***VBS will begin Monday, March 17. There will be a half hour training session after church next week at the Town Hall. Anyone desiring to help set up afterwards is welcome to stick around.
The worship team sang a pair of Gaither songs before leading us in a time of worship. The Armstrongs were invited to share a bit about their family's relationship to the church. Leonard, who could probably make a living as a historian, told a few anecdotes about the early years of our region and how their family came to settle here and attend this very small rural country church.
Walt Cressman shared with us about the approach we are taking in building the new church. It's not being taken lightly that we need to spend within our means, and will count on using the skills of our congregation in many ways. By working together on some of the building ourselves we will also be building relationships with one another and creating opportunities to strengthen our church family as a result.
After the offering and a time of prayer Pastor Brad took the pulpit.
The Courage To Ride
The past several weeks have found us moving through the book of Philippians and today we finished with Chapter 4:4-13.
At the heart of this section one can discern Paul's passion to be a difference-maker. Brad asserted that this is to be our attitude as well. "I want to be a difference-maker. I want the world to be a better place because I was here." Difference-makers, no space-takers.
In Matthew 5, Jesus set forth the same message when He stated, "You are the salt of the earth."
Brad noted some facts and stats about salt. Only 8% of salt is used as table salt. Of it's many functions a primary one in the ancient world was as a preservative. Salt stops decay. Most cities in Rome were founded near salt works. Salt was so valuable that workers were often paid in salt, which is where the word salary comes from. People prized it as currency.
God's plan in this world is for us to be His salt... preserving and purifying the world. "YOU are the salt of the earth."
Salt doesn't draw attention to itself. Salt's calling is to lose itself in something else.
Brad shared a powerful story from Philip Yancey's book Rumors of Another World about a
Brad shared a powerful story from Philip Yancey's book Rumors of Another World about a man named Ernest Gordon who was powerfully influenced by a difference-maker and went on himself to become a difference-maker.
WE are the salt of the earth. If we’ve received Christ’s forgiveness we are salty.
One of the biggest problems for Christians in the 21st century is our tendency to be seduced by the culture we live in. It bends our expectations and distorts what we perceive to be wants and needs. When we have troubles, we reach for “fast, soothing temporary relief” from our pain.
We’re called to be salt. This week our homework assignment was to carry little packets of salt that we were handed at the beginning of the service and remember our calling, to be salt. Later in the week, once this message has sunk in, we can open that little salt pack and pour it out, praying as we do so… “Pour my life out.”