July 21, 2020

Hello everyone! God is certainly good! We had four people raise their hand during our invitation this past week to signify that they had prayed to receive Jesus as their Saviour! Three of them then came forward as a testimony to that fact! What an amazing time it was! I wish that the whole church could have been there to be part of that. That is what the church should be about, leading precious souls to Jesus. The church is not a club for the saved! It is a lighthouse to the lost soul that is wandering without hope in the storms of life.

Yes, being a true follower of Christ is about more than being there on Sunday when you feel like it. The world in which we live is all about themselves, but Jesus said, “…If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.” Matthew 16:24. Also in Mark 8:34, “… Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” These are some tough words in today’s world. Because we have been taught to do whatever pleases us, look out for number one, do what makes you happy, and on and on. The Lord made sure that we got the message because Luke says it yet another way, “…If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me” (9:23). Daily, every day we need to put Jesus first, not us, not our wants, not our preferences, but what does God expect of us? Not to do our own thing, that’s for sure.

Now this will get pointed, I have always thought if a person is going on a vacation/holiday, and they are going to leave Sunday morning. What?! If you are leaving Sunday, do it after you attend the church service. Our first duty should be to God, always! Why would you miss the assembling of yourselves together? (Hebrews 10:25) Why would you miss the preaching of the Word? Why would you miss the fellowship of the saints in worshipping God? I believe that it is because we have lost the desire to take up our cross daily. I do what I do, in most cases, because I want to please God. If Trish and I leave for a trip, its Sunday afternoon or Monday, when we return its Saturday, unless unforeseen circumstances happen, so that I can be back for church Sunday morning. You say, you do that because you are the pastor, nope, I do it because I am a Christian and God comes first. We love our church family.

The second most important reason that I do what I do, is because God has called me to a leadership position in His local church. My example is very important, others are always watching, others are always learning from our example. Larry Bird (Boston Celtics), one of the greatest basketball players of his time practiced 8 hours every day, even being better than 98% of the others. Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh Penguins), shows up for practice before anyone else and stays long after they have gone practicing. What makes them great, their commitment to what they do. If people can be that committed to the world and the things of it, surely the believer should be that committed to the cause of Christ. After all it is Christs church that we are a part of, does it not deserve our best?

If you are in a leadership position in your local church, be an example of a faithful follower of Jesus. Take your call to ministry seriously, and keep in mind, anything less than your best, is not good enough. Let us take up our cross daily and follow Jesus.

 

Thanks for reading!

More next time…

Pastor


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