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, October 22, 2015

From the Pastor...

God's Law of Prayer -

"Whether we like it or not, asking is the rule of the Kingdom. 'Ask, and ye shall receive.' It is the rule that never will be altered in anybody's case. Our Lord Jesus Christ is the elder brother of the family, but God has not relaxed the rule for Him.... If the Royal and Divine Son cannot be exempted from the rule of asking that He may have, you and I cannot expect the rule to be relaxed in our favor. Why should it be? Jehovah says to His own Son, 'Ask of Me, and I shall give Thee the heathen for Thine inheritance and the uttermost parts of the earth for Thy possession.' (Ref. Psalm 2:8) God will bless Elijah and send rain on Israel. But Elijah must pray for it. If the chosen nation is to prosper, Samuel must plead for it. (Ref. 1 Samuel 7:3-13) If the Jews are to be delivered, Daniel must intercede.... If you may have everything by asking, and nothing without asking, I beg you to see how absolutely vital prayer is and I beseech you to abound in it."  - Charles Spurgeon

"If God left some things contingent on man's thinking and working, why may He not have left some things contingent on man's praying? The testimony of great souls is this: some things never without thinking; some things never without working; some things never without praying!"  - Harry Emerson Fosdick

"There is a divine principle in regard to prayer which runs all through Scripture. It is that God is pleased to unite His people with Himself in whatever He is about to do. He first of all leads them to pray, then He does what He intends to do in answer to their prayers."  - Russell Elliott

Andrew Murray asks:
"Will God really make the pouring out of His blessing on others dependent on our prayers? Yes, He makes us His fellow workers. He has taken us into partnership in His work. If we fail to do our part, others will suffer and His work will suffer. God has appointed intercession as one of the means by which others will be saved and Christians built up in the faith.... Should we not expect God's children to endeavor with all our strength to pray for God's blessing of salvation on the world...? Yes, 'pray at all times... and be persistent in your prayers for all Christians everywhere.' In so doing you will learn the lesson that intercession is the chief means of bringing others to Christ and bringing glory to God."

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

From the Pastor...

Rest: "Busyness makes us stop caring about the things we care about." - Mark Buchanan

REST - Adele Ahlberg Calhoun

The 24/7 pressure to drive and strive rules every part of life - even weekends and vacations. Saturday and Sunday aren't for rest. It's time to catch up on more work! Work in the garden, wash the car, do the books, take the kids to games, go shopping. On vacation we stay plugged into laptops and keep earning our identity while we play. It's how we sustain the myth that we are indispensable. Overwork is our badge of honor. Christians reward overworking as much as anyone. And church leaders struggle to model alternatives to the work addictions that ruin families, damage souls and sometimes kill us.

Rest is not laziness or a sign of lack of ambition. Rest is fundamental to God (Gen. 2:2-3) and the well being of all creation. Rest is a transcendent anchor in the midst of doing. God wants us to rest because a society that encourages overwork is no different from a society that encourages, lying, murder, stealing and promiscuity.

God also wants us to rest because if we don't we will not have time to care about the people we love, the neighbors we know, the strangers we meet and the gifts that come to us while we rest. We need to lay our deadly doing down and taste the unforced rhythms of grace for ourselves. Receive the gift that keeps us from running on empty. Jesus knew when to say "no" to need so he could stay connected with God. He could resist the constant temptation to do something to prove who he was - because he was deeply at rest in who he was.

"...then because so many people were coming and going that they didn't even have time to eat, Jesus said, Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest." - Mark 6:31

Thursday, October 8, 2015

From the Pastor...

"Verily,verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of Himself, but what he sees the Father do", for what things soever He doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise. For the Father loveth the Son, and showeth Him all things that Himself doeth: and He will show him greater works than these, that ye may marvel" - John 5:19-20

Our relationship to Jesus is the exact counterpart of His to the Father. And so, the words in which He sets forth His communion with the Father have their truth in us, too. And as the words of Jesus in John 5 describe the natural relationship between every father and son, whether on earth or in heaven, they are applicable not only to the Only-begotten, but to everyone who, in and like Jesus, is called a son of God.

There is not a better way to think of the simple truth and force of the illustration than by thinking of Jesus learning His trade from His earthly father in the carpenter's shop. The first thing you notice is the entire dependence: "The son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the father do." Then you are struck by the implicit obedience that just seeks to imitate the father: "for what things soever (the father) doeth, these also doeth the son likewise." You then notice the close relationship in which the father holds him, keeping back none of his secrets: "for the father loveth the son, and showeth him all things that himself doeth." And, in this dependent obedience on his son's part, and the loving teaching on the father's part, you have the pledge of an ever-growing advance to greater works. Step by step, the son will be led up to all that the father himself can do: "He will show him greater works than these, that ye may marvel."

In this picture, we have the reflection of the relationship between God the Father and the Son in His blessed humanity. If His human nature is to be something real and true, and if we are to understand how Christ is in very deed to be our example, we must fully believe in what our blessed Lord here reveals to us of the secrets of His inner life. The words He speaks are literal truth. His dependance on the Father for each moment of His life was absolutely and intensely real. "The Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do." He counted it no humiliation to wait on Him for His commands, He further considered it His highest blessedness to let Himself be led and guided by the Father as a child. And accordingly, He held Himself bound in strictest obedience to say and do only what the Father showed Him. "What things soever (the Father) doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise."

The Father had formed a glorious life plan for the Son, that in Him the divine life might be shown forth in the conditions of human existence. This plan was shown to the Son moment by moment until at last all was gloriously accomplished.

Child of God, it is not only for the only-begotten Son that a life plan has been arranged, but for each one of His children. Just in proportion to how we live in more or less entire dependence on the Father will this life plan be more or less perfectly worked out in our lives. The nearer the believer comes to this entire dependence of the Son, "doing nothing but what He sees the Father do," and then to His implicit obedience, "what things soever He doeth, these also doeth likewise," so much more will the promise be fulfilled to us: "The Father showeth Him all things that He Himself doeth, and He will show Him greater works than these." Like Christ; that word calls us to a life of conformity to the Son in His blessed dependence on the Father. Each one of us is invited thus to live.

To such a life of dependance on the Father, the first thing that is necessary is a firm faith that He will make His will known to us. I think this is something that keeps many back: they cannot believe that the Lord cares for them so much that He will indeed take the trouble to teach them and to make His will known to them, just as He did to Jesus. Christian, you are of more value to the Father than you know. You are worth the price He paid for you, that is, the blood of His Son. He, therefore, attaches the highest value to the least thing that concerns you, and will guide you even in what is most insignificant. He longs for close and constant fellowship with you more than you can conceive. He can use you for His glory, and make something of you, higher than you can understand. The Father loves His child, and shows him what He does. That He proved in Jesus; and He will prove it in us, too. There must only be the surrender to expect His teaching. Through His Holy Spirit He gives this most tenderly. Without removing us from our circle, the Father can so conform us to Christ's image that we can be a blessing and joy to all. Do not let unbelief of God's compassionate love prevent us from expecting the Father's guidance in all things.

Dear ones, if you have so far only known a little about this life of conscious dependence and simple obedience, begin today. Let your Savior be your example in this. It is His blessed will to live in you, and in you to be again what He was here on earth. He only longs for your acquiescence.

- from LIKE CHRIST by Andrew Murray