|Posted on February 16, 2018 at 2:45 AM||comments (2)|
A NOTE FROM YOUR PASTOR:
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
In February we often think of Valentine’s Day and the promise of romantic love. But the Bible tells us that love is greater than romantic love. It is self-giving in the name of Jesus Christ. To love means to lay down our lives for our friends (yes, and even for our enemies) through the power of the indwelling Christ. How can we lay down our lives? It starts in small ways. One way is through the giving of our time.
We’ve all heard the expression “time is money.” But time is the stuff of life. We give of ourselves by the giving of our time. One important way to give of our time is through listening to others, one-on-one. Jesus was a great listener. He went into villages where the sick and demon-possessed came to him for healing. Frequently he spent all day with sick people—listening to their complaints and hearing them describe their ailments. First of all, Jesus asked people what they wanted, then He listened compassionately before healing them. As individuals described their afflictions and spoke of their faith in Jesus, they felt relief. “Your faith has made you well,” Jesus told them. First He would listen, then He would heal.
Listening is also an important tool for healing and for helping us to relate to one another in a caring and compassionate way. To listen to another is often the way the Lord opens the door for us to share Christ. Christ died to ransom us from the power of sin and selfishness. He laid down His life for us. When we are born again in Jesus Christ His Spirit lives in us leading and guiding us to lay down our lives for others through something as simple as listening. We listen to others out of our love for Christ who leads us to love our neighbor.
The body of Christ, the church, is meant to be a unity where each part cares for every other part and all are built up, in love, toward the head, Jesus Christ. We see that for us to go and to listen to others offers a real way to love in the same spirit as Jesus. In addition, listening to others’ needs and concerns in church shows us how to pray for them; listening also reveals ways to help others. We find that as we pray for others and help them in different ways, we are joined together in love. Then the Spirit will open the opportunity for us to speak to them of Christ—the one who empowers our listening.
May you each grow in your love for one another as you listen and truly hear in the name of Jesus Christ. Happy Valentine’s Day!
My love be with you all in Christ,
|Posted on July 11, 2015 at 2:15 PM||comments (1)|
Jesus defined marriage: “Have ye not read, that He which made them at the beginning made them male and female, and said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they two shall be one flesh?” (Matthew 19:4-5). The Supreme Court cannot change the meaning of marriage from what Jesus, the Son of God, said that it is. Jesus words shall never pass away.
The question for Bible-believing Christians is ‘How shall we react when the laws of a country go against the word of God?’ Our first reaction is to confess our own sins. How can we talk about the speck in our neighbor’s eye when we have a log in our own. But once we take the log out of our own eye then we can see to help take the speck out of our neighbor’s eye. Let us confess our sins and seek the cleansing power of the blood of Jesus Christ.
The second thing we are called to do is to pray for revival of the churches according to God’s Word. Are we studying God’s Word and living according to its precepts and ordinances? Are we witnessing to others about the good news of Jesus Christ? Are we seeking God’s guidance by the power of the Holy Spirit?
And the third thing we need to remember is that ‘our citizenship is in heaven; from whence we also look for a savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.’ We don’t organize an anti-Supreme Court demonstration. We don’t even look toward winning the next election or passing new legislation. We obey the laws of the land even as we proclaim God’s Word. Our weapons are spiritual, not carnal. We are called to use the spiritual weapons of the Word of God and of prayer in this battle for righteousness, not the weapons of this world. We lift up our eyes to Jesus, proclaim the Word of God with love, and consider ourselves blessed ‘when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely for my sake.’
Pray for revival and that many may come to a saving knowledge of Jesus in this time when society is abandoning the Bible and failing to follow the Lord. And may God bless His children in this time of testing, and grant us His peace!