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March 27, 2018, 2:04 PM

March 28, 2018


“In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, why do you look for the living among the dead?  He is not here; He is risen!”  Luke 24:5

     We call the day Good Friday.  Good Friday is the worst good day in all of history.  When we think of that day our minds naturally focus on the cross.  As Christians, there are numerous observations we make as we look to the cross.  We see the cross as a choice that Jesus made.  There were many times Jesus slipped away from the crowd and He could have done the same at this point.  However, the plan of God was for Jesus to die upon the cross.  He made the choice to follow His Father and give His life as an atoning sacrifice for ours.  Jesus’ death on the cross was an intentional choice as our only means of salvation.

     We also see the price that Jesus paid.  Jesus was totally and completely sinless.  He was the only One who could satisfy the demands of a holy and righteous God.  The physical pain and torture that Jesus faced is almost too much for us to fathom.  The beatings, the crown of thorns, the humiliation of being spat upon and His beard pulled out, carrying His cross (really ours) when He could hardly walk, the nails in His hands and feet and the spear in His side.  Scripture says He could have called thousands of angels, but He didn’t.  He paid the price that we owe due to our sinful lives.  Even more than the physical pain, think of the emotional pain of rejection by His own people.

     Then, we must notice the love He displayed.  Consider the burden Jesus felt as the sins of the world; past, present, and future were cast upon Him.  The One who had never known sin became sin for us so that we could become the righteousness of God.  In Romans 5:8, the Scriptures plainly share with us the ultimate plan of God.  The Bible says, “but God demonstrates His own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us”.   Consider for a moment everything Jesus did for us so that we could be saved from God’s impending wrath upon this world.  How does it make you feel when you hear people say, “there are many ways to God”?  The fact is, Jesus is the only way for salvation!

     After all of this, we are privileged to celebrate the greatest day in all of history.  We call it Resurrection Day or Easter!  Jesus truly is who He says He is.  He is victorious over sin, death, the grave and satan.  We serve a risen Savior who loves us and desires a relationship with each one of us.  He is the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords.  Our prayer is that you know Him, that you have surrendered your life to Him, and that you serve Him faithfully every day.  If you do not know Him, reach out to Him today because His arms are open wide to receive you regardless of your condition.  Hallelujah!  Praise the Lord!                                                                        

                                                                                                                We love you,

                                                                                                                Brad and Virginia




March 20, 2018, 9:46 AM

March 14, 2018


“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieved break in and steal.  But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.  For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”  Matthew 6:19-21

Have you ever wondered how much of life we miss?  We are busy and overwhelmed while the things that really matter seem to go by unnoticed.  One reason I enjoy watching The Andy Griffith Show even to this day (although I know just about every episode and what takes place) is because it reminds me of simpler times.  I have several favorite episodes but one at the top of the list is entitled “Man in a Hurry”.  It is the episode about Malcolm Tucker whose car breaks down outside of town and he finds that Mayberry is shutdown on Sundays.  He becomes very agitated and upset because he cannot get his car fixed to attend an “important” meeting.  As the story progresses, Malcolm begins to understand that the people of Mayberry have managed to appreciate the things that so many others take for granted.

                How much does this describe our lives today?  We become so busy with the “necessities” of life that we pass by the important details that God desires to show us.  The sad part is that, unlike Malcolm Tucker, we fail to realize what is happening.  We continue in the fast-paced grind of what is called life to understand later that much of true life has passed us by.  When was the last time you sat amid nature with your Bible open expecting God to speak to you?  Oh, I remember, the world tells us that if God speaks to us we should be headed for mental counseling!  When is the last time you made an appointment with someone just to talk?  We have almost lost the art of face-to-face communication.  We send a text, e-mail, or share with someone on Facebook but we do not have the time for real conversation.  We fail to see all of this until something unforeseen shows up in our lives.  Then, if we are wise, we begin to realize that we are living without enjoying the blessings God has provided for us.

                It’s so easy to get distracted.  Look back at the passage above.  Where is your treasure?  What things are taking the “important” place in your life?  What significant things are you missing because you are so busy?  How much time are you spending with others who need you and would enjoy some of your time?  As you commit to spending time with God in His Word and in prayer, He will direct you to the things you need to accomplish.  When He speaks, your critical list of things to get done will probably be much different.  Things can change and change very quickly.  We must learn to live life without regrets.  The only way to do that is to treasure the things of God.  He always points us in the right direction and leads us to accomplish and enjoy the truly “important” things in life.  May we learn, as did Malcolm Tucker, that sometimes we need to look around us and enjoy the blessings God has already given.

                                                                                                                                We love you,

                                                                                                                                Brad and Virginia




March 20, 2018, 9:41 AM

March 21, 2018


“When He had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished”.  With that, He bowed His head and gave up His spirit.”  John 19:30

            It is finished!  Those three words really say it all.  Have you ever been involved in a project and finally got to the place of being finished?  God’s plan was being carried out from the time of Adam and Eve through the time of Jesus and beyond.  When Jesus uttered the words “it is finished”, He was saying that God’s redemptive work in the lives of mankind was accomplished.  God’s plan had been carried out exactly as He desired.  Jesus had fully and completely accomplished the work of atonement for the sin of man.  Now, by the sacrifice of Jesus, man could once again have the opportunity for a relationship with God.

            We have come to the point in our culture of taking Easter far too lightly.  Do we realize the magnitude of what Jesus did on the cross?  Do we realize the love God demonstrated for us in seeing His Son die upon the cross?  The world system does everything possible to take our eyes and thoughts away from the reality of Easter.  It’s easy to be drawn away by the Easter bunny and egg hunts when our focus should be on the power of the cross.  As Jesus arose the third day He conquered Satan, sin, death and the grave.  The good news is:  When Jesus is our Savior, we are conquerors too!  Paul says, “we are more than conquers through Him who loved us”.

            This is an absolutely wonderful time of the year.  Enjoy the season but be reminded often of God’s love for us and the price that was paid so that we could have eternal life.  “It is finished” means that Jesus fulfilled all the requirements of a holy and righteous God.  It is only in Jesus that we have relationship with the Father and that means we are totally and forever secure in His arms!  Have a wonderful and blessed week as we give thanks to God for His indescribable gift!

                                                                                                                                           We love you,

                                                                                                                                           Brad and Virginia




March 6, 2018, 10:07 AM

March 7, 2018


“Therefore we do not lose heart.  Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.”  2 Corinthians 4:16

     Do you desire times of refreshing?  We all need to be refreshed from time to time.  The warm days of the past few weeks remind us of the refreshing days of spring after the cold and dreary days of winter.  Most of us enjoy the transition from winter to spring because it brings us a sense of refreshing and renewal. We hear of people who enjoy doing spring cleaning.  Are you involved in some things now that you would call times of refreshing?  During this time of year, many of us are involved with different projects around the house which leads to a real feeling of refreshing. 

     What about our spiritual lives?  Are you being renewed and refreshed every day?  Renewal comes in a variety of ways and sometimes it may not be exactly what we would desire.  Look carefully again at the passage above.  The verse which immediately follows that one tells us that our troubles are bringing renewal and eternal glory to our lives.  How can that be?  It is in those troublesome times that we are learning to lean more and more upon our Heavenly Father.  We are renewed and refreshed daily as we spend time in God’s Word and personal time alone with Him.  What is the result of our daily renewal?  We fix our eyes on what is unseen rather than the things we can see.  Therefore, whatever situation we face, God can use as a time of renewal and refreshing.

     What things in life really get you excited?  Spiritual renewal gets us excited about the things that really matter.  We are in the midst of difficult days that are only going to get worse.  We need daily renewal to help us in this time.  We will not find renewal and refreshing in the things of this world.  Only in Jesus do we really experience renewal and refreshing that lasts.  Our prayer is that you will be renewed daily as you seek to know and serve Him more each day.  May you be blessed abundantly as you seek His renewal and serve Him daily with all your heart.

                                                                                                                                We love you,

                                                                                                                                Brad and Virginia




February 27, 2018, 10:58 AM

February 28, 2018


“Yet at the same time many, even among the leaders, believed in Him.  But because of the Pharisees they would not confess their faith for fear they would be put out of the synagogue; for they loved praise from men more than praise from God.”  John 12:43

 

     Think for a moment how strong the pull of the flesh can be.  During the last week of Jesus’ physical time on earth, many people believed the things He said.  However, they would not confess Him before others because they were afraid of the Pharisees.  The Bible clearly says that “they loved praise from men more than praise from God”.  There are many today who struggle with the same mindset.  They desire the approval of men to such an extent that they jeopardize a relationship with God.  You may know several people who live that way.

     It is very easy to talk about “them”.  What about us?  Are we willing to be singled out and counted among the followers of Christ?  Are we concerned about pleasing God or do we have a tendency to please those around us? We see violence toward Christians escalating every day.  Do we stand for the Scripture and risk persecution or be enticed by fleshly world arguments to accept the praise of men?  The ways of darkness are rampant in our society and we are all feeling the pressure grow stronger each day.  It seems as though we are being surrounded by the deeds of evil and darkness.  Yet, although we know the days are evil, God’s Word reminds us to “look up, be watchful, for our redemption is drawing near”!  (Luke 21:28)  Hallelujah!  Come quickly Lord Jesus!

     We would like to take time this week to say “thank-you” for your presence at Robbie’s ordination service.  We had a very good crowd to support Robbie, Whitney and their families.  It is so wonderful to see a young couple surrender to God’s calling and desire to take God’s message to the world.  Please continue to pray for them as they faithfully serve Wayside Baptist Church in Alexander City.   Let us also pray for each other as we make every effort to share Jesus with others this week.  May you be filled with a joy unspeakable as you faithfully serve our Heavenly Father! 

 

                                                                                                                We love you,

                                                                                                                Brad and Virginia


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