Trouble staying consistent in Bible reading?

Do you ever struggle with remaining consistent with a routine that includes time in God’s Word, every day?  You are not alone!  A survey from 2021 found that only 11 percent of Americans read the Bible daily.  Trends in reading habits over four years showed that the majority of Americans never read the Bible.  The fact is, reading your Bible is not going to be the “norm.”  For you to take time to read your Bible every day goes against the grain of culture and society, but it’s something you must do.  Your Bible reading and study is vital to your spiritual health and growth.  At times when something seems out of sorts or off-balance in my life, I ask myself, “How has my Bible reading been the past few days?”  More often than not, I’ll find that I missed a morning in God’s Word or that I was rushed and didn’t take time to read or    meditate on what I read, or that I cut my prayer time out.       

I have learned that for me to truly enjoy my day I must find time with my Lord!  If you’re having trouble, let this be an encouragement to keep pushing yourself to make it happen. The sensation that time with God is a chore is nothing more than your flesh fighting back. Stay encouraged and stay in the Word!

1 Peter 2:2, “As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:”

 Pastor Winston Parrish 

Rockets, stones, fires, missiles, bombs and death. All of these words have saturated the news for the past week. It’s no secret that the current conflict in Israel is not new. There has been contention and struggle in the Holy City for thousands of years. Jerusalem is the pinnacle of sacredness for Christians and Jews, it is also the third most revered place for Muslims. This entire region is a melting pot of people and problems. For decades US Presidents have tried to broker deals, accords and talks between both sides of the conflict. Many times, even as recently as under President Trump, there seemed to be hope of major fighting and major escalation becoming a thing of the 90’s and early 2000’s. We now see that isn’t so. As of the time of writing this, we are on the brink of a third intifada, or uprising. 

An armed conflict between Arab and Jew, Palestinian and Israeli seems inevitable. It’s a lot to process. The death of Israeli citizens, the unnecessary death of Palestinian children who are left nearby terrorist installations and rocket sites intentionally by Hamas leadership, is maddening and emotionally overwhelming. Israel has the right to live in a safe and secure State and she should defend herself with every tool at her disposal. We must make a concerted effort to pray for peace in Israel and that the loss of life will come to an end, now.

Since 1951 my family has stood with the Jew. God’s chosen people. In the very first book of the Bible, Genesis, It’s clearly laid out for the believer to understand just where God stands on the issue. Christians loving the Jewish people, the Hebrew children, isn’t a political stand. It’s a Biblical stand! The covenant that God made with Abraham wasn’t nullified by the work of Christ, on the contrary, it substantiated the promise that God made to His chosen people! This is an incredible time to be alive! The “fast forward button” is turned on and the finality of Christ return is imminent in the heart of the believer. The conflict in Israel is nothing more than proof that your Bible is real, relevant and that the reward of eternal life in Jesus is our only hope! Keep your heads up and your eyes on the eastern sky! He is coming again! 

 Pastor Winston Parrish

We thank the Lord for a wonderful service this past week.  The wonderful singing and praise given to the Lord has blessed us!

In our Bible Study we have completed Acts Chapter 17.  This was the 5th study in this chapter so we had time to add historical overviews and word studies.  Thank you for being so faithful to attend.

Part of our service was spent talking about the people that we love, our family members, moms, dads, sons, daughters, aunts, uncles and all in-between.  Also, our friends at school, co-workers and our Facebook friends.  Everyone we care about is going to live forever. 

Your personal prayers can touch someone’s life, whether their need is for salvation or to be back in fellowship with Jesus, or to be faithful in attending church.

Our world, our nation, and our society are seeing the erosion of our moral foundation.  Lives are in turmoil and many marriages and families are being stressed. 

We need the Lord and the Word of God more than ever!  We need the fellowship and strength of being part of our church family.

You can be an instrument used by the Lord to help someone spend eternity in Heaven.  Begin to pray, by name, for someone you are concerned about.  If you have a picture, bring it with you to church.  We will place the pictures on the cross.  This will serve as a prayer reminder for our loved ones at each service. 

Start now, planting a seed in their heart and mind that you love them and Jesus loves them.  Share with them that you are praying for them each day, because they are important to you!

Make a plan to invite them to church.  Easter is April 12th this year.  Say, “Can you make a plan for us to go to church together on Easter Sunday?”

On Easter Sunday we will enjoy Sunday School together at 9:00 AM, followed by one special Easter service at 10:00 AM.  Let’s begin now to pray together for God to touch our families and friends! 

More to come on this great opportunity.

You are loved, 

Pastor Ralph

What a question, “Have I sinned?”  This is a question that causes each person to pause and to prayerfully search their heart.

As Bible believers, we know that the scripture say, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.”  All need God’s salvation. 

After salvation, we know and understand we can grow cold, careless and we can sin by living back with the world.

The word of God is a powerful force for good in our lives.  The Bible can instruct us, encourage us, and remind us that, “…the wages of sin is death.”

I John 1:8 is a great reminder, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.”

This whole discussion about truth and sin begins with the BIG, little word…IF.

“If” we say that we have no sin, then we are not being honest with ourselves.  The Bible actually says we are deceiving ourselves, or tricking or lying to our own intellect.

It is not the BIG sin inventory that takes our tender tears or robs our prayers for revival.  It is often the gossip, envy, or strife. 

What is sin?

Sin, in the Greek (HAMARTIA) = defined as “To act contrary to the will of God.”  To Have in the Greek (ECHO)= means to hold, to wear, or be linked to something, like being married or wearing a garment. 

Psalm 51:5 reports that…   “Behold I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.”

We were not trained to sin, we never attended “sin” High School or “sin” University.  We were born with sinful natures and practiced a life of sin, by nature.  Our nature, our fallen character, it is just us!

Therefore, we need a Saviour!  We need someone to pay our sin debt.  Jesus is our Lord and Saviour and our Kinsmen Redeemer.  He paid my debt of sin with His Holy Life and sinless blood.

We need the abiding work of the Holy Spirit each day to control our flesh.   The Bible teaches us that the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.

Romans 10:9 reminds us to confess, to pray to the Lord, for there is to be no unconfessed sin in our lives.

We need a spiritual awakening and it must begin at church!                                                    

You are loved,   

Pastor Ralph

Have you ever watched one of your children or grandchildren at play? It doesn’t take very long until they start to hum a melody or to sing a song.

Why? Because they are happy! It just seems to come naturally for all of us to sing a happy tune. Whether singing along with the radio on the way to work or singing as you work, these are all expressions of joy and of happiness.

As people of faith, we have something to sing about! Psalm 40:3, “And He hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God:”.

The joy of the Lord is my strength. Part of our new life in Christ Jesus is the joy of our salvation! Our sins are forgiven and we are celebrating the our sin debt has been paid. No Guilt!

Psalm 95:1, “O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.” Verse 2 continues with “…and make a joyful noise unto Him with Psalms” (songs).

Psalm 96:1, “O sing unto the Lord a new song: sing unto the Lord, all the earth.”

We have praised the Lord with instruments and with song. We sing today with joy and thanksgiving!

The prophetic Psalms even declare the there is coming a “Great Day of the Lord.” In that day, Jesus will rule and reign and the entire world will sing unto the Lord. Psalm 100:1, “Make a joyful noise unto the Lord. ALL YE LANDS.” Psalm 101:1, “I will sing of mercy and judgement: unto thee, O Lord, will I sing.”

God loves it when we sing! God loves it when you sing!

God loves it when the choir sings! God loves it when the Kingdom Heirs sing!

He loves it when we celebrate His love for us!

You are loved,

Pastor Ralph Sexton