Pastor's Blog
We Follow Our Own Idea PDF Print

 

It seems that following Christ has become fairly compartmentalized within our fast- paced culture.  (This is probably not a recent development but perhaps an accelerated one!)  Although we hesitate to verbalize this reality it is a doctrine that we actualize within our daily routines.

 

We live immersed within the idea that attaining certain goals such as wealth, status and security are somehow noble pursuits, and will in turn bring pleasure to our Creator.  Of course this has necessitated the birth of a teaching that can somehow reconcile the contradictory commands of our Lord that speak to our surrender and communion.  Just a cursory understanding of Christ’s words and an elementary lesson in early church history exposes the folly of such individualistic focused doctrine.

 

But quite to the contrary the New Testament espouses the commonality of all believers. Responsibility rests within the whole for the well-being of each individual.  Early believers  had all things in common, they continuously bore one another’s burdens, living with a unity that could only be brought about by the presence of God’s Spirit.

 

As followers of Christ, this is our model, our example for building and we do not well if we attempt to marry our faith and culture rather than fully surrender our will unto Christ!

 

— Dale

 

 
Connections PDF Print

 

Life is about being connected.  We come into this world with an urgent need for connection with someone.  Our inability to provide for ourselves puts us at the mercy of those who would care for, and love us.  As we grow and mature most will obtain the necessary skills to become independent of these early providers but never in our lives do we reach a time of total disconnect.

 

Life is about connection.  How we acknowledge these bonds and flourish within them has a lot to say about who we are.  This speaks directly to our ability to develop spiritually. The most vital life line we possess is our connection with our creator.  Manufactured by the divine, we are not only equipped  with the ability to connect, but we come out of the box  hardwired with an  immensely strong drive to do just that.  What then prevents many from connecting with their God? . . .  Intervention!

 

The God of this world, which scripture calls Satan or the devil has laid the foundations for a reality which would seek to exist without acknowledging the Holy Creator God.  This  ruler-man’s adversary intervenes in our existence, seeking to begin us on a diet of straight “world” immediately, if not sooner.  Indoctrinated we fall in step and can easily turn our backs on the possibility of a creator who loves us and desires a  personal connection.

 

Thankfully though, our God is above any other power and makes it possible for His voice to be heard over all the misleading noise.  But hearing requires listening, followed by a step of faith off the false foundation.

 

Are you ready to experience the depth of “Divine connection”?

 

Life is about being connected!

 

— Dale

 

 
Captured by Grace PDF Print

CAPTURED BY GRACE

 

Captured by the grace of God we can do nothing less than communicate the glorious mystery of the gospel regarding Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

• We proclaim this message because of the passion with which we have been endowed.  God’s loving Spirit surges within us and urges us to be expressive with this miracle working word!

 

• We proclaim because of man’s unique predicament outside of God’s grace.

 

• We proclaim because to do less is to be rebellious and disobedient.

 

So we share:

 

• We share with our words.

 

• We share by our right actions.

 

• Through our refusal to compromise and live as the world would live, we powerfully proclaim the message regarding our Christ.

 

• Because of our love or more aptly, the love Christ’s Spirit planted within us, we make known the mystery of God.  That if you will look to Christ and believe that He is God the Son and acknowledge Him as your only hope for salvation, you too can experience His life changing presence.

 

What, has captured your heart?

 

— Dale

 
God's Holy People PDF Print

The word “Holy” is used to describe Jesus’ followers throughout Scripture.  The full meaning of this descriptive word is that we’re something different, something completely “other” in contrast to those who do not follow Jesus.

 

We are recognized as being wholesome in speech, guarding what comes out of our mouths.  As builders with our words and deeds not demolition experts demolishing others in our path.  We are known by our desire to rid ourselves of the very things that seemingly motivate the world around us.  Characteristics such as bitterness, rage, anger, envy, revenge.

 

In our overwhelming desire to imitate our Savior we strive to not even posses a hint of impurity.  We do this because Christ’s Spirit within us urges us to be “living sacrifices,” “fragrant offerings” before God that we might please the One who gave Himself for us.

 

Do we always succeed?  No!

 

Should we give up then?  Never!

 

We pray, we seek, we learn, we trust, we submit . . and in so doing we become strong in the Lord.  Being overwhelmed by a “greater love,” we can do nothing else.  “For you are God’s Holy people!”

 

“Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.”

 

– Dale

 
Spiritual Awakening PDF Print

Have you read the “Spiritual Inventory”?  (It is in appendix A starting on page fifty of your twenty one day prayer journal.)  Day six of the journal challenged us to take stock of ourselves regarding our salvation and desire for Spiritual Awakening.  Here’s a sample of the questions:

Regarding God’s Word:

Do I love to read and mediate on the Word of God?

Does my life change in response to what I read in the Bible?

Do I memorize scripture?

Regarding Prayer:

Do I value and appreciate the opportunity to pray?

How much time do I spend in genuine, heartfelt prayer each day?

Regarding Pride:

Is it ever difficult to confess my sin to God?

Is it ever hard for me to admit I am wrong?

Values:

Do I love what God loves and hate what God hates?

Am I  hurt by things that hurt the Lord?

These are just a small sample of the many questions to mediate upon in this very helpful section of our prayer journal. If you quickly read through this section just to complete that day’s devotion, would you consider reading it again? Take some significant time to mediate upon each question and thoughtfully  consider where you stand in regard to that query. If your problem is that your pressed for time, you might consider  taking one section each day. In this way you’ll be better able to more fully explore the answers that are vital to our spiritual growth!

May God grant us our petition! Spiritual Awakening!

— Dale

 
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