Unusual Kindness



Acts 28:1-16    August 26, 2018

It’s like a scene straight out of the tv show Lost. Imagine, you live on this island. You don’t get visitors. You’re going about your daily routine along with all the other residents of the island when suddenly, there’s a ship really pretty close and it has run aground and now there are 276 bobbing heads, swimming and floating on pieces of the ship toward the island. How on earth did we get here in our story!? [Read more…]

“These People…”



Sunday, August 19, 2018        Acts 17:1-15    “These People…”

Leilani was born with a bad heart. Her heart has stopped and she’s died 5 or 6 times. Once, in jr. high, there was substitute gym teacher who egged her on to run with the class, not knowing her medical status, and Leilani’s heart stopped. So she’s in her 20s when her cardiologist tells her that she needs to be on the transplant list. Her heart isn’t going to last much longer. She gets the call 4 months later. “It’s a match,” they tell her. [Read more…]

Acts 16:1-15


Pastor Donna Olsen

August 12, 2018

Acts 16:1-15

In the name of the Father, and of the + Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen Jesus said, “Come.” His disciples followed him – to Caesarea Philippi in northern Israel: a pagan worship site if there ever was one. At that place, Jesus asked his disciples, “Who do people say that I am?”  One of them answered, “Elijah.”  That’s an amazing answer. To Christians, Elijah is a Hebrew Scriptures prophet who was faithful to God. And that’s true. But to a Jew, Elijah is more than that. [Read more…]

Acts 15:1-21


Pastor Donna Olsen

August 5, 2018

Acts 15:1-21

This passage from Acts is about a church argument. The early church was arguing. It just goes to show that the church has been disagreeing since its beginning. That’s not to say that disagreeing is always bad. As church people we do argue. Over what, do you think? Parsonages. Finances. Pastors. Sexuality. Worship style. Communion reception. And on and on. Church arguments are not always negative things. It depends on what the disagreement is about. [Read more…]

Mark 6

Sermon Mark 6

Jess Olson

River of Hope

Good morning. I am grateful to have the chance to worship with you again today… I’ve only had the chance to worship with River of Hope once before…at Pastor Laura’s wedding…what a service of celebration that was. This community is gifted at celebration and hospitality…and joy. These are gifts that sustain us all through all times and all places – hospitality, celebration and joy – gifts that we give and receive in community. Gifts that River of Hope has in abundance… these are gifts we can call upon when times don’t feel so easy and breezy.

Our gospel today speaks of such a time for Jesus and his disciples. The story begins with the disciples giving report to Jesus of all they had done and taught and he says, “Come away to a deserted place all by yourselves and rest a while.”  In classic Mark fashion, we are not given many adjectives – it’s simple reporting language. The disciples did this and Jesus responded.

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John the Baptist

So way back in April, Pastor Laura asked me to give the sermon today. When we agreed that I would TELL A STORY (not preach), I felt a lot more comfortable. I put it on my calendar and agreed to meet a couple of weeks ago for a little coaching.She came over and we sat in our porch as we usually do and went over the details. That’s when she told me what the scripture reading was for today, and we read it through.  So, that’s a gruesome tale.  I mean, at first glance it’s like one horrifying weird thing after another.  And what in the world kind of story could I relate to THAT? [Read more…]

Made Vulnerable in Christ

Mark 5:21-43

21 When Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a great crowd gathered around him; and he was by the sea. 22 Then one of the leaders of the synagogue named Jairus came and, when he saw him, fell at his feet 23 and begged him repeatedly, “My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay your hands on her, so that she may be made well, and live.” 24 So he went with him. And a large crowd followed him and pressed in on him. 25 Now there was a woman who had been suffering from hemorrhages for twelve years. 26 She had endured much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had; and she was no better, but rather grew worse. 27 She had heard about Jesus, and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28 for she said, “If I but touch his clothes, I will be made well.” 29 Immediately her hemorrhage stopped; and she felt in her body that she was healed of her disease. 30 Immediately aware that power had gone forth from him, Jesus turned about in the crowd and said, “Who touched my clothes?” 31 And his disciples said to him, “You see the crowd pressing in on you; how can you say, “Who touched me?’ ” 32 He looked all around to see who had done it. 33 But the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came in fear and trembling, fell down before him, and told him the whole truth. 34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace, and be healed of your disease.” 35 While he was still speaking, some people came from the leader’s house to say, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the teacher any further?” 36 But overhearing what they said, Jesus said to the leader of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.” 37 He allowed no one to follow him except Peter, James, and John, the brother of James. 38 When they came to the house of the leader of the synagogue, he saw a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly. 39 When he had entered, he said to them, “Why do you make a commotion and weep? The child is not dead but sleeping.” 40 And they laughed at him. Then he put them all outside, and took the child’s father and mother and those who were with him, and went in where the child was. 41 He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha cum,” which means, “Little girl, get up!” 42 And immediately the girl got up and began to walk about (she was twelve years of age). At this they were overcome with amazement. 43 He strictly ordered them that no one should know this, and told them to give her something to eat.  [Read more…]

Get in the Boat!

Mark 4:35-41

35 On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.” 36 And leaving the crowd behind, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. Other boats were with him. 37 A great windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so that the boat was already being swamped. 38 But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke him up and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” 39 He woke up and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” Then the wind ceased, and there was a dead calm. 40 He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Have you still no faith?” 41 And they were filled with great awe and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?”

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The Kingdom of God is Everywhere

Mark 4:26-34

26 He also said, “The kingdom of God is as if someone would scatter seed on the ground, 27 and would sleep and rise night and day, and the seed would sprout and grow, he does not know how. 28 The earth produces of itself, first the stalk, then the head, then the full grain in the head. 29 But when the grain is ripe, at once he goes in with his sickle, because the harvest has come.” 30 He also said, “With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable will we use for it? 31 It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; 32 yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.” 33 With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it; 34 he did not speak to them except in parables, but he explained everything in private to his disciples.

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Daily Bible Readings for the week of March 25, 2018

  • Sunday: John 19:16b-22, The Crucified Messiah
  • Monday: John 17:1-19, Jesus Prays for His Disciples
  • Tuesday: John 17:20-26, Jesus Prays for His Disciples
  • Wednesday: John 15:18-1-11, The Betrayal and Arrest of Jesus
  • Thursday: John 19:23-30, Jesus’ Last Words
  • Friday: John 19:31-37 Jesus the Passover Lamb
  • Saturday: John 19: 38-42, Passover Lamb