Today I officiated at the funeral of Judy Baker Brandeberry. When we were still in our old building, Judy and her daughters, Deb Bunn and Jill Baker, attended with their families. Judy was active in a Recovery Group that Pastor Ernie Kohlmyer led and was active in church.
I remember that Judy loved to cook and was active in preparing several men’s breakfasts we had going back then. She was always a fun-lover and a real support in reaching out to troubled people, both men and women. What do you remember about Judy?
Wednesday night (tonight) we’ll be studying about Abram and Lot in the Adult Bible Fellowship. Lot got himself into some trouble because he lived among the world’s people. Abram had to come to the rescue.
Spiritual people are always out to rescue people who’ve gotten entangled in the world’s ways. Most probably you are already aware of people like that. Perhaps they are family, like Abram and Lot. God’s purpose in rescuing us is to send us back out to rescue others. Think about how you can help to rescue them and set them free. God will give you a strategy, just like He gave Abram a strategy. I hope you can be here tonight at 7PM as we unfold life principles from the life of Abram.
“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to f0rgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
This is one of the great promises in the Bible. But all the great promises have conditions. In this promise, the condition is that we confess our sins. That doesn’t mean we confess the secret sins in front of the church. If that were the case, few of us would humble ourselves to do that. The meaning here is that we acknowledge them before God. We must take responsibility for our sins and not pass the blame on to someone else. Its got to sound something like, “Forgive me, Father, for I have sinned.”
Also note that this promise has to do with God’s forgiveness, His cleansing, and His righteousness. It doesn’t mean there is not a price to be paid. Someone who has had an affair can find immediate forgiveness from God. But there will be a terrible price to pay in our relationships and reputation.
Sunday was a day of celebration. It was not only Father’s Day, but also Anita and my 40th wedding anniversary, and our grandson’s (Reuben) 7th birthday. So, it was a day of feasting and gift exchange. After eating, Nathan came to me and told me that something was burning downstairs. So, I took off like a cannon shot because there is absolutely nothing downstairs that should be hot, but with 4 grandkids around, who knows? Soon, all the adults were sniffing around trying to find the source of electrical fumes. We finally narrowed it down to the TV and carried it outside. Within an hour the air was fresh again. There’s nothing like television to bring a family together, right?
I’ve learned that we should never get too attached to earthly things; they come and they go. Its family that matters. As long as those family connections remain firm, all is OK in life. TVs can always be replaced. Only family and friends go with us into heaven.
This morning I heard a report on the news that President Obama has passed his physical with flying colors. They even gave us a list of the aches and pains he has and the medicine and supplements he’s taking for them. I thought to myself, ‘What about those HIPPA Laws?’ I thought anything related to medical issues was confidential. How do they get away with publicizing someone else’s health issues? It seems like a double standard. You can’t get info on me, but I want to know info on you. Its not fair, even if he is our President.
No matter how much we try to keep things secret from others, God knows it all. He knows every secret of our hearts, and still loves us. He chooses not to hold those things against us because His own Son, Jesus Christ, already paid for those secret sins. Since its paid for, God can forgive. Its His balance of being both just and merciful at the same time. Its Amazing Grace at its best.
This morning there is a hummingbird trapped in our garage. We don’t know how he got in there, but he keeps flying around the ceiling. From his vantage point, with the overhead doors up, he can’t see the way out. The doors are open, but he’s trapped because he can’t stoop to a lower level to see his own escape route. So its really Friday the thirteenth for him (or her).
Its like that with pride. We find ourselves in a trap in life, but we’re too proud to humble ourselves to see our own way out. So we stay in the bondage like the hummingbird. Both free but neither knows it.
Just fly a little lower and you get a better view.
Please join Anita and I tonight for a one hour prayer time at New Hope from 7-8PM. We’ll be praying for our 6-member team in Indonesia and several events that Chet and Phyllis have asked us to agree with them about during their stay. We’ll have that list in print for you tonight (Thursday). Jesus said that if we would agree together He would do it. Let’s believe that promise together as we call on the Lord’s name tonight. I look forward to praying with you.