Post Archives

Pastor Stuart
November 30, 2014

A Word from the Pastor

Like I mentioned in my last pastor’s column, I’ve been learning many fascinating things about Hickory Rock’s history in my research for our 100th anniversary next year. The most incredible thing I’ve learned so far is that I actually have a relative buried in the churchyard. Not only that, but some of my relatives have […]

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November 4, 2014

The times are a-changing, but it’s not so bad

The times are a-changing, but it's not so bad

One of the more popular laments these days is that the country/culture/society/people just aren’t as good as they used to be. There’s usually a line like, “People these days just don’t ________ like they used to.” One example among Christians is, “People don’t go to church like they used to.” Whether you think the way society has changed is good or bad, what isn’t debatable is that church attendance in America has indeed been declining drastically since the ’90s. Should that bother us? And if so, how?

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October 13, 2014

God’s will: you’re doing it wrong? (Because it’s easier than you think.)

If you’re like me, you spend time and maybe even worry trying to figure out what God’s will is. What is God’s will for my life, my family, my church, etc.? Anybody who wants to make their life better–whether in general or in the midst of bad consequences–has probably wrestled with that question. Just what is God’s will?? Well, we shouldn’t really have to ask what it is, because it’s easy to find out. We should just ask how to do it better.

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October 8, 2014

A Word from the Pastor

In our Wednesday Bible Study series “What’s in the Old Testament,” one recent session was about the judges and kings of ancient Israel. We used Samson and David as examples to show that even when a leader was respected and great, he or she could still mess up in a big way that had consequences […]

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October 7, 2014

“You ain’t from around here”: What the Bible says about immigrants

"You ain't from around here": What the Bible says about immigrants

What does the Bible say about immigrants? A lot, actually. So it begs the question: Since there are people who have settled in our community/country, do we treat them like the Bible says to treat them? And if so, what is that like?

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August 25, 2014

A church of ordinary people 

In the last chapter of Romans, the Apostle Paul says hello to a lot of people in the Roman church by name (Romans 16:3-16). And if you’re like me, then you don’t recognize any of those names and don’t even know how to pronounce them. But that’s okay. Nobody really knows who they are, because they were just good, normal, ordinary people. Well we are too, so what can learn about doing church from these fine folks in Rome? How does ordinary turn into great?

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August 1, 2014

A Word from the Pastor

I’m especially excited about two things mentioned in the newsletter from this month. First is the Beginning Faith class, which will start this August. Second is the church’s 100th anniversary, which we’ll celebrate next August. I think the two are wonderfully connected. The Beginning Faith class is for new Christians and older kids who are interested […]

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July 17, 2014

How to Succeed in Business by Going to Church

A majority of workers in the US are burned out. Only 36% of employees feel like their work is meaningful, while only 25% “connect” to their company’s mission. Businesses can improve their stats by meeting four “core needs” of their employees: physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. Spiritual? Yes! An employee’s spirituality is a significant factor in increasing both their health and commitment to their job. And that’s where churches can help people find more meaning in life and satisfaction in their jobs.

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June 17, 2014

You’re way more important than the preacher

Sermons are nice but not near as important as the things people share with each other during regular times of life, in the middle of the day, sitting at work, or visiting at home. Some of those listeners will never walk into a church, so the words they hear about how God loves them, coming from their friends and neighbors, are the most important words that they will hear. That means you’ve got a big job to do!

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May 30, 2014

“Don’t Make Me Come Over There”: 4 Tips for Handling Conflict

“Conflict raises important issues to the surface. It is how you manage conflict or don’t manage it that can make it a problem.” That tells us that conflict handled with maturity can lead to blessings, but it’s the immature kind of conflict that we can’t stand

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