Welcome

Scripture Reading:

“Then he said to them, “I can guarantee this truth: Unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever becomes like this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes a child like this in my name welcomes me.” Matthew 18:3-5

Think: Who have I welcomed in Jesus name? Who should I welcome in his name?

Pray: Open my eyes, Lord. Open my heart, Lord. Loosen my tongue that I may speak your welcome even as you welcome me. Amen.

A Cup of Water

Scripture

“I assure you that everybody who gives even a cup of cold water to these little ones because they are my disciples will certainly be rewarded.” Matthew 10:42, CEB

Reflection

When we hear about church missions, we often think of big, organized programs: missionaries serving far from home or the annual church mission trip. But Jesus often talked about missions as simply helping the people we encounter every day, like giving a cup of cold water to someone who is thirsty, food to a neighbor who is hungry, or visiting those who are alone. We don’t have to travel far from home to do these things, we can do them wherever we are.

When we think of missions in this way, every day—at school, work, home, wherever we go—can be a mission trip.

Get them talking

  • When has someone helped you? How did you feel?

  • When was a time you helped someone? How did that make you feel?

  • Why do you think it matters to Jesus that we help others?

Prayer

Dear God, give me a heart to be a helper. Amen.

Activity

Decide on a family service project. It could be donating clothes, taking a meal to a neighbor, or collecting money to donate.

get-them-talking-helping

Jeremiah 17:7-8

We received this from our friend Karen Kennedy

Jeremiah 17:7-8

“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”

Prayer

Lord, thank You that Your will and Your plan is always perfect. Even though life may not be easy, I know You see the big picture and know what’s best for me. I trust that You are always good and always faithful, and that Your love is steadfast. Help me live in light of those truths today and help me have peace. Help me face today with confidence knowing that Your plan is greater than all of my dreams or ambitions. Thank You for the life I have in You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen

Stay Away From These People

2 Timothy 3:1-5

1. You must understand this: In the last days there will be violent periods of time. 2. People will be selfish and love money. They will brag, be arrogant, and use abusive language. They will curse their parents, show no gratitude, have no respect for what is holy, 3. and lack normal affection for their families. They will refuse to make peace with anyone. They will be slanderous, lack self-control, be brutal, and have no love for what is good. 4. They will be traitors. They will be reckless and conceited. They will love pleasure rather than God. 5. They will appear to have a godly life, but they will not let its power change them. Stay away from such people.

The first four verses sound as though they are those to whom Jesus would seek out for conversion – those in most need of salvation. But in verse five we see their true nature. They know the good news. They even pretend to follow it’s principles. However,they continue to resist real change. In their heart of hearts they resist the will of God for their lives. They deseave others and possibly even themselves. They will be judged buy their fruit. Having the appearance of godliness, they sow seeds of evilness. They are the weeds planted by the enemy in the field of God’s good grain.

Matthew 13:24-30

24. Jesus used another illustration. He said, “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who planted good seed in his field. 25. But while people were asleep, his enemy planted weeds in the wheat field and went away. 26. When the wheat came up and formed kernels, weeds appeared. 27. “The owner’s workers came to him and asked, ‘Sir, didn’t you plant good seed in your field? Where did the weeds come from?’ 28. “He told them, ‘An enemy did this.’ “His workers asked him, ‘Do you want us to pull out the weeds?’ 29. “He replied, ‘No. If you pull out the weeds, you may pull out the wheat with them. 30. Let both grow together until the harvest. When the grain is cut, I will tell the workers to gather the weeds first and tie them in bundles to be burned. But I’ll have them bring the wheat into my barn.'”

God has a place for these deceitful disruptors amongst the congregation. Matthew 25:46 “These people will go away into eternal punishment, but those with God’s approval will go into eternal life.”

FOREWARNED IS FOREARMED

FOREWARNED IS FOREARMED

John 15:27-16:4a

“You will declare the truth, too, because you have been with me from the beginning.” Jesus continued, “I have said these things to you so that you won’t lose your faith. You will be thrown out of synagogues. Certainly, the time is coming when people who murder you will think that they are serving God. They will do these things to you because they haven’t known the Father or me. But I’ve told you this so that when it happens you’ll remember what I’ve told you.”

Let’s say that you are bebopping along — dota dota dota do — and suddenly a big hairy beast comes running toward you — what do you do? I don’t know about you, but after peddling down my leg, I’d run.

Now, let’s say that you had been warned that big hairy beasts were in the area. You were told that, if you encounter a big hairy beast, absolutely DO NOT RUN AWAY. If you run from them, that triggers a predictor response in them and they will chase you and eat you all up. Further you were told that you should RUN AT THEM ENDS GROWL. That triggers the prey response in them and the will ruin and hide from you.

Wouldn’t you be better off knowing in advance about big hairy beasts? In either case, you are going to encounter big hairy beasts. However, forewarned is forearmed.

In this passage of Scripture Jesus tells his disciples their duty, declare the truth. Now the hoped for outcome is that, having heard the truth, people will be set free from their sins. (John 8:32 “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”) However, not all who hear will believe. (John 8:47 “The person who belongs to God understands what God says. You don’t understand because you don’t belong to God.”) And Jesus warns his disciples that those non believers will throw them out of places out worship and even try to kill them, and in some cases succeed in murdering them. But through it all you won’t lose your faith because you were forewarned.

Prayer:

Thank you, Lord Jesus, for calling us to be your disciples and for trusting us to tell your truth in a world that badly needs the truth though they may refuse to hear it. Protect us or give us the strength to endure, so that we not lose our faith. Amen.

Parable of the Glowstick.

I found this on Facebook

Author unknown

Gracefully Broken!

I was in Dollar Tree last night and there was a lady and two kids behind me in the LONG line. One was a big kid, one was a toddler. The bigger one had a pack of glow sticks and the baby was screaming for them so the Mom opened the pack and gave him one; which stopped his tears. He walked around with it smiling, but then the bigger boy took it and the baby started screaming again. Just as the Mom was about to fuss at the older child, he bent the glow sticks and handed it back to the baby. As we walked outside at the same time, the baby noticed that the stick was now glowing and his brother said: “I had to break it so you could get the full effect from it.” I almost ran because l could hear God saying to me, “I had to break you to show you why I created you. You had to go through it so you could fulfill your purpose.”

That little baby was happy just swinging that “unbroken” glow stick around in the air because he didn’t understand what it was created to do which was “glow”.

There are some people who will be content just “being” but some of us that God has chosen, we have to be “broken”.

We have to get sick. We have to lose our job. We go through a divorce. We have to bury our spouse, parents, best friend/sibling, or our child because, in those moments of desperation, God is breaking us but when the breaking is done, then we will be able to see the reason for which we were created..

so when you see us glowing just know that we have been broken but healed by his Grace and Mercy!!!

Love As You Are Loved

Luke 10:25-28

Then an expert in Moses’ Teachings stood up to test Jesus. He asked, “Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus answered him, “What is written in Moses’ Teachings? What do you read there?” He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind.’ And ‘Love your neighbor as you love yourself.'” Jesus told him, “You’re right! Do this, and life will be yours.”

As I study this verse, I try to restate it in my own words.

  1. Love God for who He is. Seek to be pleasing to Him. To love and obey Him, not as a robot but as His loving child.

  2. Love others and seek what is best for them, even if that requires a personal sacrifice. To go beyond what is required, to give out of love.

  3. Love self, but not boast of self worth. But do not demean myself. I am a child of the King and loved by Him. He values me and has a job for me.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, I seek to lovingly obey You. I trust You to re-form me, re-make me, to re-create me, to re-center my life around loving you and loving others. Do your work of grace in me. Amen.

Also visit my other blogs.Tom and Ella’s Daily Journal of Our Lives http://TomAndEllaJournal.WordPress.comMy NEW sermons blog Armchair Sermons. Sermons posted Sundays 10 AM central time. ©2020 Thomas E Williams

Hidden Sins?

Proverbs 28:13
Those who refuse to confess or admit their sins will not prosper, but God acts mercifully and kindly toward those who confess their sins and turn away from their sinful behavior.

As a father, grandfather, and great grandfather, I have been lied to by children who are trying to hide things that they know are wrong. As a general rule, I’ve seen through their attempts at deception. However, I’ll admit to being fooled buy them sometimes.

However, God, our Father, is never deceived. Deeds done in darkness are seen as if in the light of day. Indeed, even our thoughts of sinful things are made known to Him. Matthew 5:28 “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

Prayer: by Karen Kennedy

Lord, please don’t let me ever forget the price You paid for my sin. Thank You for the forgiveness and freedom You purchased with Your death on the cross. Please bring swift awareness and conviction when I sin. Give me the strength and power to deal with and turn from the sin in my life. Help me to be kind and loving to all those around me and be a light to those in need. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Also visit my other blogs

  • Tom and Ella’s Daily Journal of Our Lives