How do you relate?

Church Update
We went to the Airport update meeting last night and gained a little information. Now it looks like the new road won’t be opened until October 17th (“weather permitting”) – that is, we don’t know anymore. It’s looking really good, though. They installed the street lights yesterday; there is a new sidewalk that goes the entire length (about .75 miles). We are still waiting to hear from their attorney regarding our place in the process. Keep praying!

Special Update
This coming Sunday (October 1st) there is a brand new church launching in Bakersfield, CA, that I am privileged to have a part in. Pastor Mark Brock and his wife, Charity, will be holding the first service of Crossway Baptist Church at 9:30am (PST).

Leading up to this service, churches across the country (including OTCC), helped place more than 30,000 phone calls into Bakersfield to let the community know about the new church and to ask permission to send information in the mail. Over 1300 households responded, “Yes, send information!” Pray that God uses the Brocks and Crossway mightly, especially during their launch this Sunday.

Scriptural Thought of the Week
Many of us are or associate or work with people who are rich in this world’s power. They are men and women in business, government, or other places of authority. When you come in contact with them, how do you relate? What should be your Christ-like composure?

Blessed are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth.” Matthew 5:5 (NASB)

“Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart…” Matthew 11:29 (NASB)

Do a word search for “gentle” in your Bible and check it with a few other translations. The synonym that you will find frequently in the KJV is “meek” (which may be how you memorized these verses).

In His dealings with people – those who believed and those who did not – Christ was meek, gentle, and He wants us to take our cue and “learn from” Him.

Quote of the Week
In one of the 20th century’s classic books on the successful spiritual life, A. W. Tozer says this about meekness:

 

The meek man is not a human mouse afflicted with a sense of his own inferiority. Rather he may be in his moral life as bold as a lion and as strong as Samson; but he has stopped being fooled about himself. He has accepted God’s estimate of his own life. He knows he is as weak and helpless as God has declared him to be, but paradoxically, he knows at the same time that he is in the sight of God of more importance than angels. In himself, nothing; in God, everything. That is his motto. He knows well that the world will never see him as God see him and he has stopped caring. He rests perfectly content to allow God to place His own values. He will be patient to wait for the day when everything will get its own price tag and real worth will come into its own. Then the righteous shall shine forth in the Kingdom of their Father. He is willing to wait for that day.

Quoted from: A. W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God (Harrisburg, PA: Christian Publications, Inc., 1982), p. 113. ISBN: 0-87509-223-3

 

 

Until next time,

Dan’l

"The Living Word"

Church Update
The new road is coming slowly but surely. It looks like they’ll have to break time records in order to be finished by the end of the month – but I guess anything’s possible. The public hearing on the Airport Expansion Project is still scheduled for next Wednesday, Sept 27 at 5:00p at Dickinson School. We have not yet heard from them.

We began a new series this past Sunday called “Balance”. Spanning five Sundays we’ll look at God’s five purposes for our lives (fellowship, discipleship, ministry, evangelism, and worship) and how they need to balance with each other and be balanced in themselves – ultimately bringing balance to our lives. Our new Connection Cafe opens at 10:00a and the Sunday service begins at 10:30a.

Personal Update
This week has been interesting. Our internet connection was down last week Thursday through Saturday, so I didn’t post anything here and couldn’t do some web site work I needed to finish. Then sometime Saturday our water heater died. There was enough hot water in it that we didn’t notice until we were trying to get ready for church Sunday morning and there was no hot water for showers! That was replaced today; yeah!!! Thanks, Ben. The new one is larger and probably doesn’t come pre-limed-up inside. : )

Scriptural Thought of the Week
My Greek professor pointed out something to me that I had noticed before. If you have already seen or heard this, let this be a reminder to you; if not, pay close attention. The very last thing Paul wrote in his letter to the Ephesians was a great prayer of blessing on them:

“The grace [be] with all those who love our Lord Jesus Christ with an undying [love].” Ephesians 6:24 (my translation) 

What a great prayer – that God’s grace would stay upon them as they continued to love Him! But there was a problem. Sometime after Paul’s letter, probably after his death and maybe even Timothy’s, something happened to cause Jesus to write,

“But I have against you that your love – the first one – you abandoned.” Revelation 2:4 (my translation) 

The love that was to be undying, that would allow God’s grace to flow through the church, had turned into legalism – simply doing all of the right stuff without love for the Master.

May God never find the need to admonish us in the same way! May His grace be with you as you maintain your love for your Savior, Jesus Christ!

Quote of the Week
I wish I could quote a whole chapter of this book. I just finished chapter two, and it is fantastic! I can’t wait to get to the rest of it. The reason I like it so much, I think, is because it is both a brain-stretcher and a spirit-stretcher. Rob Bell asks you to bring your whole mind and soul to his discussion of Christianity – hopefully so you can experience the life change God wants you to have. So – reluctantly – here is just a sample of chapter two.

The reason the Bible continues to resonate with so many people isn’t just because it happened. What gives us strength and meaning and direction is something in addition to the historical events: It is the meaning of these events. Some call this the more-than-literal truth of the Bible.

We live in the metaphors. The story of David and Goliath continues to speak to us because we know the David part of the story – we have lived it. The tomb is empty because we have met the risen Christ – we have experienced Jesus in a way that transcends space and time. And this gives us hope. We were in darkness and God brought us out into the light.

The Word is living and active and it happens. Today.

Quoted from: Rob Bell, Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2005), p. 61. ISBN: 0739456652

 

Until next time,

Dan’l

Men are God’s Methods

“Men are God’s method”

Church Update
The rust protection is on the roof, and it’s already looking better! According to the last report, the new road is to be opened by mid- to late-September, bringing all sorts of traffic looking directly at our building. Pray that we use this exposure for God’s glory.

The Airport Authority has scheduled their next Public Hearing on the Airport Expansion Project for Wednesday, Sept 27 at 5:00p at Dickinson School.

Scriptural Thought of the Week

None of us likes to take on a project with no support. Even mavericks don’t like to go-it-alone on everything. God is looking for people who will fully give Him themselves so that He can more fully show Himself to them.

“The eyes of the LORD move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.” 2 Chronicles 16:9 (NASB) 

 


“Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT) 

 


Quote of the Week

 

We are constantly on a stretch, if not on a strain, to devise new methods, new plans, new organizations to advance the Church and secure enlargement and efficiency for the Gospel. This trend of the day has a tendancy to lose sight of the man or sink the man in the plan or organization. God’s plan is to make much of the man, far more of him than of anything else. Men are God’s method. The Church is looking for better methods; God is looking for better men.

Quoted from: E. M. Bounds, Power Through Prayer (London and Edinburgh: Marshall, Morgan & Scott, LTD, 1907), p. 9. ISBN: 0802467296

 

Until next time,

Dan’l