Monday, November 24, 2008

Good Debate

These two churches face each other across a busy street!

A humorous and interesting theological debate! Until next time - Blessings in Christ ~ RLS

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Our mutual friend and Jeremy's pastor, Andy Teston, articulated my feelings and thoughts so well about our loss. These are his words:

I have been in ministry in various capacities since 1991. Through the years, I have seen God use various situations and relationships to shape and form me. One of those relationships that has most profoundly shaped me has been my friendship with Jeremy Dwayne Moore.

Jeremy was gunned down this past Friday while delivering pizza in Oklahoma City. This was his second job, for he also worked for a printing company in Oklahoma City. Jeremy was the proud new father of his baby girl, Lillie. Lillie was born just last week, October 28th. Sure he’d gotten the cart before the horse, but it was his intention to asked Jamie to marry him the night he was killed. They had picked out and purchased the ring the day before, but Jamie wanted to be asked. Jeremy had planned to do it right.

Through the years that I have known Jeremy, I have known him to be one of the most honest persons around. When many others doubted life, society, or even God, and they put on mask to cover up that doubt, Jeremy was always willing to honestly deal with that doubt in public. Many people that claim Christianity would label him as “lost,” but I beg to differ. Jeremy was one of the most “found” persons I have known. Through the years, Jeremy and I have had the privilege to struggle out loud together. We have laughed, cried, mourned and celebrated together. The togetherness of the relationship was what Jeremy was all about, and he stirred that same desire in all of us.

Last night as I gathered with family and friend in Oklahoma City, someone finally asked the question that I knew would eventually be asked. “Is Jeremy in heaven? Was he a Christian?” If loving Jesus and loving others is the definition of what a Christian is, then the answer is “Yes, Jeremy was a mighty fine Christian!” Jeremy didn’t live his life for himself, but always for the other. Along his journey of faith, he had for a time stepped away from what many church folks would say is “Christian.” I know, however, that every step of that journey, Christ knew and was involved in. The wideness of God’s mercy is greater than our human understanding can know or possess. Jeremy was the epitome of graciousness. I can only hope that all of us who claim to be grace filled could be as gracious as Jeremy.

At this time, we don’t know yet details of the funeral, not any other arrangements. We hope to have some of those answers by the end of the day. We don’t know who took Jeremy from us as either. We are all dealing with a whole range of emotions. Jeremy’s capacity to love people was only matched by the likes of Mother Teresa, or other heroes of faith we read and hear about. It is my belief that Jeremy would love the person that perpetrated this crime; I know that God does. Let us all take care to pray for Jeremy’s family during this tragic loss. Let us also pray for the one who has done this. In Christ teaching us to pray, he instructed us saying “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us…” (Matthew 6:12).

I will miss my friend. I am grieving hard. But I also know that through it all, we are not alone on this journey we call our faith in God. May God richly bless us all in the relationships that we have, hold, and share. I love and will miss you Jeremy Moore. Shalom.

Jeremy's Obit:

Jeremy Dwayne Moore was born on October 15, 1979 to Dwayne and Joyce (Bussard) Moore in Okarche, Oklahoma. He passed away Friday, November 7, 2008 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma at the age of 29. Jeremy graduated from Calumet High School as Valedictorian of his class in 1998 and attended Southern Nazarene University in Bethany for three years, and was currently attending University of Central Oklahoma in Edmond, Oklahoma. Jeremy served in the United States Army Reserve and was honorably discharged in 2004. He worked for G&S Printing in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. He enjoyed building "green" furniture, loved music, collecting old albums, loved to go thrift store shopping for vintage items, loved hanging out at the coffee shop, pulling practical jokes, and loved to explore his artistic abilities including painting. Jeremy is survived by the love of his life Jamie and his daughter, Lillie LaRae of Oklahoma City, OK his parents Dwayne and Joyce Moore of Calumet, OK one brother Josh Moore and wife Satirah and their children Jacob and Josalyn of El Reno, OK grandfather, Raymond Bussard of Guthrie, OK and a host of Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, other relatives and friends (from the Red Cup), and special friends Gene and Shirlene Tarbox, Nathan and Mandi Greenfield, and Gavin, Madison, and Katie. He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Jim and Amalee Moore and Annette Bussard. Memorial donation may be made to the Jeremy Moore Memorial Fund at any Midfirst Bank in Oklahoma City, OK. Viewing will be at the Mercer-Adams Funeral Home, 3925 N. Ashbury, Bethany, OK, Tuesday and Wednesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Services: First United Methodist Church, 10:00AM, Thursday, Nov. 14, 2008, Calumet, OK. Officiating: Rev. Andy Teston, Rev. Kevin Rogers, Rev. Lance Schmitz, Rev. James Trippett. Burial: Canadian Valley Cemetery, Calumet, OK under the direction of Turner Funeral Home, Geary, OK. Condolences may be sent to turnerfuneralhomes@gmail.


Monday, November 10, 2008

My Friend!

My friend and college roommate was murdered in a senseless act of violence on Friday, November 7th in an apartment complex three blocks east of our church. Jeremy was a man of peace and grace. He was thoughtful and caring. Dr. Howard Culbertson reminded me of the time, when Jeremy was involved with our church during the planting days, that he tried to get a cross dresser involved in our congregation. He would look for him each Sunday to try and bring him to church. That's the kind of guy Jeremy was. He wanted everyone to experience genuine community and a life changing relationship with the homeless Rabbi.

Jeremy had a genuine love for all people - especially the marginalized, poor, and forgotten ones of our society - it was evident in his life. I would really like to write a meaningful tribute, but I can barely think... there is a deep pain in this kind of loss. Pray for his brand new baby girl... pray for the family that he leaves behind... pray for our broken community... for our broken world. Lord have mercy on us - Maranatha!

This was the news report from channel 5:

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Police said a man who was shot and killed in the parking lot of an Oklahoma City apartment complex was working as a pizza delivery driver.

Investigators said Jeremy Moore was killed at the Lantanna Apartments in the 7400 block of Northwest 10th Street. Neighbors called officers after hearing gunshots at about 7 p.m. A Papa John's Pizza delivery vehicle was found just about 100 yards from Moore's body.

Police said someone made a fake call to have a pizza delivered and then killed Moore after he arrived. They said the motive appeared to be robbery and won't say how much money Moore had with him. A Papa John's employee told KOCO that workers aren't allowed to carry more than $20.

Moore was the father of a newborn baby girl. A longtime friend said Moore was working part-time at Papa John's to try to make extra money to buy a house and to raise his baby.
"Jeremy was a saint," said Rev. Lance Schmitz, of the Oklahoma City First Church of the Nazarene. "He's just always been a person that loved people, wanted to take care of people and cared about people and the environment."

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Prayer for the Persecuted

10Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

11"Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Matthew 5:10-11 NIV

Many of our brothers and sisters in Christ in more than sixty nations do not have the full freedom to confess Jesus as Lord in public. For example, some two thousand Christians are in prison in Eritrea (in the Horn of Africa) and thousands have lost their homes in India as a result of anti-Christian attacks. More than 100 million Christians face disinformation, discrimination and persecution only because they want to follow Jesus Christ. These brothers and sisters of ours easily feel alone—in the jungle, in a hiding place or in a prison. I would encourage you this Sunday to make your people aware of this emphasis and take some time in prayer specifically on behalf of those who are being persecuted for their faith.

The next two Sundays are designated at the International Day of Prayer for the Pesecuted Church. I would encourage you to participate in one way or another. There are many resources out there to help church leaders. A good place to begin is at