Sermons by Rev. Melanie Ruta

112 of 38 items

Walking in the Light

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The Israelites lived in a world of injustice and oppression and violence and suffering. They looked forward to the day when God’s justice and peace would shine like light in the darkness. They had hope for that day when good news for the poor would be proclaimed, when prisoners would be released, the blind given […]

Giving Thanks

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This Sunday is Christ the King Sunday. It is the last Sunday of the church year–a time for looking back and reflecting on the past year and a time for looking forward with hope for the future. On Christ the King Sunday we celebrate that we are subjects of Christ alone. As Christians we aren’t called to fit Jesus […]

Building Community

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Living in community requires that everyone be both enabled and encouraged to work. We let others down when we refuse to contribute to the community by not working. But leaving someone out of the work life of the community can be just as damaging. The person who has something to contribute is denied and others […]

Standing Firm

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The harbingers of doom are everywhere. We need only turn on the TV or scroll through our social media news feed to be reminded by the political pundits–our modern day self-proclaimed prophets–that the end is near. Thankfully, there is an antidote to the hysteria. We don’t have to fall prey to the anxiety that turns […]

Running the Race Set Before Us

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Riverside has been operating on a “faith” budget. At the congregational meeting in January we talked about how the cost to fund Riverside‘s ministries and programs, pay the staff, and keep the buildings and grounds open and safe was projected to cost more than estimated weekly giving. The church moved forward on “faith” trusting that God would […]

Seeking a Better Country

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Welcome home all who evacuated for the storm. Welcome home to the year round residents who leave for the summer. Welcome home to the first of the seasonal residents who are arriving for the winter. The Riverside family of faith celebrates coming home this week. This Sunday we offer up our thanks to those members […]

Trusting in the Promises of God

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RIVERSIDE CELEBRATES 60 YEARS OF MINISTRY 10 a.m. Worship Riverside has grown since its beginning in 1956. Starting with only a mission and a vision for fulfilling that mission, Riverside has grown into a multi-building site with space for worship, fellowship and teaching the next generation. Membership has grown from 65 charter members in 1956 […]

The Rich Life

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It’s not the money that we strive after which is evil. It’s the love of that money. When we are caught up in the inordinate desire for wealth–when we are craving it, clutching for it, or clinging to it–then we risk losing our grip on our faith. Eternal life is not just something to which […]

Prayer Primer

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Just do it! Prayer is central to our lives as disciples. We are called to pray often, pray with gratitude, and pray for everyone–even, maybe especially if, we can’t think of anything for which to be grateful when it comes to some people. Do it anyway! Praying for enemies and emperors in the early church […]

Hope for the Weary Witness

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A pastor was appointed to serve a struggling church for a season. The church planter who appointed the pastor to serve the struggling church knew his young colleague was weary. The church planter wrote to the pastor to encourage him to stay and fight the good fight. “Christ came into the world to save sinners,” the church […]

Improvised Faith

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It’s Jazz Sunday at Riverside on September 4. The First Sundays 2016 Summer Worship & Music Series wraps up this week with one worship service at 10 a.m. followed by a free congregational meal at 11:30 a.m. All are welcome. Jazz music features improvisation.  Jazz musicians change things up as they go along.  As Christians we understand that.  The need to […]

The Company You Keep

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Jesus said, “When you give a luncheon or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, in case they may invite you in return, and you would be repaid.” (Luke 14:12) Jesus might also have included children’s birthday parties in the list of social events where we keep score. Parents […]