God loves you . That’s it. That is really all I have to say to you. God loves you and there is nothing you can do about it. No. Matter. What. God loves you.
I wonder if some of you are thinking, Yeah, so? Aren’t you going to say something more profound than that? Aren’t you going to try to sell us on the many programs and opportunities for getting involved at the church? Aren’t you going to tell us what is right or wrong or what we should be doing with our lives? Or, perhaps some of you are thinking, how can that be true in this time and this place. A core Presbyterian understanding is that we do not choose God but that God chooses us. THAT is GOOD NEWS! That is THE Good News. We are loved by our God and there is absolutely nothing we can do about it.
It is our privilege as followers of Jesus to tell people they are loved! We get to shout it from the rooftops, we get to whisper it in baby’s ears, we get to look each other in the eye and say it matter of factly, God loves you and there is nothing you can do about it. So that is what I want you, my friends, to hear. You are loved. You are so, so, so very loved that God chooses you every single minute of every single day.
We are going to practice doing that, right here, in this church, we will share the love of God with one another. We will look each other in the eye and give this gentle reminder, You are loved by God and there is nothing you can do about it. It may make you uncomfortable. You may not like it. But I guarantee that one day someone will look you in the eye and they will say to you, God loves you and there is nothing you can do about it, and those words will break your heart wide open and you will know it is true. Those words will bury themselves within you and become part of you. Those words will become deeply part of us. And then, as those words sink into us, as they begin to mold our hearts and our minds so that we start trusting them, we will start living them by sharing our time, our energy, our resources, and our lives.
My friends, God loves you and there is nothing you can do about it! My prayer is that you know this. My hope is that you live it and the people of the North Shore and the world will know that THEY ARE LOVED.
The Rev. Kally Elliott
The First Presbyterian Church of Glen Cove was founded in 1869 to bring the message of the Christian gospel to this part of Long Island. Originally the Church was located up on Highland Road, in the vicinity of the present Episcopal Church.
In 1905 the Church was given the property where it is presently located and the church building and the manse/pastor’s house were built next to each other in 1906. Both buildings were built in the Tudor style, popular at that time. The striking architectural design, both inside and out, have created a lasting community landmark that sits on a small hillside, visible from several directions.
Inside, the sanctuary is relatively small and cozy with a single center pulpit, a magnificent pipe organ, slanted flooring which descends to the pulpit area, stained glass windows and sliding glass doors which open to a wonderfully light and airy Parish Hall. The adjacent kitchen and parlor provide easy access for meetings, Bible studies and Christian education classes. There is a full basement with many smaller rooms off the main area, making it possible for one of the other Hispanic congregations to meet there for worship and Church school.
This Church has always been mission-minded, helping to institute the North Shore Sheltering Program, which it houses during the winter months, and maintaining a strong relationship with the Interfaith Nutrition Network, as well as the Long Island Council of Churches. We are members of the InterAgency Council of Glen Cove and North Shore Clergy Association. There is a strong emphasis on peacemaking and social justice within the church and in the larger community.