Pastor Corner
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January 19, 2017, 2:25 PM

He is not going to plead...


"Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me."  Isaiah 6:8

Ever read a verse or portion of the Bible for "first time" eventhough you haver read it several times before?  How many times have we read this verse? Yet, just a few days ago I got the sence that I had read it for the first time as I felt I had been missing a simple yet import point.  So many times I had read this as the call of Isaiah, but it is so much more.

The way that it is written has Isaiah standing by, hearing a conversation.  He hears the thought, or need, expressed about workers going out in the name of the Lord.  Think about it for just a momment and picture Isaiah standing up in response to a request that he has overheard. He simply hears a need and states, "send me."  God did not coerce or plead with him, yet Isaiah answered the call to go for God.  

Oswald Chambers wrote, "The call of God is not for the special few, it is for everyone.  Whether or not I hear God's call depends upon the state of my ears."  Are we listening for God to call so that we can answer, saying, "here am I, send me.?"  I hope we are, because He will not beg and plead.  He may simple go on to the next person who is listening.

In Christ,

Bro. Grant

 




January 2, 2017, 11:13 PM

Of what are you not ashamed...


"For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile." - Romans 1:16 (NIV 2011)

Having watched a great deal of football games over the holidays, I have seen my fair shair of "interesting fans."  I'm sure you have seen the same ones.  What causes some of these people to do these things...painted faces, bare bellies, crazy hair, interesting clothing, etc.? They love their team.  They are not ashamed of their team.  Granted, some of them are not ashamed only because their team is doing well this time.  However, some would do it just because they love their team; no matter the score...even if their team goes scoreless.  Truly, they are not ashamed.

These fans have something that we, as believers, should take to heart.  They believe that their team has a chance even when the odds are stacked against them.  Why? Because they believe in their team.  They believe that their team is the best, even when they aren't.  Why? Because they believe in their team.  Truly, they are not ashamed of their team.

What would happen if we took that attitude to the Gospel?  Then, that would be exactly what we are being told to do in Romans 1:16.  We are not to be ashamed of the Gospel...ever.  No matter the odds; no matter whether we think we are doing good; no matter we believe things are going right...ever.  We are not to be ashamed of the Gospel. Why?  Because it has the power of God behind it, not us.  It is not our power but God's power that drives this.

Why are we unashamed of a team that does us nothing but provide us, at most, a temporary joy when they win?  We should be unashamed of a Gospel that gives us hope of eternal life.  And, if we are not ashamed, we should share it with someone else. After all, we have no problems sharing who our favorite team is!

In Christ, 

Bro. Grant




December 6, 2016, 8:55 AM

Pray for the workers...


"Then he said to his disciples, 'The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.'" - Matthew 9:37-38 (NIV 2011)

How many times have these words been used as a platform to pray for or send missionaries? While I'm not complaining, as I see that this is completely appropriate, I do think that we might be missing the full thrust of this Scripture.  Let me share just a couple of thoughts as to why I feel this way.

First, many times, unknowingly maybe, we limit the idea of "workers" to those that are sent, literally those that are going away.  We overlook the workers that stay in the community, our own church workers.  Consequently, there is a lack of appreciation at times for the incredible labor that goes on behind the scene and throughout the community.

Second, for both missionaries far and near (including local church workers) we forget to continue to pray for them.  We take this Scripture to mean that we need to pray for people to step and work for the Lord.  Once the numbers are there, we step back and say "thank you Lord," and stop praying.  Sure, we are to ask the Lord to send out workers, but we need to CONTINUE to pray for those workers.  Our task of praying does not stop with the "sending."  In fact, I would submit that it is only beginning.  This goes for our missionaries abroad and our workers here at home...they need our prayers.

We are in the middle of Lottie Moon Week of Prayer of International Missions.  Every day you have the privilege to pray for a missionary family simply by following this link https://www.imb.org/lottie-moon-christmas-offering-week-prayer/. Each missionary has asked for specific prayers as they continue their work.  Will you CONTINUE to pray, even after they have been sent?

In Christ,

Bro. Grant




November 16, 2016, 11:30 AM

Doing Good...


"For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." - Ephesians 2:10 (NIV 2011)

Time and time again I have seen God go before me and prepare a path of work that needs to be done.  I'm grateful that He does this, as this makes things much easier for me and those around me.  According to Ephesians 2:10, in the context of how we are saved (by grace through faith), I find it incredibly important that God teaches us the importance of doing good works.  However, just as important is doing the good works that "he has prepared."

Many of us are probably doing "good things" but are wasting our time.  Now how is that possible?  If it "good" how could it be wasting time?  You might be wasting time in several ways. Maybe it wasn't what God wanted you to be working on at that particular time, or maybe at all.  Or, maybe the "good thing" you are doing is only good in your eyes and not good in the eyes of the Lord.  Evaluate your work according to God's word, not your desires.  Or, maybe the "good thing" is only good according to the world.  Do I need to go any further?  

We were created to do good works...those works, IN PARTICULAR, that God has prepared.  I know it is difficult to discern these works at times, and even harder to follow through with these works.  However, God will reward your perseverance and diligence.  This being said, I would like to thank all those who participated in our one day mission on the 12th.  This may have been the most ambitious, in regards to projects, for a one-day event.  However, you demonstrated God's love through hard work, kind words, service to each other (including great food)...all the while "doing good."  Thank you!!

In Christ,

Bro. Grant 




October 27, 2016, 8:43 AM

Getting rooted in God...


"...if you waste your time in overactive energies instead of getting into soak on the great fundamental truths of God's Redemption, you will snap  when the strain comes; but if this time of soaking before God is being spent in getting rooted and grounded in God on the unpractical line, you will remain true to Him whatever happens." - Oswald Chambers, My Upmost For His Highest

The above quote was part of my devotional time this past week in connection with John 18:36, "My Kingdom is not of this world."  As I was reading, I couldn't help by think about how often we get caught up in the busyness of life and lose focus on what is important.  Because we are so concerned about what is happening or what might happen, we miss what has already happened...the fact that Christ has died for our sins and was raised from the dead for all eternity.

To many folks in our fast paced world, that last statement sounds irrelevant to our world.  Those words only apply to a time long ago or are part of a make believe story.  That's exactly what Satan wants us to think.  He wants us to get so busy that we don't have time to really sit down and think through what such a simple statement truly means to us today.  If we stay busy, then we won't realize the fundamental truths of God's Redemption.  If Christ died for my sins and is now alive, there I have eternal life; I have a God that loves me; I have a God that cares about what is going on even now; I have a God that actually knows what is going on; I have a God that understands the strains in life even when I don't; I have a God that sees a bigger picture than I do...and on and on and on.

As a nation, we must understand the same fundamental truths.  Even as we approach an important time in our country's history, God knows exactly what is transpiring.  He understands fully the ramifications of our decisions.  But guess what, He will not be caught off guard.  He will not be surprised.  But, He will still be in control.  Therefore, let us not "waste our time in overactive energies" but, instead spend this time "getting rooted and grounded in God" as we will need Him, no matter the outcome.

In Christ,

Bro. Grant


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