I missed you on last Sunday and am so looking forward to being with you on next Sunday to celebrate another family reunion as well as Father's Day. I believe God has a word for the men, specifically, but also for the whole church. Make sure that you are there and invite someone with you who would benefit from coming together with our church family.
It is easier to sing the praises of God in good times. Challenging times can make us wonder if God is sometimes paying any attention to us at all.
I want you to know that if we are supposed to be salt and light in the world, then there must also be lack and darkness in the world.
You will do your best work for God when others question if they can find or see God at all.
The Apostle Paul wrote to the church at Philippi from a Roman prison. He was under house arrest.
Being arrested, imprisoned, especially falsely accused is enough to make someone question or wonder if the cause of Christ is worth it, if God is paying attention, if we should just give up and live like the rest of the world.
When you or your loved one is sick, near death or has died, it is a time of darkness.
When you are between jobs or simply hate the job that you have, it is a time of darkness.
When everyone in your house is living but nobody is getting along, it is a time of darkness.
Should you despair? No.
Praise God when you think like this because it is "draw light out of darkness time".
The Apostle Paul wrote about his time of imprisonment in Philippians 1:12-14,
"I want you to know, beloved, that what has happened to me has actually helped to spread the gospel, so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to everyone else that my imprisonment is for Christ; and most of the brothers and sisters, having been made confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, dare to speak the word with greater boldness and without fear."
The Apostle Paul used his predicament as a platform for God's glory.
And, it did not only work for him. It also worked for those watching him.
Beloved, others are watching you in the sick room, on the job, and in your home.
Is how you handle what you are going through glorifying the Gospel or glorifying your grief?
You get to choose.
May we be the Gospel that we speak and not let the Gospel simply be empty words without power behind them.
Your life should be your Gospel.
I pray that as you have given your life to Christ, His Gospel will be lived through you.
Again, I look forward to seeing you soon.
Until then, know that God loves you and I love you too!