and nurture these children by word and deed, with love and prayer?  Will you encourage them to know and follow Christ and to be faithful members of his church?  These questions are asked during the service of Baptism.  Everyone is included in the promises made, and here at Forest Lake, we also ask the other children to make a promise to help the newly baptized child know and follow Christ.  This is a whole church experience.  The Confession of 1967 states it…

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Second Week of Lent – Monday

March 18, 2019

From Presbyterian Outlook Devotion Luke 6:12-16 12 Now during those days he went out to the mountain to pray; and he spent the night in prayer to God.  13 And when day came, he called his disciples and chose twelve of them, whom he also named apostles: 14 Simon, whom he named Peter, and his brother Andrew, and James, and John, and Philip, and Bartholomew, 15 and Matthew, and Thomas, and James son of Alphaeus, and Simon, who was called the Zealot, 16 and Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor. Jesus prays before calling the twelve disciples. He shows us that spending time with God…

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