My Beloved Zion Memorial,
As I sit to type out these words to you, I think about how treasured you are to me as well as to God. God could have chosen any church family for me to be a part of and to pastor; but, God chose Zion Memorial. God could have chosen any other church family for you to be a member of; but, God chose Zion Memorial. God could have chosen any other type of creature to love and adore; but, God chose humankind.
God favored humankind. God favored Zion Memorial. God favored you. And, God favored me.
Sometimes, in the midst of difficult times, it can become easy to fall prey to the temptation of believing that your difficult times define you and are evidence that the favor of God is no longer on you. Nothing is further from the truth.
In difficult times, you are still created in God's image.
In difficult times, you are still loved by God.
In difficult times, you are still favored by God.
Difficult times are just a part of the ever-changing seasons of life that will challenge you as God continues to transform you into the best you that you will ever be. And, that process is never-ending on this side of glory.
So, in difficult times, you can fall prey to the temptation of believing that your difficult times define you or you can do something else.
You can pay attention to the fact that when you became a child of God, the words of provision, protection, covering, keeping, and favor that were spoken to Joshua are also words that are applied to you.
Joshua 1:5 reveals, "No one shall be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will not fail (leave) you or forsake (forget) you."
God is with you at all times. So, you should pay attention to God at all times.
In times like these, people will retreat, as these hard times reveal them, to their idols. Some will find comfort in other people rather than God. Some people will find comfort in food rather than God. Some people will find comfort in drink, alcoholic or otherwise rather than God. Some people will find comfort in drugs rather than God. Some people will make up other gods and try to reimagine God as they see God rather than God as God is.
In the book of Hebrews, one of the challenges confronting the people was a worship of angels, God's created ministering spirits, rather than truly worshiping God. They were making idols out of the angels.
What a mistake to ever worship the creation rather than worship the creator, God.
So, the writer of Hebrews had to remind them in Hebrews 2:1, "Therefore we must pay greater attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it."
Beloved, all of the teaching, studying, preaching, listening, worship services, bible studies, Sunday School lessons, prayer time, fasting time that you have been going through in your whole life has brought you to this moment.
Pay attention to the fact that God created you, loves you and favors you!!!
We know the temptation is there, to look away from God.
But, we also must know that the opportunity is also there, to turn to God.
The currency of your focused desires is what you will pay, pay attention.
And, when your attention is turned to God, be prepared to be overwhelmed by the eternal fact that God favors you.
The harder, more challenging and difficult the times is not evidence that the favor has decreased. No!
The harder the times, the more challenging the times, the more difficult the times gives evidence that the victory will be that much greater and sweeter as the favor of God is revealed again and again and again.
Beloved, you were made for these difficult times. Pay attention. God favors you.
And, during these difficult times, the favor of God is revealed in the opportunities we have to virtually connect. Today, at noon, we will have our first noonday prayer time, virtual or otherwise. God favors you. Today, at 6:30pm, via Zoom, we will have our first virtual HOPE Wednesday. God favors you. Today, you can connect with you brothers and sisters in Christ in ways never before thought about or imagined, except by God and revealed in this due season. God favors you.
Receive God's favor and connect with us today.
And, also, remember that God loves you and I love you too!