Be a Blessing

  • The Bible is full of so much wisdom, and it’s a good idea to ponder what is means and how it applies to your life.  One such verse is 1Ti 6:6, “But godliness with contentment is great gain…”. What makes this verse a little curious is that in v5 it says false teachers proclaim godliness as a means of gain.  So how can it be great gain in truth?
  • One false teaching today is that if you have faith, you will be prosperous and successful.  That would be worldly gain, and it would be a poor reason to have faith.  It is true that if you have faith, your way will be level and straight, meaning that the Lord will give you wisdom and strength to follow the paths he has for your life.  He may or may not make you rich in material goods in the process, but he will make you rich in him!
  • The key to successful living is to live by faith and be content with any and all circumstances you find yourself in, knowing that when the Lord is near, it is the way he has for you to go, and he will lead you and make you a blessing.  Don’t make the mistake of looking back to your old life and wishing things were like they were before.  Also don’t look at the lives of others and wish your life were like their’s.  
  • Psa 37:25 says this, “I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread.”  In other words the Lord knows you have need of basic things.  Jesus said your Father knows what you need before you ask him (Mat 6:8).  Sometimes we ask for things we think we need, but we should always frame our requests to God that it would only be according to his will, for he knows what we really need.
  • Now it is hard to be content when you are lonely, estranged from loved ones and friends, or when you are being persecuted by others.  But that is where faith comes in.  Just trust the Lord is in control. ”Do not call conspiracy all that this people calls conspiracy, and do not fear what they fear, nor be in dread” (Isa 8:12). And then in Isa 45:7 God says, “I form the light and create darkness, I bring prosperity and create disaster; I the Lord, do all these things.”  Friends nothing happens in this world or to you that God does not allow.
  • My late wife had 3 children, and the youngest one has not had a father in her life for many years, because he was deported.  When I came into their lives, I grew close to my step children and have been able to be a father to them.  It is a huge blessing to this young girl especially, and a huge blessing to me.
  • So look for the blessings in whatever circumstance you are in today and thank God for them. Then by walking closely with Jesus be a blessing to others.  “Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act” (Psa 37:5).  Faith is realizing who God is and trusting in his goodness.  God is good, and he always does what is good.  Nothing in your life escapes his notice, no matter how small it may be to others.  

Pastor Greg

The Potter and the Clay

  • Think back to when you were very young.  How did God make you to be?  What qualities did he place in you that seem to have stayed with you through the years?  These define you and help you understand how God is leading you today to make your unique contribution.
  • When I was a boy, God gave me two things I’ll never forget.  I was saved at the age of 9 years old, and God gave me a deep interest in his Word, the Bible.  I started reading a chapter each day, starting in Genesis and going in order, reading it cover to cover, for as long as it took.  When I finished with Revelation, I would start over again.  One of the things I realized is God gave us Genesis to teach us he created the world to be in fellowship with him.  He established marriage.  He taught us we are sinners and that a Savior would come to crush Satan (Gen 3:15).  He chose the nation of Israel to be his people and to spread the gospel throughout the world.  God gave us his laws to guide and protect us.  He gave us the books of wisdom to teach us what is important.  He gave us the psalms to teach us how to praise him. He have us the books of history to teach us how he would lead his people through the generations.  He gave us prophets to teach us what is to come. Israel is not the Jews only but all who are grafted into Christ through faith in him and what he did for us on the cross.  He gave us the gospels to teach us about the coming of our Savior, his life, death, and resurrection.  He gave us Acts to explain how the gospel spread throughout the world.  He gave us the epistles of Paul, Peter, and John to explain how the gospel applies to our lives.  And he gave us Revelation to teach us how Jesus is coming again to judge the world, remove evil from the world, and establish his eternal kingdom on the new earth.  I still read the Bible today the same way, because like Jesus said, “It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” (Mat 4:4).
  • The other thing God gave me was a compassion for people and their problems.  He would show me people throughout my life who needed my help and how I could help them.  That quality has stuck with me over the years, and I thank God for it.  It is why I gave up my pastoral ministry to help one who would become my wife who was paralyzed.  It was very costly to take care of her.  Which is why, after she died, I am now a truck driver, to rebuild my finances so I can retire.  Whatever sacrifice I made, it was worth it, and God who sustains the world is providing for me now.  Did you know that is one of the names of God, Jehovah Jireh, which means God will provide, because he promised to provide the Savior, Jesus Christ our Lord.  He promised this to Abraham, who God commanded to sacrifice his son Isaac (Gen 22:11-14).  Abraham was about to do this, because he believed God would provide some kind of miracle, which he did, a ram caught in a thicket as a substitute for his son on the altar.  This is what Jesus did for us.  He is your substitute on the altar, so you do not have to die for your sins if you have faith in him.
  • Now think about yourself.  How has God shaped you over the years?  Each person is unique, and the important thing is to realize God has been shaping and preparing you for today and the future.  “But now, O Lord, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand.”  Just as God has created much variety in his creation, each of us is uniquely beautiful to him.  You know when you love someone,  you look beyond their physical appearance.  You see what no one else sees.  That is how God looks at us.  He knows we are sinners, and even Christians struggle to overcome sin.  But God sees our hearts.  He sees the future.  He sees how he is shaping you into the person he wants you to be, a person made to conform to the image of Christ.  Join him in his work. He who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him (1Co 6:17).
  • I would love to hear from you, how God is working in your life.  If you have never participated in this ministry reach out to us and tell us how we can pray for you and what the Lord is doing in your life.  May the Lord bless you richly today!

Pastor Greg

Who’s on First?

  • Have you ever wondered why there is so much order in the universe?  For example the stars and moon are arranged in space; there is order in the seasons of the year; there is order in all biological life; there is order in science; there is order in marriage and family for the roles husbands, wives, and children play; there is order in church worship and government ; and there is order in God’s laws. 
  • It’s as if God wants to tell us something. What is it? Well for one thing the order we perceive and read about in the Bible teaches us God is highly organized and wants us to live orderly lives according to his plan. He also wants us to trust in his promises for things he is doing and will do, so we may have hope. “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”  (Jer 29:11). 
  • God also wants you to know that since his fixed order won’t change, neither will his promises or his love for you. “Thus says the LORD, who gives the sun for light by day and the fixed order of the moon and the stars for light by night, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar– the LORD of hosts is his name: 36 “If this fixed order departs from before me, declares the LORD, then shall the offspring of Israel cease from being a nation before me forever.” (Jer 31:35-36). 
  • Now let’s get down to the most basic thing about order you and I need to understand. God is God. We are not God. Reject any humanististic teaching that says you are a god. No my friend, you are God’s creation and his handiwork created for his glory. The first allegiance you must have is to the Lord, not yourself or anyone else. In the Bible Rev 2:4 says Christ is your first love, and you must not abandon him. 
  • Someone once taught me the order in a man’s life should be your soul, then your wife, then your life. Don’t put your wife above God. Some wives might like that, but not a godly wife. Don’t put your hobbies and sports above God. Go to church on Sunday, because it is the Lord’s Day. It isn’t a day to attend your kids’ sporting events or go on some recreational activity like golf. Sunday is a day for corporate worship. Don’t put your job above your wife and family. Your job concerns your life and is third in order, not first or second. Many men make that mistake and lose the trust of their wives. And never ever abandon your wife and family. Your are there to love, protect, and provide for them. Many families these days are not comprised of both husband and wife. Living together with someone is not the same as or an acceptable substitute for marriage. Living together is not teaching your children or you about God’s order in marriage and family. 
  • Some people say Christianity is just a bunch of do’s and don’t. The way I see it is God’s laws and his order are like a fence for our protection and bring glory to his name. We are not free agents.  Our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit and are not our own. So many people these days believe a person has to make their own decisions and has a right to do so. Well God does teach us we must decide. But if you choose any other way than his, you will suffer much pain and regret. Why not trust the one who planned it all and sustains us all?
  • If you are one who started out well but drifted away from God, come back. He will welcome you, just like the prodigal son’s father welcomed him. Israel drifted from God but returned. “Set up road markers for yourself; make yourself guideposts; consider well the highway, the road by which you went. Return, O virgin Israel, return to these your cities (Jer 31:21).  It is never too late and is always the right thing to do to make Jesus Christ the Lord and Master of your life. 
  • I say all this because I love you, even if we have never met. I have many friends I haven’t met yet but one day will in heaven. These are not just words but point to Jesus who is vital for your life.  “For it is no empty word for you, but your very life, and by this word you shall live long in the land that you are going over the Jordan to possess.” (Deu 32:47). I want you to know God’s peace and experience his great love. “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” (Luk 2:14). 
  • If you have never participated in this ministry reach out to us and tell us how we can pray for you and what the Lord is doing in your life.  May the Lord bless you richly today!

One Another

  • One of the great things about Christmas is to hear from family and friends you haven’t seen or heard from in a long time. It’s all connected!  All those people who influenced us to be who we are now.  How nice it is to have such memories.
  • As Christians we look forward to heaven, when everyone who is in Christ will be together in community forever.  Imagine that!  And what’s more Jesus, who is what connects us to God and one another, will be there front and center!
  • The words “one another” occur a lot in the Bible: 

Love one another (John 13:34)

Be devoted to one another (Romans 12:10)

Honor one another above yourselves (Romans 12:10)

Live in harmony with one another (Romans 12:16)

Build up one another (Romans 14:19; 1 Thessalonians 5:11)

Be likeminded towards one another (Romans 15:5)

Accept one another (Romans 15:7)

Admonish one another (Romans 15:14; Colossians 3:16) 

Greet one another (Romans 16:16) 

Care for one another (1 Corinthians 12:25)

Serve one another (Galatians 5:13)

Bear one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2)

Forgive one another (Ephesians 4:2, 32; Colossians 3:13)

Be patient with one another (Ephesians 4:2; Colossians 3:13)

Speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15, 25)

Be kind and compassionate to one another (Ephesians 4:32)

Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs (Ephesians 5:19)

Submit to one another (Ephesians 5:21, 1 Peter 5:5)

Consider others better than yourselves (Philippians 2:3)

Look to the interests of one another (Philippians 2:4)

Bear with one another (Colossians 3:13)

Teach one another (Colossians 3:16)

Comfort one another (1 Thessalonians 4:18)

Encourage one another (1 Thessalonians 5:11)

Exhort one another (Hebrews 3:13)

Stir up [provoke, stimulate] one another to love and good works (Hebrews 10:24)

Show hospitality to one another (1 Peter 4:9)

Employ the gifts that God has given us for the benefit of one another (1 Peter 4:10) 

Clothe yourselves with humility towards one another (1 Peter 5:5)

Pray for one another (James 5:16)

Confess your faults to one another (James 5:16)

Do not lie to one another (Colossians 3:9) 

Stop passing judgment on one another (Romans 14:13) 

If you keep on biting and devouring each other…you’ll be destroyed by each other (Galatians 5:15) 

Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other (Galatians 5:26) 

Do not slander one another (James 4:11) 

Don’t grumble against each other (James 5:9)

So this Christmas, love one another as Christ loves you. , and treat your fellow believers as your family, for that is what they are…the family of God.  Merry Christmas!

Pastor Greg

Pour Your Heart Out to God

  • Do you have a friend you can pour your heart out to?  Do you have someone in your life who loves you unconditionally and actually knows your heart?  Do you have someone in your life who takes all the time it takes to get to know your concerns?  Do you have someone in your life who has the wisdom and power to act for your good?
  • If you are a Christian, the answer is YES!  You have the Lord. “Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.” (Psa 62:8).
  • As you get older and as things change in your life, many loved ones precede you in death.  You may move away for former friends and just not have anyone left.  In my life I have my older brother, and I am so grateful for him.  My brother and I have both lost our wives.My brother does  his best for me, and I do my best for him. But even he has his limitations as to what he can do about my problems and concerns.  Pro 18:24 teaches us “A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.”  Do you know who it is?  Of course it is Jesus.  
  • Jesus has all the power and all the wisdom and all the unconditional love and patience to help you through all your concerns, so you no longer have to be concerned about your life.  Your only concern should be to stay in daily contact and walk in obedience to the Lord’s commands. “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty had of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.” (1Pe 5:6-7).
  • Doing this requires faith.  Just say to the Lord Jesus, I know you died for me, and I have trusted in you as my Savior and commit myself to follow you as my Lord.  I know that you love me and gave yourself not only for me, but for all those who place their trust in you.  I know that you are coming again, and that you want me to bear witness to you.  You are concerned about me and about all the Father has given you to save.  Help me to give you my problems and my fears. Take them and bring peace and resolution in my life.  Sustain me.  Provide a way for me.  Help me remember I am yours and you are mine.  Help me understand what it means to be in Christ.  You know me better than I know myself.  Thank you for hearing my prayer.  In Jesus’ name, Amen!
  • If you have never participated in this ministry reach out to us and tell us how we can pray for you and what the Lord is doing in your life.  May the Lord bless you richly today!

Christmas is About Love!

I see more impatience during the holidays every year. Are we really so overwhelmed by the whole thing that we can no longer enjoy it? Have we lost the essence of the season in all the busyness of creating perfection? Shopping…baking…wrapping… decorating…social obligations… juggling bills to pay for all the trappings…frayed nerves… exhaustion…worrying…and even wishing it was over already… This is not what Christmas is really about. I am praying we all step back and look at the choices we make and teach our children and be an example to others that love is the greatest gift of all. If you have that, you have all you need. God bless us all!

Be always humble, gentle, and patient. Show your love by being tolerant with one another.
(Ephesians 4:2)

Hot tempers cause arguments, but patience brings peace.
(Proverbs 15:18)

Let your hope keep you joyful, be patient in your troubles, and pray at all times.
(Romans 12:12)

I waited patiently for the Lord’s help;
then he listened to me and heard my cry.
(Psalm 40:1)

The Lord is good to everyone who trusts in him,
So it is best for us to wait in patience—to wait for him to save us—
And it is best to learn this patience in our youth.
(Lamentations 3:25-27)

Everything About You Matters to God

  • One of the things about being a truck driver is you often have to deliver or pick up a load at a location where you have never been before.  Sometimes it’s in the middle of the night and/or on a weekend or holiday when most families are gathered around or asleep at home.  Whoever you are there are times when you feel disconnected from your loved ones and may even wonder whether anything you do on a daily basis matters very much. 
  • The great thing about being a Christian truck driver is to know the Lord is always near and you are never alone.  Even the darkness is as light to him.  “If I say, ‘Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,’ even the darkness is not dark to you, the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.” (Psa 139:11-12).  
  • What the Lord wants from us is our devotion to him.  He sees your heart and if it’s really for him. If it is, everything you think, say, and do is significant. For it is then the Lord can really use you to reach the world.  “The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” (Luk 6:45). 
  • Remember light overcomes darkness, not the other way around. You can light a match in a very large pitch black room, and that single flame will not be extinguished by the darkness but give it’s light. So it is with God’s light. “In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world.” (Joh 16:33). So, if you are a Christian, make it your aim to please him with your heart, so you can  experience his peace and so he can guide you to do those things he has planned for you to do.
  • If you have never participated in this ministry reach out to us and tell us how we can pray for you and what the Lord is doing in your life.  May the Lord bless you richly today!

Pastor Greg