Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Strive to Do the Word

We had another great service on Sunday! It is so good to see the church rise up and worship together. We broke 100 for the first time in a couple of months. God was truly glorified and made much of. Spirits were uplifted, hearts encouraged, and the testimonies of individuals demonstrate that God spoke and moved among us. Thank you to all of you who engaged in this combining of hearts, minds, and voices.

Again, the notes from the sermon yesterday are attached, if you want to open them. Let me know if I need to send them in a different format, if you can’t open them. And to give you some insight to my madness in my notes: 1. explains what the verse(s) mean, 2. gives cross references, 3. are illustrations, some written out, and some abbreviated, and sometimes longer ones are at the bottom of the page, 4. is the applications of the truth taught. Sorry if they are not much help to you. The audio is available on our website and the Sermon Central website.

From Sunday morning’s message: 1) remember that love is not easily angered; ask the Lord to love people through you today through the restraining of anger and frustrations. Remember, you can control how you express your emotions through the power of the Spirit. It will be a great testimony to those around you to suffer without anger, especially to those of you with short tempers. 2) Love does not keep score; we must forgive those who wrong us by the power of the Spirit. Preach to yourself, memorize some verses on forgiveness. And focus on acting forgiving, not bringing up past hurts, praying for the other party, not thinking evil of them. Remember this does not mean it’s “OK,” condoning their actions, must forget, nor that you are going to “feel” forgiving. 3) Love rejoices in truth. Expose sin in a proper fashion, and when it’s repented of, forgive and move on. Find a truth in the Word today and rejoice over it. Find someone around you and encourage them by complimenting on the fact that they are obeying the Word, rather than just knowing it.

From Sunday night’s message: 1) The focus of your worship (personal, family, and corporate) is Jesus Christ! Strive to make Him central each day in your thoughts. Dwell upon His faithfulness, provision, love, mercy, and truth. 2) Worship is not about form, but content. Evaluate and attempt to separate personal preferences from unchanging truths and methods to carry out those truths. Try a new form of worship in your personal time this week. Prepare to adjust your thoughts this week as we sing songs that you don’t prefer, or as you endure a temperature or time frame that you would do differently. 3) Worship is participatory. Encourage those around you sing, sing, sing (it is also the daily mark of the Spirit-filled Christian). Train your mind and heart to truly engage Him, focus on Him, and worship Him. Look for ways to help facilitate a great worship experience for those around you, especially those that are new with us, and visitors. Take the initiative, do what you feel led by the Spirit to do.

Next week, we will have Phillip Edge, the IMB missionary from Russia preaching for us. You may remember him from several weeks back on Mission night. I know that he will hear from the Lord, and bring it to you. Sunday night, Benji Rowland from Journey church will be here to give us an update on Journey and bring the preached word to us. You don’t want to miss this Sunday!

Then the week after that, we will be meditating on 1 Cor 13:7 in the AM service, and 1 Chronicles 12:32 in the PM service regarding “Living Apostolically” another character of Missional churches. Read and Study ahead for getting the most out of this time of reflection and declaration of God’s Word. Also remember that we are doing the Crown Financial Study on Wednesday nights about biblical truths on good stewardship and financial management. All are invited. Statistically those who take the course and apply the principles eliminate several thousand dollars of debt, and save several thousand dollars that they would not have done otherwise over the next few years following the study.

Prayer: remember that this week we will leave for Peru on Friday afternoon. Huge week for the Kingdom in Peru! Please be diligent in prayer. I will try to keep you updated as to specific needs. Also remember Glen Greene (Martine’s brother) who came through a serious surgery yesterday putting a stint in an aneurysm. Remember Evelyn Sumler who is in the ICU at Tift Regional. Susan Mauldin’s daughter in law as she will have surgery next Tues. Carolyn as she is recovering at home (thanks to all of you who are visiting, calling, and preparing meals for her). And those who are struggling right now financially, vocationally, relationally, physically, and spiritually; there are many in our congregation. Pray for names specifically from the directory. And for visitors too.

Thanking God for and praying for you

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