The First Christmas Carol

Pastor’s Notes
December 3, 2017

Are there those who want to or actually worship angels? When we identify one who has died as “now being an angel” in a real sense that is precisely what we are doing. We elevate him or her to a level never stated as so in the bible. We have a soul…angels don’t. Christ died for our soul, not his created angels. How do we know this about angels? Find one verse in the bible that says it differently. You won’t find it. Satan rebelled and will not be forgiven yet he was/is and Angel.star

We miss something per angels.” The word also means star! Light! Messenger! By implication it also means “pastor.” We tend to be boastful of our worship habits or Christian living, but will come in less than our perception of our self. The angels actually saw all of creation as it happened; the heavens, earth, inhabitants, man, their own creation. However, they are not boastful. They give total allegiance and praise to God. The only exception is the fallen angels who Lucifer leads. We need to sing all praise and worship songs with joy. His angels did and do. This is evidenced at the First Christmas Carol sung by the angels to a rather surprised cluster of shepherds.

Can we see angels? Even if we have or think we have, they are not the objects of worship. We need to ask, “Where is Christ in our daily living?” Morning prayer; evening prayer; meals only; middle of our day; weekend Sundays? Christianity is a way of life; not a religion.

Angels gave all glory to God for the birth of Jesus. Why? They knew his purpose was for the salvation of mankind. They also understood their position within creation.

Angels sang a song never before sung, We can still sing it today. Shepherds had little to boast about per their careers in the outer pasture lands guarding their sheep.  Just because the angels first appeared to them they didn’t boast of that fact. They declared the Messiah had been born.

There was a third note within these events. Without the birth of Jesus there would have been no cross. No cross is our loss. We would be no better off than the fallen angels under Satan’s thumb. The peace (on earth) of God is not a political peace. It is a personal peace regardless of the events that surround us. God first, last and I the middle.

Jesus and cross

Pastor’s Note November 20, 2017

Psalm 121

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.brick

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?

Teaching Moments – July 28, 2017

Last Sunday, July 23, 2017, we were again treated to the voices, enthusiasm and happy faces of the Patriot Singers. It is always a joy to have this special group in our worship service! They sing from deep within their heart and hesitate not to “let it go” in song and sound.

Our new Calearning momentsdillac Community Church and Cadillac Community Bible School are humming right along with Dr. Jim Stark sharing a “teaching moment” each Sunday during the worship service. From my point of view they are a “learning moment”.  He asked if we ever wondered what some of the people in the Bible looked like(?)….then proceeded to tell us that Elisha was bald.(II Kings 2:23-24)  It is written that a group of youths were mocking him and he turned around and pronounced a curse on them in the name of the Lord.  Two bears came out of the woods and mauled 42 of the youths.  How about that!  What a wonderful, fascinating and completely factual Book of Life God’s Holy Word is!

Added insight: For the “want to learn mind,” this moment in Elisha’s life was right after he had received Elijah’s literal cloak as prophet and God’s servant to Israel. There are bible is aliveseveral oddities in this passage, other than the bald comments and harassment mockery by the youths per Elisha on his return trip from watching Elijah “swept up” by a fiery chariot. Elijah had swiped his cloak on the River Jordan to cross over it while walking with Elisha. The Jordan parted and they walked across on dry land. When Elisha turned back to the Jordan River, he shouted out, “Where is the LORD, the God of Elijah?” Then he struck the waters of the river just as did Elijah a few minutes earlier. The waters parted again and 50 prophets on the other side of the river witnessed this.

This confirmed Elisha as the true prophet of God. [2 Kings 2:15] The 50 prophets then declared, “The spirit of Elijah is now upon Elisha.”

Pastor Gina Tuch

 

Pastor’s Notes – June 27, 2017

exampleSalvation/Vocation, what has one got to do with the other you may ask. I did ask Pastor Mike over dinner in a restaurant Saturday evening. I knew from typing the Sunday bulletin what his sermon title was and wanted an explanation. First of course, I wanted to state my case. The circumstances were perfect for good communication….no television, no audience, no phone calls….just the two of us.  I love a captive audience. I remarked that I didn’t see the relationship between Salvation and what one would choose for life’s work.
His eyes lighted up as he prepared to explain. He said carrying your salvation into your vocation was the connection. We as Christians sometimes separate our employment from our religion. Do we have to do that?  No, I don’t think so.  Our very being is a testimony to our faith in God. We are walking in the Light and our steps on the path of righteousness are there to see, to be an example.
Whether you are a garbage collector, a medical doctor, an engineer or a circuit court clerk (as I was) you are a walking, talking example of God’s love for all of us. We are His children and He asks that we love Him above all and love our neighbors as ourselves..
That should be easy enough. We are filled with His spirit, right?  But if you look around – even in this small city of Cadillac – you will see souls in need of salvation, people living on the streets, child abuse, drug and alcohol abuse, crime, bullying and suicide.
We also see charity organizations, missions, churches offering food and free clinics. We have grief support groups and community outreach and backpack programs to make sure our kids have healthy meals if needed.   Are you aware that if you know the good you ought to do and  do nothing, you are in sin (James 4:17) .
Dearest Lord, thank you for the Holy Spirit that keeps us on track by reminding us we can do more, we should do more….to spread your love as far and wide as  possible, and we know all things are possible with You. In Jesus name, Amen
Pastor Gina

Pastor’s Notes – June 20, 2017

father-and-son-June 18th was- as we all know- Father’s Day.   Pastor Mike preached on the most Holy Father God.  How amazing to have God call us His children!  Can we take that in?   It’s almost beyond understanding, but He truly loves us!  God is love, but he is also just. That does not mean we will not be chastised.   We will have consequences in this life. We will (hopefully) learn lessons and we will not succeed at some things we try. Because He is a parent, God will lead us in the path of righteousness.   Being human we will become impatient and sometimes not communicate with our Heavenly Father.   He is always there; we need to listen more carefully.

I was so fortunate to have wonderful Christian parents. My father was (to me) perfect. He was honest, honorable, kind and loving.  He adored my mother and never raised his voice to either of us.  He worked every day, didn’t drink alcoholic, never said a swear word and not only attended church every Sunday, but worked tirelessly in every official capacity in our church.   He said his prayers on his knees every night.

I have heard horror stories of fathers who are cruel or worse. Drunkenness, laziness, addiction, unfaithfulness…these are just some of the problems some families face. That is if the man even stays with the family at all!  This is a real problem, but our Father in Heaven has a plan for us. We know He will never leave us nor forsake us.  He wants us to succeed and prosper. “Thank you God for desiring a loving relationship with us.  We are not worthy to sit at your table Lord, but you invite us in and gather us up in your arms.”

Thank you for fathers. Most of all, thank you for God our Father.

Pastor Gina Tuch