R E M I N D E R S — ≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈
JULY 20TH THRU JULY 24 —
FROM 6 TO 9 P.M. EACH AFTERNOON
THURSDAY, JULY 24TH —
• ABC PARISH OFFICE IN CASEY IS
SATURDAY, JULY 26TH —
• A-C FOOD PANTRY - OPEN
FROM 9 A.M. TO 11 A.M.
IN CASEY U.M.C.
MISSIONS TEAM TO HOPE MINISTRIES -
9 A.M. TO 1 P.M.
SUNDAY, JULY 27TH –
SEVENTH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST————————————————————
SCRIPTURE READINGS —
THE MESSAGE (MSG)
The trickster is tricked.
Our U.S. culture neither believes in nor
condones polygamy. While arranged
marriages are permissible in the United
States, what Laban does here could be
seen as a violation of contract law. Worse,
he seems almost to be engaged in a form
of human trafficking, selling his daughters
in exchange for labor. What of the rights
and voices of the women involved? What
of Leah, required by her father to bed a
man who does not love her? What of
Rachel who expected Jacob to be hers
alone, at least first? And what of Zilpah,
Leah’s maid, “given” to Leah by Laban?
This already dysfunctional family system
—one that has cast out a legitimate child
and his mother (Ishmael and Hagar),
allowed a younger son to trick his father
and steal his brother’s birthright and
blessing (Rebekah, Jacob and Esau) —
is now shown to be even more
dysfunctional — two wives in a week, the
“wrong one” first. That alone, without the
previous history, would have pointed to
trouble. And it doesn’t help that to obtain
the wife he actually wants, Jacob must
put in yet another seven years hard labor
beyond what he had already provided.
Jacob the trickster is tricked, perhaps
learning something or getting a retribution
for the pain he had inflicted by his trickery
in his original family aimed at overturning
his culture’s strict *primogeniture rules.
(*the right of succession belonging to the
This time Jacob, the grabber, does not get
what he wants, and there is no way he can
grab it, either.
What does this story have to do with us as
United Methodist Christians? We don’t do
polygamy in the United States, Europe, the
Philippines, or even in the vast majority of
cultures where we have congregations in
Africa. Few of us anywhere do arranged
marriages. Wherever United Methodists
have been, we have elevated the status of
women, ordaining female elders and even
lifting up a female bishop in Mozambique.
Even in highly patriarchal cultures, we are
a people who speak up for justice and for
equality, male and female alike. Much in
this story runs counter to our instincts.
We have to be honest about that. We may
even find ourselves needing to proclaim
against such elements.
The world and to some degree whatever
cultures we participate in still play people
as if they were cards in some larger game.
The world continues to assert its rights to
do so based on its own precedents. That
we offer a different narrative and different
politics as Christians does not mean, that
the cultures in which we find ourselves as
disciples of Jesus and ministers in his
name has done so or even will stop doing
so anytime soon. Laban plays everyone
he can . . . Jacob, his own daughters,
other women he possesses . . . to his own
culturally determined advantage.
treats Leah horribly, clearly disdaining her
from the start, once he realizes who she is.
Divorce was not an option in that culture,
so instead he chooses polygamy where it
is clear he will treat Rachel far better than
her sister, his now first but unfavored wife.
For families of every kind, may we justly
value each other in our relationships, we
pray to you, O God.
14-15 Laban said, "You're family! My flesh
When Jacob had been with him for a
month, Laban said, "Just because you're
my nephew, you shouldn't work for me for
nothing. Tell me what you want to be paid.
What's a fair wage?"
16-18 Now Laban had two daughters; Leah
was the older and Rachel the younger.
Leah had nice eyes, but Rachel was
stunningly beautiful. And it was Rachel
that Jacob loved.
So Jacob answered, "I will work for you
seven years for your younger daughter
19 "It is far better," said Laban, "that I give
her to you than marry her to an outsider.
Yes. Stay here with me."
20 So Jacob worked seven years for
Rachel. But it only seemed like a few days,
because he loved her so much.
21-24 Then Jacob said to Laban, "Give me
my wife; I've completed what we agreed I'd
do. I'm ready to consummate my marriage."
Laban invited everyone around and threw
a big feast. At evening, though, he got his
daughter Leah and brought her to the
marriage bed, and Jacob slept with her.
(Laban gave his maid Zilpah to his
daughter Leah as her maid.)
25 Morning came: There was Leah in the
Jacob confronted Laban, "What have you
done to me? Didn't I work all this time for
the hand of Rachel? Why did you cheat
26-27 "We don't do it that way in our
country," said Laban. "We don't marry off
the younger daughter before the older.
Enjoy your week of honeymoon, and then
we'll give you the other one also. But it will
cost you another seven years of work."
28-30 Jacob agreed. When he'd completed
the honeymoon week, Laban gave him his
daughter Rachel to be his wife. (Laban
gave his maid Bilhah to his daughter
Rachel as her maid.) Jacob then slept with
her. And he loved Rachel more than Leah.
He worked for Laban another seven years.
PSALM 105:1-11 (UMH 828)
THE MESSAGE (MSG)
Hallelujah! Thank God! Pray to him by
Tell everyone you meet what he has
Sing him songs, belt out hymns,
translate his wonders into music!
Honor his holy name with Hallelujahs,
you who seek God. Live a happy life!
Keep your eyes open for God, watch for
be alert for signs of his presence.
Remember the world of wonders he has
his miracles, and the verdicts he's
O seed of Abraham, his servant,
O child of Jacob, his chosen.
7-15 He's God, our God,
in charge of the whole earth.
And he remembers, remembers his
for a thousand generations he's been
as good as his word.
It's the Covenant he made with Abraham,
the same oath he swore to Isaac,
The very statute he established with Jacob,
the eternal Covenant with Israel,
Namely, "I give you the land.
Canaan is your hill-country inheritance."
When they didn't count for much,
a mere handful, and strangers at that,
Wandering from country to country,
drifting from pillar to post,
He permitted no one to abuse them.
He told kings to keep their hands off:
"Don't you dare lay a hand on my
don't hurt a hair on the heads of my
THE MESSAGE (MSG)
We pray for the leaders of all nations, of
companies and of movements, that they
may always work for justice and fight
every form of tyranny, exploitation, cruelty
repression, hardship, distress, poverty,
persecution, famine, hunger, and danger
known to mankind.
Our song to creation is because of hope.
26-28 Meanwhile, the moment we get tired
in the waiting, God's Spirit is right along
side helping us along. If we don't know
how or what to pray for, it doesn't matter.
He does our praying in and for us, making
prayer out of our wordless sighs, our
aching groans. He knows us far better
than we know ourselves, knows our heavy
pregnant condition, and keeps us present
before God. That's why we can be so sure
that every detail in our lives of love for
God is worked into something good.
29-30 God knew what he was doing from
the very beginning. He decided from the
outset to shape the lives of those who love
him along the same lines as the life of his
Son. The Son stands first in the line of
humanity he restored. We see the original
and intended shape of our lives there in
him. After God made that decision of what
his children should be like, he followed it
up by calling people by name. After he
called them by name, he set them on a
solid basis with himself. And then, after
getting them established, he stayed with
them to the end, gloriously completing
what he had begun.
31-39 So, what do you think? With God on
our side like this, how can we lose? If God
didn't hesitate to put everything on the line
for us, embracing our condition and
exposing himself to the worst by sending
his own Son, is there anything else he
wouldn't gladly and freely do for us? And
who would dare tangle with God by
messing with one of God's chosen? Who
would dare even to point a finger? The
One who died for us—who was raised to
life for us!—is in the presence of God at
this very moment sticking up for us. Do
you think anyone is going to be able to
drive a wedge between us and Christ's
love for us? There is no way! Not trouble,
not hard times, not hatred, not hunger,
not homelessness, not bullying threats,
not backstabbing, not even the worst sins
listed in Scripture:
They kill us in cold blood because they
We're sitting ducks; they pick us off one
None of this fazes us because Jesus loves
us. I'm absolutely convinced that nothing
— nothing living or dead, angelic or
demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low,
thinkable or unthinkable—absolutely
nothing can get between us and God's
love because of the way that Jesus our
Master has embraced us.
THE MESSAGE (MSG)
Jesus tells five short parables of the
kingdom of heaven and describes the
work of "scribe trained for the kingdom."
Farmer God, sowing weeds and reaping
harvest of wild birds, plant your kingdom
in all the earth, and let the unwanted
things find homes!
31-32 Another story. "God's kingdom is
like a pine nut that a farmer plants.
course of years it grows into a huge pine
tree, and eagles build nests in it."
yeast that a woman works into the dough
for dozens of loaves of barley bread—and
waits while the dough rises."
34-35 All Jesus did that day was tell stories
— a long storytelling afternoon. His story
telling fulfilled the prophecy:
I will open my mouth and tell stories;
I will bring out into the open
things hidden since the world's first day.
THE CURTAIN OF HISTORY
36 Jesus dismissed the congregation and
went into the house. His disciples came in
and said, "Explain to us that story of the
thistles in the field."
37-39 So he explained. "The farmer who
sows the pure seed is the Son of Man. The
field is the world, the pure seeds are
subjects of the kingdom, the thistles are
subjects of the Devil, and the enemy who
sows them is the Devil. The harvest is the
end of the age, the curtain of history. The
harvest hands are angels.
40-43 "The picture of thistles pulled up and
burned is a scene from the final act. The
Son of Man will send his angels, weed out
the thistles from his kingdom, pitch them
in the trash, and be done with them. They
are going to complain to high heaven, but
nobody is going to listen. At the same time,
ripe, holy lives will mature and adorn the
kingdom of their Father.
Are you listening to this? Really listening?
44 "God's kingdom is like a treasure
hidden in a field for years and then
accidentally found by a trespasser. The
finder is ecstatic—what a find!—and
proceeds to sell everything he owns to
raise money and buy that field.
45-46 "Or, God's kingdom is like a jewel
merchant on the hunt for excellent pearls.
Finding one that is flawless, he
immediately sells everything and buys it.
47-50 "Or, God's kingdom is like a fishnet
cast into the sea, catching all kinds of fish.
When it is full, it is hauled onto the beach.
The good fish are picked out and put in a
tub; those unfit to eat are thrown away.
That's how it will be when the curtain
comes down on history. The angels will
come and cull the bad fish and throw them
in the garbage. There will be a lot of
desperate complaining, but it won't do any
51 Jesus asked, "Are you starting to get a
handle on all this?"
They answered, "Yes."
52 He said, "Then you see how every
student well-trained in God's kingdom is
like the owner of a general store who can
put his hands on anything you need, old
or new, exactly when you need it."
• 1663 - The British Parliament passed a
second Navigation Act, which required all
goods bound for the colonies be sent in
British ships from British ports.
• 1804 - The 12th Amendment to the U.S.
Constitution was ratified. With the
amendment Electors were directed to vote
for a President and for a Vice-President
rather than for two choices for President.
• 1909 - Orville Wright set a record for the
longest airplane flight. He was testing the
first Army airplane and kept it in the air for
1 hour 12 minutes and 40 seconds.
• 1944 - U.S. troops completed liberation
• 1995 - The Korean War Veterans Memorial
was dedicated in Washington, DC, by U.S.
President Clinton and South Korean
President Kim Young-sam.
MONDAY, JULY 28TH —
• ADAIR U.M.C. AND GOOD SHEPHERD
VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL
JULY 28TH TO JULY 31ST.
• ABC PARISH OFFICE IN CASEY
IS CLOSED UNTIL AUGUST 4TH.
HAPPY VACATION, EVERYONE!
• 1866 - The metric system was legalized
by the U.S. Congress for standardization
of weights and measures throughout the
• 1868 - The Fourteenth Amendment to the
U.S. Constitution was declared in effect.
The amendment guaranteed due process
• 1945 - A U.S. Army bomber crashed into
the 79th floor of New York City's Empire
State Building. 14 people were killed and
26 were injured.
TUESDAY, JULY 29TH —
Happy Birthday David Young!
Happy Birthday Sam Carney!————————————————————
• 1773 - The first schoolhouse located
west of the Allegheny Mountains was built
in Schoenbrunn, OH.
• 1993 - The Israeli Supreme Court
acquitted retired Ohio autoworker John
Demjanjuk of being Nazi death camp guard
"Ivan the Terrible." His death sentence was
thrown out and he was set free.
• 2005 - Astronomers announced that they
had discovered a new planet (Xena) larger
than Pluto in orbit around the sun.
WEDNESDAY, JULY 30TH —
Happy Birthday Wyona Williams!
ABC - AD COUNCIL MEETING WITH
POTLUCK DINNER. MELISSA DRAKE IS
GUEST - AT CASEY U.M.C. - 6 P.M.
• 1502 - Christopher Columbus landed at
Guanaja in the Bay Islands off the coast of
Honduras during his fourth voyage.
• 1619 - The first representative assembly
in America convened in Jamestown, VA.
• 1942 - The WAVES were created by
legislation signed by U.S. President
Franklin D. Roosevelt. WAVES were part of
the U.S. Navy.
• 1956 - The phrase "In God We Trust" was
adopted as the U.S. national motto.
• 1965 - U.S. President Johnson signed
into law Social Security Act that recognized
Medicare and Medicaid. It went into effect
the following year.
THURSDAY, JULY 31ST —
Happy Birthday Gretchen Umbaugh!
Happy Birthday Peg Snyder!
ABC PARISH OFFICE IS CLOSED THRU
LAST DAY OF BIBLE SCHOOL IN ADAIR!
• 1498 - Christopher Columbus, on his
third voyage to the Western Hemisphere,
arrived at the island of Trinidad.
• 1971 - Men rode in a vehicle on the moon
for the first time in a lunar rover vehicle.
FRIDAY, AUGUST 1ST —
Happy Birthday Ann Gerhards!
• 1619 - The first black Americans (20)
arrived at Jamestown, VA.
• 1774 - Oxygen was isolated from air
successfully by chemist Carl Wilhelm and
scientist Joseph Priestly.
• 1790 - The first U.S. census was finished
with a total population of 3,929,214
recorded. The areas included were present
states of Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia,
Kentucky, Maine, Maryland,
Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New
Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode
Island, North Carolina, South Carolina,
Tennessee, Vermont and Virginia.
• 1834 - Slavery was outlawed in the entire
British empire with an emancipation bill.
• 1876 - Colorado became the 38th state to
join the United States.
• 1893 - Shredded wheat was patented by
Henry Perky and William Ford.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 2ND —
Happy Birthday Beth Rogers!
• 1776 - Members of the U.S. Continental
Congress began adding their signatures
to the Declaration of Independence.
• 1858 - In Boston and New York City the
first public mailboxes were installed along
• 1861 - United States Congress passed the
first income tax. The revenues were
intended for the war effort against the
South. The tax was never enacted.
• 1983 - U.S. House of Representatives
approved a law that designated the third
Monday of January would be a federal
holiday in honor of Dr. Martin Luther
King, Jr. The law was signed by President
Reagan on November 2.
• 1990 - Iraq invaded the oil-rich country of
Kuwait. Iraq claimed that Kuwait had
driven down oil prices by exceeding
production quotas set by OPEC.
FUTURE FOCUS —
• SUNDAY, AUGUST 3RD —
COMBINED WORSHIP IN CASEY U.M.C.
AT 10:30 A.M.
“LIBERTY BELLES” PROVIDE WORSHIP
Thank you for your hard work this week.
I hope nobody became overheated. That
can be a problem in this weather.
Everything that happens is because you
stepped up. Just stay cool!
God Bless and Keep You,