Our Prayer Concerns

Pastor’s Letter  ~ APRIL 2020
 

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“I want to know Christ and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in His sufferings, becoming like Him in His death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”                  Philippians 3:10-14 ~ NIV

 

The cross and the Resurrection began in the heart of God and was lived out in God’s Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  This impacts our lives as we are the reason and the focus for this act of God.  As a result, the Resurrection is something that believers can experience in daily life as well as experience for all eternity!  It was a pivotal day, a day like no other in the history of the world.  That first day of the week came as God’s power dramatically unfolded in the world.  There was an earthquake, and an angel appearing like lightning, as white as snow.  The massive stone was rolled back and the Roman guards were overcome by fear and fainted as if dead men.  The entrance to the tomb was exposed to the world to see.  As the first women went in, what they found was amazing!  This Resurrection power was not from this world, it was from beyond this world!  As the first disciples came and looked into this tomb, they found the grave clothes still wrapped as though a body was present; yet His body had mysteriously disappeared.  Just as His disciples responded with fear and joy in the days to come, we too are overwhelmed at its prospects.  The Divine has interacted with the mortal in a powerful climax.  Eternity has crossed over into time.  Resurrection is the power of God to give new life.  It is the power to bring us into the Holy of Holies, the direct and personal contact with the Presence of God, a place that at one time was forbidden except for the highly consecrated priest, and that only once per year.  We can enter at anytime!  But in order to do so, there is something we must do.  Resurrection always follows death.  We will at one time or another experience the death of our mortal bodies.  But there is another death that precedes this.  It is the death to self and to the world in which we live.  The greatest attraction for us humans is to live our life for ourselves in the world with all of its habits.  Jesus tells us that before we can follow Him, we must take up our cross too.  The cross always means death.  Before we can experience the Resurrection power, something must die.  As Christians and as humans, the hardest thing we have to do is to let the old self die.  It is always there right there to take up where we left off.  This is where the power of the Resurrection life comes into play.  As we struggle to put off the old habits, the newness and the joy of following our Lord takes precedence over our old way of life.  It is not that we want to struggle to live an obedient life based on the law, but instead we are free based on relationship.  We want to obey because we have been inwardly changed.  The joy of salvation is that we have been entirely forgiven of our sins by God.  This brings a freshness to our daily walk and a joy and peace that is found nowhere else.  So often, as those who have been Christians for a while, we lose the freshness of the Resurrected life in our day to day walk with Jesus.  What we must do is to remind ourselves, and this is the greatest time of the year to do it, not only what it cost God, but what it must also cost us.  We can become numb to the working of God in our life to the point where we begin to slip.  Daily we must take time to renew our walk by being in God’s word and surrounding ourselves with the thoughts of God in prayer.  Communication is essential!  We must “press on” as Paul puts it “to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.”  We must also press on and continue to nurture our relationship with Jesus.  As we make that effort, the world will look a little dimmer and the Kingdom a little brighter!  Be encouraged as we walk together in Christ Jesus our Lord! In His love, Pastor Bill ♥

 

 

 

 

 

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