Sunday Messages & Special Services

Worship for May 24, 2020 for the video click on the following link

 Welcome! We are so glad that you have joined us to worship with Rittman United Methodist Church!

 Let’s open worship as we pray, calling on the Light of Christ – “Light of Christ, shine on our path. Chase away all darkness. Illumine us. Lead us to the heart of God.” Amen

 As we prepare for the message, let’s sing as we open ourselves to God, asking to have our eyes, ears, and hearts opened to all that He is for us and others.

Open My Eyes That I May See”   By Clara H. Fiske Scott

Verse 1 – Open my eyes, that I may see glimpses of truth Thou hast for me;
place in my hands the wonderful key that shall unclasp and set me free.

Chorus – Silently now I wait for Thee, ready, my God, Thy will to see. Open my eyes, illumine me, Spirit divine!

Verse 2 – Open my ears, that I may hear voices of truth Thou sendest clear;
and while the wave notes fall on my ear, everything false will disappear.

Chorus – Silently now I wait for Thee, ready, my God, Thy will to see. Open my ears, illumine me, Spirit divine!

Verse 3 – Open my mouth and let me bear gladly the warm truth everywhere;
Open my heart and let me prepare love with Thy children thus to share.

Chorus – Silently now I wait for Thee, ready, my God, Thy will to see. Open my heart, illumine me, Spirit divine!

CCLI Song # 68003     © Words: Public Domain        Music: Public Domain

 Our Scripture Lesson today comes from Ephesians 1:15-23 & Matthew 6:19-34. I am reading these from the Common English Bible translation.

 Ephesians 1:15-23  (CEB)

15Since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, this is the reason that 16I don’t stop giving thanks to God for you when I remember you in my prayers. 17I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, will give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation that makes God known to you. 18I pray that the eyes of your heart will have enough light to see what is the hope of God’s call, what is the richness of God’s glorious inheritance among believers, 19 and what is the overwhelming greatness of God’s power that is working among us believers. This power is conferred by the energy of God’s powerful strength. 

20 God’s power was at work in Christ when God raised him from the dead and sat him at God’s right side in the heavens, 21 far above every ruler and authority and power and angelic power, any power that might be named not only now but in the future. 22 God put everything under Christ’s feet and made him head of everything in the church, 23 which is his body. His body, the church, is the fullness of Christ, who fills everything in every way.

 Matthew 6:19-34

19 “Stop collecting treasures for your own benefit on earth, where moth and rust eat them and where thieves break in and steal them. 20 Instead, collect treasures for yourselves in heaven, where moth and rust don’t eat them and where thieves don’t break in and steal them. 21 Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. Therefore, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how terrible that darkness will be! 24 No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be loyal to the one and have contempt for the other. You cannot serve God and wealth. 25 “Therefore, I say to you, don’t worry about your life, what you’ll eat or what you’ll drink, or about your body, what you’ll wear. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds in the sky. They don’t sow seed or harvest grain or gather crops into barns. Yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you worth much more than they are? 27 Who among you by worrying can add a single moment to your life? 

28 And why do you worry about clothes? Notice how the lilies in the field grow. They don’t wear themselves out with work, and they don’t spin cloth. 29 But I say to you that even Solomon in all of his splendor wasn’t dressed like one of these. 30 If God dresses grass in the field so beautifully, even though it’s alive today and tomorrow it’s thrown into the furnace, won’t God do much more for you, you people of weak faith? 31 Therefore, don’t worry and say, ‘What are we going to eat?’ or ‘What are we going to drink?’ or ‘What are we going to wear?’ 32 Gentiles long for all these things. Your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 Instead, desire first and foremost God’s kingdom and God’s righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore, stop worrying about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

The Word of God for the people of God! Praise be to God!

 We all have desires for special things. Those special things become treasure to us. Your treasure is whatever you hold or see as important in your lives.

         The Ephesians passage today was a part of Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, but he is speaking to us as well. He was praying that God would open the eyes of the people through a spirit of wisdom and revelation. His hope for the people was to have us know God so much that we could truly experience deep within our hearts through God’s power all that He is for us.

         Today is Ascension Sunday, the day we are to remember when Jesus entered into heaven after spending time with the disciples following His Resurrection. Jesus told the disciples that after He left He would send the Holy Spirit to be received by His disciples to give them power as they witness about Him to all the world. We’ll hear more about that next week.

Paul was speaking to all of us as disciples of Jesus Christ! We have that great inheritance of God’s power through Jesus Christ! That is quite a treasure!… We, the Church, have the Holy Spirit to lead us, and as this part of Ephesians tells us we are His body and He fills us in every way! We are the Church!

         The problem is… do we recognize the power that we have through Him? Do we have the confidence in who we are in Christ to be His hands and feet in this world? … Or do we

not see this as a treasure?

Hold on to that thought of this treasure that He gives, and let’s move further by looking at the message from Matthew 6. It has a lot of information in a very small space of scripture, which expands more about the treasures in our lives, and how they affect who we are.  

First it speaks about our treasures and tells us not to collect earthly treasures. But

isn’t that what we all do? Some more than others, I’m sure! But it is definitely human nature to want to be taken care of, and we think that the more we have physically the better off we are and the better taken care of we are.

But what are earthly treasures?… Money?… Things that money can buy?… Romantic and physical love?… Our looks and how we come across to other people?… How other physical, tangible thing that brings us physical pleasure can be treasure on earth… Things that others or we become envious of, when other people have them… Anything of this earth that can be taken, stolen, or destroyed is an earthly treasure…

Maybe it’s time to start looking at our treasures by taking inventory of them. What kind of things do we have?… What kind of things do we desire?… Are they necessary?… Do we truly use all that we have?… Are they important to how we serve God?…What do we really need?…

Maybe it’s time to look at the things that we still think that we need to have physically to be happy… Are they really necessary?…

         Here in Matthew it says to stop collecting the earthly things, because they are just things that will be destroyed, in some way or another, or they will be stolen by others or they will just deteriorate. And then where are they?…If they are destroyed or taken, what do we have left?… Do you really need all the things that you have?… Could something just happen to them that would cause them to be worthless or gone?… And then what would you have?… Do you have so much stuff that you don’t use anyway?… And could that stuff be used by others who could truly bless their lives because of their need?… This is material treasure, and we should be considering what we really need physically…    

Another treasure might be sinful ways that give us pleasure. Behavior that take up our time, that keeps us away from our relationship with God and others. Think about whether you have some of these that are earthy treasures happening in your lives that Paul may have been speaking about.??… Things that aren’t as important as they may have seemed to you before now… What are your real needs?…

         Other treasures are heavenly treasures. The things that keep us close to God: relationships with others who are Christians, or with those who we are helping to bring closer to God…  Qur relationship with God through prayer, Bible study, fasting, Holy Communion, Baptism, and other means of grace are also heavenly treasures. Heavenly treasures are those things that give us inner peace.

         The treasures that we cherish show through the ways we live. We aren’t able to hide our true selves. Matthew 6:21 says, “Where your treasure is, there your heart is, also.” What are your treasures showing about what is truly in your heart?…

This passage goes on in Matthew 6 to reflect about our inner lights. Our inner lights show who we truly are and what is truly in our hearts. If it’s light, a good light, then we shine light for others to see Jesus through our words and actions… If it’s a dark light, then our lives are not good, and it will show in the wrong ways that we speak and act…

        Charles Spurgeon, a preacher of the 19th century, once said this, ‘You must keep all earthly treasures out of your heart, and let Christ be your treasure, and let Him have your heart.” He was responding to this message from the scripture. If our treasures are material things, they are here on earth, and they show that all we are concerned about is ourselves and what we can get physically… But if we are focused on God through Christ and the Holy Spirit, then our treasures are heavenly treasures, and Christ is definitely one of them! They show that we are more concerned with what God wants for our lives and for the lives of others. Heavenly treasures of God in our lives give us the power and strength to do what needs to be done here on earth to make more disciples of Christ… developing more and storing up more heavenly treasures through these disciples… Focusing on God, and God’s purpose for our lives, focusing on Christ’s Church and our part in it! Focusing on what Church truly is and not whether we are able to do what we want…or to have what we want…but focusing on what God wants for our lives…

 So where is your treasure?… Is it in the things of this earth, or is it in God and the things of God, and in making more disicples of Jesus Christ?

Paul said that No one can serve two masters. We each have to make a choice. We can’t serve God and something or someone else! That includes not serving ourselves!

         Paul went on to say that we don’t have to be worried about our lives. God will take care of us just like He does everything else in the world, even the birds and the flowers and the grass of the fields… Paul assures us that God cares for us so much more than these things. That is a pretty important message for the times we find ourselves in right now…

         We need to have faith that God has this whole situation under control. It may not be in the timing that we want, and it may not be the way we want, but it is in God’s timing and it will be the way od wants it to be… We have to trust and hold onto our heavenly treasures. Don’t worry about the earthly treasures, because God will provide our every need!…

         Hear again the reassuring words of Paul from the end of Matthew 6, “Your heavenly Father knows that you need them.  Instead, desire first and foremost God’s kingdom and God’s righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore, stop worrying about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

         It’s time to trust in God! It’s time to look at our priorities and what we treasure the most! It’s not about us! It’s about God and God’s plan! It’s about Christ’s Church and making and maturing disciples of Jesus Christ here on this earth!

         Where is your treasure???…..

 Let’s pray… Almighty and Loving God, We thank You! We thank You for the reassurance that you are all we need! We thank You for the provisions of all that we need! Help us to trust in You to get us through these days ahead, according to Your will and Your timing. And help us to evaluate honestly where our treasure is, bringing us each to seek heavenly treasure above all else. And we pray this in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ, Amen.

 As we think and about Christ and as we proclaim His name, let’s sing “I Love To Tell The Story,” remembering what He has given all of us in our need, reconciliation with God, who provides all that we will ever need!  

Verse 1 – I love to tell the story of unseen things above, of Jesus and His glory, of Jesus and His love.
I love to tell the story, because I know ’tis true; It satisfies my longings as nothing else can do.

Chorus – I love to tell the story, ’twill be my theme in glory, to tell the old, old story of Jesus and His love.

Verse 2 – I love to tell the story; more wonderful it seems than all the golden fancies of all our golden dreams.
I love to tell the story, it did so much for me; and that is just the reason I tell it now to thee.


Verse 3 – I love to tell the story; ’tis pleasant to repeat what seems, each time I tell it, more wonderfully sweet.
I love to tell the story, for some have never heard the message of salvation from God’s own holy Word.


Verse 4 – I love to tell the story, for those who know it best seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.
And when, in scenes of glory, I sing the new, new song, ’twill be the old, old story that I have loved so long.


CCLI Song # 29413  byArabella Catherine Hankey & William Gustavus Fischer.

 © Words: Public Domain   Music: Public Domain

 Thank you for continuing to support the ministry of our church! Please continue to give according to the Holy Spirit’s leading in your heart for the continued work in Christ. Let’s pray, dedicating these gifts to the Lord.      

Dear Generous, Loving Father, We thank You for providing for our needs. Thank you for touching the hearts of the ones who have given out of those provisions this week. and thank You for each person’s ministry of Your church. We give these gifts to You and ask Your blessings upon these gifts as they are used to continue our ministries in Your name. May You be given all the glory. In Christ’s name we pray, Amen.

 Now let’s bring to mind the answers to prayer, the signs of God’s presence that you’ve seen, and other joys that have been experienced this week…… It is also a joy to congratulate to graduates of 2020 today, especially Matt Richards from Wadsworth High School, the graduates of Rittman High School, and Brooke Britton, who graduated with her doctorate in molecular biology from OSU!

Also, today we remember, on this Memorial Day weekend, those who have given their lives for the freedom of this country! … So many times we think that Memorial Day weekend is just a time of celebration, or we think that it’s a time to recognize those veterans who are still alive. But this is a special time to remember the sacrifice that those in service have given to keep us free.

Now let’s begin also to bring to God those who have been on your hearts throughout this week and those who remain in need of God’s touch on their lives; Those who are ill or injured…; those who are grieving the lost loved ones…; those who have lost their jobs, homes, security…; those who are recovering from or are anticipating surgeries or other medical procedures…; those who are caring for the sick and injured…; those who protect the communities around us…; students, graduates, teachers, administrators as this school year comes to a close …; government leaders as they guide and direct us throughout this world…; those who are hungry, homeless…; those having a hard time with this separation and wondering when it’s all going to end…; those who are struggling in any way… We place in God’s care…   Let’s pray…

Dear Almighty Father, Thank you for the successes of those who stayed the course and finished the schooling that has been theirs over these days. Be with them in the future to do their best in all that You have for them. Thank You, for the answers to prayers that we have had and recognized. Thank You for the ways that we have been able to see You among us, especially in these days of struggle. Thank You for our being able to worship You in freedom and in truth, because of the men and women who have fought for our freedom, and we remember those who have lost their lives in their service. Thank You for safety that has been experienced by so many, also. Lord, we thank You that we can trust in You to respond to all that we bring to You, according to Your will in the ways that are best for each one. Please hear our prayers, even if they haven’t been spoken out loud. Help us to understand that Your Holy Spirit intercedes for us even when words won’t come. Help us to share Your love with others around us by thinking of them first, instead of ourselves. Help us to have the right kinds of treasures in our lives; the heavenly treasures that You provide for us and that we are able to provide for You. We pray all of this in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, as we pray the prayer that He taught us to pray, 

   Our Father, who art in heaven. Hallowed be thy name. Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for Thine is the Kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever, Amen.        


         We are in a process of starting to plan for the future, so that we will be able to begin coming together as safely as possible. There is no date planned for having worship services in the sanctuary. We are now in Phase 2, and will be starting with the Trustee’s meeting this Tuesday night in the Social Hall, meeting at a distance safely, according to number guidelines, as people feel comfortable. We will be following all CDC recommendations. If you have any questions, please contact me or one of the church leaders, so that we can answer those questions.

 As we close today, let’s sing “Praise to The Lord, The Almighty” as we praise His name for all that He is in our lives and the lives of others.

Verse 1 – Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, the King of creation!
O my soul, praise Him, for He is thy health and salvation!
All ye who hear, now to His temple draw near; praise Him in glad adoration!

Verse 2 – Praise to the Lord, Who o’er all things so wondrously reigning!
Bears thee on eagle’s wings, e’er in His keeping maintaining.
God’s care enfolds   all, whose true good He upholds. Hast thou not known His sustaining?

Verse 3 – Praise to the Lord, Who doth prosper thy work and defend thee;
surely His goodness and mercy here daily attend thee.
Ponder anew what the Almighty can do, who with His love He befriend thee.

Verse 4 – Praise to the Lord! O let all that is in me adore Him!
All that hath life and breath, come now with praises before Him!
Let the amen sound from His people again; gladly forever adore Him.

CCLI Song # 43073   by Catherine Winkworth & Joachim Neander

© Words: Public Domain  Music: Public Domain

 May you have peace in the assurance of God’s protection and care! God Bless You! Have a safe week full of God’s love, as you serve Him!

Worship for May 17, 2020 for the video click on the following link

Worship for May 10, 2020 for the video click on the following link

WORSHIP FOR May 3, 2020 for the video click on the following link

WORSHIP SERVICE April 26, 2020 for the video click on the following link

WORSHIP SERVICE April 19, 2020 for the video click on the following link

Easter Service 2020 for the video click on the following link

Easter Sunrise Service 2020 for the video click on the following link

GOOD FRIDAY REFLECTIONS 2020 for the video click on the following link

MAUNDY THURSDAY REFLECTIONS 2020 for the video click on the following link

April 5, 2020 – Palm Sunday for the video click on the following link

WORSHIP – March 29, 2020 for a video of this service click the following link

WORSHIP for March 22,2020 for a video click on the following link


In this time of uncertainty, let’s take a step back and reflect on what is important! As we seek to understand all that is happening around us, let’s remember to seek God and God’s guidance! In order to do this, we have to put God first in ALL that we do! Matthew 22:37, Luke 10:27, Mark 12:20, & even Deuteronomy 6:5 all tell us, in a few differences of words, to love the Lord, our God, with all our hearts, with all our souls, with all our (minds, strength, might). Matthew 22:38 tells us that this is the first and greatest commandment! This is what matters most! If we allow God to be the most important part of our lives, everything else will fall into place! So let’s think about something that may be heavy on your hearts today. You may be thinking that because we aren’t meeting together in the church building that worship can’t happen. Hopefully you realize that we should never stop worshiping! God is always with us and we should always be seeking to show God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) that we are present with our Lord! Whether in prayer, song, thought, or deed; we can give God the glory for our lives and for this world that has been given to us. Take time especially today, as we are taking a Sabbath away from gathering to spend some quality and quantity time praise and worshiping the Lord. 1. Pray2. Read the Word and reflect on it 3. Listen to some Christian music that touches your soul and sing along 4. Walk through the fresh air and sunshine communing with God5. Take time to reflect on what God wants you to do in service to others6. And above all else, give yourself completely to God, allowing the Lord of your salvation to guide you in all you do and say.
Let’s pray together…Dear Almighty God (Father, Son, & Holy Spirit), We come to you with humble hearts, and with unsettled feelings as we place ourselves into your care and keeping today and in the weeks ahead. Lord, calm our spirits and help us to center into You as we hear Your Word and all that You have for us to contemplate and understand this day and in the days ahead in all of the concern, unsettledness, and change that we are experiencing at this time. Give us the desire to be ever closer to You, and lead us in the best ways possible to spend every day giving ourselves to You. In Jesus Christ’s name we pray, Amen

November 19, 2017 11 am Traditional Service

November 19, 2017 9 am God’s Gathering Worship Service

November 12, 2017 9 am God’s Gathering Worship Service

November 5, 2017 9 am God’s Gathering Worship Service

October 22, 2017 11 am Traditional Service

October 22, 2017 9 am God’s Gathering Worship Service

October 8, 2017 11 am Traditional Service

September 17, 2017 9 am God’s Gathering Worship Service

September 17,2017 11 am Traditional Service

August 7, 2016 9 am God’s Gathering Worship Service

July 31, 2016 Combined Service

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