"But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watchings, in fastings; ...
(2 Corinthians 6:4-5 KJV)
As we look at these words written by Paul, we should realize that it is usually in the midst of these problems and situations that we can discover whether we are good servants of Our Awesome God or not. If we read carefully all of 2 Corinthians 6, we should ask ourselves which of these virtues we need to work on first.
If we start and look at just the conditions mentioned in verses 4 and 5, we can see that, if the circumstances included a need for more patience, ours can be increased by our problems, if we keep with our Christian teachings and even if our patience is stretched tight before it is released. Our Awesome God shows us if patience is still a problem for us, whether we need to keep working with it or if it is time to work on another virtue. But, with God's help, we will have learned more about our own abilities.
Our problems may be afflictions, which could be common to all (Job 5:7; 14:1; Psalms 34:19), are for the good of men (James 1:2) and for the glory of God (2 Corinthians 12:7-10; 1 Peter 4:14). These are to be borne with patience by the Lord's people (Psalms 94:12). So the afflictions can be many and with varied problems that could include anything from Job's problems in Job 5:7 to leprosy.
We need to remember that, as servants of God, we should handle these problems and situations, such that we learn better what to do, that it increases our knowledge and it glorifies Our Awesome God. This notifies those around us that we are God's children. In this way, at least part of God's purpose is met since we never know all of His purposes. As servants of God, Christians need to meet the spiritual as well as the physical needs of those around them. Check yourself: Are you a servant of God? Are there areas you could improve?
If we can improve any area of our lives, we should strive for the improvement so we can become the best servant we can be. We represent a perfect God even though we can never be perfect while on earth, we need to try.
LWBC is a Bible believing church that tries to live Jesus Christ's commandment to "love one another as I have loved you." (John 15:12 KJV) Join us this Sunday as we learn more about Our Awesome God. Our church starts with small groups on Sunday at 9:30 AM and Worship Service at 10:30 AM. On Sunday evening at 6:00 PM, a Bible Study meets along with children's AWANA clubs which go until 7:30 PM (September through May). On Wednesdays, we meet at 7:00 PM for Prayer Requests and Bible Study along with a separate Spanish Bible Study until 8:00 PM. We love visitors!
"But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."
(Romans 5:8 KJV)
Paul of Tarsus
By Jack Zavada
"The Apostle Paul, who started as one of Christianity's most zealous enemies, was hand-picked by Jesus Christ to become the gospel's most ardent messenger. Paul traveled tirelessly through the ancient world, taking the message of salvation to the Gentiles. Paul towers as one of the all-time giants of Christianity.
"The Apostle Paul's Accomplishments:
When Saul of Tarsus, who was later renamed Paul, saw the resurrected Jesus Christ on the Damascus Road, Saul converted to Christianity. He made three long missionary journeys throughout the Roman Empire, planting churches, preaching the gospel, and giving strength and encouragement to early Christians. Of the 27 books in the New Testament, Paul is credited as the author of 13 of them. While he was proud of his Jewish heritage, Paul saw that the gospel was for the Gentiles as well. Paul was martyred for his faith in Christ by the Romans, about 64 or 65 A.D...
"Paul had a brilliant mind, a commanding knowledge of philosophy and religion, and could debate with the most educated scholars of his day. At the same time, his clear, understandable explanation of the gospel made his letters to early churches the foundation of Christian theology. Tradition portrays Paul as a physically small man, but he endured enormous physical hardships on his missionary journeys. His perseverance in the face of danger and persecution has inspired countless missionaries since...
"Occupation: Pharisee, tent maker, Christian evangelist, missionary, Scripture writer.
Tribe - Benjamin
Party - Pharisee
Mentor - Gamaliel, a famous rabbi..."
Excerpted from "Paul of Tarsus" by Jack Zavada
Paul was famous and did many things that furthered Christianity but most of all he was persistent and never gave up because Paul realized that Our Awesome God never gave up on him even when he was killing Christians. We as Christians should be as persistent as Paul. Come join us as we at LWBC learn more about Our Awesome God and His purposes for His adopted children. We have Worship Services each Sunday at 10:30 AM. We love visitors and seekers of God.
"And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave. And, behold, there came a voice unto him, and said, What doest thou here, Elijah?"
(1 Kings 19:12 -13 KJV)
When one slows down and listens after problems have happened, one may hear that "still small voice" telling one to stop. It might come as Elijah heard it or it might come in other forms, but Our Awesome God knows the best way to stop you when you are going the wrong way, doing the wrong thing or you just need to slow down. We often do not know or understand God because we do not listen for or heed His gentle calls to stop and consider what we are doing.
A whisper can barely be heard and is especially hard to hear as you rush to and fro, so sometimes it must be felt as a pressure on ones' heart and mind. It is like a warm gentle breeze blowing calmly across your soul. It warms and comforts you when you heed it and listen. This feeling and voice are well worth your wait. So listen and wait for Our Awesome God to whisper in that "still small voice" so He gets your attention.
When you are pursuing a path that clearly follows scriptural commandments but you sense that God wants you to do something else that is not on that path, stop and pray before going on. Consider the action and test It against scripture. Does it involve anything that might violate Our Awesome God's word? If not, do the action as best you can as soon as possible. Leave the results and consequences up to God.
Once the assignment is accomplished, God may give you another job. If not, you can return to your original path, but you might want to pursue it in a different direction. A good example is found in Paul’s journey described in Acts, chapters 16 and 17. Sometimes God closes doors (Acts16:6-7). Sometimes God tells us directly by voice or in a vision (Acts 16:9). Other times God uses circumstances (Acts 17:13-15). Paul never did get to Galatia or Bithynia but he preached the Gospel wherever he went.
Our Awesome God never explains His plan to us. He gives us commands in the Bible and lets us work out our own plans to obey them to the best of our ability. Then God blesses them with results that may not be what you expected. But you should always be listening for Him to tell you when He wants you to do something else. You will learn to listen and obey while developing a deep and abiding love for Him and His gentle stops.
Join us at LWBC every Sunday at 9:30 AM, we have small group Bible Studies and at 10:30 AM, we meet in the sanctuary for Worship Service. Sunday evening is at 6:00 PM we have Bible Study along with AWANA for children until 7:30 PM. Our programs include a Wednesday Prayer Meeting and Bible Study but are varied as we teach and preach from Our Awesome God's Holy Bible. We love visitors!
"And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren."
(Luke 22:31-32 KJV)
Testing of a person by Our Awesome God is usually done through their faith. We feel the testing of our faith as more acute when it involves us feeling alone with the problem. The feeling of being deserted by everyone will make you feel as a soldier would if all his weapons were removed and he was asked to wipe out a tank. Alone!
Paul wrote, "I have kept the faith" (2 Timothy 4:7) but they cut off his head not long after. His faith was still there. There were three things he rejoiced in having done: 1) "having fought the good fight", 2) "having finished the race" and he had, 3) "kept the faith". Paul's faith had been tested multiple times, making his faith stronger, and he passed as he joined Jesus in heaven. May our faith be as strong when our testing occurs. May we remember that we are never alone even when we are wrong we can always ask Our Awesome God to come be with us, and He will, testing us and strengthening us to teach us to lean on our Lord as we spread God's message to all.
Like Paul, we need to keep trying so we can finish "the race" and keep "the faith" so that we can wear that crown like Paul will wear. So that we can test and strengthen our faith and know that we can do it because, having the faith, we believe. Our Awesome God may be testing us so we will know how much faith we have. We need to remember that the most important thing we can do is have faith in Our Awesome God and keep that faith strong. So if testing will strengthen that faith then let us be glad He is testing us, for the time will come when we will need a strong faith like Paul.
Faith is "an unquestioning belief that does not require proof or evidence". Our Awesome God is a reality to me. He is in my heart and helps me daily, testing me as I go through , increasing my faith and knowledge of my Father God. You develop by testing and pushing yourself to your limit in anything to get better at it. God helps you to do the same.
Come join us as we work in Our Awesome God's vineyard, telling others about His story of love and salvation. Our church starts with small groups on Sunday at 9:30 AM and a Worship Service at 10:30 AM. On Sunday evening at 6:00 PM, a Bible Study meets for an hour along with a program for children called AWANA which goes until 7:30 PM. We have a Prayer Meeting and Bible Study that meets at 7:00 PM on Wednesday.
"Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,"
(Colossians 2:16, 18 KJV)
We need to realize that legalism is still a threat to our freedom in Jesus Christ. It tries to make us follow rules that we no longer need because we have Jesus, who has taken away our sins. And if we follow rules are we getting closer to Jesus or further away? So Paul says, we Christians must not allow men to judge us according to their manmade ritual rules, so that we take their opinions to heart and change our lives to abide by their rules. Why should we even consider such legalism?
Looking at Colossians 2:9-10: “For in him (Jesus Christ) dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power: (KJV). If we are complete in Jesus Christ, who took all our sins upon Himself, then why do we need to go back to something that didn't work, like legalism? We don't and Paul says we shouldn't.
These warnings remind us of the importance of our commitment to biblical worship and biblical Christianity. When we stray from the Word, which is one of the ways by which Our Awesome God directs His people, we stray into dangerous ground. If you are a Christian, there is a special blessing for you and you can ask Him what He wants you to do. But for those who don't know Jesus Christ and the Holy Bible, understand that you must come to Christ because there is no removal of sins unless you allow Christ to do it. Jesus Christ does the judging and the mediating. No amount of following rules will save you!
Stay away from other people's rules and read your Holy Bible, especially around what Jesus Christ said, does it agree with your rules? Then read the Old Testament as Our Awesome God gives us the Ten Commandments and shows us why we need a savior. Attend His church that preaches and teaches that Jesus Christ died for you, taking your sins upon Himself and arose the third day to sit by God, interceding for you when you sin. God loves you!
Join us at LWBC as we work in Our Awesome God's vineyard to tell everyone about Jesus Christ and His salvation. We start with small groups on Sunday at 9:30 AM and Worship Service at 10:30 AM. Our programs include Bible Study groups along with AWANA for children on Sunday evening at 6:00 PM lasting until 7:30 PM. Wednesday at 7:00 PM is Prayer Requests and Bible Study.
"For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith."
(Galatians 6:8-10 KJV)
The idea in this Scripture is not clock time but opportunities to Touch A Life for Christ. Those openings for ministry that often come at inconvenient times such as a friend who wants to talk, a child who asks a question, or the chance to lend a hand to someone in need. Paul is telling us to keep our lives in order such that we can respond when the chance arises to help. These opportunities will be left out of an overly tight schedule.
You could say that opportunity is a time favorable for a purpose. This passage could be interpreted as referring to the present life that Our Awesome God gives us in order that we can learn to sow and do good things. We should not worry about the opportunities we missed today for we can do nothing about them. Today has passed, but we can decide to be alert for the opportunities to Touch A Life that Our Awesome God will give us tomorrow.
Paul called it doing "good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.".(Galatians 6:10). We can help shape another person's life by showing an interest and taking action. Check the people around you. Is there someone who needs your touch in their lives that Our Awesome God has given you the opportunity to touch with your words or actions? Be ready to respond to the opportunity to Touch A Life for our God!
Touching others with the knowledge and love of Jesus Christ is why we are here on earth. There are always people who have never heard about are wonderful God who created us and loves us. Our Awesome God wants us to know Him well enough that we will Touch A Life with the Words of Jesus Christ, God's Son, everywhere we go.
Come as we reach out to Touch A Life for Jesus Christ in our community and the world. Join us at LWBC every Sunday at 9:30 AM, we have small group Bible Studies and at 10:30 AM, we meet in the sanctuary for Worship Service. On Sunday evening at 6:00 PM, a Bible Study meets along with AWANA for children, lasting until 7:30 PM. And Wednesday evening at 7:00 PM there are Prayer Requests and Bible Study. We love visitors!
"Yet I supposed it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, and companion in labour, and fellowsoldier, but your messenger, and he that ministered to my wants. For he longed after you all, and was full of heaviness, because that ye had heard that he had been sick."
(Philippians 2:25, 26 KJV)
Paul wrote a letter that became part of Our Awesome God's Bible from his Roman prison about a Greek convert to the Christian faith named Epaphroditus. He was a fellow worker with Paul who had been very ill. Epaphroditus, as far as we know, was not a preacher or a deacon and he never performed a miracle. But the light his life cast still shines centuries later in the Holy Bible.
When thinking about good Christian character, we should think about characteristics such compassion, courage, discipline, endurance, faithfulness, forgiveness, generosity, grace, holiness, hope, humility, justice, love, mercy, obedience, repentance, sacrifice, service, trust, truth, wisdom, prayer and contentment. Are these words descriptive of the life you live? They describe the life that Epaphroditus lived. He modeled a life that exemplified brotherhood, a work ethic, spiritual endurance and service for Our Awesome God's people to follow.
The Christian characteristics that are seen by others in your life are very important to those around you and should include qualities such as love, compassion, discipline, faithfulness, truth, wisdom, and obedience. These are some of the characteristics Our Awesome God is slowly teaching you. What characteristics would Paul have used to describe your life?
How are your characteristics being seen by others around you? Maybe you have few or no real Christian characteristics because you need Jesus Christ and His example in your life as Epaphroditus had. If so, come to our church and learn how to become a child of God. Our Awesome God helps His children develop these characteristics as they learn more about Him while traveling through life.
It isn't easy to live life here on earth because Our Awesome God uses most things we do, good or bad, as an area for teaching us to use Jesus Christ as our example to follow. But eternity in heaven is worth it!
Join us at Living Word Baptist Church as we pray and worship Him this Sunday at 9:30 AM for Bible Study and 10:30 AM for worship Service. Sunday evening at 6:00 PM we have Bible Study along with a children's program called AWANA which goes until 7:30 PM. On Wednesdays, we meet at 7:00 PM for Prayer Requests and Bible Study. First, it is time that you should know and love Our Awesome God as your creator and Savior. We can show you how from the Word of God and we love visitors.
Flo & Bill