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August 30, 2016, 12:22 PM

From Your Pastor's Heart - August 28, 2016


Good Morning Family,

          I want to encourage you to read your Prayer Concerns page from your bulletin.  In it you will find the hearts of many that you serve alongside at church.  The prayer needs are varied and of a diverse nature.  However, at the same time, we must know there are many unspoken requests within our body as well.

          Today, in your bulletin, we are going to begin including some of the prayer concerns voiced by our children and youth on Wednesday nights.  Just as we take time in many of our Sunday services to voice our prayer concerns, we do this weekly with the children and youth.  I want to include these in our bulletin, because we as the Body of Christ should pray for the many needs of those that are in our care.  I have said before that this church has a special shepherding ministry for the children and families of this area.  This is part of the ministry, being aware of prayer needs in our community.

          The requests can be as simple as “help in finding my lost dog” to as complicated as “my parents are divorcing”.  Those are two actual recent requests.  These children feel comfortable sharing their hearts with the workers on Wednesdays and I cannot say how much that means to the Lord.  I strongly believe that we have the most capable and caring staff for children and youth ministry with which I have ever worked.  They weekly share the love of Christ and the Gospel with these kids.  This is no “babysitting” or “childcare” job.

          They faithfully teach the scriptures, sing worship songs, and lead the children to an ever increasing knowledge about Christ, which will result in some of them coming to faith in Him as the Lord directs in His time.  At the same time, the all volunteer staff on Wednesdays seeks to remain apprised and connected to the kids on a very personal level so as to keep an eye on what may be happening at home as well.  At times, it can be quite heart-breaking, but we know the Lord can work through any circumstance to reach a soul in need, if that soul is open to Him.

           As always, my prayer is for you to, “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth.”    II Timothy 2:15

 

Humbly Yours,

Bro Steve

Dr. Steven Gann

Your Shepherd




August 19, 2016, 7:53 AM

From Your Pastor's Heart - August 21, 2016


Good Morning Family,

            I offer a little culture from me to you this morning.  Today, we will be addressing in part of the message how we relate to those who might be considered enemies.  Of course I am talking about those who consider themselves our enemies because of our following Christ.  They can be quite consuming to our spiritual life and can zap our energy to live Christ to the full.  But, we are to realize that they have no real power over us, other than what we grant to them.

 

            So, for your thought and reflection, I give you a poem by Belinda Van Rensburg, a South African missionary to Paraguay in South America.

 

Oh enemy mine just leave me be,
For I'm in Christ who set me free;
I'm not defenseless; on my own;
I now belong to Him alone.

I'll fear no terror of the night
For I live in God's holy light.
His banner over me is love;
He gives me good gifts from above.

He provides and He protects;
He guides me and directs my steps.
I am the apple of His eye
And will be 'till the day I die.

I was weak but now I'm strong;
I was lost, now I belong.
Flee, my enemy, turn around;
I'm His and I am heaven bound.

 

           As always, my prayer is for you to, “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth.”    II Timothy 2:15

 

Humbly Yours,

Bro. Steve

Dr. Steven Gann

Your Shepherd

 

           

 




August 13, 2016, 10:08 PM

From Your Pastor's Heart - August 14, 2016


Good Morning Family,

            So, this week has been a week of understanding anew that the Lord does indeed speak to us through His Holy Spirit, when we listen.  His direction and guidance are invaluable and are actually indispensible when it comes to living a life pleasing to Him.  Sometimes the things He asks us to do are counter intuitive, but nonetheless when the puzzle pieces are in place, it does all fit together.

            As we walk with Him day by day, we will see more and more of the ways in which He guides and prods us along our path of following Him.  The scripture is true in Proverbs that tells us to not lean on our own understanding, but to acknowledge Him and He will directs our steps.  My own understanding can be pretty sketchy at times.  I may see a way forward on an issue, but I must wait for Him to reveal the correct path.

            Those are simply some thoughts I have as we prepare to dive into Romans chapter 12 today.  The beginning verses say, “1I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

            I pray we will see these verses and more this morning in a fresh new way as we ask the Holy Spirit to illuminate us and give us insight to the meaning and intent of Paul as he wrote under the Spirit’s inspiration and guidance.  I am excited as we begin afresh in Romans and work our way through the remainder of the letter in the coming weeks this fall.  I pray you will not miss a service, unless providentially hindered.

            Interesting this is that we begin chapter 12 of Revelation tonight as well.  I didn’t plan that.  Please come back tonight at 6:30 as we continue to be blessed by our study of this wonderful book.

             As always, my prayer is for you to, “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth.”   II Timothy 2:15

Humbly Yours,

Bro. Steve

Dr. Steven Gann

Your Shepherd




August 7, 2016, 12:00 AM

From Your Pastor's Heart - August 7, 2016


Good Morning Family,

          August.  Unbelievable how quickly the year has gone so far.  Time certainly is fleeting.  It takes a lot of effort to get the most out of every day.  How some people can spend their days in constant turmoil apart from the peace of the Lord resting upon their lives is beyond me.  I am glad I don’t understand living like that, otherwise I would be one of them.

          What Christ wants from us is constant surrender.  Not because He is a demanding tyrant of a God, but because He wants what is best for us.  When I live in “un-surrendered mode”, I am asking for a heap of trouble that should never be mine.  I walk into situations that in which I am completely unguarded and vulnerable as His child.  Walking surrendered and dead to self keeps us in His protection, provision, and reliant on His providential direction.

          Proverbs tells us to “lean not on our own understanding, but in all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths”.  It is easy to spot a Christian living in the flesh.  They are the most miserable of creatures and make everyone around them miserable as well.  I can be that creature from time to time and so can you.  To our friends and family; they know when we are “un-surrendered”.  In that frame of mind, it is our self driving all of our actions and it can be a hard chain to break.

          Throwing up the white flag is the only answer for people like that.  For the believer or one who calls Christ their Lord with only their lips, living in rebellion, it is a most dangerous state.  It can bring about much discipline from the Lord that can be quite severe.  Isn’t it more serene living in His light and walking in His steps much like walking in your father’s footsteps in the snow?  This week, commit to commit your ways to Him in all things.

           As always, my prayer is for you to, “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth.”  II Timothy 2:15

Humbly Yours,

Bro Steve

Dr. Steven Gann

Your Shepherd




July 30, 2016, 8:43 PM

From Your Pastor's Heart - July 31, 2016


Good Morning Family,

          Fall is just around the corner!  (I keep telling myself that.)  But, until then, summer just keeps on coming at us with a vengeance.  I realize it is difficult for some of you to be out and about in this heat.  We are praying for you.  And the kids go back to school in a little over two weeks.  That is, of course, good news for some and bad news for others, depending on your age.

          August should provide a slight respite for the church family here as summer activities wind down and we prepare for “back to school”.  I am excited to look forward to getting back in more of a routine as September approaches.  The administrative side of me needs routine and order once in a while.  It is a time to examine and make sure everything has its place and is in its place around the house and the church house.

          On a separate note, several in the church body may have some very serious trials in their extended families and relationships.  So, I want to offer my encouragement as you wade through possibly very trying and difficult times.  We have all been there and it is not a fun place to be, but God is depending on us to bring peace, as much as it is possible with us, to the situation.  Keep looking to Him for wisdom and courage to lovingly do and say the right things that people may need to hear.  I am not sure of everyone who may need this encouragement today, but I do know of a few of you, present company included.

          This morning, I want us to focus on the Lord and what He would want to say through the message to us.  We will be observing the Lord’s Supper together this morning as well.   As we do, let us contemplate the tremendous grace involved in the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross for us.  He died for me, I’ll live for Him.

           As always, my prayer is for you to, “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth.”    II Timothy 2:15

Humbly Yours,

Bro. Steve

Dr. Steven Gann

Your Shepherd

 

           


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