Soulful Hospitality

by Pastor Tim White

God’s Life Make Space for Others

The Bible has a lot to say about the gift of hospitality. In the Middle East, ever since time began, hospitality is no joke. I remember when I was living in Jerusalem and my Archeology professor challenged us to try and make friends with some Bedouins. A friend of mine, Dave Hamlin and I, spotted some out in the desert and we made the long hike to meet them. It was a little bit spooky because they recognized no boundaries and their lifestyle had not changed since the time of Abraham. We did not speak very much of their language, but they invited us to have dinner with them. When we told our Professor (who was a famous Israeli General) he replied, “all of the cultures of the Middle East hold hospitality as one of their highest ideals. It’s a little like Alaska where you can go to jail for not showing hospitality to someone in need. Hospitality can be a matter of life and death in the desert.”

Dr. Marty Folsom is preaching this week on Soulful Hospitality. Jackie and I had the honor of being Marty and Cindy’s guests for a dinner and an evening of fellowship. They both worked together to show us “five-star hospitality”. God worked through their gift of being relaxed and encouraging as well as in the excellence of the whole evening.

The church reaches new people when we extend hospitality. Our families become strong when we learn hospitality. And we become more unified and loving when we practice hospitality. Be praying that I will be able to return and preach on Labor Day Weekend, but until then, you are in great hands with Dr. Marty Folsom this weekend.

Your friend for the rest of my life,

Pastor Tim White

P.S. Join us for worship this Saturday at 5:30 pm or Sunday at 10:30 am. Out of town or unable to join us in person, catch us on Facebook Live at 10:30 am Sunday (or view it later on the Washington Cathedral Facebook Page).

When God Calls - Answer the Phone

by Pastor Tim White

Never in all of history have so many of us failed to answer our phones as much as we do today.

Right? We are bombarded by phone calls from people that tell us that we are in trouble with the IRS and you must mail them gift cards to pay to the debt. Surveys, free vacations, amazing investment opportunities (which would cause us to go broke if we fell for their scams). Even spam calls from those selling a product to help us with all the spams. Our home phone (which we have had for 35 years) has not been answered for a couple of years now. Every time it rings it shows up on our TV, but we don’t even have a phone to answer it anymore. We have tried to cancel it, but our Cable Company told us it would cost more to cancel it than to keep it. When I published my Doctoral Dissertation, it contained my Vitae which included my phone number, so I guess I deserve a few international calls every day. The less efficient television, print and radio advertising have become, causes companies to invest in Robo calls.

What if God called us and we did not answer? One of my favorite people in the world - Ron Wilbur, will be preaching this weekend on that very subject. For those who don’t know, Ron, and his wife, Faye, are former members of our church. They were dependable pioneers for Washington Cathedral helping other pioneers to found this church. Ron soon became a reluctant but fruitful TLC leader for us. Their advertising agency grew to include several cities until their office in Orange County became the most fruitful office. As their business continued to grow, they attended Saddleback Church where they met Rick Warren. Rick called Ron into ministry in Saddleback’s small group ministry. Ron advanced to become a Director of Small Groups at Saddleback. Following the DNA of Washington Cathedral, he also started a ministry of his own called Motel Church Ministry ministering to some of the people who are very isolated and living in motels. This ministry became a national ministry.

This weekend Ron will be sharing why Jesus urges us to “Ask, Seek, Knock.” In other words when God calls, we do need to answer the phone. If you want to be inspired, then please don’t miss Ron Wilbur preaching at the weekend services at Washington Cathedral: 5:30 pm on Saturday and 10:30 am on Sunday. Don’t forget if you are out of town or for some reason can’t be at one of our services, you can always attend our service via Facebook Live. Check it out on the Washington Cathedral Facebook Page.

Your friend for the rest of my life,

Pastor Tim White

Soulful Praise

by Pastor Michael Fernandez

“The soul is the whole person. It connects all the other dimensions or parts (the heart, mind, body, and social dimension) together.” In his book “Renovation of the Heart,” this is how Dallas Willard defines our soul.

Therefore, “Soulful Praise” means we praise God for what’s happening in our Soul, and in every area of our life. Through every weakness and strength, for what’s happening in our heart, in our mind, in our body and in our social life or lack of.

In 1980 I married my first wife and two years later, on our anniversary, she asked for a divorce. This was before any of us knew anything about children of alcoholics. To her love meant daddy coming home yelling and screaming at both her and her brother and having to retreat to her room to hide. This was the case even though her dad had been sober for years before I even met him. For me, love meant my dad adoring my mom and loving her more and more each day. They were married for 59 ½ years up until my dad passed away. Marriage to me meant for a lifetime, and obviously for her it meant something different.

I found myself, the only sibling out of ten who still attended church, getting the first divorce in our family! I could not believe it! I was the one my nine brothers and sisters would call and ask me to pray for them all the time. This was in August., and it was the week before Christmas before I could bring myself to tell my parents. I was devastated. I was too prideful. The next May our divorce was final. For the first time in my life I forgot how to love myself. I liked to jog around Green Lake in Seattle. If on one of those jogs I saw a young couple walking around the lake holding hands, the pain of my divorce would come back to me. The thought would come to me - would I ever be loved again? I felt like my life was a failure.

Even after becoming a Christian in March of 1985, I would experience those same feelings whenever I saw a loving couple holding hands and laughing and enjoying each other. Then one night I went on a walk during my prayer time. During that time a thought came into my mind. Praise God for your divorce! What, I thought. Praise God for my divorce! Praising God would mean I would be thankful for my divorce. Then It dawned on me, that because of my divorce I went back to church and I found a relationship with Jesus. WOW!

I looked down at the ground and I prayed Thank you Lord for my divorce. Because of it I found you!!! Praise God! As I was looking down, I felt all that pain come back once more, but then as I looked up into the heavens, the cloudy sky parted as if the heavens opened to me and the moon was bright and beautiful. I began to smile and all the pain from my divorce left me and I was filled with joy -- that pain has never come back.

“No, I don’t need your sacrifices of flesh and blood. 14-15 What I want from you is your true thanks; I want your promises fulfilled. I want you to trust me in your times of trouble, so I can rescue you and you can give me glory.” PSALM 50:13-15, TLB

Pastor Michael Fernandez

Note: Join us in worship this weekend. Pastor Michael will be sharing with us about “Soulful Praise” this weekend, Saturday at 5:30 pm and Sunday at 10:30 am. If you are traveling, you can catch the service on Facebook Live at 10:30 am (just go to the Washington Cathedral Facebook Page.)

It is Well

by Pastor Linda

One of my favorite hymns is “It is Well with My Soul”. I know those words speak to many people because it is used so often in many of our contemporary worship songs. One of the songs we sing often repeats those words over and over again more like a prayer than a statement or fact.

Is it really “Well with my Soul?” Have you ever wondered that when singing or hearing those words? I know I have and, unfortunately, more frequently than I like to admit. However, I always have a longing for my soul – the part of me that was formed by the very breath of God – to be much more connected to Him. That is what I’m calling “Soul Health.”

Having had knee surgery three weeks ago for a torn meniscus, I’ve been doing a lot of research on how to better care for my knees, feet and other joints that take a lot of impact and stress. There are a lot of things I can do to help strengthen those important areas so I can continue to do agility work with my dog, play golf and go on long walks. It just means adjusting my lifestyle, so my body is better equipped to do the things I enjoy.

Even more important than our bodies, is the health of our souls. Our souls go on with us into eternity, our bodies are only temporary. So, what do we do to nurture our souls? Pastor Tim has asked me to share what God has placed on my heart about this very important topic this weekend. Hope you can join us on Saturday night at 5:30 pm, Sunday morning at 10:30 am or on Facebook Live as we explore what God’s Word teaches us about “Soul Health.”

Hope you are able enjoy this beautiful Northwest Summer week.

Blessings,

Pastor Linda

Something New

by Pastor Linda Skinner

For I am about to do something new.
See, I have already begun! Do you not see it?
I will make a pathway through the wilderness.
I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.
Isaiah 43:19

There is something about “new” that can be very appealing. On a new summer day in the morning the air is so fresh and clean. I love to go outside on my back patio and just breathe in the newness. A new baby is probably the most exciting thing. God recently sent our family a new baby girl. She was born to my great niece in California, so I haven’t had the opportunity to hold her and cuddle with her, but just the pictures of her sweet little face and the excitement I see on the faces of her mom, dad and big brother bring tears of joy to my heart.

God is always up to something “new”. New mornings, new babies, new beginnings. He’s all about “doing something new” in our lives.

Well this week, he’s doing something new at our church. If you haven’t heard already, our church has a new Sunday Worship Service. We are calling it a Super Service. It’s “Super” because God is leading us to have one service on Sunday’s at 10:30 am bringing us all together to worship Him in the beauty of newness. We are combining elements of the 9:30 service with the 11:00 service and birthing the new 10:30 service.

Of course, we have to celebrate. So, Pastor David is fixing a delicious breakfast that will begin at 9:30 am for those people who like to get up a little earlier and then again at 11:30 am after the new 10:30 service.

Dr. Marty Folsom will be with us to close out our series “If you’re alive, its time to REBUILD YOUR DREAMS.” Rhonda, Eliot and the entire music team will be there to lead us in songs of worship. It is going to be a “something new.” Hope you are able to join in on the festivities this weekend. (If you are unable to attend in person, you can join us on Facebook Live. Just go to the Washington Cathedral Facebook page to gain access to the livestream.)

Enjoy something new today.

Pastor Linda Skinner

DNA of a Dream

By Pastor Tim White

(The Book of Jeremiah and questions about how God has planned your life)

This is the message that I have to share with you this weekend. “If you are alive, and chances are that if you are reading this, you are alive; then it’s time to rebuild your dreams.” Every dreamer has had to go through the painful and fun experience of re-engineering their lives. Don’t you think God should have a hand in this beautiful project? Well if you do, then come to church this weekend and learn that the Bible has a word to inspire and direct you.

My Special Guest this week is Janson White, Ph.D. He is a Professor at the University of Washington and a researcher for Children’s Hospital, but most importantly, he grew up in this church. I have asked him to join us to discuss some of the recent breakthroughs in Genetics. His interview will lay the backdrop as we ask this great question of Scripture.

I have an important announcement to make. We who are committed to the dream of Washington Cathedral to build the greatest caring network are rebuilding God’s dream. We have no doubt that we will succeed in this all-important endeavor. Step Number One is to combine the 9:30am worship service and the 11:00am worship services into one Super Service at 10:30am for the near future. Saturday night will continue as it has but we need the momentum of a super service. We know this won’t be easy for some of you, but we wouldn’t be doing it if it wasn’t absolutely necessary. So, I ask that you have my back on this one. Our first combined service will start the last weekend in July. Pastor David is going to cook a beautiful breakfast and have it available before and after the service.

This new worship service will be at 10:30 am beginning on July 28th and continuing into the near future -- Super Service at Washington Cathedral.

If you have any questions please call me; because I am determined to be your friend for the rest of my life,

Pastor Tim White

Discover Your Spiritual DNA

by Pastor Tim White

What a Big Win it was as we celebrated our love for our community, our nation, and the world. Anarchists, Republicans, Democrats, Green Party and everything in between joined together, not to say our nation is perfect, but to remember the love that we feel for our nation. And of course, Christians feel that way about every nation they live in. A dramatic moment was when Penelope Hernandez shared what it meant to her, a person who immigrated from Mexico, to grow to love her new country and watch her son, LG, learn English, make the Honor Roll, and join the Marines. After four years, he graduated at the top of his college engineering class and was installed as a Lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps. LG stayed around and enjoyed the meal at the Saturday night service and at the picnic on Sunday. He was able to visit with the people who have held up he and his family in prayer and will continue to lift them up throughout his career in the Marines. It was a great moment.

This weekend I will continue our series on: If you are alive then It is Time to Rebuild Your Dreams. I will share with you a message from the Gospel of John on: “Discover Your Spiritual DNA”.

Please join us. I believe you will find the sermon inspirational.

Your friend for the rest of your life,

Pastor Tim White

A Dream That Will Bless Our Nation

by Pastor Tim White

I am a Big Picture guy. When I advise people to dream, I ask them to dream big. I ask you, as we rebuild our dreams, to dream a dream so big that it cannot be accomplished in one generation. Dream a dream that will bless our community here in the Puget Sound area, that will bless our nation, and will bless the whole world. That’s all. When we really lift our eyes to God who created the Universe, we build dreams so big that they cannot be accomplished in our lifetime.

Everyone has a dream somewhere in their DNA. And for everyone who is alive it is time to rebuild your dream. Rededicate, refresh, re-envision, reorganize and retool. The Bible makes it clear our dreams are bigger than we understand and so we need to be constantly adapting them as we prepare them to meet God’s expectations - not just ours. Instead of being frustrated, maybe we need to dig deeper to discover what God’s Word is trying to say to someone who is graduating from high school, or college, looking for a new job, surviving grief, or just retired. God does have something to say about our frustrations and discouragements and he really responds to our individual stories and concerns. He can always point us in a better direction. Washington Cathedral is listening, so this is an exciting time for all of us.

Many people today, for one reason or another, do not feel happy about our nation. We pray that they can join with us. As every veteran knows, our nation is not perfect, but together we can work towards positive growth in our nation. We all have that need. Running to our room in frustration is not a good option. How much better to come outside and engage in meaningful dialogue that will help our nation to be better and to be a source of blessing to the entire world.

This weekend we are refreshing the American Vision. And a big part of that is to consider how blessed we are to live in this country. In all our services we will be awarding the Medal of Freedom to a young Second Lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps. He has a dramatic story that is at the heart of refreshing the American Dream. As you know, people from the right and the left, Republicans and Democrats, will all be demonstrating together in the dream that our nation can come together and get over the challenges that face us. Right after the 11:00 am service, there will be a picnic with a great bounce house for kids, a fun and competitive dessert contest - and you get to sample them also. There will be games for the whole family. From 12:00 to 2:00pm - a short time for a picnic, packed with great food and fun for all. Hotdogs and hamburgers provided. Also, gluten and meat-free options. The salads and desserts will be potluck style, so bring a large serving of either. Whether you love our nation, or you don’t, but want to love it - you are invited.

Your friend for the rest of my life,

Pastor Tim

Time to Rebuild Your Dreams

by Pastor Tim White

In the Book of Ezra 1:3, the Bible tells the story of the Persian king who ruled Israel. He made a proclamation to Israel that God has spoken to him telling him to let the people of Israel rebuild their temple. The door is open, and it is an opportunity to rebuild their dreams. That is the season we are in at Washington Cathedral. It is time to revise, rededicate, relearn, reinvent, and to refresh our dream of building the greatest caring network that the world has ever seen.

Anyone who has ever dared to try and dream God’s dream, has to rebuild it from time to time. It doesn't matter if you are 11 years old or 91 years old. Nobody receives a perfect plan that never needs to be adjusted. We learn, we grow, situations change, and sometimes, we have to rebuild. Many times in our lifetime we get frustrated and discouraged because it seems that God has lost sight of our dreams, when in fact we have lost sight of Him. He wants to turn us or grow us, and we have not been listening. So, from now until August our church, and each of us individually, will be focusing on letting God rebuild our dreams. I hope you can make it this weekend, as we kick off this new, dynamic series.

Your friend for the rest of my life,

Pastor Tim White

God’s Grace is Amazing

by Pastor Linda Skinner

Thirty years ago, this past January, I started serving as a full-time pastor at our church. Throughout those thirty years, the thing that continues to astound me is the power of God’s grace. I remember when I first started in the ministry, Pastor Tim shared with me that the one most important things we must always share with people, regardless of the situation, is the hope that we always have because of the persistent, loving grace of God.

Early on in my ministry, I had a beautiful young lady come to my office in tears because she felt that God could not love her because of all the things she had done wrong. She enumerated all her sins to me and then said, “God will never forgive me for all of that.” I pulled out my Bible and read to her the story of the woman caught in adultery in John 8. When I read the words of our Lord, “Then neither do I condemn you,” her eyes teared up. That afternoon, she prayed with me to accept Jesus into her life.

A couple of weeks later she came back to me and said, “I don’t think it worked.” Not being sure of what she meant by that I asked, “What don’t’ you think worked?” She said, “Our prayer.” At that point I was a little perplexed, so I asked, “Why don’t you think it worked?” “Well,” she said, “I have always had a ‘potty’ mouth and I thought when I accepted Jesus, He would take that away. But he hasn’t. I still find myself using those words.” I think the Holy Spirit was helping me on this one because without hesitation I asked her, “Before you accepted Jesus and those words came out, how did it feel?” She responded, “It felt great!” So, I questioned her further, “Tell me, how do you feel now when those words come out.” Without hesitation she said, “I feel terrible.” I laughed as I proclaimed, “There you have it, it worked.”

That is what so amazing about God’s grace. He accepts us with all our bad history and short comings and then He never leaves us where He found us. He’s always there to guide us to where He wants us to be. All during our lives, His grace is at work guiding and molding us into the person He wants us to be. Our job is to be open to the work He is doing in us and listening to His guidance – however it might come.

This weekend Dr. Marty Folsom is going to be sharing with us a message of grace entitled “Reflected Grace” based on 2 Corinthians 3:6-18. Hope you can join us as learn about living “life transformed by God’s grace.”