Worship, grow, witness, give

New pastor tapped to lead First UMC

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The Rev. Eddie Hilliard has only been leading the congregation at First United Methodist Church of Sealy for about a month, but he says it already feels like home.

The pastor, originally from Mississippi, previously led a congregation in Missouri City.

During Sunday’s sermon, Hilliard gathered with the children of the congregation, providing them Hot Wheels toy cars to teach them about sharing.

“Some of you are too young; you don’t know what Hot Wheels cars are,” Hilliard said. “Everybody’s got one; wait a minute. I don’t have one. Does someone want to share?”

Almost immediately a young man handed over his toy to the pastor.

“Do you know why it’s so important for us to share?” Hilliard said. “We are so blessed.”

Hilliard went on to preach about Acts 4:32-25 in a sermon titled “Letting Go.”

“I feel pretty challenged when I study this passage,” Hilliard said. “It makes me squirm just a little bit. Our possessions are simply a vehicle to transmit love and care and serving someone else. Pretty frightening, isn’t it?”

Fear, Hilliard said, is the primary reason people don’t share openly.

“Why is sharing so unpopular?” he asked. “Letting go of possessions that we worked so hard to get, we tend to fear that they might fall into the hands of someone who will squander them. For me it’s difficult to give up possessions.”

Greed kills, the pastor added.

“There are things that get in the way of us being radical givers,” he said. “It’s about the quality of the gift. Giving and sharing is just one more part of being a Christian.”

The gifts belong to God, Hilliard said.

“This church has been a lighthouse in Sealy for more than 150 years,” he said. “We want to do more. We want to continue to use what we’ve been given. We get this awesome privilege of taking care of it and bringing joy to God’s kingdom. All we have comes from God.”

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