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from Rev. C. Nels Ledwell
Ambition: Bigger Is Not Always Better
Micky Anders tells a story.
The American businessman was at the pier of a small, coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellow fin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them. The Mexican replied only a little while.
The American then asked why didn’t he stay out longer and catch more fish. The Mexican said he had enough to support his family’s immediate needs.
The American then asked, “But what do you do with the rest of your time?”
The Mexican fisherman said, “I sleep late; fish a little; play with my children; take siesta with my wife, Maria; stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos; I have a full and busy life, señor.”
The American scoffed, “I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing; and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat; with the proceeds from the bigger boat, you could buy several boats; eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman, you would sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then Los Angeles and eventually New York City where you will run your expanding enterprise.”
The Mexican fisherman asked, “But, señor, how long will this all take?”
To which the American replied, “Fifteen to 20 years.”
“But what then, señor?”
The American laughed and said that’s the best part. “When the time is right, you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich; you would make millions.”
“Millions, señor? Then what?”
The American said, “Then you would retire and move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos.”
Sometimes our American culture thinks only about things that are bigger. Bigger is always better. We get so caught up in the success syndrome of our culture that we forget the way of Jesus which called us to simplicity and, in our text this Sunday, to a life of self-denial.
See you in Church or online this Sunday!
Your Pastor,

Preparing for Worship

Sunday, February 25, 2024
Second Sunday in Lent
Scripture Lesson: Mark 8: 31-38
Message: “Points From a Paradox”

Acts of Kindness

Kindness Update – A Legacy of Kindness!

Despite our recent chilly mornings, the calendar tells us that spring is getting closer – oh, happy day! With spring gardening in mind, I couldn’t help but think of planting seeds of kindness when I read the obituaries in last week’s Journal Messenger & Reporter. My heart was touched by the entry for Jim Brewer who went to be with the Lord on February 3. A lifelong McCormick resident who lived at Forest View Manor, I imagine that members of our small group who are in ministry there knew him. While I know Jim’s brothers, I did not know him that well; after reading his beautiful obituary, however, I wish I had known him better:
“Jim R was a beloved character with a big heart, deeply devoted to his family and his Forest View community. Following his wishes, there will be no formal service. Instead, honoring his memory, he requests that you perform a kind deed for someone, following the example set by his friend, Kate Dorn.

In Matthew 25:40, it is written, “Truly, I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” Let us honor Jim’s memory by spreading kindness and compassion.”

Jim’s friend – Kate Dorn – was also my friend – and she was just as Jim described. An educator who put “kindness” in every textbook and interaction with her students and all who knew her, there are many beautiful flowers blooming for God today in the garden Kate so carefully tended during her time on earth!
Many seeds of kindness were planted and scattered during Random Acts of Kindness Week last week with 60-plus hearts placed on the Kindness Board in the hallway at church! Each heart represents a kindness observed or carried out personally by kind souls. And just think of all of those that were done in secret! While we don’t do kindness for recognition, it does our hearts good to acknowledge the goodness in the world every now and then! May we all be inspired to cultivate kindness gardens like Kate!
This week’s Kindness entry: This act of kindness was shared with me by my sister-in-law just the other day. She had inserted her debit card into the slot to make a payment and was quite disturbed when her card wasn’t returned to her. She went inside the business to find out what she needed to do to retrieve her card and was told they were unable to get into the machine at the time and she would need to check back later. At about that time someone walked up behind her to turn in a card that was kicked back to them when they used the machine – it was hers! In addition to being very relieved, she said she was overcome with gratitude toward the person who had shown such kindness!
Have you seen God today? If you see God at work this week, there are two ways you can share what you saw!
1) Be a blessing to others by sharing your Act of Kindness (no names please) on our website, or use this link! Then check back each week to learn how others are passing on acts of kindness! The link is
2) There is a Kindness box in the library on the window sill, along with paper and pencil. Share your God-Wink, perhaps someone else will be inspired!


If you are experiencing any type of difficulty and you need someone to listen to you, with whom you can share your feelings and receive acceptance and Christian love, please consider being in a relationship with a Stephen Minister at MMC.
Start by calling Pastor Nels or one of the Stephen Leaders and begin a ‘fellowship’ with a Stephen Minister. We may be reached through the church office at (864) 852-2394.


The Congregational Care Committee wants you to know they are there to help you if you ever need transportation, meals or a visitor! Please contact Kim Jackson if you or someone you know needs help or if you would like to be added to the list of volunteers.

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Upcoming Events



During Lent, many of us are reminded once again to examine our lifestyles and ask, “What can we do for others?” Part of faith formation at any age is compassion and offering a serving heart to our neighbors. Lent is a good time to commit to giving money to a project that helps those in need.
The Stewardship Committee has come up with a fun way to serve with “Coins for Lent.”
Go to the MMC website to view a daily guide. It will remind us of all we have and how little others may have.
Now, before Ash Wednesday, make a container to collect the money. Be creative or use a jar, tub, or coin bank you already have. Place it where the entire family can see it (and contribute to it).
You may want to contribute a quarter for every item on the giving calendar. You may want to simply collect loose change and give whatever coins you have for each item.
Each Sunday, pray as a family for the project and the people who will benefit from your gifts.
Our giving begins concludes with Holy Saturday. During Lent, Sundays are for worship and praise to God and are reflected with a weekly day of prayer.
There will be a box in the Fellowship hall to collect your coins, let’s watch it fill up by Easter!


Join us each Wednesday at 12 noon for a light lunch and a Lenten lecture series led by Pastor Nels Ledwell. The series will end on March 27.
There is a sign-up sheet in the Fellowship Hall. Hope you can join us! For questions, contact Kim Jackson.
Palm Sunday commemorates the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem and begins the series of observances focusing on the events of Holy Week.
A Sunrise service will be held at Baker Creek Pavilion on Easter Sunday, March 31 at 7am. Coffee and refreshments will follow. Bring your company, neighbors and friends.
There will also be a service at 10am in the MMC sanctuary.


When you sign up on the calendar across from the church office, you are responsible for the flowers for that Sunday. You are welcome to bring in your own plant or arrangement from home, or you can arrange with one of the florists listed below. They will bring the arrangement for you and set it up on the pedestal in the sanctuary on Saturday night. You can take the flowers home after the service or perhaps you’d like to take it to someone who needs some cheering up!
Patsy will call or email you prior to your date to get the information you want in the bulletin. The arrangement might be in celebration of an event or in memory of a loved one(s).
Thank you for helping to make our services “huge”!