Thankfulness, From Beginning to End

The New Testament is full of thankfulness, from start to finish. Each of Paul’s letters seem to begin with gratefulness for the church he was writing to, and they usually end with his thanks for individuals among them. See Phil.1:3-4 or Col.1:3, among many. Most of these churches had serious problems that threatened their undoing, but along with reproof the apostle found things about them for which he was thankful. And how about us? Perhaps there are things about our congregation that one could grumble about, but are we thankful for the many more things that are positive? Continue reading

Talking With God

“And I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to Me, says the Lord Almighty.”

– 2 Cor.6:18

I talked to three of my grandchildren on Skype last week. One in Ohio told me all about a visit to the local zoo – and included all the animal noises. Two more, in Tennessee, showed me some paper hats they decorated in VBS. I’m happy they love to talk to us, even if it’s just over the computer. They live too far away to have personal visits very often, so Skype is a blessing to us. When several of our sons and their families get together, they often Skype us to have a conversation. Continue reading

Families Count

Christmas dinnerWe crave family this time of year. Many drive long distances to be with them. Turkey dinners are carefully laid out for relatives. Even broken families wish for better times and may attempt reconciliation. Loneliness can be profound when one has little family left. Some people have so much family to visit, they become exhausted.

Scripture applauds good families. In Joseph and Mary’s family we see a glimpse of togetherness during a special time. Luke 2:41-52 tells us how their extended family traveled together to Jerusalem for Passover. This would have been a happy time for each of them. When the 12-year old Jesus went missing, they assumed he was somewhere nearby with relatives. We can safely let down our guard around family. Continue reading

Jude’s Advice

We welcome everyone who has come to Barrie for our Young Adult Weekend. It is especially encouraging to have Jay, Linda and Jacob Manimtim among us, and of course Jay is our speaker today. The subject of the weekend is something every Christian needs, “A Closer Walk.”

Jude, who was likely the brother of Jesus Christ, had unique insight into this, as one would expect a brother to have. He didn’t brag about his family connection, nor did he act superior to those who had never met Him. In his short New Testament letter, Jude urged us to draw closer to the Lord, and thus avoid the destructiveness of those who would try to harm Christ’s people. Continue reading