The sights and smells of the season:  burning leaves, damp woods, pumpkins in the field, cornfields ready for picking, the color of the leaves. It’s one of my favorite times of the year.

It’s also a time for homecomings, celebrations, and so much more.  I hope that you take part in each of them as we celebrate homecoming and also our 175th anniversary as a congregation in Selma.

It was March 20, 1983, John Sculley, President of Pepsi Cola and one of America’s fastest rising corporate stars, stepped off the elevator and into the penthouse suite of the San Remo apartment building in New York. He was there to give Steve Jobs, founder of Apple Computer, an answer to his offer. 


For months, Jobs and his staff, badly in need of a brilliant leader to manage their rapid growth, had been trying to lure Sculley away from Pepsi.


Sculley had discouraged their efforts. He had no interest in leaving Pepsi and he knew almost nothing about computers. Besides, he was slotted for the top spot at Pepsi and his salary, stock options and perks were beyond anything Jobs could hope to match. Still, Jobs persisted. 


Their conversation unfolded like this, according to Sculley:

“We were on the balcony’s west side, facing the Hudson

River and he finally asked me directly: `Are you going to come to Apple?”


” `Steve, I really love what you’re doing. I’m excited by it. How could anyone not be captivated? But it doesn’t make sense. I’d love to be an advisor to you, to help you in any way. Anytime you’re in New York, I’d love to spend time with you. But I don’t think I can come to Apple.”


Steve’s head dropped as he stared at the pavement. After a weighty, uncomfortable pause, he issued a challenge that would haunt me for days: `Do you want to spend the rest of your life selling sugar water or do you want a chance to change the world?”


A Welshman named Sucant was abducted by pirates in 403 A.D. The sixteen-year-old Christian lad was taken to Ireland and enslaved for five years by the cruelest of Irish chieftains. Eventually Sucant escaped to join a monastery in Southern France. 


There he changed his name to Patrick, and intended to live out his years in the orderly monastic life of a monk.


In 432 A.D., at the age of 45, the Holy Spirit called Patrick to return to Ireland and carry the gospel to his former tormentors. 


During the next 31 years he baptized more than 120,000 people into Christ!


Today the Irish say of Patrick, “He found Ireland all heathen. He left it all Christian.”


Just before Jesus left this world, He said to the disciples ”Go.”


In the upcoming weeks after we finish the book of James we’ll be looking at the “missional church.”  


May I encourage you to take what I call a “John 3:16 walk” this week. 


Take an hour and go for a walk being careful to notice every person you see. Pray for them.  If the moment allows itself, share Jesus with them.  Invite them to church.  


John Wesley once said, “The world is my parish!”  Where can we be the “salt and light?”  Let’s take the church outside the walls.  

Matthew’s Gospel ends with the Great Commission – “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And remember I am with you always, to the end of the world.” 

Rather than an ending – this conclusion to Matthew’s gospel is a new beginning.   

Our call:  To make disciples for the transformation of the world.

See you in church