This is where you will find out what's going on at our church. The Monthly News, Weekly Sermons, Calendar of Events and Special Notices. For more information about location, staffing and services, visit OUR WEBSITE. Also, go to that website to view the older sermons - they are available there as links and there are about 200 to choose from!

Thursday, January 12, 2017

From the Pastor...





God needs men who will believe Him for the impossible … who operate with confidence in God’s ability to do the miraculous … who will pray and proclaim like this … who understand that bringing spiritual awakening to a city is just as possible in our day as it was in Ezekiel’s. He is the same resurrecting God.

Bodies with No Breath

But there was one final part of the physics lesson that Ezekiel needed to see.
So I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and behold, a rattling; and the bones came together, bone to its bone. And I looked, and behold, sinews were on them, and flesh grew and skin covered them; but there was no breath in them.
Then He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “Come forth from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they come to life.”’” So I prophesied as He commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they came to life and stood on their feet, an exceedingly great army (vv. 7-10).
Every man of God has seen this equation before—seemingly healthy bodies, but no breath. No life.
We know people like this. We call them “lost” people. Paul said they are “dead in [their] trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1). This, of course, was all of us until the Breath came.
There are also churches like this. Mechanically functioning, programs and bells and whistles in every direction, but no life. They self-proclaim that there is life, but discerning believers know something is lacking.
The greatest heartache of such churches is that they have zeal but no power. They give a false impression to a desperately thirsty world that they are flowing with living water, but lives are not being changed. People are being sanitized on the outside but not sanctified on the inside.
Jesus was even harsher. He called such religion “whitewashed tombs … full of dead men’s bones” (Matthew 23:27).

What About Us?

Do we see this reality? Do we recognize the difference?
Or do we go on, propping up lifeless corpses, hoping our church can get just a little bigger and look just a little better than the one down the street, so we can feel good about our activity?
Do you long for the Breath?
Are you that singular prophet, in the middle of a valley of dry bones, who has the spiritual tenacity to finish the job? To pray and proclaim and believe until the Breath of God comes? Slowly at first, but then sweeping like a north wind into your family, your church, your community, and our nation? Until God comes and brings spiritual awakening to the land, and raises from the graves an “exceedingly great army”?
Then all the world will know that only One could do such a thing—no man, no church, no human machinery. “‘Then you will know that I, the LORD, have spoken and done it,’ declares the LORD” (v. 14), and He will be adored.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

From the Pastor...


The following is John Wesley's Covenant Prayer, a prayer of surrender used by British Methodists in a covenant service on the first weekend of the New Year.


I am no longer my own, but thine.
Put me to what thou wilt, rank me with whom thou wilt.
Put me to doing, put me to suffering,
Let me be employed for thee or laid aside for thee,
exalted for thee or brought low for thee.
Let me be full, let me be empty.
Let me have all things, let me have nothing.
I freely and heartily yield all things to thy pleasure and disposal.
And now, O glorious and blessed God,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
thou art mine, and I am thine.
So be it.
And the covenant which I have made on earth,
let it be ratified in heaven.
Amen.
SaveSave

Saturday, December 24, 2016

From the Pastor...


What Does Jesus Want for Christmas?
                       
 by John  Piper

           
What does Jesus want this Christmas? We can see the answer in his prayers. What does he ask God for? His longest prayer is John 17. Here is the climax of his desire: "Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am" (v. 24).

Among all the undeserving sinners in the world, there are those whom God has "given to Jesus." These are those whom God has drawn to the Son (John 6:44, 65). These are Christians - people who have "received" Jesus as the crucified and risen Savior and Lord and Treasure of their lives (John 1:12; 10:11, 17-18; 20:28; 6:35; 3:17). Jesus says he wants them to be with him.

Sometimes we hear people say that God created man because he was lonely. So they say, "God created us so that we would be with him." Does Jesus agree with this? Well, he does say that he really wants us to be with him! Yes, but why? Consider the rest of the verse. Why does Jesus want us to be with him?
. . . to see my glory that you [Father] have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. 

That would be a strange way of expressing his loneliness. "I want them with me so they can see my glory." In fact it doesn't express his loneliness. It expresses his concern for the satisfaction of our longing, not his loneliness. Jesus is not lonely. He and the Father and the Spirit are profoundly satisfied in the fellowship of the Trinity. We, not he, are starving for something. And what Jesus wants for Christmas is for us to experience what we were really made for - seeing and savoring his glory.

Oh, that God would make this sink in to our souls! Jesus made us (John 1:3) to see his glory. Just before he goes to the cross he pleads his deepest desires with the Father: "Father, I desire - I desire! - that they . . . may be with me where I am, to see my glory." 
But that is only half of what Jesus wants in these final, climactic verses of his prayer. I just said we were really made for seeing and savoring his glory. Is that what he wants - that we not only see his glory but savor it, relish it, delight in it, treasure it, love it? Consider verse 26, the very last verse:
I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them. 

That is the end of the prayer. What is Jesus' final goal for us? Not that we simply see his glory, but that we love him with the same love that the Father has for him: "that the love with which you [Father] have loved me may be in them." Jesus' longing and goal is that we see his glory and then that we be able to love what we see with the same love that the Father has for the Son. And he doesn't mean that we merely imitate the love of the Father for the Son. He means the Father's very love becomes our love for the Son - that we love the Son with the love of the Father for the Son. This is what the Spirit becomes and bestows in our lives: Love for the Son by the Father through the Spirit.

What Jesus wants most for Christmas is that his elect be gathered in and then get what they want most - to see his glory and then savor it with the very savoring of the Father for the Son.

What I want most for Christmas this year is to join you (and many others) in seeing Christ in all his fullness and that we together be able to love what we see with a love far beyond our own half-hearted human capacities.

This is what Jesus prays for us this Christmas: "Father, show them my glory and give them the very delight in me that you have in me." Oh, may we see Christ with the eyes of God and savor Christ with the heart of God. That is the essence of heaven. That is the gift Christ came to purchase for sinners at the cost of his death in our place. 

 

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

From the Pastor...

What is Christmas?

Is it just a day at the end of the year?
A holiday filled with merry good cheer?
A season for presents - both taking and giving?
A time to indulge in the pleasures of living?
Are we lost in a meaningless, much-muddled haze?
Have we closed our eyes to God and His love?
And turned our eyes from "The Bright Star Above?"
Oh, Father in Heaven, renew and restore
The real, true meaning of Christmas once more.
So we can feel in our hearts again that
"Peace on Earth, Good Will to Men"
Is still a promise that man can claim 
if he but seeks it in Thy name.

Helen Steiner Rice

♰♰♰♰♰♰♰♰

FIVE POINTS for the growing Christian

1. READ YOUR BIBLE DAILY (1 Peter 2:2)
Read your Bible daily, if you would be strong
To witness for Jesus and overcome wrong;
"I'm busy" you say, as you lay it aside
But when you neglect it you'll surely backslide.

2. KEEP LOOKING TO JESUS (Colossians 3:17)
Keep looking to Jesus, He never can fail
And walk in His footsteps in every detail;
The world's bright attractions will fade from sight
When you look to Jesus, your Saviour and Light.

3. PRAY WITHOUT CEASING (Luke 11:9)
Pray without ceasing, you can count  on Him
Who cleanses and keeps you a victor o'er sin:
There's nothing so great that our God cannot do,
And nothing so small that He won't do for you.

4. CONFESS HIM TO OTHERS (Matthew 10:32)
Confess Him to others, be bold for your King
To those who are living in darkness and sin;
What help can you better to all recommend,
Than this blessed Jesus - the needy one's Friend?

5. DO SOMETHING FOR JESUS (James 1:22)
Do something for Jesus, He did all for you,
Your joy is complete when His will you do;
So seeking to please Him through each new day
His presence shall gladden each step of your way.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

From our Region Minister...

 "Glory to God in the highest . . . . and on earth peace to all in whom he delights.” (REB) 

        The ultimate correction of the human heart occurs in the receiving of Christ.   The heart left to its own devices can sometimes reach heights of visible good, but also drift into evil places.   These last few months I have been struck by how easily it is for the human heart to drift into hatred.   How much fear is spawned in people, and how from fear hatred grows against those who cause that fear.  And in a great chaotic circular motion fear and anger both produce each other and run together.   If we as fallen human beings did not fear so quickly, would our hatred of each other grow so much?   To paraphrase Dallas Willard, when we cannot force our will on another person, we turn to frustration, and then to anger.    I would add that anger then solidifies itself into hatred and we begin to believe others are not created in God’s image as much as we ourselves.   Frustration, plus hatred, destroys both internal peace within the individual and external peace among people and peoples.   And hopefully at this point, we beg God to intervene. 
        The Gospel, the good news is that God in the person of His son, intervened and is intervening in the tragedy of human experience and actions.   The Incarnation, and a Triune love, breaking into human history is the remedy and redemption for our propensity toward evil.   Jesus’ birth is an invitation to grace and transformation, here and now, looking forward to the ultimate peace of being eternally in God’s presence.    I believe if the human heart can be consumed by hatred, in Jesus name how much more it can be consumed by grace.   If the more we who live within the borders of Christ kingdom allow a heavenly authority to mold our hearts, there will be less room for fear, anger and hatred.
        Jesus is born into a very messy complicated world where sin abounds.   But Jesus’ birth sets the  boundary on evil's affect and sin’s fruit.    The good news is God has not left us in bondage to our baser nature, but has sent His son to restore in us the full Image of God, in the likeness of his Son, as we work to live out Christ’s character within human history.     Peace, salvation, transformation, wholeness is all there when we receive the same Christ the shepherds greeted.  If we can just live out the way of Christ, how different would our world be?  
        All glory to God, Father, Son, Holy Spirit, for you haven’t left us alone, or to our own devices.   

Merry Christmas, in Jesus name, 

Dale

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

From the Pastor...

Consider the condition of the church today, with all its worldly influences, its worldly entertainment, its lightness and frivolity, its focus on success and money. And think of the absence of godly sorrow over sin, the lack of self-denial and devotion to Christ. It’s clear that the church today has lost its authority, drained of its spiritual power long ago.

Christ isn’t coming for a church that has become a den of robbers. He’s not coming for a church that’s led by CEOs but by the Holy Ghost. The church he’s coming for has rejected all foolishness and every false gospel. It’s a church where pulpits are filled with fearless prophets and watchmen who preach as oracles of God and not from borrowed messages. And it is filled with sanctified saints who shun the love of this world and have not let it take hold of their hearts.
From - The Great and Final Separation by David Wilkerson. November 14, 2016

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

WILL YOU FINISH AS AN INSTRUMENT FOR REVIVAL?


“He just didn’t end well” is a common phrase. Sadly, how a man finishes his life may dramatically define him.
Most men I know want to go out with a bang, not a whimper. So how can our latter days be even more significant than our former?
Take a lesson from David in Psalm 71, which is subtitled by David, “Prayer of an Old Man for Deliverance.”
Keep COMING
Be to me a rock of habitation
to which I may continually come (v. 3 NASB).
David, the shepherd-leader, often used the picture of a rock or fortress to describe his relationship with the Lord. But here he described the constant nature of this protection.
He asked the Lord to be a rock of “habitation.” This means a dwelling place, a permanent place. And, David promised that he would “continually come.”
When we are not careful, we begin to look to other things as the source of our life and enabling. David reminds us to make our dependence so consistent that it looks like our permanent location.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if people were saying of us in the closing chapters of our life, “He lives in the presence of Christ!”
Keep PRAISING
You are my hope;
O Lord GOD, You are my confidence from my youth.
By You I have been sustained from my birth;
You are He who took me from my mother’s womb;
my praise is continually of You (vv. 5-6).
David understood God’s contribution to every stage of his life. And he reminded his soul often of what God had done. “Bless the LORD, O my soul,” he said in Psalm 103:1, “and all that is within me, bless His holy name.”
This looking back made him grateful, and his gratitude erupted in not momentary, but sustained praise. In fact, he said in v. 14 that he would “praise You yet more and more.”
The oldest believers shouldn’t be the grumpiest, but the greatest. They should be well educated in a lifestyle of praise.
Keep TELLING
Even when I am old and gray,
O God, do not forsake me,
until I declare Your strength to this generation,
Your power to all who are to come (v. 18).
David knew that his highest and best use as an older man was to give those behind him a perspective they could not possibly have on their own. He felt responsible to declare to them the glories of trusting in God and experiencing His power.
He wanted them to learn how to come to the Father, letting Him be their strength and trust, so that increased praise would swell to the One to whom it rightfully belongs. The older he became, the more he longed for God to be famous among the next generation.
Keep SEEKING
You who have shown me
many troubles and distresses
will revive me again (v. 20).
David knew that God alone was the source of continuous reviving, not only for his life but for everyone. He kept asking for and seeking greater measures of revival in his own life and nation right up until his last breath.
Can I tell you a tale of two men?
One of the finest pastors and leaders I know in Arkansas, Don Moore, is 80 or so, and it seems to me he is at the pinnacle of his passion … and his joy. Before the recent illness of his wife curtailed his traveling, he was speaking across the state, calling people to cry out for revival and awakening in our day. At last count, he had mobilized 1700 senior adults to pray every day for revival!
Sid Carswell was a former missionary/pastor who was in our church. For the last 18 months of his life until he died, he came every single day at noon to the church to pray, with any who would join him, for revival and awakening in our day.
Sid’s knees and hips were so bad it was excruciating even to walk. He fell while leaving from this prayer time and broke his hip, but when I visited him at his home before his death, he was still coming, still praising, still telling, and still seeking!
Dear Sustainer of my soul, give me the grace and strength to keep coming, keep praising, keep telling, and keep seeking more and more, all the way to the end. May increasing days give You increasing praise. Squeeze from my meager life every ounce of usefulness available, and may my last breath declare Your glory!

Monday, October 31, 2016

From the Pastor...

Since we've been talking about prayer so much lately, and always... here's a good book from a Pastor who has based his years of ministry solidly on the foundation of prayer. It's a wonderful reminder to us of our responsibility and the benefits we reap through prayer. (The church library has a copy)


Prayer, the Ultimate Conversation

by Charles F. Stanley


Perhaps there are questions you desperately need answered. Maybe you are facing a trial that is too large or difficult to face on your own and you yearn for divine direction. Or it could be you are simply curious about what He would say to you.

In Prayer, The Ultimate Conversation, which is based on a lifetime of walking with the Father and fifty-five years of ministry founded on prayer, Dr. Charles Stanley not only teaches the disciplines of intercession but also explains how to fight life’s battles through intimate communion with the Lord. Dr. Stanley discusses how to truly know God through communication with Him. He explores topics such as:

Learning to recognize the sound of the Father’s voice 
Recognizing how your perception of God shapes your prayer life 
Winning your battles through prayer.