Trinity United Church of Christ - St. Petersburg

   Our Vision: To Delight God       Our Mission: To be loving, actively involved ambassadors of God


Post Reply
Forum Home > General Discussion > Impressed on my heart

Jacob Beeman
Posts: 3

Hello Trinity,

My name is Jacob Beeman. I am new to your church and have only been with you for two Sundays now. I did however wish to pose to all of you a discussion that I feel might help us all grow in our spirtual journey with God as well as give me a better understanding of the worship style of Trinity and UCC. I would like to speak of personal worship and personal walks with God with other Christians. What has been holding this on my mind for the past two weeks now has been a question that the pastor asked on Sunday March 20, 2011. She asked everyone assembled "Why do you come here[Trinity]" So few were able to answer and this absolutly blew me away. Then when she asked if anyone could share with her and the congregation, not one person spoke up. Well if we are so unsure should we not examine this in our hearts? I feel that this is something that everyone should be able to answer even in themselves. The easy answer to give is "because its the right thing to do", or "you are supposed to go to church", another great answer that is very common to this question is "because I am Christian". Those are not stong answers though. Why do we gather in a church then? That is a far less person question that we can find all through out the scripture. My answer will come to you straight from the bible. "Where two or more are gathered in my name there I am also". I am sorry I do not remember where in the bible this comes from I just know that it is the word passed to me from my god. Well if when we gather in gods name He is there also then I want to gather in His/Her name so that I can be closer with him. I always want to be in God's pressence. That is why I go to church and I think many of us go for that same reason most of the time with out even knowing that is the reason we get up and get ready for church on Sunday. I would be so interested to find out why Trinity though from you all. I have found an answer in my heart that is not to personal to share. I feel love and compassion from the people there, I find the message to allign with what I feel impressed is truely gods word. That is why I have come back and will do so again.

Church Worship though is only part of it all though right? I would like to think so, but that is a personal question that we all have to decide in and of our selves. I personally believe in a meeting of persons not in the time of church to study together the words of our Lord so that we can grow in our knowlege and bring it out in to the world where things are really happening and where it can really be used for the glory of god. I personally believe in meeting in times when Church is not in session so that we can worship God and with out structure praise him and sing to him from our hearts letting him know that He is the love of our lives, and as He loves us so will we love him. Another personal belief of mine is that we should come together in prayer away from our church sessions, we should spend time together and apart building a close and personal relationship with God. The joining of hands, the anointing the head with oil, prayer for the sick and prayer with prayer warriors is some thing that I believe in. I am curious how all these things feel with you all. I love your services I love coming to them but how do you feel about gathering to gether with out real formality just to give love to god, and to share prayer with each other and with God? I would love to hear how you as individual people feel about these things.

How do you pray? That is a personal and intrusive question isn't it? Is that not just rude asking someone how they pray? Now if you feel that that is rude question, that is to intrusive then I ask you why do you feel that way? I pray by offering my Lord God thanks, adoration, asking his guidance and his love, but most important to me, I pray with my heart and from my heart. Jesus in the bible shared with us "The Lords Prayer" so often do we repeat that and we all have it in our memory right? When we say it though do we really say it from our hearts? That is another personal question right? Answer that to ourselves and find our selves closer to the Glory that the Creator has to offer. Why did Jesus give us this prayer? Was it to be so great prayer that we say from memory but not heart? I believe this to have just been a prayer that he was sharing with his people and that he wanted them to share back with him but to share from the heart, but I also believe that we can take his prayer as a guidline on how to pray. It thanks our Lord for being himself, and it comes to him in reverance for what he has done, then it asks his forgivness to his own people, only then once he is praised and has forgiven us so that we are once again "clean as the lamb" and in asking for this forgivness that makes us clean he comes to God and he asks that we be given our daily bread, that could be metaphor, or it could be in truth that he is saying give us physcal things. He could here be asking give us the spirtual bread to go forth in your name or the physcal bread so that we could survive and get along. Then he praises again. This is a short prayer that can be memorized, but it is stated in the bible that he would pray and his disciples would pray for hours on end, and pray with the masses hours, and join hands with them. Again I ask, how do we pray? Do we offer all of these things in our personal prayer or are they ceremony that we have been taught? That is of course not a question that we would answer to any one else because its personal.  That is why it is personal prayer. How do you feel about this prayer in the way I have discribed it? With joining of hands and with out a focus on the right words but rather just using your words in the right way? I would look forward to hearing a great deal about this.


Gosh I hope I am not just rambling on, and that I am making sense with out stepping out of bounds. This is what has been on my heart to share with you and to speak with you about. I hope I have not in any way offended, I know there is a thin thin line that we walk when it comes to our walks with our Lord, it is any easy line to cross and such an easy place to find offense so I hope I have walked that line and not brought upset to you all.

Your New Friend in God


March 27, 2011 at 1:40 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Site Owner
Posts: 3

Wow! Jacob, you have given us a lot to think about!  Thank you! Don't worry about offending.  Folks at Trinity aren't easily offended and we welcome all viewpoints!  I was sort've amazed as well that Sunday when so few people answered the question about why we come to Trinity. Usually when that question is asked, many people do respond. We mostly all say about the same thing: Trinity is a very special place with warm and welcoming people who don't push, but genuinely care.  I know that is why I came back after visiting almost nine years ago and it's why I keep coming every week.  Regarding prayer: when I pray I just have a conversation with God.  It's not fancy and probably not very "Biblical" sounding, but it is straight from my heart.  I love the Lord's Prayer and each time I say it, I feel comforted.  We do have a prayer team and Bob Clement can tell you more about that.  I'm sure you'd be very welcome to be on that team! We have not met together in awhile as the church has gone thorugh some transitions, but the prayer team used to meet outside of the service.  I really believe in the power of prayer and have seen the results over and over.  Conversations such as these are healthy and important for a congregation to thrive. Thank you for your input and I hope that others respond as well.  I'm not sure everyone has found their way to our new website yet so don't be discouraged if not many answer. We'll keep working to get them here!!

March 27, 2011 at 6:19 PM Flag Quote & Reply
Posts: 1

 I don't know if I can respond to all your thoughts at once, I type slow and have a tendency to bore myself to sleep.

 Let me start with why I come to Trinity. I have shared this many times in my 4 years there, so all you that have heard me babble before, here is a chance to just fast forward. When I came to Trinity all the "regular" reasons people give, my reasons are 180 degrees out of phase. I was not a Christian, I definitely did not think it was the right thing to do and I had no plan on giving any praise or credit to God. I am nearly 54 and have been an atheist most of my life. I followed a Pastor who had done my Mother's funeral service. She did such an awesome job and sang like an angel, so I figured I got nothing else to do on Sunday so we went to her church in Tampa.

 No fire and brimstone. No God hates or God will smit you. It was not a God I had ever heard about. Her God was about Love. Now don't get me wrong, I didn't become Christian right away. In fact I still did what a did most often I got online to debate Christians on their God.I spent much of my time in gay chat rooms because that seemed to be were "Christians" hung out.

 What I found online was just what I thought churches were full of. People who used the Bible when it was convenient. Their sins were ok and forgiven because they were "born again" but gay people were going to hell and nothing they could do (not even burning a bull on the altar) would stop that. Well, it was an easy debate and easy to make "Christians" look foolish and ignorant.

 I started going to Bible Study and asking her my questions to show God sucked and to make her mad, which always happened online. She politely answered my questions and never lost her cool.

 She was moved to North Florida but we stayed in touch and when she found Trinity was going to be her new home, we came here to see her. We've been here every since.

 So, all that aside, why do I come to Trinity? Simple,. Here God is Love. Here is where I found God and you see it in the congregation.

 OK, wake up, enough for this time. See I am long that long fingered since I am typing this.

Anyway, as Susan said I am part of a Prayer Team. I write a prayer every week that can be said daily and I give you a list of all those we pray for in case anyone would rather say their own prayer. My prayers are not full of Thy's and Thou's, they are simple,(hey I've only been a Christian for a little while) so I just Thank God for all He has given us and ask that He please help the people we lift up to him.

 If you are interested feel free to send an email to subject Prayer Team and I will be happy to include you. There is POWER in PRAYER!!!!


March 27, 2011 at 7:55 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Posts: 1

In answer to your question about why I attend Trinity; it is because it is the first church in my entire life where I have felt a very strong presence of God, a warm church family and feel like I have been embraced by people there.  In most other churches I have felt tolerated rather than welcomed and embraced.  This church means a great deal to me and I come because I love being there and love the church family we have.

Welome to our church!  I am glad you have come to be with us!!  Have a great week and we will see you on Sunday!

March 27, 2011 at 8:45 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Jacob Beeman
Posts: 3

I appreciate that you all would take time to talk about about this with me. I grew up in a small penocostal church. We did talk alot about fire and brim stone. We also told of Gods mercy and his love though. We had a good balance. I think we need that balance because I firmly believe that there is a hell and we will go there if we are not in Gods way. Now you can say "Saved", "Born Again", "Born In God", oh look it is pastors sermon. The words do not matter what matters is that you have accepted Jesus Christ and through him is Father God, and the Holy Spirit into your heart and into your life. It does not have to be this defining moment but it does have to happen that you accept them into your life and let them lead you. We must understand or at least I believe we must understand that though God is loving and merciful the tenets of Christianity dictate that you will go to hell if you sin against God. I am talking breaking the 10 commandments ect ect.  (No I do not believe that being gay is a sin against God, or man) with that said though I do believe that the act of adult relations between any two persons out side of wedlock is a sin.

A prayer team is a wonderful thing. What about a worship team? Or have you thought about holding a mid week worship service? I also grew up in a church where I was there almost every day of the week for an event, from the homeless program, the youth program, the prayer meetings, the mens meetings, the worship service. I got Friday nights off from church every week so that I could be a "Teen Ager" which to me was going to the movies. God has been such a great part of my life though all of my life and though I have backslidden time and time again I always find my way back to the light and the love of my ever forgiving father.

I would be happy to be a part of your prayer team. I will send a private mail about that when I have the time. :) Well anyway all that just to say thank you for the insights into Trinity and I will look forward to seeing many of you on Saturday for planting and also on Sunday for service.

March 28, 2011 at 12:49 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Pastor Jeanette
Posts: 1

Jacob, You have opened a wonderful dialogue.  I think of sin first as alienation from God.  If I turn away from God, then the rules and guidelines of Christianity don't apply to me.  I believe soooo many people in this country are alienated from God and that is why we have so much greed and bad behavior.  If I am in relationship with God, then I need to know how God would have me relate to others and I learn this from the Bible primarily through Jesus.  He came to show is the Way and it is only through him that we learn what is expected of us.  Temptations are around us all of the time and God expects us to resist.  We need a community of people who can surround us and support us and help us to realize fully what God would have us be. 

Jacob, Our worship traditions are not the same as what you have experienced in the past.   But we worship the same God, are faithful to the same Jesus and invite the Holy Spirit to guide us.  Hopefully you will find nurture in our community of faith.

March 30, 2011 at 9:19 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Jacob Beeman
Posts: 3

Pastor Jeanette,

I have found a great deal of spiritual nurturing in your church thus far and I understand that I come from a different background than many at Trinity, I think those diffences in my background to be a good thing. Perhaps from my background I can bring things to Trinity that were not there before and from Trinity's and the people at Trinity's back grounds I can learn and grow spiritually. That is my hope is that we grow in our love of Jesus and in our faith, together.


March 30, 2011 at 10:26 AM Flag Quote & Reply

You must login to post.