We are in September! School is back in session. We had a wonderful time at VBS as we shared the love of Jesus with the children in our community. A special thanks goes out to all our servant-hearted volunteers as we taught children about achieving peace in the world and how Jesus gives peace differently than what we find in the world. I also hope you’ve had an opportunity to recharge your batteries as you return to school, work or retirement.
These past few years have taught us that our world can be upset in a moment’s notice – especially when a pandemic hits. We have to make modifications here and there for various reasons and those changes can be short or long term, right? Churches are not immune to outside influences and an always changing culture, but one thing I have learned is – 1) how we present the good news may change in an effort to communicate the gospel 2) BUT the Word of God does not change and neither does Jesus. I don’t know about you, but those statements bring a lot of comfort and encourage-ment to me. They also offer hope to all of us.
Here are a few scriptures (among many) that reinforce these themes that I share with you:
Matthew 24:35 Heaven and earth will disappear, but my words will never disappear.
Hebrews 13:8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
Romans 15:16 [The Apostle Paul writes] I am a special messenger from Christ Jesus to you Gentiles. I bring you the Good News so that I might present you as an acceptable offering to God, made holy by the Holy Spirit.
The Word of God is supposed to inform, equip and ultimately transform us into “an acceptable offering to God,” so that we can produce fruit and help others experience a relationship with Jesus. I implore you my dear friends to walk with Jesus every day. Read the scriptures; sing praises (hymns/worship songs) to glorify God and bring you closer to Him; ask the Holy Spirit to examine your life and expose any aspects of your life that need transformation; then seek that transfor-mation from the inside out.
One of my favorite scriptures that helps me look through a different lens than the world looks through is Philippians 4:8 And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.
Last, but not least, living the Christian life is a process. It requires us to make a commitment to follow Jesus and not the world. It requires us to look at the world we live in with a holy spirit led, scriptural lens. Paul was Saul before he had a life-changing visit with The Risen Christ. Saul was a persecutor of Christians. Saul became a Christian, became Paul and became an on-fire Apostle for Jesus Christ. What can we become with Jesus Christ as our guide and the Word of God as a lamp unto our feet (Psalm 119:105)?
See you on Sunday. God bless and keep you,