Are You Still Loving Jesus?

Revelation 2:1-7 NLT says “Write this letter to the angel of the church in Ephesus. This is the message from the one who holds the seven stars in his right hand, the one who walks among the seven gold lampstands:”
“I know all the things you do. I have seen your hard work and your patient endurance. I know you don’t tolerate evil people. You have examined the claims of those who say they are apostles but are not. You have discovered they are liars. You have patiently suffered for me without quitting.”
“But I have this complaint against you. You don’t love me or each other as you did at first! Look how far you have fallen! Turn back to me and do the works you did at first. If you don’t repent, I will come and remove your lampstand from its place among the churches. But this is in your favor: You hate the evil deeds of the Nicolaitans, just as I do.”
“Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches. To everyone who is victorious I will give fruit from the Tree of Life in the paradise of God.”
Do you remember when you first came to Jesus? Do you remember your first encounter with the Savior? I can remember simply overwhelming LOVE. Love for God, love for everyone around me. It was as if I was given new eyes as well as a new heart as I saw everyone differently than I had before I met Jesus. The Word of God gives us plenty of instruction on how we are to love after coming to Jesus. We must begin at the altar, recognizing the diminishing of our relationship with God as well as others as life just hits us from all sides and circumstances. Read more…


The King’s Anointing

Have you ever had someone in authority in your life be really, truly good to you? Have you had that moment when your boss said, “You have been doing such a good job, I would like to give you a promotion and a raise?” Or when the teacher at school says, “Wow, I was really impressed by your recent paper, you may have a career in writing?” Those are wonderful experiences.
How about the opposite? Have you ever been passed over? Ignored? Embarrassed publicly? Were there people who did not want to be friends with you, people who would not talk to you? Have you ever been fired? These are not good experiences. They are situations we want to avoid in life.
Let’s look at how God thinks about us. In the Old Testament times the Holy Spirit worked through select people. When a priest went into service unto God, he had to be from the right family-the family of Jacob’s son, Levi. He had to be free from disease and if he meet the qualifications then the existing leadership would pour oil on his head to signify the coming of the Holy Spirit in his life. And it was only for a man. This was called the anointing of the priest.
In the same way the king was anointed by the prophet. Samuel went to Jesse’s house to anoint one of his sons as king of Israel. He had a meal with them and them went through them one by one looking for the one whom God had chosen. He found none. God had rejected all of Jesse’s sons. So he asks Jesse, “Are these all the sons you have?”
Jesse confesses that the youngest son is in the fields watching the sheep, and they go to get him. When he arrives God says, “This is the one; anoint him.” So David has the oil poured on his head as a symbol of the coming of the Holy Spirit in his life.
This was the working of God in Israel for many years. The prophet, priest and king received the anointing when they began their service unto God. But in Joel 2:28,29 God announces a change:
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Be Still My Soul

While reading in the Gospel of Mark. I came to the story in the 4th chapter where Jesus calms the storm. On this journey, Jesus is with them asleep on a pillow at the back of the boat. The windstorm came up and the boat began to fill with water. This could only mean one thing; they were going down!
Have you ever had a storm in your life where your soul was overwhelmed? Have you ever felt restless and alone as your boat was filling up with water quicker than your bucket could dip it out?
Well, take courage-Your answer is as close as the Word on the pillow next to you in your storm. Jesus said “Silence, be still” “Suddenly the wind stopped and there was a great calm.” (verse 39) May we rest in Him and trust in His ever-watchful eye so we can say: Be Still My Soul!


Be A Solution

The events of our days are confusing and somewhat frightening.  We are facing sickness and death like no other time in our lives.  No one knows the long term effects of being sick with the Covid-19 virus.  No one has found a cure and there is no preventive measures we can take.  If I say all we can do is trust God, someone will say that it is a cop out.  But I say to you, “Trust God”.  This is the first place to go.  God loves you and is waiting for you to cry out unto him.  He give comfort and peace, hope and assurance.  He knows what tomorrow will bring, so learn to trust him today. 
On the other hand I must learn to “Be A Solution” and not part of the problem.  I find far too many people who ignore wisdom and end up sick themselves or making someone else sick.  Don’t be a part of the problem.  Walk in wisdom.  Walk in compassion.  I talk to people every day who have cancer or heart problems or diabetes and are in danger of their lives if they were to contract Covid-19.  Yet too many people ignore masks, ignore calls to social distance, ignore washing hands.  It’s said that 80% of all cases could be eliminated if everyone would wear a mask.  That’s 80% of all cases worldwide.  Be A Solution and not part of the problem.
 
The same goes for the other cultural elephant in the room.  There have been protests for over a month over racial injustice.  I have heard people talk about civil war, about anarchy, about what should be done, could be done, and would be done if they were in charge.  I am doing a Bible study on 1 John  and I read it over and over.  LOVE ONE ANOTHER! If you love God then you will love others because God is LOVE!  The Bible is clear about this truth–the church is to be what the society is meant to be.  There is no racism in the Church of Jesus Christ.  There is no injustice, no inequality, no violence.  In fact the Bible says, “There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male or female.  For you are all one in Christ Jesus.”  (Gal 3:28).  Jesus and the disciples did not spend time in social activism.  They were not attempting to change the Roman Empire culture.  They, Jesus and his followers, were creating a church which was a model for reality.  It was a place of love, acceptance and forgiveness.  It was holy and righteous.  It was fully loving as it was fully transformational.  Jesus never left anyone the same as when he found them.  Every person was a changed person.  A more loving person.  A more forgiving person. A person more like Christ.
 
The least we can do at this time is to not be the problem.  Love your God with all your heart and soul and strength.  And love your neighbor as yourself.  Be a good Samaritan! A good American! A good disciple of Christ.  If and when God leads you into a situation where you can show the love of Christ, then show the love of Christ!  Bind up the brokenhearted.  Set at liberty the captive.  Open the eyes of the blind.  And put your actions and words to the test–Am I Being a Solution or am I Being A Part of the Problem?


Learning the Love and Respect of Marriage

As Pastor I believe God is calling us, as a church congregation to strengthen the marriage relationships in our church. He has led us to study the “Love and Respect” series on marriage and I want to use this material to create a “ministry” to marriages in the congregation. So  I will post a teaching from the “Love and Respect” series. Some weeks it will be directed to the marriage relationship in general, and some weeks to husbands or wives. I hope you will take time to read these devotional thoughts and that they will help you to apply the principles that are taught by Dr Eggerichs.

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The Flowing of the River-Report of Revival in Far East

I received an email from friends overseas this week further reporting on the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the Far East. They report that during a three day conference nearly 300 people were baptized in the Holy Spirit. These had never been taught about the Holy Spirit, of spiritual gifts and definitely had not heard of speaking in other tongues. Yet they received immediately the teaching and the Spirit came upon them. Praise be to the Lord!

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