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In God We Trust

Steve Ranney, Pastor

 

If you look at any denomination of United States currency, you will find the phrase “In God We Trust.”  It first appeared on a two cent coin in 1864, and it was placed on all coins by 1909.  In 1955 President Eisenhower signed a bill making it mandatory that all currency produced by the United States government display the words “In God We Trust.”

 

There are those who are opposed, not only to having the words on our money, but also having it referred to as our nation’s motto.  It has been challenged on numerous occasions, most recently in 2014, on the grounds that putting the phrase on our currency amounts to the government “establishing” a religion.  Each time, however, the courts have ruled that this simple phrase did not rise to the level of endorsing religion but was simply a statement out of our heritage, and they allowed it to stay.

 

On the other side of the argument there is a foundation committed to defending the use of this phrase as our country’s motto and who have set up an organization that serves to stand guard over this tradition.  They raise funds to lobby congress and respond to lawsuits seeking to remove the phrase from our money and other government-sanctioned uses.

 

The one question I have, when it comes to this debate, however, is “Do we really trust in God?”  It is one thing to give lip service (or money service) to this phrase, but does it show up in the way we live our lives and the choices we make?  When worry rules our lives, do we remind ourselves that our trust is in God and turn the issue that we are worried about over to God?  Do we let fear guide our actions, or do we choose to act as one who can trust God with every area of our lives?  And, ironically, does the way we use our money show that we trust God to provide all that we need?

 

Over the next several weeks in worship, I will be talking about what it means to trust God.  Using Luke chapter twelve, we will examine what it means to trust God with our security, our relationships, our resources and our future.  If you can, please join us in worship.  If that is not possible for you on any of these weeks, you can pick up the sermons on the Tustin Presbyterian Church web site at www.tustinpresbyterian.org.  I look forward to seeing you and talking about this together.

 


 

Meet Steve Ranney

 

As we welcome our new Pastor, Steve Ranney, here is a little information to help us get to know him better:

 

  • Married to Kim Skilling who is a graduate of Princeton Seminary and is celebrating 30 years as a minister in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

  • Two sons and a daughter and two grandchildren.

  • B.A. in Ministry from Northwestern College in Roseville, Minnesota.

  • Master of Divinity from Denver Seminary.

  • Doctor of Ministry in Preaching from McCormick Seminary.

  • Ordained in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in 1991.

  • Associate Pastor of Grace Presbyterian Church of Centennial, Colorado, 1991–2006.

  • Pastor/Head of Staff of St. Mark Presbyterian Church of Ballwin, Missouri, 2006–2015.

  • Steve seeks to lead both by example and by challenging people to use the gifts that God has given them for the building up of the body of Christ.  Thus, Steve's main focus is helping each person grow up in their relationship with God so that God will be able to bless others through them.

 

 

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