Like the bricks that make a building, each one has its responsibility for the integrity and function of the entire building. So it is with the local church body. As a true believer we are all a part of “the church.” Just because one goes to another building to worship does not nullify his or her membership in the Body of Jesus Christ. As the local body of Christ we all have given talents, responsibilities and spiritual gifts to be used. Like a canvas of art, each color is necessary. If part of the painting is missing, it is noticed.
We can backup to Psalm 120:1 and read, “Save me Lord from lying lips.” Those can be lips of bad or false counsel and our own lips.” We MUST exercise our spiritual gifts, talents and abilities to sustain the spiritual fabric of both a building and a canvas painting. Deceitfulness has no place in the church. Am I an occasional Christian or one that is little more than one who claims the title? Do we sometimes see God as in the way of our careers, lives, ambitions? Why would we conclude that?
There are over 4,000 churches closing each year in the United States. What is going wrong? Part is the one brick that refuses to be part of the total building; the one color that refuses to complete the canvas. Another reason is too many so-called Christians are living a life of spiritual dormancy. Gods’ instructions to us as a part of the building of the local church body; i.e. the body of Christ, is not a way of life, It is THE WAY OF LIFE.
Might God be happy and delighted or hesitant of what we plan to do for and with him in 2018?
THANKSGIVING is one day a year. Pumpkin pie, turkey and dressing, cranberry sauce and assorted goodies fill our table. Families get together and catch up with each other. The preparation for the meal can stretch over days, but the actual meal is over in less than 30 minutes.
I truly believe we are thankful for our many blessings. I even believe we praise and glorify God for all that He has done for the world of sinners; thank you Lord Jesus.
We cannot deny that our traditions are changing, can we? The younger generations will not recognize the changes unless taught by those who are their elders. Our everyday life is tied up with electronics, cars that drive themselves, instant news everywhere ….mostly tragic news unfortunately. We have a love/hate relationship with cell phones, video games, Social Media. It was fun at first. Then it had a good purpose. Now we are seeing the dark side and it is scary.
What I want to stress (not a good choice of words) today is, let’s all love family more this Thanksgiving. Let’s love and glorify our Lord and Savior every moment and feel eternally grateful for His death on the cross and resurrection to provide a path to salvation from hell; for His resurrection and the miracles of His Word. Pray and study The Bible. Peace and joy awaits us in those words.
How do we “love family more?” Easy words but too often it is a task. One way is to think of something positive for each person within our Thanksgiving circle. The best way is to honestly pray for them be it their salvation or walk in life.
May we all have a meaningful and loving THANKSGIVING.
Matthew 5:10 is the eighth and final beatitude. “Blessed are ye when men shall revile you and persecute you and say all manner of evil against you falsely for my sake, for great is your reward in heaven.” [KJV]
Pastor Mike asked the congregation “Do you feel persecuted?” Don’t we all at times? But this verse is speaking about being maligned for Jesus’ sake. Can you withstand torment for Jesus? Can you remain faithful and stay the Christian course?
There are martyrs who give their lives for their faith. We hear of students in the Mideast who are killed for saying they are Christians. In the years of old many men of faith died horribly and painfully. Could we? I want to say yes. In the days ahead I feel we will be tested to limits unknown to us thus far.
“Thank you my Lord and Father for your love and faithfulness. May we put on the armor of God as we go forward.”
Rev. Gina Tuch (10-2017)
PS: (JIV) Persecution can come in many forms. It isn’t always the gallows or the end of a sword.
In this Matthew passage the Greek is diōkō. It can mean “to be forced to flee, suffer, be chased or pursued.” In a real sense it is like living a life under the thumb of a bully; always keeping an eye open for the next guaranteed encounter. This becomes clearer when one reads the next verse (5:11)…”to be reviled or disdained of men.”
Sometimes my mind is writing this article while I am driving my car. This is a wonderful and creative experience but frustrating because I do not have the tools at hand to capture my thoughts. You may think I could conjure those words again with pen in hand. But this, I find, is not so. When I was a teenager, I would get up out of bed and write down what I was creating so that I wouldn’t lose it in the morning.
Pastor Mike spoke on “peacemakers” and my thoughts immediately went to God’s Word. Anyone who spends time studying and reading the Bible knows exactly what peace feels like. To completely immerse one’s self into the writings inspired by our Lord and learn to understand by studying the messages there for us is euphoric. I have heard that physical exercise can give you this feeling but for me, nothing brings me peace more than “being in the Word”.
Can we be peacemakers? We certainly can contribute and communicate peace in our family, church and wherever we may be. Please read the words, study their message and feel the peace that waits for all who are in God’s Holy Word.
Rev Gina Tuch
Blessed are the merciful for they shall be shown mercy Matthew 5:7.
So many people in the world today need mercy. Even without the ravages of weather and rumors of war, sickness, addiction, emotional and mental illness, we still must fight Satan every minute of every day!
Our Lord and Savior was merciful to all. He was not treated with mercy by the world. He loved us in spite of our sinful nature. His love is what we need to Live. His love is the blood flowing through our veins. Compassion, gentleness, caring, concern, thy name is Jesus.
I believe we all need to pray for this world right now. We may think we know all that is going on, but we certainly do not! We are on thin ice in this life. Be ready to meet the most merciful God.
Rev Gina Tuch
Cadillac Community Church
and Bible School