Pastor’s Pen

Boasting in our arrogance in 2020 vs. Resting in God’s Providence in 2020

Hello Church Family:
How does your loving Heavenly Father want you to enter every day of this new decade? He calls us to live lives in 2020 fully believing that with great purpose He is personally managing this universe with absolute caring control. He calls us to trust that He is completely in charge of this world in 2020 even though His hand may be hidden from us, He calls us to live like His rule of this universe is absolute. Are you entering 2020 with plans that acknowledge that the everywhere, always present power of God is active in your life? Are you making plans for this next decade trusting that His hand still upholds heaven and earth with all of His creation in His power? Are you with great boldness taking steps in your life that acknowledges God’s complete authority over jobs and family, wealth and poverty, rain and drought, health and sickness, food and drink? Are you enjoying that all of these are being taken care of for you not by chance but by your Heavenly Father’s, loving, powerful right hand?

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Does the start of 2020 find you spiritually renewed or spiritually sleepy?

Hello Church Family!
As we look to begin 2020 this next week do you find yourself spiritually sleepy or spiritually renewed? Are you struggling with spiritual stagnancy, sluggishness or dullness? Do you run through life not desiring or pursuing or enjoying the presence and promises of God or the loving relationships that He has blessed you with within the community of your church? Do you wake up in the morning and move through the day without being convicted of your sin by the Holy Spirit? This is a very difficult place to be. I do not know any believer that enjoys being in this place of spiritual glum. It is sad, depressing and many times hopeless.

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Satan never saw it coming… the Incarnation

Hey Church Family: What an amazing thought! The Son for God, The Logos, The Alpha and the Omega, The I Am, The Creator of the Cosmos, dominions, rulers and authorities and all things, The One foreknown before the foundation of the world, The One having neither beginning of days nor end of life came to Earth for us, was sent to us, was given to us, was revealed to us, putting on flesh, one Christmas morning 2000 years ago.
 
The Incarnation of the eternal Son of God into, the God-Man, named Jesus, blindsided Satan. He never saw it coming. So, we know that Satan is not all-knowing, right. In Satan’s pridefulness he could not have imagined that The Creator of the Cosmos, Son of God, would be coming to Earth to be born to a virgin in a lowly manger. Satan could have never imagined that God Himself would humble Himself to the point of becoming fully man. He never saw it coming that God loved His people with that kind of radical love.

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When do you forgive someone’s grievous sin against you?

Happy Friday GCT:
Great news… as believers we are fully forgiven. Those of us who are children of God, regardless of background, regardless of current struggles, are fully forgiven. All of our sin, past, present, and future, has been absorbed on the cross of Jesus Christ.
 
So, how do we practice that same forgiveness with other people around us? You know those difficult times when you find yourself having been sinned against by your friends or husband or wife or the next-door neighbor? The relationship that you once enjoyed and loved that was filled with mutual care and acceptance is now broken, fractured, frustrated and filled with resentment. This brokenness is a result of something they said or did not say or did or did not do. There may have been a difference of opinion or purpose that created a frustration that then created this conflict. It is during this challenging moment that a root of bitterness can easily take root and create great division and even death of a relationship. Oh my! This is never a pleasant place to be. So, what are we called to do in a relationship as a follower of Christ when we were the ones sinned against? How and when do we practice Gospel forgiveness when others are slow to repent or don’t repent at all?

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Are you a Peacemaker or a Peacefaker?

Hey there church family! As we continue our series on “How the Gospel Changes us,” let us consider how broken and fractured relationships lead us away from experiencing the fullness of the Gospel.

This Christmas season with who do you find yourself in conflict? We live in a world where there is constant opportunity for conflict, fights, struggles, bitterness, aggression, disunity. Husband and wife, friendships, co-workers, neighbors, children and parents are all vulnerable to daily conflict and disunity. Our culture is somewhat toxic as it loves to see and encourage the tearing down of others. We tend to wound and attack others quickly whether there has been an injustice or not. We do not seek to give charitable judgment or the simple benefit of the doubt. We do not seek forgiveness or reconciliation. We ignore, avoid, smile and move on without any desire to live out the command that Jesus has given us to be Peacemakers. Instead we have a tendency to embrace the culture around us of peace-breaking and peace-faking. We cannot be a people, we cannot be a disciple or a child of God without us actively pursuing peacemaking in all relationships.

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What does gratitude look like today?

Hey wonderful church family. Have you ever thought about how interesting it is that our society so quickly can go from a day devoted to thankfulness and gratitude to the very next day that declares that you need more, more, more so go, go, go and get more stuff that you don’t have. Our society says don’t be thankful for too long. One day is enough! The struggle of living in a consumerist society is real. Our society says reach past what you have right now and focus on what you do not have. This is the heart of ingratitude. Ingratitude says things are never as good as they should be for me. Ingratitude focuses on the next thing instead of celebrating what you have been given. Ingratitude blinds us to the never ending blessings in our life. Ingratitude has as its center – me. Ingratitude worships self and loves entitlement thinking that I deserve this. Ingratitude makes us cosmic pessimists in life which makes us unable to be content with the gifts that have been given or even recognize those gifts. Ingratitude robs us of joy, delight and worship in the One true God who is always good and His steadfast endures forever. So, God is not joking when He says over and over “give thanks to the LORD for HE is good and His steadfast love endures forever” (2 Chronicles 16:34).

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