Tuesday, April 27, 2010

"Blazing Saddles"

"Ah Ha", you say. "Nancy and her amazing United Methodist Women are off to the Assembly in St. Louis".You're correct. We are gone! We are outa here! And, we will be joined by Bishop Schnase and anybody who is really "anybody" later in the week. 6500 Strong. United Methodism at its finest, friends.
I am reminded of a line from one of my favorite movies. (You all know I am partial to satire.....don't you???) DUH! Hedley Lamar (aka Harvey Korman) had a priceless line in "Blazing Saddles",as he spoke of all of the vile characters that he wanted to enlist in his murderous and infamous (that's "more than famous"...and another movie line in another movie) band of outlaws. He names villains, rapists, thieves, scoundrels, racists, murderers,......and finally Methodists, as those he wants to wreck havoc in his frontier town. Amen, brothers and sisters.
I'm with Hedley Lamar. I want the United Methodists with me.And,I really want the United Methodist Women with me.

Precious Lord, take my hand. Lead me and the Missouri Conference UMW, as we journey to St. Louis. Help us to make our denomination strong and help all of us to realize that our commitment to women, youth and children makes our denomination truly special.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Faith, Hope, Love in Action

Well, it's almost here. Assembly in St. Louis, 2010, begins next week. Bonnie Stewart can't believe that I am already packed. Isn't everybody???? The list of agencies to receive Prayer Shawls and Baby Blankets has been sent to New York (Linda Douglas has filled a SEMI with items sent to WD, for this event). Paula has her volunteer list out. Rachel has her socks! What else, girls?
I am reminded of other Assemblies of recent years. The one 20 years ago in Kansas City. Dortha Mae was the Registrar. Cincinnati....singing "Lord, I'm available to you." with Betty Thurston, on a couple of street corners. Orlando....computer failure, and Whitney Houston's mother's Gospel Group. Philly...Marilyn and I in our Uncle Sam Hats touring the city's treasurers, and me experiencing ACELA and the subways. And,our last one in Anaheim.....Onikah(my mini-me)out on her own for the first time. Wonderful memories. I can't wait to make some more.
Just come and have a great time. Enjoy the uplifting music, the spirit filled worship and enjoy St. Louis in the springtime.

Gracious God, be with us as we travel to Assembly. Let us focus on the total experience and help us to cherish the good times. Bless all of the women who will come together in your name for the purpose of Mission to others.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

April showers bring.......

Grass. I mowed the yard today. Mowing the yard is great exercise and it gives me a great sense of accomplishment. Nice straight lines and crisp corners. Organization at it's best. And, unlike the daily dishes, the daily bed making, and nightly dinner, I won't be mowing again for a about a week.
It's about control, I think. I can actually control that yard. And,I can take pleasure in the accomplishment of that task. The rest of my life is more out of control than usual. The upcoming Assembly and other things are weighing heavy on my mind.

Lord, show me a way to let go of my worry. I am so blessed with health and a fine family. My friends are gathered around me. Thank you for my life and remind me that I can do anything with your help.

Monday, April 5, 2010

UMW SUNDAYS...not the week after Easter, PLZ

I received a call last week that included a request for me to preach yet another UMW Sunday, later this month. I checked my calendar and replied to the caller in the positive. Yes, I would be happy to do your UMW Sunday. It's been my pleasure to give an inspirational Sunday talk, now and then. In my four years as Conference UMW President, my UMW Sunday travels took me from Canton to Sikeston,from Kimberling City to Rockport. In between, I have preached in Harper's Chapel(that's a story for another time), all over in Kansas City, in Columbia, and in St. Louis. I've even done a couple in the state of Kansas. ("I'm a Sunflower from the Sunflower State." you know.)
One thing, however, that I try NOT to do is preach a UMW Sermon on the Sunday after Easter. Come on Pastors. Do you think your old ladies just fell off of the turnip truck? I can just hear your comments now. "We'll give those old biddies the Sunday that is our lowest in attendance. Nobody is going to want to hear what they say anyway. And, while we're at it, I think I'll take that Sunday off. I need to get away. Mission, humbug."
Well, we made our Pledge to Mission, in Missouri, this year. Over $400,000 in Mission Giving. Hey, there are a whole lot of somebodies out there who care what we have to say.
So call on me girlfriends, I'll do your UMW Sundays, but not this week!

Dear Lord, we make our prayers and ask You to answer them. We forget that You are calling us to do Your will. Help us to really listen to Your requests and help us to be "doers of your word and not hearers only." Amen