ANNOUNCEMENTS

Church Office Hours for July - The church office will be closed all Mondays and Tuesdays. | Commencing in September, we will be returning to in-person worship! | 
DONATIONS - To make a donation to support Heart Lake United Church click here | May & June 2022 - The church office will be closed all Mondays.
 

Welcome to Heart Lake United Church

At Heart Lake United Church you will find people with diverse backgrounds and experiences all coming together to share our faith and build a caring, inclusive community. Everyone belongs!

Our Mission: To live an active faith connecting God, people and community.

These are not easy times. As we begin to ‘open up’ we may be feeling relieved or maybe even more uncertain and vulnerable. The early followers of Jesus were not living in easy times either. They faced disease, economic uncertainty, great income disparity and injustice maintained by force.

Jesus knew that standing up for justice and protecting the rights and the lives of the vulnerable during such a time is not easy. Yet Jesus encouraged his followers to do just that.  He told his first disciples “I am sending you out like sheep in the midst of wolves.” He advised them to be “wise as serpents and gentle as doves.” (Matthew 10:16)

With so much information coming at us and so many expert opinions being shared, we all need to use our own wisdom to sort through it all. We need to seek reliable sources and trust our own common sense. We need to put the care of others before our own comfort. We need to speak out for justice, but do it gently, firmly but gently, so that when we come through this time we will have built a more just and peaceful society for everyone. 

Jesus has more advice for being faithful witnesses to the gospel during challenging times. Join our online worship. 

  Heart Lake United Church is a model of diversity and living in harmony.   
  • all ages,
  • all genders,
  • all races,
  • all religious experiences

Everyone is important to Christ so everyone is important to us.

We all belong.

Heart Lake United Church reaches out through various programs and there is something for everyone.

On Sunday mornings  at 10:30 we worship with inspiring singing led by our music team, sermons that make the Bible relevant to today, and through sincere prayer.

We have a BLAST program for younger kids and SURGE program for youth. Our infants and toddlers are cared for by a trained ECE worker.

 

HONESTY

Written by Super User on . Posted in Sunday Sermons

Luke 13:31-35. March 13th

Prayer: Come Holy Spirit and teach us to love unconditionally. Forgive us when we fall short of loving our neighbours. Amen

34 Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!

These are words of lament from Jesus the prophet, teacher, Messiah, friend and Saviour of the world. It is a metaphor that speaks to the death of Jesus in Jerusalem. Jesus expressed his sadness for the people and all that the city of Jerusalem represents. The subject of death is not an easy conversation for anyone. Yet, Jesus had this complex and incredible difficult conversation with his followers.

What does it mean to journey with Jesus to the cross knowing death is a reality we face too? Have you ever pondered what happens after death? These forty days will help us to remember all of the emotions of Jesus and what it means to be human. We know of fear, sadness, pain, death and anxiety. But we also have the privilege of knowing the ending of this story.

What would you imagine these strange, complex and cryptic messages of life and death to mean? How long do we have to keep following Jesus as Jesus heals, communes, and teaches those living on the margins of our society? The symbolism of the cross is the death and resurrection of Jesus for the saving of the world.

The cross is the symbol of saving grace and promise of eternal life for the Christian community. The human race cannot escape the pains of life such as death, violence, illness, addiction, alcohol abuse, mental illness and all forms of our daily realities. These remind us of our own mortality. Jesus is the source of strength that helps to keep us from self-destructive behaviours.

What are some of our wilderness challenges that put us into exile? Maybe some people are in exile as the result of chemical and food abuse. It may have come as a result of an inability to control emotions or an inability to control unethical behaviour at workplaces or with social relationships. During Lent people give up the use of alcohol and other habits hoping to reduce self-destructive behaviours.

I do not think anyone seeks to become an addict. Those who become chemically dependent are seeking things that we all seek, like love, compassion, forgiveness, affirmation, acceptance and more. Perhaps they are seeking in some unacceptable places and means. Experts repeatedly explain drug abuse by pointing to adolescents' lack of self-esteem, mental illness or feeling of powerlessness.

People abuse alcohol because they think it fixes whatever is wrong - if only in the moment and it works quickly. The effect of this quick fix is especially powerful on people with an addiction trait. Perhaps, it could help explain why two people consuming exactly the same amount of alcohol have such different reactions. One becomes relaxed; the other goes out of control.

When our life is unmanageable, drugs and alcohol are two of the great illusion builders that trap us into thinking that for a time we are in control. While honesty tells us that all the time the abuse of chemical substance is making us more out of control.

What is the answer to the pain? People seek more of the same fix? Life becomes more and more unpredictable. Eventually the person reaches a point of despair in which he or she experiences powerlessness in a way that even the abuse substance cannot fix. This is the moment when people who are suffering with such illness seek help. Others simply surrender to their dependency.

God understands us when we reach the point in our life of feeling powerless to do anything about our ill condition. God understands, and hopefully the saints of the church. However, it is important for us to understand that faith is the spiritual foundation on which recovery is built. For example, Alcohol in excess leads to other problems. Perhaps you know a friend who has an illness with the abuse of alcohol, to bet too much at a game of poker, and to make other unethical choices.  

St. Augustine said, "I do not understand how this very thing for which I lust becomes more delightful when it is forbidden."

St. Paul says: "I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do." (Romans 7:19.) This is the civil war that rages with us and our helplessness in attempting to live an exemplary life in God. Yet, it is the person who has experienced God's free grace of love, forgiveness and recovery is acutely aware of honesty with God and self. A person's return to spiritual and emotional health is often not welcome, even feared. Everyone is in need of God’s grace for we have all sinned and fallen short before God.

The cry, "Who will deliver me from this body of death?" is part of the human condition. The good news is that reaching the bottom, we are stripped of our illusions about ourselves and our strength. Jesus journey to the cross is an invitation for us to surrender to the Holy Spirit. The Spirit is constantly making and re-shaping us to become the person God created us to be.

Wine in Israel was a sign of the blessing of God and was to be used as a way of exemplifying the meaning of this blessing. Wine must assist one in living life and to use it as an escape from the living of life is to make it an enemy/demon.

Honesty is to know you are ready to receive help through the grace of God. Honesty shapes our discipleship to be faithful witnesses to God’s unconditional love for everyone through Jesus Christ.  Amen.

Contacts

Heart Lake United Church
85 Sandalwood Pkwy East
Brampton ON L6Z 4S3
Tel: 905 846 7314
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Website: www.hluc.ca

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