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A Weekly Word from John
Who Can Stand?

1/25/2015 Who Can Stand?: Revelation: 6


Logo Revelation Sereies Poster webThe end of the world. What a terrifying and confusing thought… when will it happen? How will it take place? What will happen to us? These are questions we all consider at some point, and they are questions the Bible addresses. Scripture does answer every question in detail, but it gives us enough answers for us to 1. Live with hope despite whatever evils we may encounter today, and 2. Warn others so that they might be spared God’s wrath.

Begin... Again II - True Value

1/11/2015 Begin... Again II - True Value: Matthew 6:25-26



Giving is not so much a money issue as it is a heart issue. Jesus made it clear that all we have to do is look where our treasure is… and then we will know where our heart is. The Macedonians understood just how ‘generous’ God had been toward us through the ‘giving of himself’ for us in the gospel that they, out of their extreme poverty overflowed with a wealth of generosity. They actually pleaded with the apostles to have the privilege to give! Wow! (2 Cor. 8:4,9 )  

One of the ways we train ourselves in godliness in regard to stewardship is to first of all recognize that we are secure in our Heavenly Father’s care. Anxiety, seemingly in our face at every turn, can be alleviated when we realize that God will provide for our needs (not our wants) because of how highly He values us (Matt. 6:26 ). This will bring great freedom and great generosity in our planned giving to God’s kingdom work. 

It is quite interesting to note that if believers in Christ’s Church gave the tithe (10%) across the board as a minimum, 165 billion dollarswould be available to bless the world and invest in the making of disciples worldwide. Sadly, Christians today are only giving overall 2.5 percent of their income to the Lord’s work whereas in the Great Depression, the Church gave 3.3%. 

So what can we do?

  1. Ask God for grace to believe that He values us and therefore will take care of our needs.
  2. Sit down at the beginning of this year and pray to the Lord about our giving. Write down the figure of 10% of your income. Pray some more and ask the Lord if this is what He wants you to give. (See 2 Cor. 9:6,7 --- I Cor. 16:1,2)
  3. Teach our children the importance of the tithe from Holy Scripture (See Malachi 3:10 , Luke 18:12 , Heb. 7:5 )
  4. Let the Lord be ‘Lord of our money’ as He should be Lord of our lives. 


Salt & Light in 2015

12/28/2014 Salt & Light in 2015: Matthew 5:13-16

SaltSalt served two primary purposes: to flavor and to preserve. 

The TV and internet are full of “Top Stories of 2014” lists, and many of them are stories of bad news. But in all of the craziness that is the end of the year, remember that God is still at work. Salt is a simple thing, but a little bit of salt goes a long way! Jesus calls his disciples the salt of the earth and the light of the world. 

Is Life Sacred?

1/18/2015 Is Life Sacred?Psalm 139:13-16


SOHL web logoDo you ever feel that you have no value in this life? Do people and society put you down? Are you simply a random act of creation like the animals and the fish of the sea? The Creator of the universe says no. Jesus, the Messiah says no. We are the ‘crown’ of His creative work.

Begin... Again

1/4/2015 Begin... Again: I Timothy 4:7

Winter-2015-WEbg-PosterA New Year… not another New Year Resolution please! For me, the important start to a new year has to do with intentionality and goals. God’s amazing grace keeps us living the adventure of faith every year with confidence, looking forward to the final goal of heaven. It’s not about the perfection but rather about the direction of our discipleship walk. His Spirit keeps us going with grace-filled energy to love and serve God and humanity pointing people to the good news of God’s rescue mission for all time. 

Love Came Down

12/21/2014 Love Came Down: I John 4:7-16

 xmas ornamentHow do you know that God actually loves you? You personally? Right now… Right here on this earth in your situation; in your stage of life? Christmas time is a manifestation of God’s love. The apostle John makes this clear in his writings in Holy Scripture.

The ‘sending’ of the miraculous child to earth in the Birth of Bethlehem was the launching pad for that personified love. God desired to show all humanity who He is and what he is like. The life of Jesus of Nazareth is the personification of His love. The death of Jesus is also a personification of His love. The resurrection of Jesus the Christ is the victorious completion of His love. His glorious return will be the consummation of His amazing love and grace.

Christmas on display is not about ornaments and lights and snow even though we enjoy them this time of the year. Christmas on display is recognizing how much God loves us in that He would take on human flesh at Bethlehem and then take on our sin in His body on the cross. Christmas on display is our choosing to reflect that love to one another in the same way that God shows it to us. His Spirit has been given to all who believe as the most important Christmas gift of all. He enables us to love one another in ways that we cannot do ourselves when we surrender to His control. Will you embrace His Christmas gift this year?

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PO Box 145 · 63 Rockwood Road (Route 115) · Norfolk · MA 02056
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