Jesus loves you

and we want to get to know you. 

Welcome

 

Welcome, and thank you for visiting Waltz United Methodist Church online, or in gathered worship. We hope that our website highlights the worship, fellowship, and service opportunities available.

We worship in a traditional style, in traditional hymns, and preaching from the Bible.

 

Please feel free to read more about our church on this site, or come in for a visit. We would love to greet you and share with you our love for Jesus Christ and for you, our neighbor.  

Our Mission
 
Our mission is to be fully devoted to Jesus by opening our arms to those in search of the truth.  All are welcome.
  We show God’s love and concern for our fellow man at every opportunity. Through works of charity and opening our doors to listen and love, we feel that we are walking in the footsteps of Jesus Christ.
Worship Services  

Our traditional Worship  Service begins at 9:30 AM. 
If you haven't visited us yet, know that you will be a stranger for only about 2 minutes - after that you're family. All are welcome!
   
   We celebrate Communion on the first Sunday of each month.
 

Contact us:  7465 Egypt Rd
         Phone:  (330) 722-1015

Pastor Les is continuing his regular office time, on Wednesdays 9-12 AM,   You may call his cell phone to make an appointment if  you have a special need
(216)-536-0997  
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Altar Cross at our outdoor          Worship Service

    (Thanks for the photo, Eric)

Wednesday           Dec 7             10: 00 AM    Prayer Shawl Ministry

                                                    12: 15 PM    Admin Bd

 

Saturday               Dec 17             2 – 4 PM     Pastor’s Open House

 

Wednesday           Dec 21            10:00 AM     Prayer Shawl Ministry

                                                     10:00 AM     Trustees Meeting

 

 

Christmas Eve       Dec 24              6:30 PM     Candlelight Service

 

Christmas Day       Dec 25                                 No Service

 

Sunday                   Jan 1                  9:30 AM    Regular Worship Service

We welcome Ed Gugliucci to our membership as a transfer from Brecksville UMC with a gift of a Prayer Shawl made by our Prayer Shawl Ministry knitters,   

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Special Prayer Needs:

Prayers for Barbara Rak's brother, Robert Spieth, whose home was badly damaged in Naples, Fl from Hurricane Ian. Robert suffered a cut while evacuating from chest high flood waters that led to a bacterial blood infection. He is being treated with antibiotics hoping to save his leg. 

 

                Merry Christmas!

                         2021

   

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Happy Easter!
        2022
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Pastor's Corner:  I will be publishing the weekly Sermon Notes here that correspond to the Sunday Sermon available on our Facebook page (Waltzumc Church)

Sermon Notes: Connecting The Dots: Love

Intro: We lit the Candle of Love to start our service. But we lit that candle after we lit the candle of Hope, which we focused on last week, implying that there is an order in the characteristics of our Advent preparations. The four candles of Advent – Hope, Love, Joy, and Peace - connect like a ‘connecting the dots’ puzzle that reveal a Big Picture of God working in our lives to prepare us and provide a continuing foundation for our faith.

 

I.  About Love

A. Love seems to be one of most often used, so often misused and misunderstood words in our language. Love is used 551 times in the just the NIV translation of the New Testament. Love gets confusing in the English usage because in the original Greek of the New Testament, love has 3 different applications. Agape, love for God, Philos, love for others as brothers and sisters, and Eros, sexually based love. So when we read the word Love in our New Testament, we can miss the meaning without understanding the context it was written in. When does Love apply to God?  When does it apply to others?  Adding to the confusion are songs like the Beatles’, “Love, Love, Love, All you need is love”.  But if you listen to the words, love is like some kind of potion you can use for a variety of things, without knowing what it is, or how it applies. But all you need is love, a universal cure-all, it seems. But to understand God, we need to understand Love. In our Advent preparation this week, we’ll be looking at God’s Love for us, and our love for God.

B. Part of our confusion is we tend to think of Love as a feeling. But God’s Love goes beyond mere feelings. Love is more appropriately used as a verb, an action word. We say God loves us. But we don’t depend on God’s Love as His feelings toward us, but rather His response to us. Likewise, we may say we love God, but God wants our love to be more than our feelings about Him, but rather our response to Him, putting those feelings into actions. God so loved the world that He sent His Son to show His fatherly love for us, so that all who believe in Him shall have everlasting life. Belief is faith driven actions, more than just a recognition of Jesus’ existence. As James says, “faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.”  We can say we love God, and believe in Him, but without actions, such Love is just a feeling. And neither is our Love for God an independent feeling that results in action. It comes from God working in us and our response to those workings. 

C. This year with Thanksgiving only a week before Advent, we might have even incorporated a Candle of Gratitude into our Advent wreath. God’s Love working in our lives has provided blessings and guidance for our path to Him. Our true Gratitude for God’s blessings in our lives provides us a growing, continuing hope in our God. Hope in a God whose demonstrated Love is so great that He would promise His own Son, as our Messiah, to pay the blood price of our sins. Hope of His continued blessings and an assurance of His presence. Hope in a

generous God who is faithful to the promise of our future with Him. So that our Love is a response of Gratitude, Hope, Love for His Love for us. Love connects the dots, represented by our Advent candles, of Gratitude and hope, just as we will see joy and peace resulting from further connecting those dots that ultimately connect us to Jesus, the Christ.

 

II. Genesis 41:3-13

   A. We’re using the life of Joseph, Jacob’s 11th son, to exemplify the Advent characteristics preparing us for God’s ultimate Love driven purpose. Seeing how these four characteristics naturally flowed in his life, like dots that connected to show the Big Picture of God working through his life. We began with the first dot as God’s hope though His covenant, or sacred Promise, to Abraham for descendants that would be as numerous as the countless stars in the sky, and a promised land for the nation of descendants, forever. The forever clause of this covenantal promise is guaranteed through the Messiah. God repeats this long range promise of Hope to Abraham’s son Isaac, and Isaac’s son Jacob. Today we will continue to see God working in the details in the life of Jacob’s son, Joseph, as a means of remaining faithful to His long range Promise.

B. You may remember Joseph was the youngest of 10 older brothers who were born to 3 different mothers who were Jacob’s wives. But Jacob strongly favored Joseph as his youngest, and as the son of Rachel, the previously childless wife he loved most. Jacob’s favor was seen in the infamous coat of many colors, adding to the brothers’ resentment of Joseph. Then Joseph has two dreams. In the first, one of 11 sheaves in the field rises up, and the other 10 bow down to it. A second dream has 10 stars, and the sun and moon, bowing down to an 11th star. While Joseph has a gift of dreams, God’s interpretation would not be seen for another 30 years. But the brothers naturally assume they were the ones bowing down to Joseph, adding fuel to their hatred.

C. We can understand Joseph’s Hope at this time of his life. Despite his brothers’ hatred, he knew the deep love of his parents. He had dreamed his brothers might one day bow before him. With his colorful coat, the seventeen-year-old Joseph might well have even had a swagger. At least until his brothers saw him coming to check up on them. Deciding at first to kill him, they instead put him an empty dry well until they spot a caravan coming toward them, and decide to sell him for a profit. They would dip that resented coat in sheep’s blood and tell Dad a wild animal must have killed Joseph. Joseph’s hope must have taken a nosedive. Sold like a piece of property, then sold again in Egypt as a slave to Pharaoh’s captain of the guard.

D. But Joseph responds well. Instead of developing a resentful attitude, Joseph performs his duties so well, his new master, Potiphar, gives Joseph complete control of his household. Scripture says all Potiphar had to concern himself with was what he wanted for supper. Joseph’s enduring hope of his future allowed him to love his master and serve him faithfully. But then Potiphar’s wife tries to seduce him, and he runs from her. Scorned, she tells her husband Joseph attacked her, and Joseph is thrown into Pharoah’s dungeon. Despite now being jailed, instead of a personal slave, Joseph’s ethics are rewarded by being given charge over the other prisoners.

E. Then the Pharoah’s cupbearer and his baker are jailed with him. They each have dreams but are troubled because they can’t interpret them. Joseph’s love for others takes notice of their troubled state and tells them God could interpret their dreams through him. The baker’s dream foretells of his own execution. The cupbearer’s dream foretells of his being restored to Pharoah’s court. And within three days, both dreams become reality. Joseph asks the cupbearer to put in a good word to Pharaoh for him, but the cupbearer forgets, and Joseph spends another two years in prison although wrongfully imprisoned. But Joseph continues to hope in God and show God’s Love working within Him.

F. Would we have responded as well as Joseph? Put in a pit, then sold by his own brothers into slavery. Were the dreams of his brothers bowing before him wishful thinking? Then wrongfully convicted/his good deeds forgotten. Where was God’s justice? The Bible doesn’t really answer those questions, we only see results. He had to have found faith in God from his youth. Such faith would have allowed him to hope in God and demonstrate his Love for God, even in these conditions. Without such hope and resulting Love, it would have been unlikely, if not impossible, for Joseph to overcome his difficult situation. But God was preparing Joseph, connecting the dots of a Bigger Picture of His greater purpose.  

G. In the last verses of our OT lesson, Pharaoh has a dream that his officials cannot interpret. Then the cupbearer remembers Joseph’s special ability to interpret dreams and recommends him to Pharaoh. Joseph is cleaned up and taken to Pharoah. The connected dots of hope and love are about to connect to the dot of Joy resulting from God giving Joseph the interpretation of Pharaoh’s dream. But, the reality of Joseph’s ordeal to date, was that even if Joseph had a naturally positive personality, he was unprepared for all that had happened to him. But God had known Joseph’s heart. A heart that hoped in God and loved Him. And God loved Joseph, and had put him in these situations to prepare him to respond to what He needed to accomplish for His greater purposes in the Big Picture. God had orchestrated the events in Joseph’s life to bring him to Egypt, and have him ready when He connected the dots to bring him to this exact moment before Pharaoh. We’ll leave Joseph there until next week’s continuing saga, when we light the Candle of Joy. 

 

III.  I Corinthians 13: 1-13

A. We lit the Candle of Love from the Altar candles, symbolic of God’s Love being given to us. God already Loves us. He created us out of His Love and wants to restore us to a full relationship with Him. His light ignites our hope in Him, resulting in our Love for Him. Our lives are brightened by our Father’s Love given to us by His Son. But what is that Love? What does it do? What do we do with it?

B. Our NT lesson from I Corinthians 13, often referred to as the Love Chapter, gives us some insights on Love. It’s often read at weddings, and has become understood as how a husband and wife should love each other. But Paul wrote this letter to the troublesome, unruly Corinthian church. Corinth was a metropolis of pagan activities and beliefs, so that the converted Gentiles often brought their former behaviors and practices into the church. So, Paul is addressing the church to mold them into Christian ways. Pagans often rang bells and clanged cymbals to make noise to get the attention of their gods. Paul is saying that even if they were to speak in tongues, or prophesy, or perform miracles, or even abuse their bodies to win God’s approval, but didn’t have love, they were like those gongs and cymbals, mere noisemakers. So Paul begins to define what love is.

C. Love isn’t just a good feeling toward others, wishing good things for them. Love is what we do by our actions. It’s patient, accepting others for what they are or aren’t. It’s treating others with kindness, in spite of how they treat us. Envy, pride, boastfulness, seeking our own good don’t belong in the same sentence with love.

D. When we love others, we aren’t easily angered, or keep track of their wrongs against us. Love is rejoicing with the truth, not as in revealing another’s sins, but finding joy when others find joy in His Truth.

So love isn’t just about how we feel about others. It’s an active conduct of protecting others, hoping for their future, and persevering for their best interests. Some of these traits may seem difficult for us, they’re also what we can expect of God. Patient with our shortcomings, forgiving, slow to anger, never delighting in evil, but rejoicing when we accept His truth.

 

Conclusions: We hear that from Jesus’ words in the Beatitudes, in the Lord’s Prayer, in His Prayer in Gethsemane, even in His parables as He describes His Father’s Love, and as He demonstrates in His own life. But nowhere does Jesus prepare us to understand His love more than He does in Communion. Breaking the bread to show He would be broken on the Cross, lifting the wine to show that His blood, the source of His Life, would be shed to forgive our sins. Asking us to remember these symbols of His Love whenever we eat the bread and drink the juice. Acts of love, not feelings, to remember His Love for us, not just His feelings of Love. Amen

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