Pastor Corner
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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




October 12, 2016, 11:12 AM

You have it for others...

"We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us." - Romans 12:6 (NIV 2011)

The last two weeks have been different.  Several things have happened, some good, some bad, basically life has happened.  So you may ask, what's so different about that?  Glad you asked.  Well, the last two weeks I have walked up to my office door on Wednesday morning to find a simple piece of paper taped to my door.  These pieces of paper have not changed the events that have taken place in our family, church, school, etc.  However, these pieces of paper have caused things to be different.  Why?  You see, these pieces of paper have had encouraging words printed upon them...scripture that has reminded me that God is with me.  I have not forgotten this truth, but it's great to be reminded that it is a "reality" not just words that we read.  The other great part of these pieces of paper have been the hand written words that have reminded me that someone is praying for me...no name, just someone.  Powerful!

Romans 12:6 state that we are given different gifts.  In fact, later in verse 8, encourgement is mentioned as one of those specific gifts.  What I want to stress, however, is that "we have" or literally "having" means that there is no doubt about whether or not each of us have gifts.  The question is whether or not we choose to use them.  In reality, using your gift shouldn't be a question either, especially in the context of what Paul is writing. Each of us has a tremendous impact as we use our gifts that God has given us...but we have to be willing to use those gifts.  And, just as I have shown above, it can be something small that has a huge impact to someone else.  SInce you "have it," consider how you can use your gifts TODAY to help those around you.

In Christ,

Bro. Grant


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