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Archive for January, 2008

True Worship

I read this short article awhile back and just came across it again this morning.  It may be short but it is full of such valuable information.  Let’s keep our main goal, worship. It really is quite simple.

 

MINISTERING to the HEART of GOD

Music Ministry can sometimes become so overwhelming.  The music minister/director is responsible for the pulse of the service from the pre-service all the way through the “after service” time.  It can all be very draining and all too often this stress can cause a person to get “out of focus”.  As music directors we put so much emphasis on “getting it right”, having the latest and the greatest new worship song, and singing it before our neighboring church does-ok, maybe that is too brutally honest-but the fact remains that when we get spiritually drained, we get out of focus.

Our job is simple, really.  Our goal is to create an atmosphere of praise and worship.  What is the purpose of praise and worship?  It is to minister or, as we often say with little thought, bless the Lord.

King David, who wrote our candy stick motto, “Sing unto the Lord a new song’, also wrote those powerful words, “Bless the Lord, Oh my soul and all that is within me”.  To really minister to the heart of God goes much beyond singing a really cool song with a jamming beat.  Somehow as we prepare for our worship service each week, we have the commission to reach right into the depths of our souls and bless the Lord.  It is then and only then, that we can really have a successful music department.

written by: Michele Penton

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Yesterday was a great day in the Lord’s presence. From the beginning of service to the very end His glory filled the sanctuary. Matt opened the service with the old hymn, “There Is Power In the Blood” and as we sang I knew this would be one of those special times. We sang more choruses and then the chorale sang, “I Am”. Oh my! It was as if waves of glory rolled. Nathaniel (our son) preached one of the best sermons I have heard on “The Precious Blood”. This is pretty good since he didn’t know he was preaching until 9:30 Sunday Morning. When Nathan (my husband) woke up his back had totally gone out on him and he could barely stand up. So he told Nathaniel that he was going to have to preach and take care of the Communion Service. However, the anointing of the Holy Ghost was so real. After Nathaniel preached we partook of the Lord’s Supper and remembered the sacrifice our Lord made for us. Once again the presence of the Lord swept over us as we worshiped and thanked the Lord for all he has done. Thank God for His great love! Where would we be without the Lord?

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We are at Landmark Global Impact 2008 in Stockton, California. The church here is absolutely beautiful. Bro. Wayne Huntley from Raleigh, North Carolina preached a great message tonight on “We Need Revival”. He preached about the difference between evangelism and revival. It was so good and so needed. If you want to listen to this sermon I’m sure you could order a copy (dvd or cd) from CLC. It would be worth your time and money. Also, it is always so good to come to a conference and fellowship with people of like precious faith. Seeing old friends and making new ones is always a pleasure. God bless all of you this day.

Another great sermon you will want to hear is “How to Build a Revival Church, preached by
Randy Keyes. This is so true! Please order this one from CLC too. You will be blessed.

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Sometimes when things are not going well in our life we are quick to complain. We are also quick to look for someone to blame. It surely must be someone else’s fault. It seems we live in that kind of day where no one wants to take responsibility for their own actions. However, that “someone” may be a lot closer than we think. It would do us all good to start with some self-examination before we look elsewhere.

During Jeremiah’s time the disobedience of God’s people was great and yet they wondered why God was not blessing them. What these people failed to recognize was their own rebellion and unrepentant attitude. This left them without God’s forgiveness and without His blessings.

Jeremiah wrote in Lamentations 3: 39-40 (HCSB)

39 Why should [any] living person complain,
[any] man, because of the punishment for his sins?

40 Let us search out and examine our ways,
and turn back to the LORD.

Why should we complain about what OUR choices have brought to us? Why should we blame someone else? Why do people even become angry with God?

Proverbs 19:3 (Amplified Bible) The foolishness of man subverts his way [ruins his affairs]; then his heart is resentful and frets against the Lord.

God is righteous and just and He will allow us to feel the results of our choices. However, God’s greatest desire is that we would acknowledge our sins (errors) and turn back to him as Jeremiah stated in Lamentations.

David, the man after God’s own heart said,

Search me, O God, and Know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” (Psalm 139: 23-24)

It is definitely for our benefit when we open up to such a relationship with God. Let’s not complain to God, but instead do some soul-searching and determine where our life needs to be put back on track with HIS will. If we maintain a genuine repentant spirit and openness to God, his direction and will for our life, then and only then will He continue to bring us His Blessings.

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I want to say a big Thank you to our church family for honoring my husband on his birthday. He loves the bookshelf’s. He will now be able to get the rest of his books out of storage. Hopefully we will have it finished this week and you will be able to come by the office and see it for yourself. He was able to get a few books out of storage and put them in the home office when we moved here. However, when you have over 25 years of study books, etc you have collected then that is quite a library. Thanks again! The Pentecostal Church family is AWESOME. You are a blessing to us and we love you dearly.

p.s. The photos did not turn out good so that is why they are not posted. Sorry.

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nathans-photos-004.jpg

Happy Birthday to my incredible man! I hope and pray your day is blessed beyond measure. Nathan, I Love You BUNCHES!

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Top Ten Predictions for 2008

 

1. The Bible will still have all the answers.

2. Prayer will still work.

3. The Holy Spirit will still move.

4. God will still inhabit the praises of His people.

5. There will still be God-anointed preaching.

6. There will still be singing and praise to God.

7. God will still pour out blessings

upon His people.

8. There will still be room at the Cross.

9. Jesus will still love you.

10. Jesus will still save the lost.

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The following list was taken from this book: How Did I Get So Busy? Written by Valorie Burton. Thanks to my friend Gail for sending this to me. I thought it was so good I wanted to share it with you all. We do get so busy sometimes that we forget the simplest of things. Maybe this will help keep us on track.

 

books

Dear Friend,

Sometimes we simply need to be reminded of things we know to do, but haven’t done. Perhaps our paths are crossing this week because you need a reminder of how important it is to take good care of yourself. When you do so, taking care of everything and everyone else becomes a less stressful endeavor. So this week, I would like to share what I call the “10 Commandments of Self-Care” from my new book, How Did I Get So Busy? Make them your personal habits, and you’ll create a self-care lifestyle that nourishes your mind, body and spirit:

The 10 Commandments of Self-Care

1. Use all of your vacation time every year.
Be intentional about taking time off. Take out your calendar this week and schedule your vacation time for the next 12 months.

2. Commit your time off solely to non-work related activities.
Keep your time with family and friends sacred by setting boundaries around your personal time so that work does not interfere. You need time to recuperate from work so that you’ll be more professionally productive. If you work from home, set work hours and close the office door during your off hours.

3. Take your rest seriously.
We’ve all heard it, but too few practice it: Get eight hours of sleep. Being well-rested builds immunity, keeps you from being irritable, and simply gives your body what it needs. Be a good steward over the body you’ve been blessed with. It may take some extra discipline to do it consistently, but you can do it. How about starting tonight?
4. Have fun at least once a week.
What do you like to do for fun? Having fun every day would be the ideal, but try to at least do something simply for the fun of it on a weekly basis. Scientific studies have shown that positive emotion builds your emotional capacity to handle adversity and stress, and be more open and creative. If life’s gotten so hectic that you don’t even know what to do for fun, make a game out of trying new things until you find what’s fun for you.

5. Eat regularly, preferably sitting down. 🙂
Do you eat on the go? Skip meals? Dine in front of the television? Eating offers an opportunity not only to refuel your body, but to reconnect with yourself and others. If you don’t have time to eat three meals a day sitting down, it’s a sign that it’s time to reclaim your schedule.

6. Exercise regularly, preferably standing up. 🙂
It is essential to stand up and get moving! Whether it’s walking, fitness class or a favorite sport, get your heart rate up at least three to four times per week for 30 – 45 minutes. Exercise should be a part of your life just like brushing your teeth or eating dinner. Rather than considering it “optional,” find a way to make it a part of your lifestyle.

7. Be fruitful and productive, not busy.
Do you have a habit of getting distracted easily? You start the day with a great to-do list and by 5 o’clock you’ve barely crossed anything off the list? We are meant to be fruitful – to produce the fruit of the Spirit and make meaningful progress in life. Being busy is about having a lot of activity without much to show for it. Aim to be productive.

8. Use technology to gain time, not consume it.
If you are like many people in today’s culture, you manage multiple email accounts, home, work and cell phones along with accompanying voice mail for each, text messages and perhaps a Blackberry, too. Plus, you’ve got more choices than ever with cable and satellite television, TiVo, satellite radio, and mp3 players. All of these things are supposed to give you better choices, save time and make your life better. But only if you learn to use them to gain time and not consume it. Establish personal rules with the technology you use – respond to email at specific times rather than reacting to it as soon as it arrives, turn off the cell phone at dinner and be vigilant about clearing the clutter of old messages.

9. Connect heart-to-heart with the people who matter.
One of the worst consequences of busyness is that you become disconnected from the people who matter. When having a conversation, stop multi-tasking and look the person in the eye. It says, “What you say is important.” Connect intentionally and your relationships will be better for it.

10. Be led by the Spirit.
In a busy world where everyone voices their opinion about what you should be doing, it can be tempting not to trust the voice of the Holy Spirit that speaks directly to you. The answers you need lie within you. But you have to quiet down and slow down long enough to hear that still, small voice. Have the courage to follow it. It won’t lead you astray.

My challenge to you this week:
Take care of yourself! Commit to one thing you’ll do this week from the 10 commandments of self-care, then do it.

  • P.S. I know that some of us are in a time of prayer and fasting right now so # 10 would be a good one for now.

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To All My Friends

 

 

 

BestWish

 

To all my friends who sent me best wishes in 2007, or promises of good luck if I forwarded something, it did NOT WORK. For 2008, could you please just send either money, chocolate or gas vouchers.  Thank You!

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My, oh My!  Have we not heard promises tonight?  I have learned that if any one of the presidential candidates gets in the White House that all of our problems will be over.  “We will all be able to live the American Dream.  We will all have our health care paid for.  Our school teachers are going to be paid more (which by the way, I’m for).  There will be no more invisible people in America.  Our troops are coming home within a few months of the election.”  And the promises went on and on.  I believe that every candidate is sincerely wanting to better America but I also believe that there is no way they can possibly deliver on all of their promises. I am not against politics and I believe every American should vote.  I know that I will. I thank God for America.

 However, I know a man that can deliver on His promises. He has been doing so for thousands of years.  When the word of God says something, you can take it to the bank.  It will happen.  Those promises are yea and amen.  Look at a few of them with me.

Heb. 13:5  I Will Never Leave you or forsake you

Isaiah 1:18
Come now, and let us reason together, says the Lord. Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be like wool.

Acts 1:11
Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

John 14:17-19

 17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

 18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.

 19  Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.

Luke 21: 25-28

25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;

 26 Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.

 27 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.

 28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.

Don’t get bogged down in this world.  Keep looking up!  Our redemption draweth nigh!

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