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Posts Tagged ‘The church’

A great post from Jason on 20 Ways To Be Refreshing in the Local Church.  Read the whole article and then pick a few that you can plan for this coming Sunday and the week to follow. Here’s just a sample:

  • Greet people on Sunday mornings with a smile. It is o.k. to let your face say that you are “happy” to be at church. Go out of your way to say, “Hi,” ask questions about the lives of others, and listen attentively.
  • Visit the widows and shut-ins of your church. Take an afternoon and visit three or four. Sit, talk, listen, and be willing to look at their photo albums—all of them (1 Timothy 5:3)!
  • Have a mouth that is overflowing with grace (Ephesians 4:29) and is slow to wander down any other road.
  • Show up each Sunday morning with a mental list of three or four people that you are going to find and minister to (Philippians 2:4). Many of us walk into church with an attitude of, “I wonder who will minister to me today.” Nothing can be as drastically encouraging to a local church’s membership than a people united in the understanding that they are there to serve and love one another.
  • Be a Monday morning encourager instead of a Monday morning critic by sending your pastor an email detailing what you appreciated about his Sunday sermon.
  • Don’t rush out of church on Sunday mornings. Be one of the last to leave because you are taking the time to talk with everyone you can (this will be hard for the introvert—but some of the most engaging and refreshing people I have served with are introverts. They wear themselves out on Sunday morning). The football games and lunch will be there fifteen or thirty minutes later.

And while we are talking about life in the body, why not jump over and read “7 Things Your Church Needs from You” by Tim.  He elaborates on these points in very practical ways. Your church needs you to. . .

  • be humble
  • prioritize church
  • consider giving God a day
  • live like a Christian all week long
  • get to know people not like you
  • learn generosity
  • be a great church member

If you put the two lists together, you have 27 ways to practically build up the body of Christ where you fellowship!  Read, pray, think, plan and get started today!

 

 

 

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“Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation.” Mark 14:38
As Christ is the church’s friend—so Satan is the church’s enemy:
her greatest enemy,
her cruelest enemy,
her worst enemy,
her continual enemy.

He makes war against all who keep the commandments of God, and the testimony of Jesus Christ, Revelation 12:17.
The devil envies our happiness, and seeks our ruin:
1. By tempting of us, 1 Corinthians 7:5.
2. By persecuting of us, Revelation 2:10.
3. By accusing of us, Revelation 12:10.
4. By hindering of us, 1 Thess. 2:18.
5. By deceiving of us, 2 Corinthians 11:3.

“Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour!” 1 Peter 5:8.
Oh, beloved! the devil is:
the great troubler of saints,
the great deceiver of nations,
the great devourer of souls,
the great enemy of mankind!

But now, here is the church’s happiness—that Christ is her friend, (Song of Songs 5:16.)
her greatest friend,
her dearest friend,
her most loving friend,
her best friend,
her constant friend,
her sympathizing friend,
her mighty friend.

By his blood—she overcomes the devil;
by his grace—she resists the devil;
by his might—she treads him under her feet;
by faith in his Word—she quenches all the fiery darts of the evil one.

Oh! though Satan hates us—Christ loves us;
though Satan condemns us—Christ justifies us;
though Satan accuses us—Christ clears us;
though Satan tempts us—Christ strengthens us;
though Satan seeks to destroy us—Christ preserves us;
though Satan buffets us—Christ assists us:

1. By his Spirit.
2. By his promises.
3. By his graces.
4. By his presence.
5. By his Word.
6. By his intercession.
7. By his power.
8. By his ministers.
9. By his example.
10. By his prayers.

Oh! the Lord Jesus has a great love for us, and care of us; and therefore he counsels us in the words of my text to, “watch and pray, lest we enter into temptation.” These are the words of our Lord Jesus unto his disciples; they having been slumbering and sleeping when Christ had commanded them to watch. ~Excerpt from “Watch and Pray” by William Dyer

HT: Here I Blog

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charles spurgeon

charles spurgeon

The church is not perfect, but woe to the man who finds pleasure in pointing out her imperfections!

Christ loved his church, and let us do the same.

I have no doubt that the Lord can see more fault in his church than I can; and I have equal confidence that he sees no fault at all. Because he covers her faults with his own love—that love which covers a multitude of sins; and he removes all her defilement with that precious blood which washes away all the transgressions of his people.

–Charles Spurgeon

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“It is our conviction that every Christian should be an active member of a Bible-teaching local church. As believers in Christ, we are members of His body and must discipline ourselves to be actively involved in ministry as a way of life. Here are some specific reasons why you should be a committed member of a solid, Bible-teaching local church.”–Paul T shares 6 reasons why every Christian should be a faithful church member.

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Want to catch God’s eye?: In light of both our complete helplessness and our constant sinfulness, one would think that nothing we do could ever catch God’s eye… but then Isaiah 66:2b states. . .

7 Ways to Stop Students Texting in Class:  These suggestions should be taken into consideration when attending church services as well!

Arrrrrrgggghhhhhh!!!  My Toe, My Toe, My Toe!:  Mark shares an illustration of when he hurt is little toe and then makes an analogy to believers and the church:  “Jesus cares about his body infinitely more than we care about ours. Paul said that when one part of Christ’s body hurts the whole body suffers. When one part of Christ’s body rejoices, the whole body joins the celebration. When the church stubs it’s little toe, Jesus cares about it. If we immediately go to the aid of our little toes when we stub them, how much more does Jesus care about and move to help each and every member of his body.”

An historic day in church history on this day in 1618:  Calvinists Reject Arminianism at Dort – November 13

Erik, an ordinary pastor bemoans the fact that Joel Osteen Keeps Using God’s Band-Width.

Randy reminds us there is Eternal Hope for the Grieving: Our churches and communities, our nation and our world, are filled with grieving people—numb, broken, bitter or simply exhausted. Grief is a journey, often confusing and sometimes terribly lonely. Those grieving need to hear from God. He promises His Word, not ours, will not return to Him empty, without accomplishing the purpose for which He sent it (Isaiah 55:11).

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“The disparity between the angels’ worship and our own is especially ironic in the light of the fact that we have so much more to be grateful for than the angels do. When angels sinned just once, they were immediately judged by God and given no opportunity of redemption (2 Peter 2:4; Jude 6). Yet wicked humans, whose sins are so many and so great, are offered forgiveness through Jesus Christ. So, while the angels declare that the Lamb of God is worthy to be praised, they are merely objectively proclaiming the fact of his worthiness. However, when redeemed sinners like us worship the Lamb, our involvement is intensely personal. We praise the Lamb not merely because he suffered and was slain, but because he suffered for our sin and was slain for us. Since the angels have less to praise God for than we do, let us at the very least match their intensity in our worship now and look forward to a time in heaven when we might actually surpass them in our praise around the throne.”–J. Todd Murray, Beyond Amazing Grace:

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Trevin Wax reflects upon a phone call that a church planter recently received from a lesbian inquiring if she would need to change if they attended this new church.   It’s actually a quite convicting piece: 

Thinking about that phone call and the demands that were made before she would come to church led me to reflect on the nature of repentance and the ways – even if we don’t want to admit it – we are all like the lesbian caller. We want to be affirmed as we are.

If I join your church, will I be expected to change my prejudice and bigotry toward those of different races? I want a church where people look and think like me.

If I join your church, will I be expected to change my living arrangements? I know cohabitation isn’t best, but I don’t want the church prying into my personal life.

If I join your church, will I be expected to reach out to lost people with the gospel? I don’t want a church that’s always harping on evangelism.

If I join your church, will I be expected to give generously? I don’t want a church that talks about money too much.

If I join your church, will I be expected to serve? I’ve got a lot going on, and aside from a few hours a week, my schedule is off limits.

The list could go on. At the heart of this conversation is repentance. Can I come to Jesus on my own terms? Or will I have to change?

So many of us think of the lesbian caller and unknowingly respond like the Pharisee going to the temple to pray: “I thank you, God, that I’m not like that.” Meanwhile, we cling tenaciously to the sinful attitudes and actions that characterize our lives. And then we go home unjustified… and unchanged.

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