Bishop's Corner

The centerpiece of time

1/2/2015

God, it seems you’ve been our home forever; long before the mountains were born, long before you brought earth itself to birth, from "once upon a time" to "kingdom come" — you are God. You’ve got all the time in the world — whether a thousand years or a day, it’s all the same to you. (Psalm 90:1-2,4; The Message) By BISHOP ROBERT HAYES Jr. As you replace your 2014 calendars with new ones for 2015, let me pass on a few thoughts about a related subject, seldom discussed. The days and months ...


One knee up, one knee down

12/12/2014

"They entered the house and saw the child in the arms of Mary, his mother. Overcome, they kneeled and worshipped him. Then they opened their luggage and presented gifts: gold, frankincense, myrrh." (Matthew 2:11, The Message) By BISHOP ROBERT HAYES Jr. So many wonderful segments of the Christmas story have survived the centuries, but the one I like best is the narrative about the three wise men. Scriptures do not go into great detail about who they were, but there are a few facts that help us ...


God welcomes your call of thanksgiving

11/21/2014

Some stories stay with you forever. One that I will remember always is the wonderful account of a man who attempted to call the editor of a large metropolitan newspaper. The editor worked in an exclusive, private office. All incoming phone calls were screened. To reach the editor, a caller first had to speak with a secretary in an outer office, then a subordinate in an inner office, and finally the personal administrative assistant to the editor. When the man called, the secretary in the outer ...


Living in the tension

10/31/2014

"I, therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, making every effort to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace." (Ephesians 4:1-3) By BISHOP ROBERT HAYES Jr. Today I feel compelled to address what I believe is the most volatile issue in U.S. culture and within our denomination: human sexuality. More specifically: homosexuality and...


Desire a radiant faith

10/10/2014

"Rejoice in the Lord always and, again, I say: Rejoice." (Philippians 4:4) By BISHOP ROBERT HAYES JR. How inspiring to see a devoted follower of Christ meet life’s challenges with a cheerful outlook and determination to overcome any circumstance! When you encounter people like that, your own burdens seem lighter and you gain incentive to go another round. But how discouraging to see an equally dedicated disciple engulfed in hopelessness! I have seen both during my ministry. The difference ...


Wonderfully made

9/19/2014

"I’ve concluded that whatever God does, that’s the way it’s going to be, always. No addition, no subtraction. God’s done it and that’s it. That’s so we’ll quit asking questions and simply worship in holy fear. Whatever was, is. Whatever will be, is. That’s how it always is with God." (Ecclesiastes 3:14-15, The Message) By BISHOP ROBERT HAYES JR. Let me begin with a confession: The older I get, the less patience I have with people who want to argue about the existence of God. What world are...


The joy of being called

8/29/2014

"As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. ‘Come, follow me,’ Jesus said, ‘and I will send you out to fish for people.’ At once they left their nets and followed him.’" (Matthew 4:18-20, NIV) By BISHOP ROBERT HAYES JR. Bill is a dear friend who, like me, enjoys memorable quotations. Since my college days, I have collected a great number of books that contain ...


The dog days are upon us

8/8/2014

"Brace up your minds, (and) then, keep cool." — 1 Peter 1:13, Moffatt Translation By BISHOP ROBERT HAYES JR. Greeks and Romans first used the phrase "dog days," referring to the hot, sultry period between July 24 and Aug. 24. They associated the term with that time of year because that’s when Sirius, the "Dog Star," begins appearing at sunrise. The ancient peoples believed that bright star’s heat combined with the Sun’s to cause the scorching temperatures and scarcity of rain. You don’t have to ...


Mountains I am willing to climb

7/18/2014

"Now give me this mountain."—Joshua 14:12 By BISHOP ROBERT HAYES JR. Psychologists verify that most of us barely scratch the surface of our talents and abilities when confronted with difficult tasks. We seldom "go all out" for anything, rarely giving our whole selves in great enterprise. Now and then something does come along that stirs our passions — or backs us into a corner — and only then do we expend ourselves in total commitment. It’s not only some youths who claim boredom and "...


See, I am making all things new! (Revelation 21:5)

6/27/2014

2014 Episcopal Address to the Oklahoma Annual Conference By Bishop Robert Hayes Jr. I have here a letter dated Feb. 15, 1888. When I traveled recently to our church in Guymon, in Oklahoma’s Panhandle, where the people were celebrating the church’s 125th anniversary, I learned about this letter. It was written by one of the first Methodist families to make a home in that area, in what then was called "No Man’s Land." The author of the letter was Mary Westmoreland Hitch. Along with her ...


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