Priorities…What’s Really Important?

Welcome Back Readers!! I hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving and spent some time thanking God for all He is and all He does!

How many of you went to those Black Friday (well, really Thursday) sales? Did you buy a newspaper to look at all the sales ads? Did you spend time comparing prices, writing out what you wanted to get, looked at maps, and planned our your shopping adventure? I admit I ventured out and went to Wal-Mart with my sweet 6 year old son. But, all this planning got me thinking….What if we, as Christians, would get that excited about going to church and sharing the gospel with others? Do we read our Bible and plan out our day according to God’s Holy Word, the Bible? Or those times, you miss Sunday School because you weren’t prepared? Or missed church because just wanted to sleep in?

Mr. Webster defines a priority as a noun meaning “a thing that is regarded as more important than another.” During our shopping trip our priority was to get the stuff we wanted and make it out alive! 🙂 The Bible teaches us that we must focus on things NOT of this world, but fix our eyes on Jesus!! Hebrews 12:2 reminds us, “keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that lay before Him endured a cross and despised the shame and has sat down at the right hand of God’s throne.”

Romans 12:2 reminds us, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”

Please take some time to reflect on the Love of Christ and remember the “Black Friday” He endured on the cross for our sins. Remember Jesus is the Reason for the Season!!!

Be a blessing,
~M

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Giving Thanks because God is Good

Today’s blog is going to be different. I’m going to just let the Scriptures speak to you.

Psalm 118

1 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
his love endures forever.
2 Let Israel say:
“His love endures forever.”
3 Let the house of Aaron say:
“His love endures forever.”
4 Let those who fear the Lord say:
“His love endures forever.”
5 When hard pressed, I cried to the Lord;
he brought me into a spacious place.
6 The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid.
What can mere mortals do to me?
7 The Lord is with me; he is my helper.
I look in triumph on my enemies.
8 It is better to take refuge in the Lord
than to trust in humans.
9 It is better to take refuge in the Lord
than to trust in princes.
10 All the nations surrounded me,
but in the name of the Lord I cut them down.
11 They surrounded me on every side,
but in the name of the Lord I cut them down.
12 They swarmed around me like bees,
but they were consumed as quickly as burning thorns;
in the name of the Lord I cut them down.
13 I was pushed back and about to fall,
but the Lord helped me.
14 The Lord is my strength and my defense;
he has become my salvation.
15 Shouts of joy and victory
resound in the tents of the righteous:
“The Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!
16 The Lord’s right hand is lifted high;
the Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!”
17 I will not die but live,
and will proclaim what the Lord has done.
18 The Lord has chastened me severely,
but he has not given me over to death.
19 Open for me the gates of the righteous;
I will enter and give thanks to the Lord.
20 This is the gate of the Lord
through which the righteous may enter.
21 I will give you thanks, for you answered me;
you have become my salvation.
22 The stone the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone;
23 the Lord has done this,
and it is marvelous in our eyes.
24 The Lord has done it this very day;
let us rejoice today and be glad.
25 Lord, save us!
Lord, grant us success!
26 Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
From the house of the Lord we bless you.
27 The Lord is God,
and he has made his light shine on us.
With boughs in hand, join in the festal procession
up to the horns of the altar.
28 You are my God, and I will praise you;
you are my God, and I will exalt you.
29 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
his love endures forever.

There will be no blog tomorrow. Spend some time with your families and give The Lord thanks for who He is! Happy Thanksgiving!

~Pastor G & M

Giving Thanks Always

Hello Readers! This is such a sweet time of year. I love thinking about our blessings. But, did you know that even our struggles are blessings? Read with me James 1:2-4 “2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. 4 Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

Next time, you are experiencing a struggle or a storm of life, consider it a joyful time because God is maturing and molding you into a stronger person. I know during this time it is hard to think this way. We must be thankful during the good times, the hard times, and everything in between. Just remember to pray and keep close to The Lord and He will help you. We are reminded of that in Deuteronomy 31:6 “6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Join me as I pray. Lord, you are perfect and all knowing. Some of us are facing uncertain times, major decisions, struggles, while others are experiencing happiness and joy. Help us during these times. Hold us and carry us through life on Earth. Lord, we are eagerly awaiting Your Return. Thank you for everything. You are so good to us. In Jesus Name, Amen!

Be a blessing,
~M

A Lesson on Anger and Forgiveness

The world teaches you to be quick to anger and slow to forgive, but the LORD teaches us to be slow to anger and quick to forgive! This can be hard to do. But, reading His Word will help you.

*****Ephesians 4:31-32
31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.*****

Proverbs 14:29
He who is slow to anger has great understanding, But he who is quick-tempered exalts folly.

Proverbs 16:32
He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, And he who rules his spirit, than he who captures a city.

James 1:19
This you know, my beloved brethren. But let everyone be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; A fool always loses his temper, But a wise man holds it back.

Proverbs 15:1
A gentle answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up anger.

Proverbs 15:18
A hot-tempered man stirs up strife, But the slow to anger pacifies contention.

Colossians 3:13
bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.

Romans 12:19
Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.

Ephesians 4:26
Be angry, and yet do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,

Proverbs 14:17
A quick-tempered man acts foolishly, And a man of evil devices is hated.

Matthew 6:14-15
For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.

Matthew 18: 21-22
Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, ” Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times? ” Jesus answered, ” I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.”

Be slow to anger and quick to forgive!
~M

A Simple Thank You

Our first grader had a special assignment this week. She was asked to write out things she’s thankful for. Here is what she wrote:

I am thankful for my family and friends. I am thankful Jesus loves me with all His heart. I am thankful Jesus is my Savior and lives in my heart. 1 John 1:9 says, “if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all our sins.” I am thankful Jesus forgives me when I sin.

So, what are you thankful for?
~M & J

Today is ….

Hello Everyone! I hope you are having a blessed week.

Today is …
Thursday, November 21st, 2013
One week away from Thanksgiving Day
One week away from those Black Thursday/Friday Sales
The perfect day to turn away from your sins and either accept Christ as Lord or reject Him.
The perfect day to return to His presence if you have walked away from Him.
The day you can quit holding onto grudges and forgive them.
A beautiful day to greet others with a SMILE
A gift from God — today can be anything

Today could be …
Your last chance to get right with The Lord.

Yesterday, a girl I graduated with (I’m 31) died. Life is so uncertain. We don’t know if the breath we just took will be our last.

Joshua 24:15–
15 But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”

It’s your choice. Make the right one because it has ETERNAL consequences.

Think about it,
~M

Mistakes

Hello Readers! Please excuse my previous mistake…I posted an unfinished blog post earlier. Sorry. 🙂

How many of you have ever had an “I can’t believe I just did that moment?” or “Oops” or “What was I thinking?” I know I personally have…especially when I look back at school pictures–the infamous perm hairstyle. But, I did learn something….no more perms for me!

Those kind of mistakes last a lifetime. People will remember our shortcomings and our mistakes. But, our Lord, Jesus Christ, doesn’t. As soon as we ask for forgiveness…it’s gone. The key is that we must ask and do our best not to make those mistakes/sins again.

So, are you holding on to something that you need The Lord to forgive you for? Just simply pray and tell Him what you did (confess) and He will forgive you.

His Word, The Bible, instructs us in 1 John 1:9 —
9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

Are you all confessed up and purified from your mistakes? If not….ask for it. Just always remember when you ask for God’s forgiveness, He gives it. He doesn’t hold grudges like mankind does.

Happy Wednesday! Be blessed and be a blessing,

~M

What’s in Your Heart?

What’s In Your Heart?
Luke 6:43-45 (NIV) from Biblegateway.com

43-“No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit. 44-Each tree is recognized by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from thorn bushes, or grapes from briers. 45-A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. Luke 6:43-45 (NIV)

What can we learn from these 75 words?
Luke 6:43-45 Notes:

– good does not produce bad

– bad does not produce good

– people will look at you and see what you really are. (good or bad)

– you can not expect to receive good from bad

– you can not expect to receive bad from good

– good produces good

– bad produces bad

The last 10 words should be an eye opener for us all. Let’s take a closer look at these 10 words. “For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.”

What is stored inside your heart? Is it good or bad?

– “A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart,”

– “and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart.”

Everyday we are given choices of what we will fill our hearts with. We don’t just start our day with immediately storing good or bad, we start with a choice. It is the choices that we make that define what and who we are. “For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” Each choice we make shapes and molds our hearts. Our hearts begin filling with the good or the bad. Which all boils down to the choices we make. What’s in your heart? Answer – just start talking and you will find out.

From my heart to yours,

Pastor G

(May you be encouraged today and be an encouragement to others)
As my wise grandpa said, it doesn’t cost you anything to SMILE.

I love you, Child

I found this poem I wrote in a folder from church camp in 1998.

A note from God:
I love you, child,
More than you can ever understand.
Even when you feel no one can love you,
Even when you feel no one cares,
You can be assured I’ll always love you.
Yes, my child, I hear your silent prayers.
I love you, child,
More than you can ever understand.
When you feel like crying, here’s my shoulder.
Is your load too heavy? Give it here.
Are you frightened? I can make you boulder.
Do you have a secret? Here’s my ear.
I love you, child,
More than you can ever understand.

Romans 8:37-39:
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Be blessed and be a blessing,
~M

A Light Bulb Moment

Today’s post is going to be short and simple. Our almost 7 year old prayed this earlier, “God, please take the meanness out of everyone’s hearts and fill it with love for you and others!” I think our birthday girl has it figured out. Stop the Meanness. Love God. Love Others!

Ephesians 4:32:
32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Luke 10:27:
27 He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

Be a blessing to others,
~M

Come back Monday! 🙂