Hello Brothers & Sisters,
Fall is definitely upon us! It’s refreshing to feel the cool air outside. I confess that this is my favorite time of year. I have found that the change in the temperature carries with it the potential for change in my soul. I’d encourage us all to experience the changing of seasons that way. In what ways might God want to bring refreshment and change to your life?
This past Sunday we concluded our Streams series with a message called, Our Streams, Our Witness (6 of 6). I began by sharing how we affirm the Apostles’ Creed. I then pointed out something that was missing: the life and teachings of Jesus. If we want to be the difference the world needs to see in the church, we mustn’t overlook the importance of Jesus’ life and teachings. As I mentioned in the sermon, Jesus commissioned us to make disciples that learn to follow his commands (Matt 28:18-20). And what were some of those commands?
Here are a few commands that come primarily from the Sermon on the Mount:
Love and pray for your enemies (Matt 5:44-46)
Repent of your sins and follow him (Matt 4:17-19)
Store up treasures in heaven, not wealth on earth (Matt 6:19-21)
Don’t worry but trust God instead (Matt 6:25)
Seek the Kingdom of God above all things (Matt 6:33)
Don’t judge people’s hearts (Matt 7:1)
Treat others like you want to be treated (Matt 7:12)
Forgive others/be reconciled (Matt 5:23-24; 18:21-22)
Love God and your neighbor (Matt 22:37-39)
Since Jesus commands us to live in this way, how do we actually put these things into practice? Well, we can’t do it alone. This is why we have been stressing the importance of our sermon-based small groups at Grantham Church. Jesus had a small group (a personal space) where he invited his disciples to share the journey together. Are you meeting with others to talk about these things? I want to encourage you to go below the surface in your conversations and be real about those areas God is speaking to you. And then encourage each other unto repentance and obedience. This is the way of discipleship.
This weekend is Missions Sunday – The World of Missions. Please join us as we explore and celebrate the world of missionaries and the ways they serve. Jonathan and Becky Owen, our missionaries in Malawi, will speak to our adults and our children at 9:00 am, Jonathan will preach in the service, and there will be a lunch in the fellowship hall. We will also have an evening gathering in the sanctuary at 6:30 pm with John and Esther Spurrier, long-time BIC missionaries to Zambia. They will share of the great work God has done through them in helping to eradicate AIDS in Africa.
Want to give to the Ingathering Offering this Sunday? There will be envelopes in the pew racks for you to designate your offering. 50% will go to support Jonathan and Becky Owen, Jay & Judy Smith, and Secure Workers in the Middle East. The other 50% will go to help these projects: Macha Hospital Support, Malawi IT Server & Support, Leadership Development in Spain and in Mozambique. Thanks in advance for helping us reach our goal of $10,000 in order to assist our brothers and sisters in the work of the Kingdom around the world.
You are making a difference, Grantham Church. May we press on in the hope of the resurrection, for we know that our labor in the Lord is not in vain.
Grace & Peace,
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