Pastor's Blog
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March 7, 2014, 12:37 PM


Right now I am sitting in a classroom at Platte Woods United Methodist Church in Platte Woods, MO.  The rest of my class and the others here are downstairs in the basement having lunch.  I am in prayer and study.  It is quiet except for what I hope is heat blowing through the vents.  Our teacher read us prayer for lunch and it is a prayer I think we can all appreciate.  I will share it here and through email next week.  

Perhaps because of this prayer, I began thinking about how we are  all praying for each other this year.  I hope you are continuing to pray each day for your persons or families.  I have been so blessed to pray for each one I was given.  Some of those I am praying for don't even know that I am but others do because I am trying to send out cards every week to a few people.  I enjoy sending out cards almost as much as I enjoy receiving them.  I think of them as simple acts of kindness.  Sometimes I am sure God gives me people to send cards to because I have heard how receiving one came at just the right time.  

I wonder what simple act of kindness each one of us might do during Lent.  Pay for a cup of coffee for the person behind you in line, smile at the person who has a frown on their face, say hello to someone you never spoke to before, etc.

Our journey in Lent gives a chance to be closer to God.  Be willing to take a chance.


03-08-2014 at 8:52 PM
I applaud you for your lenten discipline! I know you will be not only successful, but your relationship with God will be so much stronger.

Regarding the 'simple acts of kindness comment,' I was reminded of a very nice lady at the Washington DC airport who asked if she could help me figure out the self-checkin machine. In return, I asked her if she would like my subway fare card, "which might have $3+ on it--maybe less." She teared up and stated that was the nicest thing anybody had done for her in a long time. I then also teared up because I was reminded that God puts me in situations ALL THE TIME where people do nice things for me. So I am committing to do a better job of being kind and showing God's love however I can. Those small acts of kindness may just be what makes a person's day!

Do well in your classes......
03-07-2014 at 1:58 PM
Betty Houten
Vonda, you are so special. I also pray for you and Tom.
It has been a pleasure having name to pray for daily. It certainly allows or makes me to be still and talk to God.
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March 6, 2014, 7:28 PM

Long John Silver's

I have settled in my room at the Quality Suites Airport.  I had a delay in Portland but made my flight in Seattle just fine.  I arrived at the hotel around 4:15 and immediately began thinking about dinner.  I thought to myself it is actually 2:15 at home so I should at least wait until 5:00.  I left the hotel around 4:45 to searach out dinner.  I ended up doing some window shopping and it ended up being 6:30 before I had dinner.  As I was sitting in the drive through of Long John Silver's I thought it would be easy to just not eat tonight.  But LJS is one my favorite places and I rarely get a chance to eat there so I drove on through.  

I don't know why this has been reasonably easy these past two days, whether it is the fact that once I make a decision it is easier or perhaps it's the fact I have spent more time praying these past two days.  I don't know the answer but I know I am willing to be changed this Lent and I expect that to happen.  How I don't know but I know Jesus is walking along side me.

Tomorrow I will drink tea while my fellow classmates eat lunch.  Tea is my once consolation of my Lenten fast.  

So all in all I'm feeling pretty good so far.  


Blessings to you all these 40 days!

March 5, 2014, 11:38 PM

I am willing

I am soon to go to bed before my flight to Kansas City in the morning.  I realized throughout the day that every time I wanted to eat I thought about Jesus.  Wow!  There is no better way than to spend Ash Wednesday or any other day of the week than spending it with Jesus.  I know it's only the first day and I'm sure it will get harder but I am happy with this day.  I rode my bike for half an hour as planned.  I spent that time praying.  But as I ate my dinner at the church I thought of all the people in the world who didn't even have a church dinner to look forward to tonight.  Some (many) people will go to bed hungry.  I am not one of them.  Probably all the people who read this are not one of them.  What can I (we) do so that less people go to bed hungry tomorrow?

I am willing to be changed, are you?

March 5, 2014, 11:48 AM

Bread and Donuts

This morning I began my Lenten discipline.  It is only 9:30 and I am already realizing how hard this will be.  I read two blogs this morning talking about Lent.  The author of one said every year she prayed for her Lenten discipline and when she got to the point where she said, "oh no, not that", she knew that was it.  I feel the same way.  I certainly wouldn't have started fasting without the hand of the Lord.  But I expect it to be an enriching experience.  The second author talked about being willing this Lent.  What a wonderful concept!  We have to be willing to let God use us and that is often our problem.  We don't want to do the hard stuff.  We say we are willing but when push comes to shove, we rarely are, actually willing.

I have already been tested.  This morning I had to go to Safeway to pick up some items for our meal this evening at the church.  Do you know what is cooking at Safeway early in the morning?  Well, it's donuts and bread.  I love bread and donuts aren't too shabby either!  But I didn't fall, I kept right on walking, perhaps a little more slowly so as to take in the smell.

I did spend some extra time with God this morning and for that I am thankful.  Praise be to God!


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March 3, 2014, 3:21 PM

Peparing for Lent

If you were in church yesterday,  you heard me talk about my plans for Lent.  If not, here is basically what I said.  Last week I was reading an article about fasting and of course God in all His wisdom set before me a task. I am certain I would not have come up with this idea on my own.  I have a friend in Virginia who several years ago fasted the entire 40 days of Lent, well 46 including Sundays.  He did well, until it was time to start eating again.  There were several days of discomfort, let’s just say.  But I am not going to that extreme.  I am eating dinner every night.  I am just abstaining from breakfast and lunch each day.  I am planning to spend the time I would be eating with God.  I am planning to take the money I would have spent and giving it to the church for what I hope becomes a food ministry.  I am NOT doing this to lose weight.  I am NOT doing this to bring attention to myself.  I am doing this to bring attention to the many people in our world and especially in our community who are hungry.  I will be hungry.  If we are in a meeting together you may hear my stomach growl. Now imagine those in our community whose stomach growls all the time.  Imagine children who go to bed hungry every night.  Imagine seniors who are going to bed hungry. Whether we want to think about it or not, it is happening. It should not be happening. We should not be letting it happen.

I am also planning to be a little more active during Lent.  I will walk or ride my bike for 30 minutes every day, yes every day.  Another opportunity to spend some much needed time with God.  Because really Lent is an opportunity for us to come back to God, rest at the feet of the Lord, and spend some quality time there.  I’m not asking you to do the same thing I am, although you are welcome to come along for the ride.  But I am asking you to spend more time with God these coming 40 days.  I am asking you to DO SOMETHING during Lent.  Whether it is giving something up or taking something on, just do something!  I am planning to blog about the journey here.  I’m sure it’s going to be interesting to say the least.  I leave for school in Kansas City on Thursday so that will be a test all in itself.  But I know with God’s help and your prayers I will succeed.

Our Lenten Journey begins this Wednesday with a potluck at 6:00 p.m. and Ash Wednesday service at 7:00 p.m.  Come to both or just one and bring a friend.  Each day in Lent, except Sunday I will send out a reflection from Adam Hamilton’s 24 Hours that Changed the World.  We will be looking at this book on our Tuesday night Soup and the Word evenings.  I hope you’ll join  us each Tuesday beginning March 11th as we journey to the cross together.


I begin a new sermon series this Sunday as we go on a “Journey of Stones.”  More about that later in the week.  I hope to see you this Wednesday.


Blessings to all,


Pastor Vonda

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