The Yost Post: March 31, 2020

Pastor's Blog

A Few Lessons “The light shines in darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.” John 1:5 Church family, I shared the following article online through Facebook. It has apparently been helpful far beyond anything I could have imagined. I am sharing it here for this e-newsletter particularly for those of you who did not have access to it online. God bless you all. A few lessons from my life as a submariner to help manage the coming days. I have lived 423 days underneath the ocean. The longest time I have gone without seeing the sun even once was 53 days. That will become important later on as I write this. While several of my shipmates will have longer service than that to their account, I earned my dolphins and thereby a lifetime right to claim my story. I served in the U.S. Navy for six years, four of … Read More

The Yost Post: March 12, 2020

Pastor's Blog

Stay Focused There are many things which regularly compete for our attention. Fun or novel experiences may be a welcome break from our routines. Some distractions break our concentration and lead to frustration. Still other distractions, day in and day out, lead to lives which do not go where we intended to go. Today I wanted to write about keeping our focus on the right stuff in life. Keeping our focus upon God’s call in the midst of everything else competing for our attention. I believe staying focused is uniquely challenging when much is outside of our control and chaotic. As I write this, financial markets are all over the place and there is uncertainly of COVID-19 threats. People are asking questions about travel and jobs, schools closures and quarantines. Wow, if that is all which held our focus and attention, we’d be frazzled to no end. I challenge us … Read More

Wesley UMC Response to COVID-19

Pastor's Blog

Wesley Family, As you have surely heard by now of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus). I wanted to be intentional to share some information and how Wesley will be responding. Most people under 60 years old and those without an underlying health condition should be fine, even if you get this virus. We are asking for your help to protect our vulnerable people from infection and to help delay the onset of the virus in our community. With prevention in mind, the staff of Wesley and I are implementing the following changes to our worship services. These changes are effective immediately: LIMIT PHYSICAL CONTACT: A verbal greeting or head nod will be our norm for the next month or so. Refrain from shaking hands, fist bumps, and hugs. WESLEY GREETERS: Doors will be held open to limit the number of people handling entry doors. NO HAND SHAKING: We will not shake or … Read More

The Yost Post: February 26, 2020

Pastor's Blog

Lent This year’s Lenten season is already here and I have to tell you, I’ve been so busy I have not even thought about what I am “giving up” this year. Perhaps you too have not spent much time deciding what to forgo in Lent. Maybe we can figure this out together? First, have you thought about why we give something up from now until Easter? Well, let’s start there. It is quite easy to get into routines in life, especially when our daily needs are close at hand. Seasons of fasting help us break the routines. The practice of fasting, or skipping a meal(s) for a set time is a powerful discipline which can help you reconnect with God. A common practice is to stop and seek God’s hand of strength each time hunger grasps you or a craving emerges. Through this practice one may discover how to seek … Read More

The Yost Post: February 13, 2020

Pastor's Blog

The past two weeks haven’t exactly gone according to my plans. It has been over 20 years since I have experienced something in my life which rendered me physically unable to go about my daily life. I woke up Monday two weeks ago and knew something was not right in my body. Luckily I have been married just long enough to know, when my spouse says, “go get that checked out, now,” I actually know to listen to her. I ended up having two abdominal hernias repaired. Before I say anything else, I am very aware my outpatient surgery is a walk in the park compared to what many of us go through. My experience has re-acquainted me with what it is like to have to depend on others. I thought I would share a few lessons from my experience. First, GRATITUDE. I am grateful for medical professionals who dance … Read More

The Yost Post: January 23, 2020

Pastor's Blog

Pete Haayen has served in a rare way the last five years at Wesley UMC. The normal ask and responsibility for serving as a lay person leader in a United Methodist Church is three years or less. Pete has served five years as the Administrative Board Chairperson. The Chair not only guides the work of the Board, he/she is also a member of all the other leadership committees of the church. Pete took this role seriously and has been a key contributor on all the areas of leadership in the church. At the Board level, he worked with my predecessor to update the Board’s structure and church governance, including streamlining the Board size, ensuring representatives from the all ministry and legal committees were on the Board, and the introduction of email voting on routine matters. Pete helped the Finance Team, along with Chair Vicki Ward, to transition from outdated software … Read More

The Yost Post: January 9, 2020

Pastor's Blog

I have heard significantly less about New Year’s resolutions this year than any year I can remember. It could be I am just not listening as much. My hunch is we are not talking about resolutions because we are not considering making changes in our lives this year. As the holidays were approaching, I heard countless people call for a cease in conflict on social media and around family tables. People have felt pressure on all fronts with politics leading the way as an area we just need a break from for a few days. Many outside and yet influential parts of our society seem outside our control. Stress does that to us as individuals and as a society. Stress robs us of the precious moments we need to imagine a different reality than the one we are struggling to survive in. It would make sense with so many people … Read More

The Yost Post: December 19, 2019

Pastor's Blog

“And the Word became flesh and lived among us…” John 1:14a This is the reason for the season. Scores of books have been written concerning this one line. I have preached on it many times. The foundation of “why Jesus matters?” is wrapped up in this one concept. The Logos — the rationality of God, the mind of God, the cognition of God — this is what became flesh and dwelt among us. In the universal heart of humanity we have asked if there is a God and if so, what is that God like? The Christmas story proclaims loudly, “If you want to see the fullness of God, in the most complete way any human could possibly understand, you need to know Jesus Christ.” If you want to know what God thinks about life, see Jesus. How should we treat others? See Jesus. How should our leaders conduct themselves? … Read More

The Yost Post: December 4, 2019

Pastor's Blog

I have heard from many of you it has been difficult to get your minds wrapped around how quickly Advent arrived and the approach of Christmas this year. I can say at the Yosterosa we are experiencing a similar phenomenon. I don’t know if it is the slapshot/rapid move from Thanksgiving to Advent or if life is just jamming along so fast we can hardly keep up. I suppose it is a little bit of both. I thought we could take an intentional few moments in this newsletter article to get our hearts, minds, and souls jumpstarted into the season of preparation for the arrival of the Christ child. I invite you to read these following questions with a few moments pause to consider each question. Perhaps read and prayerfully consider each question for 10-20 seconds. Do you have memories of Christmas’ past which really stick out in your memory? … Read More

The Yost Post: November 20, 2019

Pastor's Blog

“Thanksgiving in All Circumstances” “Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 Do you have a passage of scripture you go to regularly? The kind which you have read maybe a hundred times or more which still speaks to you? This passage is one which does that for me. There are times it speaks words of comfort when worry seems like an inescapable shadow. It harkens to the intention of God to bring continual peace into the lives of God’s children. Paul’s words also drives me to the deep place of prayer in everything. The challenging portion of the verse comes to me when we are called to have thanksgiving be a part of every … Read More