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From The Pastor

December 14, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

“Seeing God Clearly”  Several years ago, I mistook a new member’s sister, — a beautiful young woman in her late thirties, — for the woman’s mother. And I later discovered that the man standing next to her was not her father, — but her br… Read More

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From the Pastor

December 7, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

“The God Who Comes Close”  I remember hearing the story told of a woman telling about being on an airplane flying from Tucson to Phoenix. Also on that plane was a young mom and her baby daughter. And the little baby was saying, “Dada, Dada.” She ha… Read More

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From The Pastor

November 30, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From The Pastor “The Gourmet God”  Is there any more delightful moment than when two people enjoying a lovely candlelit dinner lift their glasses and bring them together in a “clink?” Believe it or not, there are some Bible verses that sound as if we are toastin… Read More

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From The Pastor

November 16, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor Thanksgiving has a long history of celebration in the United States. Starting with the Pilgrims in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1622, to George Washington declaring a day of Thanksgiving to God for the blessings of becoming a new nation, and finally, having Abraham Linc… Read More

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From The Pastor

November 9, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From The Pastor John Ortberg has a sermon entitled “It All Goes Back in the Box.” He talks about playing his grandmother in Monopoly as a boy. Grandma was ruthless. They used to play marathon games that went on for hours. Each was determined to win the battle of … Read More

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From The Pastor

November 2, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor Not too long ago, I watched the 1993 movie, “Cool Runnings” with some of the young adults from our church. The movie is about the first Jamaican bobsled team to go to the Olympics held in Calgary back in 1988. The late John Candy plays Irvin… Read More

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From The Pastor

October 26, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

 From The Pastor Last week, when I was in California with my Princeton Seminary Covenant Group, I got to experience how bad the traffic is around Los Angeles. The GPS time for our destination kept going up and up as we were driving on the highway, and I was starting to get a bit… Read More

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From The Pastor

October 19, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor The California pastor, Pastor Erwin McManus, in a sermon titled, Seizing Your Divine Moment, shares the following story about his son Aaron. One summer Aaron went to a youth camp. He was just a little guy and I was kind of glad because it was a church camp. I fig… Read More

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From The Pastor

October 12, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor I love the story of a minister and a music director who weren’t getting along. It seems that the music director had this annoying habit of intentionally choosing songs that seemed to contradict everything the pastor was saying. For example, one Sunday the pastor prea… Read More

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From The Pastor

October 5, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor After watching sales decline for three straight months at Kentucky Fried Chicken, Colonel Sanders called up the Pope to ask him for a favor. “What can I do for you?” the Pope asked. Colonel Sanders replied, “I need you to change the way everybody pra… Read More

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From the Pastor

September 28, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor I enjoyed my time at the Solanco Fair last week. It was my second fair with you, as I had just arrived here in September of last year, and everything still seemed so new and unfamiliar. This year, I soaked it all in, — the parade, the food, the people, all of it.&nbs… Read More

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From The Pastor

September 21, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor “Sweet Surrender”   There’s a great scene in the movie, “The Apostle,” starring Robert Duvall. Duvall plays a Pentecostal preacher who’s gone astray and one night he’s praying so loud his neighbors can’t sleep. One… Read More

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From the Pastor

September 14, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor The Christian writer, Anne Lamott, writes about taking her son to the beach at the Pacific Ocean in California. They spread out their towels on the sand and settled in to enjoy the day under the sun. About that same time another group of people spread out their towels righ… Read More

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From the Pastor

September 7, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor Back when I was in my church’s high school youth group, one of the things we guys learned is that one way to score big points with the girls was to be very eloquent in conversational prayer. I remember sitting one time in a circle as we were getting ready to pray as a you… Read More

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From the Pastor

August 31, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor What is the worst job you have ever had? In other words, what is the lowest you have ever stooped to earn a buck? For me, it has to be the summer after high school graduation that I spent cleaning the bathrooms at a camp in the Adirondack Mountains of New York. It was… Read More

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From the Pastor

August 24, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

Someone has said, “Freedom comes from self-control.” In other words, we learn to say “no” to some things so we can say “yes” to others. If you think about it,  that’s what self control is really all about. It’s being able to sa… Read More

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From The Pastor

August 17, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor “The Goodness of Good”  Ever notice that the word “good” can feel negative to us? I can preach a sermon on a Sunday, and afterwards, someone will say “That was good,” but the comment will leave me deflated and disappointed. Ho… Read More

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From The Pastor

August 10, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor I recently took the plunge, and purchased satellite radio for my car. I wanted to hear certain stations that I could listen to regularly without static and interference. It is also something that I can use on long trips, because now I will get reception for a desired chann… Read More

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From The Pastor

August 3, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor Mark Edmonson, a professor of English at the University of Virginia, writes, “My students are possibility junkies... they always strive to keep their options open, never to shut any possibilities down, which means they cannot commit to one thing.... Ask any American college st… Read More

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From The Pastor

July 27, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor The Harvard Grant Study was done with the Harvard classes of 1938-40. The study followed 268 male Harvard undergraduates, – those still living well into their 90’s, – and collecting data on various aspects of their lives at regular intervals, all to determine what … Read More

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FROM THE PASTOR

July 20, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor Dr. William Dement is an American sleep researcher and founder of the Sleep Research Center at Stanford University. He is a leading authority on sleep, sleep deprivation, and the diagnosis and treatment of sleep disorders such as sleep apnea and na… Read More

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From The Pastor

July 13, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor "The Joy of Honesty”  The pastor-author, Gordon MacDonald, likens preaching on Sunday mornings to walking down a long hotel corridor. He compares what we see of each other on Sundays to those doors down that long corridor. Behind the doors you pass, private real life thi… Read More

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From The Pastor

July 6, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

“Freedom in Christ" The Fourth of July is all about freedom: fireworks, flags, parades, food, and John Philip Sousa songs. It’s a wonderful blend of history and liberty, patriotism and pride. We remember and celebrate the birth of our democracy 242 years ago. The dream of what we could … Read More

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From The Pastor

June 22, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor “The Stories and Songs of Vacation Bible School"         Beginning Sunday, and throughout next week, I get the feeling that Chestnut Level is going to be a surging river of children. The current will be moving constantly, guided by… Read More

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From The Pastor

June 15, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

“Time With Dad”             A few weeks ago after church on Sunday, I traveled over to New Jersey to spend the weekend with my father. During my time there, Dad and I went out to lunch at a popular hot-dog j… Read More

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From The Pastor

June 8, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor Last Saturday I was in Greensboro, North Carolina to preach the message at the funeral of my pastor-friend, Richard Cram. It was a wonderful service of music and memories, as we thanked God for Richard’s life, and his life of faith in Jesus Christ.   Here are e… Read More

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From The Pastor

June 1, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor Once upon a time there was a devout Christian who had a cat. Every morning he would get up and spend time in devotion. He read the Bible, meditated, and then prayed. This daily ritual meant a lot to him, and as time went by, his prayer sessions grew longer and more in… Read More

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From the Pastor

May 25, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor It is always interesting to hear some of the final words of people down through history. In May 1864 in the heat of the Civil War, Union General John Sedgwick unknowingly uttered his last words, “They couldn’t hit an elephant at this dist–” He never… Read More

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From the Pastor

May 19, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor Several years ago, the church I was serving in North Carolina was going through a major building renovation and expansion. During one of our Sunday services, the fire alarm went off. As you know, a fire alarm, by design, is painfully loud, and you really can’… Read More

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From The Pastor

May 11, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor In his book,"Legacy of Sovereign Joy," John Piper writes that in 371 AD, at the age of 16, Augustine sneaked away from his mother in Carthage. During the night he sailed away to Rome, leaving her alone to her tears and her prayers. How were Monica’s [Augustine’s mo… Read More

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May 4, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From The Pastor Last month, Chestnut Level hosted the monthly Solanco Pastor’s Fellowship luncheon in our Family Life Center. It has been a joy to meet, pray, eat, and share with other brothers and sisters in Christ who are serving the Lord in their respective churches and ministries.&nb… Read More

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From The Pastor

April 27, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

"Church Without Walls" In our self-serving culture with its me first mentality, being a servant is not a popular notion. Jesus measured greatness in terms of service, — and not status. God determines our greatness by the people we serve, not by the people who serve us. And yet, it i… Read More

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From The Pastor

April 20, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor                                               &nb… Read More

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From The Pastor

April 13, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor I saw a post on the internet this week. It said, “An accountant is someone who knows the cost of everything and the value of nothing.” That is probably unfair, because with April 15 coming this Sunday, accountants are very valuable. My sister, Ka… Read More

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From The Pastor

April 6, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor Frederick Buechner compels us to stand up and pay attention with these words: "It is absolutely crucial, therefore, to keep in constant touch with what is going on in your life’s story and to pay close attention to what is going on in the stories of others’ lives. IF God… Read More

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From The Pastor

March 29, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

"Stay Until the End”  With the Miami Heat trailing 94-89 in a potentially decisive Game 6 of the 2013 NBA Finals, many Heat fans at American Airlines Arena decided they'd head out early. You know, beat the traffic, -- no need to stick around to watch the last 30 seconds of a tough l… Read More

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From The Pastor

March 23, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

“Faith In Between” Holy Week is bracketed by shouting crowds. On the front end of Holy Week is Palm Sunday when we remember the day Jesus entered the city of Jerusalem. Luke tells us that the crowd that welcomed him that day “praised God in loud voices for all the miracles th… Read More

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From The Pastor

March 16, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From The Pastor There is a man who paints portraits on Plexiglas mirrors. He uses mirrors so that when people look at the painted image they will see that their own reflection has become part of the portrait.   As we continue in this season of Lent, we remember some of Jesus' last w… Read More

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From the Pastor

March 9, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor  As I write this, the snow is falling (and accumulating) outside. Can I just tell you that it is NOT snowing in North Carolina! Weather reports vary, saying we should expect 5-9 inches of snow. The children are out of school and church activities have been cancel… Read More

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From The Pastor

March 2, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

I’m sending this from Houston, Texas as our church and First Presbyterian Church, Strasburg are working together on Hurricane Harvey relief and restoration for some of the people here. It has been a wonderful week of service, fellowship, mission and outreach. You should be very proud of our ch… Read More

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From the Pastor

February 23, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

With the news of Billy Graham’s death this week at the age of 99, much of the focus has been on his long life as an evangelist.  The impact he has had on millions of people across the globe as a messenger of the good news of Jesus Christ is something that we may never see again.  It … Read More

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From The Pastor

February 16, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From The Pastor Sometimes we are confused by the season of Lent.  And we will say things like, "That’s a Catholic thing isn’t it?" The answer is, Lent is not a Catholic thing.  It’s a Christian thing, even though not all Christians make an annual practice of observing Le… Read More

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From The Pastor

February 9, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

From the Pastor A trapeze artist was being interviewed when the reporter asked about the importance of the net underneath him. The trapeze artist said, “Obviously, it keeps me safe, but let me tell you what it really does for me.  It makes me a better performer.” The reporter ask… Read More

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From The Pastor

February 2, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

  From the Pastor My guess is that the players on the Philadelphia Eagles and the New England Patriots in Sunday’s Super Bowl understand all too well what it’s like to endure suffering and hardship in pursuit of a great dream. The NFL season is a grind, a battle of attr… Read More

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From The Pastor

January 26, 2018 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

When Tampa Bay Buccaneer quarterback, Jameis Winston first came into the league, he met with Roger Goodell, the Commissioner of the National Football League.  Winston had already had a great collegiate career, but with some notable troubles of his own making off the field. When Winston walked i… Read More

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