We owe the Lord our very best. Whatever our best is that is what we owe Him. Whatever we are, whatever we do, or however we look, we owe Him our best. It may not be someone else best, but it’s about our best. It’s something that comes from within us. It’s not something that someone else should or can judge. When a lot of us were kids, we could really get in a mess of trouble if we didn’t change from our “best” clothes that were kept for church before we started to play. We had Sunday shoes that were kept strictly for Sunday and funerals. Times were hard in those days with most families (at least it was with the ones that we knew), but it didn’t matter that we would outgrow those shoes fast. They were the Sunday best. They may have not been as stylish as others, but they were our best. They didn’t have to be the most stylish, but they had to be clean and polished.
Our elders raised a bar for us to have an example. I will appreciate that fact as long as I live. We as Christians should follow their lead and do the same. We were taught to give our best. When Sunday school offering came around, we gave the nickel instead of the penny. We were taught to give Him our utmost respect in everything that we would do in life. It wasn’t to impress someone else, but it was our offering and honor to God. We were taught that you didn’t try to impress God, but to honor and respect Him in His house and in His presence. Sunday was a holy day, and we were taught to act in that manner. I don’t know how it was around your house growing up, but laundry day was not on Sunday. There was no yard mowing and no plowing that went on on Sunday. If the hay got wet, then it got wet. I don’t recall anyone every moaning the blues over it. The most that happened that could be in any way considered work was that a the cows had to be milked and a hen or rooster got its neck rung for Sunday dinner. Today, you can’t tell whether it’s Sunday or Tuesday. Life goes on. The world today gets to church if it doesn’t interfere with something else that they want to do, and if they do get there, that’s usually once a day. Of course they would be hard pressed to go more than once a day because the church doors are closed on Sunday nights in most places. Someone will have to pay that bill one of these days. Is that our best? I certainly hope not. Our best is to honor Him with everything within us and everything that is in our keeping. Whatever job that we have been given to do for Him, let’s give it our best. If we teach, let’s study the lesson before thirty minutes before we stand before the class. If it’s music, let’s make sure we have spent time in prayer and practice. If it’s sweeping the floor, let make sure it’s our best. Whatever the job or ministry, our best is called for. Our best is whatever that honors Him. Do we honor Him? If not, let’s start today!
If we all just stop for a minute, we can find many things to thank God for that He has done for us this very last week. He does something for us every single day. We just have to be mindful of His presence and His divine intervention. Good things don’t just happen. The devil doesn’t permit good things to happen to us, so be mindful of where the blessings are coming from. Jairus came to Jesus and ask that He come and heal his daughter. News came that the daughter was already dead. Jesus told Jairus to not be afraid and to believe. How many times has He intervened in life and death situations in our lives? He just asked us to not be afraid and believe. Have we gotten to that point yet?
The man in the tombs that was possessed by demons was where the devil wanted him, and then Jesus passed by. He cast the demons out, and they found the man clothed and sitting at the feet of Jesus. When Jesus does something for us, we need to sit at His feet and thank Him.
The woman at the well was a mess, and part of it was not her fault. Part of it was being born in the wrong place. Sometimes things are not our fault, but Jesus can make the difference. All the things of her past (her fault or not) were washed away with the water of life that Jesus gave her. She was so excited that she forgot her water pot and went screaming into town to come see a man who had set her free. We have to remember that we are important to Him whether anyone else cares for us or not. People may choose to shut us out, but if we come to Jesus with a sincere heart, we can count on Him to love us at all times.
What about our story? What things did we bring to Jesus? Was it all good? I doubt it. When He saves us, He gives us something new to live for. He gives us many things to thank Him for. He expects us to step up and act like we’re saved and on our ways to heaven. If we’re saved, His presence is always with us, and He intervenes to make a way where there is no way.
If you don’t know Jesus, today would be a great day to ask Him into your heart and life. He makes such a difference. Let’s take time to thank the Lord for all the things that He has done for us this past week, and we can also thank Him for all the things that He’s going to do for us.
07/29/12What does our ministry mean to us? Are we committed to it? Are we faithful to it? Do we get tired of it and start letting it become less and less in our lives? If God has called us to something, we need to keep at it until He changes our direction or until we feel like He has released us from a task. We are the only ones who know when this happens. God will tell us first. We don’t need to get ahead of God, or we don’t need to lag behind. I wonder if God ever looks down when we just stop, after He has set the wheels in motions for things, and says “Well, they certainly messed that up”. We may never know the damage that we have done when we give up.
I think of Moses when he come off the mountain, and his brother, Aaron had gone into the gold jewelry business because Moses had taken longer to get back than they thought was necessary (We don’t always know how God is moving in the leadership of the church. It’s not always maybe as we think it should be, but we need to wait and see what God has given to our leaders for us.) I can’t imagine Moses’ eyes when they fastened on that gold calf. He had the word of the Lord on two tables, and he was in such shock that this caused him to drop them only to be broken. (There are times that you think everything is going along really well, and about that time, you see a golden calf emerge.) After all that God had been to them and all the things that he had seen them through; they stopped doing what they were supposed to do. Thankfully Moses talked God into not destroying them. I would imagine that he got a bit weary of having to go to God to beg Him to overlook their stupidity. Trying to keep people in line with God’s work is a bit like herding cats. The people wasted so much precious time when they forgot who their deliverer and master was. Do we do the same thing? We get to wanting to go to a “jewelry molding party”, and we slack up on the ministry that He has given to us. Their lives depended on what God had in mind for them. The same is true of us today. We have to just keep on walking. Souls are depending on us to not get weary of what we are called to do. We can’t let people influence us, or we will end up with nothing but a golden calf. We must keep doing what He has asked us to do. In Galatians 6:9 it says, And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. According to that scripture, there is a reward if we don’t get tired.
6/17/12Once again, I sort of envy some of you being able to call or go see your dad today in order to tell him Happy Father’s Day. It is such a privilege, but if you still have your dad, you may not realize how much so. To some of us, he seemed to have all the answers that we needed. He has taught me how to do little things that as I’ve gotten older; I have forgotten a step or two. Sometimes I forget that I can’t, and I think that I’ll ask Dad how to do something or what he thinks about a situation. What I wouldn’t give to have that conversation and many more with him
I realize that everyone did not have a great dad. There are abusive fathers. It’s like mom’s giving birth. It doesn’t make them a mom anymore than fathering a child makes a man a father. Real fathers would lay down their life for their children. They will spend everything they have to make sure a child is alright. The children comes before anything else. Real fathers teach their children work ethics, honesty, how to give, how to get along with others, and most of all how to live a Christian life and raise a Christian family. Children may not act like it, but they will never forget.
If you are fortunate enough to be able to do so, make sure every day is Father’s Day by spending time and keeping in touch. There is nothing that helps to bond a father and a child like keeping in touch and keeping up with what is going on in each other’s lives. I don’t mean trying to run each other lives, but just make such each of them are always aware of knowing they have each other’s back in any given situation and at a moment’s notice.
Father’s don’t always like everything their children do, but it should not have anything to do with the love they have for them. What if God decided not to care about us every time that we displeased him? We would be in a real mess.
For those of you that still have a good dad, honor him by respecting him. You may not always agree with him, but always at listen to what he has to say (It seemed as I got older, Dad go so much smarter to the point that he was the smartest man I ever knew). For those of you who still have a father that is not much of a father, just know that you can have a heavenly Father that will love and care for you. He will listen every time that you call. For those of you who don’t still have your Dad, be thankful for the time that you had and remember only the good times today!
Dads, Happy Father’s Day!
The walk with Christ is all about faith. Without it, we are spinning our wheels. If we read the word, think about what He’s done for us, and we listen to what He’s done for others, we can’t help but increase our faith.
The word says in John 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you. That means just what it says. People will say yes but...That is where we all make the mistake of not believing. Just take His word (all of His word) for what it says. We can’t pick out part of a sentence, but as a whole, it means just what it says.
We should stop on a daily basis and think about what He has done for us. When He answers a prayer for us, we should build a memorial in our mind to keep forever. When the needs and cares come as they do on a regular basis, we can draw from all of the things He has done and know He’ll do it again. We’re going to make it. I dare say that there are very few in this congregation that God has not healed at some point and time. He’s met financial needs by making a way where there was no way. He’s saved our families, and He’s going to save the ones that we’ve asked for. We all have something that we are believing Him for. Just remember what He’s done for us already and know that He will do whatsoever we ask. That’s what the scripture above says, and He’s a God that cannot lie.
Our faith is build by listening to the testimony of others. Brother Buddy’s home and doing well. Freeman and Anne had God with them on the trip home to take care of them when the devil threw something in their path where they could have been harmed. There’s been surgery for several people in the congregation that God let them come through with great success. We’ve heard from friends that there has been healing of people that were placed on the prayer chain. God has let us be successful to raise funds for the boys and girls to go on their trip. We didn’t just raise that money on our own. God’s hand was in it. When we will, God will.
If we just have faith, there is absolutely nothing that God can’t or won’t do for us. It’s up to us. As Sister Arlene Miller says it, We either believe Him or we don’t. There is no middle ground. Let’s keep on believing and see what God will do next.
It’s Mother’s Day, and I no longer have one. I know there are many of you in that same boat. For those of you that still have a Mom, you cannot imagine what it is like to not be able to call or go see her to wish her a happy day. I still need to tell her things, and she has been gone for many years. I still need her advice on anything and everything. She had a way of making me know that everything was going to be alright regardless of the circumstances. I realize that I’m one of the lucky ones. I had the very best Mom that God could give any child. Not all children are so fortunate. As it’s been said, giving birth doesn’t necessarily make a woman a mother any more than a cat having kittens in the oven makes them biscuits. It’s hard for me to imagine that we have “mothers” that can neglect or be mean to their children or even let someone else be mean to them. If you wanted to see what a tornado without rain looked like, just let someone try to do harm to me. My mom turned into that tornado. Every woman who has children should feel that same way. My mom taught me the distinct advantage of walking and talking right. She didn’t just teach me, she showed me. She taught me to tell the truth no matter what, to be kind, to do anything that I attempted with all my might, to behave in church (that was a biggie—I didn’t know you could speak while church was going on until I was almost twelve), and to always wear clean underwear just in case I was in an accident. Moms, give your children the right upbringing. They may stray when they are older, but they will never forget what they have been taught.
If you still have your Mom, be sure and spend time with her. Call her regularly just to say hi. One day you will reach for the phone, and she won’t be there to answer.
I sure wish I could say Happy Mother’s Day Mom and she hear me, but you know, I think she knows. Fortunately, I knew what I had in a Mom and tried to show her how much I loved her. So today, if you still have her, tell her you love her!
HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!!! Pastor
In John 4:19, the story of the women at the well tells us that after the encounter with Jesus that she ran to the city telling them Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ? If we as a church seek Him until He comes in our midst, we too will cry to everyone to come see a man. People won't listen to mere words, but if we have had a close encounter with Jesus, they will pay attention. We will live in such a manner that they won't hear the words, but they will recognize the anointing that is always there after a real encounter. We all have to live on this earth, and some days it's not all fun and pleasure. In fact, most days are not, but when we get alone with Jesus, He makes such a difference. Ministering to people is not always easy. Even Jesus had stopped at the well because He was wearied with His journey. We all get weary at times with all the things that we are going through. He will walk through with us if we let Him. I wouldn't want to attempt this life without Him.
The encounter that the woman had probably didn't solve all her earthly problems, but it gave her someone to call on to change things. He will change things in our lives if we ask and believe. The woman may have had children that were in such trouble. After the encounter, she had someone to ask to help her with them and to save them. When He changes us, He can change the things around us. He can take away the things that are making our lives so difficult. I realize that we are probably not going to live without something upsetting us on a regular basis, but He will give us what we need to do His work if we trust Him. He will make a way where there is no way. He will make our lives worth living. He did this for the woman at the well, and He is no respecter of persons. Let's have an encounter with Him so that we can tell everyone that we come in contact with to come see a man.
The older I get the more real the end becomes. Maybe I need to clarify that I didn't say I was old just getting older. Now back to where I started from and that was it seems we are racing toward the finish line at an incredible rate of speed. It comes into focus what Paul was saying, forgetting those things which are behind and pressing toward the mark. Paul was saying it was important for him to forget some of the things in his past in order to take hold of the finish line in front of him. Sometimes we have a huge problem with releasing those things that have weighed us down. That takes you to Hebrews chapter twelve where we are to lay aside every weigh and sin that so often besets us. Letting go or simple being free from those things or people that hinder us from walking in total victory. Letting go or simple walking away from fear, doubt, anger, jealousy. Have you ever tried to live peacably with all people as much as possible. The Bible never said it would be easy, but it did say we could do it. It even says it is our reasonable service. If you are one of those that can't see beyond this life then you will never be reaching for anything outside of this world. That makes you a prisoner of this world with no hope of the one to come. If you are one that has focused on Jesus and the world to come then you will not have any problems turning loose of some things to reach for the world to come. Live each day like it's your last and one day you will be right. Have a blessed week and walk in health.
One thing that we can derive from Easter Sunday's message is that our children sang and talked like they knew personally the Easter experience. I have never been so blessed by a musical as I was that one. Everyone that had anything to do with the arrangement and performance of, It's All Because Of Jesus, we say thank you from the bottom of our heart. To the rest of us, let's not let Easter be a one day thing, but let's keep it alive as Christ is alive.
Let's sound it from the housetops, and sing it at work. Let's be the example Christ has called us to be. If our children can be that excited about it, so can we. Let's be the message Christ wants us to be. Invite someone to church; encourage someone; pray for and believe for someone; minister to a neighbor, a stranger, or relative. Time is running out as scripture says, summer is past and we're not saved.
Have the right attitude so that others will want what you have. If you do the right thing, the person that's watching you just might except the Lord because of you. Let's fill our church for the Lord. We then can have Easter every Sunday. May the Lord continue to bless and keep you is our prayer.