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Sermon Video

March 29, 2020 Dry Bones Apart, Living Bones Together, Ezekiel 37:1-14

Sunday School Video

 Jesus with Friends in Bethany 

John 12: 1-8  

"The Weekly Word"

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March 30, 2020 Edition

  

Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” And with that he breathed on them and said, “receive the Holy Spirit.” John 20:21-22

          As much as I love to be on the go, I love my alone time too. And how awesome it is just to be still and listen. Listen to all that’s going on, listen to the wind, the rain, the sounds of birds. How fantastic to hear the silence and know, somehow, I am comforted and blessed. There’s a sense of refreshment and reassurance in the quiet of a morning, the breeze in the afternoon, and the freshness of evening.

          And Jesus disciples felt that same peace when Jesus was, of all places, locked inside a room with them. He told them a couple times; peace be with you. And Their state of being calm and uncertain, turned to peace and restoration. Mind you, the disciples were at a place of total emptiness. I mean, they had just lost their teacher, their friend, they didn’t even know where he was or if they’d see him again. Everything in their world was, well, anything but peaceful. As far as they’re concerned, everything which was so good, is now gone.

          How often friends sadly do we feel that way. Where we fail to take notice of all the blessings happening, of all God is doing even as we’re so busy. Have you ever given God thanks you can be so busy? Have you realized, someday, you may long to have an ability to be so busy once again?

Well Jesus brings a calm reassurance to them not only by his words, peace be with you, but breathing upon them so they receive the Holy Spirit. And he prays, for them, they may be gracious receivers. Not that he’s not going to do it, but that they receive what he’s given. And so he says, as my father once sent me, I am sending you.  

          And isn’t that so important for us to hear today? Jesus sends us, but not alone, he gives us the help and strength we need through the Holy Spirit. However, we must be a gracious receiver of that Holy Spirit, feeling the calm reassuring presence of Jesus as we’re busy and when we’re resting. Even as we feel a sense of worldly calm during our day, are we praying to receive the Holy Spirit. Are we doing so doing wash, waiting for something or someone, when we’re waiting in line, when we’re figuring something out, when we’re winding down, when we’re thinking about getting up? Are we feeling the peace of Jesus saying, receive the Holy Spirit? And, are we doing it?

          Let’s be gracious receivers this week by thanking God for all he’s done. And let’s receive his Holy Spirit by passing on kindness, by not getting so upset, by inviting someone into our world we haven’t and by becoming more aware of what’s going on around us. God’s doing awesome things, let his breath fill you anew, so you can live it and interact with it in a whole new way. Maybe, just maybe you’ll know Jesus peace is truly with you, and by the Holy Spirit, you can face or get through anything. Life will mean so much more and look so much better! To God be the glory

Pastor Brandon


The Weekly Word

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"The Weekly Word"

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March 23, 2020 Edition

 

Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. Isaiah 60:1

            Those who know me may be aware I have sleep cycle issues. They’re much less since I’ve been called to a full-time role, but the fact remains, it’s something, to a certain extent, I’ll always have to battle. As a blind person, my eyes not being used to any light any longer, well, they’re not going to notice the difference between light and darkness. Even if I may physically feel the light and know it’s daytime, my eyes will sometimes trigger to my brain to stay awake at night, and sleep during the day.

            Odd as it may sound, it’s no laughing matter. It can get downright annoying friends. I mean, sometimes I’ll be ready to wined down for the night, and I’ll just lay there, and my body won’t sleep. So naturally what do I do, I get up and do something. In fact, to go to sleep, I cannot just have quiet, usually I’ll have a story, a sports talk station or a piece of music playing in the background, that is, until I drift off. And sometimes when I yawn during the day, I’m afraid people may feel I don’t care, well actually know, I may just have had a bad night’s sleep beforehand.

            Truth of the matter is friends I’ve learned to manage that cycle even though darkness is all I know. Some days it’s tough to get going, but I feel the Lord moving me forward. It’s not always easy to live in darkness, but what I learn throughout the day is, how great is the darkness if the light of God truly is there?

            This verse from Isaiah reminds us to rise from whatever darkness may be surrounding us, hindering us, or bringing us down. Maybe it’s the darkness of a broken relationship, maybe it’s the darkness of the weather, maybe it’s the darkness of the seasons, maybe it’s the darkness of indifference, and maybe its darkness formed in you just can’t get motivated or excited. But here is the Prophet saying, something awesome awaits, if you take that step. If you just get up, something good’s gonna happen. If you just move on, something better is around the bend, if you somehow not let the past either define or consume you, you never know what the future might hold. And then there’s the Biggy, if you don’t know how you’re gonna deal with what the future holds, allow God to provide people: friends, family, church, to encourage you and offer hope. Know God will provide resources to someway, somehow help you arise, so you can shine once again.

            So friends in this culture of failure not being acceptable, remember, it’s okay to be down, to fail, to be discouraged, and to be frustrated with not knowing. In fact, just expect it will happen. Why? There’s darkness in the world. But always know that darkness will never be too great for God’s light to help you arise and shine. Know Christ will guide you and the Holy Spirit will comfort you if you truly try to arise, to get up, and to keep going. Don’t let your light go out. Don’t give up on God, because he’ll never give up on you! Sometimes your darkness may seem like a vicious cycle, but with the Lord at your side, you’ll always be able to press on. To God be the glory

Pastor Brandon

  


The Weekly Word

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