Monday, April 25, 2022

Pastor's Ponderings, April 25, 2022

We Are Our Brother and Our Sister’s Keeper

Jazmin Tolliver. in the April 24, 2022 U.S. News, wrote an article entitled, “Video Captures Florida Deputy Climbing Building To Save Baby From Fire.  The article went on to indicate, “We saw the building fully engulfed. It was chaos everywhere," according to Deputy William Puzynski.  On Saturday, April 23, 2022, this heroic deputy scaled the second-floor balcony, grabbed the baby from her mother and passed the child down to other deputies on the ground. Both the mother and her grandmother were rescued.

This story shows that there are still people who are willing to sacrifice themselves to help others and to demonstrate profiles of courage.  The Bible says that there is no greater love than the willingness to lay down one’s life for another (John 15:12-13).  The Golden Rule scripture says for us to do for others what you want them to do for you (Matthew 7:12).  We are also to be like Christ in this world (1 John 4:17).


We should show compassion for others like this man.  If we do not show it when we have the opportunity, how can we say that we have love for others (1 John 3:17)?  We are all together on the same planet that is moving, according to the Scientific American, about 1000 miles per hour.  Our fortunes are tied together.  Therefore, let us love, appreciate, and support each other.

John 15:12-13

New International Version

12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 

13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.


Matthew 7:12

New International Version

12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.


1 John 4:17

New International Version

17 This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesu


1 John 3:17

New International Version

17 If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person?

brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority.







Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Pastor's Ponderings, April 20, 2022

Ctrl+Z/Command-Z (on Apple)

On our computers, there is a Control Z or Command-Z key combination that deletes what you have just done. You may have deleted the wrong sentence or overwritten something that was important.  Pressing Control/ Command-Z deletes your error and restores it to where it was before you took the wrong action.


Have you ever wished to have a Control/Command-Z in your life? You went to the wrong party, took the wrong job, entered the wrong relationship, or hung around with the wrong crowd? How many of us had to confess that we would’ve, could’ve, or should’ve done something different?


The Bible says God makes all things new (Isaiah 43:19). The scripture declares that old things are passed away. We are made new in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). We are no longer in darkness. God has made us a new creation in Christ, and we are now under the authority of Jesus Christ (Colossians 1:13).  


While there is no magic eraser in life that can free us from all our bad choices, our God wants us walking in the newness of life (Romans 6:4). He still thinks good thoughts towards us, plans for us to prosper - we still have a hope and future; faithful to forgive us even if we make mistakes.


We can thank God that our sins are forgiven, and we are justified (Romans 3:24) or “just as if I had never done wrong.” We can be joyful knowing that God restores us.


Isaiah 43:19

New International Version

19 See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.


2 Corinthians 5:17

New International Version

17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!


Colossians 1:13

New International Version

13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves,


Romans 6:4 
New King James Version

4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.


Romans 3:24

New International Version

24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.







Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Pastor's Ponderings, April 12, 2022

God’s Positioning System 

As a person who has been challenged with folding maps on long trips, I welcomed the arrival of the new Global Positioning Systems. Instead of having to worry about making wrong turns, I could simply type in my destination and allow it to direct my journey.  I was very happy to note that it would even tell me my time of arrival.  All I need to do is steer, brake, and keep my eyes on the road and not on difficult to read maps.


Just like the GPS, it is great to know that God is better than satellites and He will direct our paths to our expected destination (Jeremiah 29:11).  We don’t have to worry if He is tired or sleeping on the job (Psalm 121:4). He is always present even when we make wrong turns in life.  He promises to speak when we turn to the left or right (Isaiah 30:21).  He gives us the light we need on our path when we turn our lives over to Him (Psalm 119:105).


Just like I have no desire to turn off my GPS during my travels, we should have no desire to stop listening to God.  He promises to go with us even though we go through deadly times (Psalm 23:4).  Let us remember to tell all of those who are around us that they don’t have to struggle to find the best direction in life.  More than our GPS, God will be a protection for us as He guides us (Isaiah 58:8).  

Jeremiah 29:11

New International Version

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.


Psalm 121:4

New International Version

4 indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.


Isaiah 30:21

New International Version

21 Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.”


Psalm 119:105

New International Version

105 Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.


Psalm 23:4

New International Version

4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.


Isaiah 58:8

New International Version

8 Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.







Monday, April 4, 2022

Pastor's Ponderings, April. 4, 2022

Let Us Cry Loud Against Evil 

Cole Delbyck wrote an article in the Apr. 3, 2022, Huffington Post, entitled, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy Beams Into Grammys With Call To Action.  The President said, "Tell the truth about the war on your social networks and TV. But not silence.”  Moreover, Andy Blatchford wrote in the 03/24/2022, Politico magazine, an article entitled, Band of others: Ukraine’s legions of foreign soldiers are on the frontline. The article went on to indicate that up to 20,000 volunteers from around the world have joined with the Ukrainian military to fight in the war.


Just as this president, during this war, is challenging the world to help, God is calling for those who love Him to awake from their slumber and cry out loud against sin (Isaiah 58:1).  A classic quote from an unnamed author was, “The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing.” Those of us who love the Lord must stand in agreement against atrocities in this war and other horrors around the globe. 


We have mighty weapons that we can wield under God’s direction (2 Corinthians 10:4).  Our weapons are the power of prayer, the Name of Jesus, and the sword of the Spirit. We must pray continually (Thessalonians 5:17). Speak truth to power.  We must make intercession and pray for world leaders for God’s wisdom (1 Timothy 2:1-2).  Also, we can remind ourselves that God’s joy is our strength (Nehemiah 8:10).


Now is not the time to say it is somebody else’s problem.  When we see our brother in need and do nothing about it, how does God’s love dwell in us? (John 3:17).  The scripture says that the greatest commandment is to love the Lord with all our heart, soul, and mind and to love our neighbors as ourselves (Matthew 22:37-39).  Now is the time to ask God what we can do as children of God and cry loud joyfully and victoriously. 


Isaiah 58:1

New International Version

58 “Shout it aloud, do not hold back. Raise your voice like a trumpet. Declare to my people their rebellion and to the descendants of Jacob their sins.


2 Corinthians 10:4

New International Version

4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.


Thessalonians 5:17

New International Version

17 pray continually,


1 Timothy 2:1-2

New International Version

1 I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— 
2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.


Nehemiah 8:10

New International Version

10 Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”


John 3:17

Amplified Bible

17 But whoever has the world’s goods (adequate resources), and sees his brother in need, but has no compassion for him, how does the love of God live in him?


Matthew 22:37-39

New International Version

37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’

37 This is the first and greatest commandment

39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’