Our Blog

Filter By:

Pastor's Point - January 2023

main image

Church Family,

A few weeks ago, I mentioned in one of my sermons the reality of change during the Christmas season. Now, of course, I am not referring to the true meaning of Christmas; that never changes! But as we get older, Christmas changes in the ways in which we celebrate it, the people that we get to be with, the places in which we go, and even the foods in which we eat.

I loved celebrating Christmas as a child with my family that I grew up in. It wasn’t because of the amount of presents I received, but it was because of the amount of love
that my parents expressed to their children. They loved us enough to always remind us of the true meaning of Christmas; they loved us enough to help us see the value of giving to others, not just receiving for ourselves; and they loved us enough to demonstrate before our eyes kindness and thoughtfulness to others. As a child, I celebrated Christmas with my mom and dad and my siblings, but that has changed.

I am not able to be with my parents any longer at Christmas. They are with the Lord. Yes, I miss them, but I do not wish they were still with me. They have completed their race and they are resting in the presence of Jesus. But God is so good to me that He has given me new people to be with to celebrate Christmas. When I was a child, I always hoped that I would find a girl to marry one day and spend the rest of my life with. I hoped there would be a day that I would have kids. And as God gave me a wife and children, I prayed that one day my children would find spouses to marry and have children of their own. God has done all of that for me!!! I now get to celebrate Christmas with all these people in my family.

I am thankful for God’s kindness to me, but I do know that there are still times of loneliness and missing those that you cannot be with. My oldest son, daughter-in-law, and one of my grandchildren are not able to be with us for Christmas. I miss them, but this is part of the changes that take place in life that are heightened in our lives during the Christmas season. So, whether there are some of your loved ones who are no longer with you or are maybe on the other side of the world, just know that Christmas does change, but the real meaning of Christmas never does. Our Savior came to earth, took on flesh, saved us from our sin, and in that gives us a future and a hope. Let’s remember that this Christmas season! Let’s not focus on the change, or our loss. Let’s thank God for our future and hope that we have for all of eternity and for the new year to come in 2023!!!

I love you and I love being your pastor

Posted by Alan Scott with

Spare Change - January 2023

main image

One thing I have learned is that change is inevitable.  There are some that welcome change and some that revile it, but one constant in life is change.  I have always been one that doesn’t want things to change.  I like the simple things in life, and I am fine if things stay just the way they are.  This has always been a challenge for me because as much as I try, life circumstances, people, the world, etc. are always changing.  Since change is unavoidable, how do I deal with it?  What can I do as a Christian to not only understand change but to leverage it for the glory of God? Here are 3 ways to deal with change:

The first thing we need to understand about change is everything changes, except for our Lord.  The Bible is replete with passages about the unchanging character (i.e. Hebrews 13:8, Malachi 3:6, Numbers 23:19, Isaiah 40:8, Psalm 119:89, Psalm 102:27) of God.  This is very comforting in a world that is always changing.  We can always count on the Lord to be the same today as He was a thousand years ago.  This is important because it means we can trust the Lord.  We can also trust the promises that He made in the scriptures.  The unchanging nature of God is a distinct characteristic that should fill us with hope.  We can always count on our Lord, today and every day in the future.

2. Change gives us hope.  As much as I don’t like change, I realize that I am a product of change.  When I became a Christian, I was transformed and I have been on a trajectory of transformation ever since.  Change, or as it is also known - sanctification, is a reality for all believers.  We should relish the fact that we are not the person we used to be.  We should be thankful that the Lord works in our heart to make us more like Him.  In this way, change is good.  Change gives us hope.  We don’t have to remain stuck in our sin and disobedience.  God will help us to move out of it for His glory.  The main driver for this is still the basics of the faith.  The Word of God is the catalyst for change in our lives.  If you really desire to change, you must dive into God’s Word.  Embrace the fact that you are God’s ongoing masterpiece, and He will do an amazing work in your life.

3. Change is coming, so be ready.  You have one advantage in dealing with change: you know it is coming.  If you know something is coming then you can be ready for it.  You can’t ever be completely ready because you don’t know the specific things that will happen, however, there are some general principles that we can apply to be ready for any situation as a believer.  Peter shares this truth in 1 Peter 1:13-16:

13 Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14 As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, 15 but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”

How do we prepare for any challenge in life?  Set our focus on Jesus, live for Him instead of ourselves, and pursue holiness.  When we live this passage out in our lives then we can overcome any changes that come our way.

We can’t stop the world from changing, but we can rest in the fact that the unchanging Lord of Creation is sovereign over everything.  We can also look to Him to help us grow and change to be more like Him; in this way we can be prepared for whatever comes our way.  Change is inevitable, but that shouldn’t scare us. Rather, we should embrace it and be ready for the challenge.

Posted by Bryan Gotcher with

Previous12345678910 ... 315316