THE FRIENDLY WHITE CHURCH ON THE HILL



CHURCH MISSION STATEMENT

We are called to bring people into a personal relationship with God through his son, Jesus Christ.
We accomplish this by bringing others into the community of the church through genuine friendship and fellowship. In this loving fellowship we grow in faith through the Word, community, prayer and worship.




THUNDER BAY ELK VIEWING SLEIGH

RIDE!












SOUPS ON!

A soup cook-off was held at Paul and Nancy's home.
There was lots of good food and all had a great time.

Paul and Steve at solving the worlds problems
Bob  is trying to explain why he has Buckeye slipees on while standing under the Michigan Flag!
Debbie and Caren playing pool????


BATHROOM RENOVATIONS


Recently Topinabee Church has undergone renovations to make the bathrooms more handicap accessible.

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SERMONS
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MUSIC

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THIS WEEKS DEVOTIONS
by Pastor Mike

A Name on the Breeze
"For the sake of my servant Jacob, and Israel my chosen, I call you by your name.” Isaiah 45.4 NRSV
March 16, 2017
I heard my name called
By a voice that was familiar
Softly riding that morning breeze
Carried over the lake
Or was it from the hills?
No commands followed
Or instructions
No criticisms
Or directions to obey.
Just my name on the morning’s breeze,
Suspended in the air
Spoken by a Voice
I swear I know
And I smiled
It was good to be remembered.
Prayer:  Lord, good to know wherever we are, You have not lost track of us.

Pious Excuses

March 15th, 2017
 “Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. And just then there appeared a woman with a spirit that had crippled her for eighteen years…When he laid his hands on her, immediately she stood up straight and began praising God. But the leader of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had cured on the Sabbath…” Luke 13.10-14 NRSV
There is a pious reason given for not doing good. We no longer seem concerned about doing right on Sunday, our Sabbath, but note there are still pious excuses given for not doing good.
“If I help them at this point, they might become too dependent on me.”  Let’s deal with that if it happens and help.
“I would love to help the church in this area, but I just don’t feel led.”  The Bible teaches that when we know to do good and then don’t, we’ve sinned. Let’s forget the feeling and do the good thing!
“They will only waste what I give them.”  Often we have entertained angels unaware.
“There is so little I can do.” Then let’s do the little we can and leave the rest to God and His plans.
 Prayer:  I can fool others and even a part of myself, but never You. 
Driving the Long Way
 “After this he appeared in another form to two of them, as they were walking into the country.” Mark 16.12 NRSV
 March 9, 2017
 The Interstate is a modern marvel and I’m grateful for it.  Faster than the roads I grew up driving, it allows me to get where I’m going in record time. And I miss the congestion of the cities and all the stop signs and lights.
And I also miss the interesting architecture and the visible history and personality of the towns. I miss the local eateries and settle for the same restaurants one exit after another.
Sometimes faster isn’t better.
Years ago I read the book “Blue Highways” by Least Heat Moon.  The premise of the book is that the secondary roads are colored blue in maps (remember those?). It was by taking those blue highways that he met much of America.  He observed things differently on that trip. He sampled regional cooking, discovered where people lived, worked and heard their stories.
Taking the long way, whatever our journey is, will let us see what we’ve missed in our quest to save time.  And perhaps remember that sometimes, the journey is the reason we travel, not the destination.
Prayer:  Lord, some days I move and work so fast, I miss the day itself.
The Value of the Necklace
 “Or what woman having ten silver coins, if she loses one of them, does not light a lamp, sweep the house, and search carefully until she finds it? When she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost.’”  Luke 15.8,9 NRSV
 March 7, 2017
 This scripture might seem a straightforward story of a woman looking for lost money.  But in the parables of Jesus, we know to look further.  It was the custom for a bride to wear part of her dowry as a necklace made up of ten silver coins.  So this was not a quest for mere money.  This was a search for her dowry, that is, for her economic security and independence.  But even more than that, she was seeking the symbol of her marriage and her love.
This is what Jesus is teaching us.  Not merely that we are valuable, like a lost coin, but that His search is motivated by love.  Because it is for love, this search will not end until that which was lost is found.  And then look out, because that’s when the party begins!
 Prayer:  Lord, thanks for searching for us until You find us.

Life in the Real Church

Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3.12

March 7, 2017

            There was a couple many years ago who had just started attending the church I was pastoring. They were excited about having found what they called “the church they had been looking for.”
Some time later, I discovered they had attended seven different churches in the previous ten years. Several months after that revelation, they were gone.
       How could they leave so shortly after finding the church they had been looking for? They were members of the tribe of wandering people who have a vision of church that is unrealistic. And when they discover the church is made up of real people, their traveling pathology kicks in.
       These folks have a fantasy about what church should be that does not include those of us who are imperfect, who have sharp edges and our own ideas of what church should be.
       Dreams and ideals are important and have the power to propel us forward in our quest to be the church Jesus calls us to be. But there must be room in our dreams and visions of the church for the imperfect, the struggling and yes, even the annoying.

Prayer: Lord, You put here us for many reasons, but loving each other is at the top of the list.

Live in the Real Church Part 2
And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church.” Ephesians 1.22 NRSV
March 8, 2017
It was a church long ago and far away. During my time there, I received a series of requests from the good members on how to improve the church service. Some of the mild and polite ones are listed below:
Shorten the sermons because we’ve heard it all before.
Expand the number of fellowship meals and class parties because that’s what church is really about.
Take the children out of the service because they distract from the holiness of the service.
Bring the children back into the service so they can learn how to behave in church.
More Bach on the organ.
Less Bach and more contemporary music.
Why do we sing so much?
We need to sing all the verses of all the hymns.
And, of course, turn the thermostat up, turn it down, turn it up, turn it down!
I wonder, what kind of church would it be if we all got our way?
Prayer:  Lord, lest we forget, it is Your church.

Brave Enough To Let Go.

Do not remember the former things,
   or consider the things of old.
I am about to do a new thing;
   now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?”
 Isaiah 43.18, 19 NRSV

March 1, 2017

       Being afraid is OK. It means we are about to do something scary. And life is full of scary things!
       The creature that lived under my bed was one. It had the ability to become invisible when I poked my head out from under my magic blanket, making it a sneaky adversary until I was six.
       When I was older, asking a girl out on a date left my mouth dry and my heart pounding. What if she said yes?!
       But the scary things I’ve done often possessed the possibility of becoming a happy time in my life.
One of those scary things was letting go of what I could not change. This freed me from an all-too-common affliction some of us have. We think making every thing and everyone better is somehow up to us. And that we have the mystical power to alter reality and make what hasn’t changed for years suddenly change where time and others have failed. How has that worked for you? Me either.

Prayer:  Lord, show us how to do our best and when we find ourselves facing a brick wall, how not to pound our head against it, but step around it and go on with our lives.