Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall
sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.
Psalms 55:22 KJV
Have you ever been disappointed or betrayed by friends or even Loved ones? Have you ever experienced things like sudden job loss, illness, unexpected deaths of someone close to you, financial problems, or even increased anxiety over what you see going on around you today? As this verse was written, David was experiencing many of these same things! However, in the midst of it all, he was able to do what many of us have probably failed to do from time to time: "Give it to God" Casting our burdens unto the only True and Wise God allows us greater access to His Eternal and Infinite Ability to carry and sustain us through ALL of our trials, and disappointments!
He is not a God that just watches you struggle. He is a God that has not only prepared you for your “tough” situations of struggle, but he also guides you through these time seemingly unnoticeable. It’s during these times that we present all of our own possible solutions, but as these solutions fail and come up short, that’s when we finally realize that God was there throughout the entire situation. Have you had that happen? Yes we all have! How do I know, because regardless of our burdens, issues, and problems, we are still pressing forward through His Grace and Mercy!
I encourage you to give Him ALL of your concerns, leave them with Him and continue to move forward and enjoy the Sustaining Power and Grace He has waiting for you! Every burden you share with Him, brings you closer to Him! Bottom line is with God on Your side, carrying your burdens, who can be against you? So whatever your burden, "Let God", He's Got You!!! Trust Him!!
Break Through The Wall –(By Kenneth Copeland)
“I Can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me”
You’re running the race set before you, moving full-speed ahead with God’s blessing overtaking you every step. Then Suddenly, WHAM!! You hit the wall. It may be a wall of sickness or financial trouble, of spiritual failure or family problems. But, regardless of the form it takes, the effect of “the wall” is always the same. It stops you cold.
The question is, once you hit the wall like that, what do you? What is your response? You may be tempted to quit, to turn back in defeat. But don’t do it. Because God will enable you to break through that wall and keep right on going. I’m not going to tell you it’s easy. The truth is, it’s tough. But you have to PUSH on through the tough times, if you are ever going to have a breakthrough.
Ask any athlete. He’ll tell you that! Because if he’s a winner, he’s been there. He’s pushed his body to what seems to be maximum. His side has hurt. His lungs have ached. He’s had cramps in his legs and thighs. And just when he felt like he couldn’t go on, he’s heard some coach yell, “Come on! Move it!”
Athletes call that “hitting the wall.” It’s a time when the body says, “That’s it. That’s all I can do. I can’t go any further. I can’t go any faster. I quit”.
But the seasoned athlete knows that “the wall” isn’t the end. It’s a signal that he’s on the verge of a breakthrough. If he’ll toughen up and push himself a little more, he’ll get a second wind. Suddenly, he’ll go faster than before. He’ll reach a level of excellence he couldn’t have reached any other way.
When you feel the worst, when failure is breathing down your neck, press in on the word as never before. You may meditate on a particular scripture for days and even weeks sometimes, trying to get a revelation of it, seemingly without success. Then suddenly, like the dawn of the morning, light will come pouring in. You’ll see the way to break through. All you have to do is punch one little hole in that wall of problems, dig one tiny hole in it with your faith and with the Word of God.
Then keep tearing away at that hole. Don’t Quit! And, before long, the forces of God will come bursting through, demolishing every obstacle in their path. Once that happens, you’ll never be the same again. You’ll be hooked. It will only take one breakthrough like that to make a never-dying, never-quitting champion out of you.
Submitted: By Bro. Steven D. Kniffley Sr.
Song of Encouragement: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iBq724p4GXE
Show yourself Mighty (By Bishop Albert Jamison – © -2007 Light Records)
Show yourself mighty, show yourself strong, show yourself Awesome, in the midst of the storm, for in the time of trouble, He will give you a song. Show yourself mighty, show yourself Strong, show yourself mighty, Show yourself Strong,
Just Keep On Poet: Clifton Abbott Just keep on a-livin' An' keep on a-givin', An' keep on a-tryin' to smile; Just keep on a-singin' A-trustin' an' a-clingin' To the promise of an afterwhile. For the sun comes up An' the sun goes down, An' the morning follows night. There's a place to rest Like a mother's breast, An' a time when things come right. Just keep on believin' An' a-hidin' all your grievin'. An' keep on a-tryin' to cheer. Just keep on a-prayin' A-lovin' an' a-sayin' The things that we love to hear. For the tide comes in An' the tide goes out. An' the dark will all turn bright; There's a rest from the load An' an end to the road. An' a place where things come right. Live Blessed!!! JFBrooks
“An Ideal Man”
He is different from just being a male (with) or defined by biological composition.
An ideal man is characterized by the following:
1. He is submitted to God's divine authority.
2. He has a relationship with God.
3. He communes with God in prayer.
4. He accepts his responsibility and stands by it.
5. He keeps his promises and oaths with his marriage partner wife.
6. He is not lazy.
7. He provides for his home
8. He is the priest of his home.
9. He is a leader for his family
10. He has a passionate hunger and thirst for God.
We must strive to be an ideal man to honor God. Our families depend on us to live a godly life to defend, protect, and lead them.
Psalms 37:23-24 NIV
The LORD makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the LORD upholds him with his hand.
“Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ; by whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in Hope of the Glory of God.” (Romans 5:1-2)
As we approach the holiday season of 2020, like most holiday seasons in the past we tend to reflect on many things. Normally, many of us reflect on the year that is ending and naturally benchmark the highs and lows of the year. We consider our family, economic, social, and employment situations, tending to scrutinize both our achievements and failures throughout the year. The more experiences we have in life, our analysis of the previous year seems to change as we learn more about what truly matters in life. As we look back, regardless of how well or how disappointing we see the previous year, the most important thing now becomes: How are we going to continue to have a better future? How do we take what we learned throughout 2020 and build upon it for the upcoming year of 2021 and beyond?
We can all agree that 2020 was, to say the least, not the year we expected! To say it was a tough year is a major understatement! However, I just want to encourage you as you read this to know simply that if you are reading this, you have survived! Think about everything that has happened in 2020 and know that you may feel weakened, tired, lonely, missing loved ones, struggling with various illnesses, etc. But the bottom line is that you are here! So, as we go forward through the holidays of the historic year of 2020, just remember that God has kept us and continues to keep us! Our future is not in question. Our hope has carried us and will continue to carry us as we consistently seek and acknowledge our savior Jesus Christ as the source of this hope! Yes, what a tough year, but be not dismayed whatever betides. God will take care of you! Don’t look back, stay focused and press on. Never lose hope! Hope is the door to brighter days, peace, and the gifts of salvation and eternal life with the only true and living God!
Yours in Christ,
Do You Look Like a Christian?
Matthew 5:16 “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” (NKJV)
Bro. and Sis. Brown shared a story during Sunday school one morning. They mentioned that someone stopped them after Church as they were entering a store. This person said, “You look like you go to Church, would you mind praying with me?”
We can make some assumptions that because it was a Sunday, immediately after Church, suit and tie, nice dress, this person concluded that the Browns were Christians.
What about the rest of us? How do we appear to the world? On other days of the week, when we are not dressed in our Sunday best, Do You Look Like a Christian?
It is important for us to realize that people are watching us. There is an old saying, “You might be the only bible they see.” We have an enormous opportunity to witness to everyone we encounter daily. FYI, it doesn’t need to be in a formal setting dedicated to service. The impact that we can have on people in our private atmosphere can be significant.
How do we react to our daily situations at work, at the grocery, standing in line for an event, navigating rush hour traffic or picking the kids up from school? Do we allow the Shekinah glory of our Savior to shine through or do we hide our candles under the proverbial basket?
Luke 11:33 No one, when he has lit a lamp, puts it in a secret place or under a basket, but on a lampstand, that those who come in may see the light. (NKJV)
Let us be resolved to allow the Love of the Father to shine through us every day. When we wake up every morning and thank God for His tender mercies and His marvelous grace, ask Him to shine through us brightly so that They’ll Know We are Christians by Our Love.
-Bro. Fred Henderson
“Let your works give God glory”
In Sunday School we were in John 15:8 “This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples”. The more useful you become to the kingdom of God, the more glory He will receive. What we do depicts who we serve. If we get cut off the freeway do we give a finger solute or do we thank God no one got hurt, which one gives God glory? Do we show love when confronted with hate, do we give instead of take, do we sympathize with those who are hurting, are we friends to the friendless, do we feed those who are hungry? Our responses should tell us who gets the glory. Jesus lived to give God glory, and so should we.
Jesus has set the example for us. When we think of Jesus we think of love, joy, peace, grace, mercy, kindness, safety, comfort, patience, unselfish, all powerful, wisdom, and so much more. I believe that every Christian man should show love, because God is love. When people see us they should see the love of Christ. God is no respecter of person, this means God is not republican or democrat, God is not black nor White, God’s love covers all His people. If you support a liar, what kind of fruit are you bearing, if you support someone that has no empathy, what kind of fruit are you bearing, if you support a cheater, what kind of fruit are you bearing? What we do and who we support represents what kind fruit people see in us. In Mark 11:12-14 Jesus after was hungry and sees a fig tree from afar with leaves, but after close inspection there was no fruit. There are some people that look the part of a Christian, but after close inspection they bear no fruit. How can we give God glory without bearing any fruit?
As Christians men we represent the Kingdom of God, and our families. Our mission is to give God glory and to be an example of Christ. Be aware of people who give themselves and men glory and omit God.
Minister David Overton
Today is Election Day 2020
If you haven’t voted, I pray you have made a plan to cast your vote today, before the polls close at 6:00PM.
None of us can predict the future and determine how the election will turn out. However, one thing is certain, no matter who wins, no matter which party has control of the White House and Congress, God is still in control of the universe. That’s right, He’s not just in control of a town, a state or a country, He is the Supreme Creator of the universe. That means everything that has been created, including earthly governments, are subject to His authority. Paul reminds us of this fact in Romans 13:1:
Let every person be subject to the governing authorities.
For there is no authority except from God,
and those that exist have been instituted by God.
Paul’s direction speaks to God’s reign over governing structures or entities, and the fact that they only exist because He allows it. God’s oversight is not limited to a particular party, or individual. God’s oversight and allowances includes the fact that we have governments in the first place. 1 Samuel 8 shows us how Israel grew tired of the authoritative structure established by God for the Children of Israel. As Samuel was both their prophet and judge. As Samuel grew old, and because his sons were not as righteous living as he was, the nation demanded to have a king like the nations around them. Although Samuel tried to warn against having a king, The Lord granted Israel’s request and Saul became their first king.
God established the earthly rule of governments. It was not His divine will, but He permitted it. This fact is what enabled Paul to declare “for there is not authority except from God and those that exist (governments) have been instituted by God.”
Hopefully, if you already voted, or if you are casting your vote today, you are doing so from a biblical Christian point of view. Not as a registered member of a party, not as someone with bias for or against one group of people, initiatives, or campaign platforms…but AS A CHRISTIAN.
Do not conform your thinking to the ways of a Democrat, a Republican or even your favorite civil rights organization. Let all our thinking, voting and activism be transformed by the renewing of our minds and let the Christ we serve direct our engagement with this political construct. There is an adage that encourages voters to “vote your conscience.” I will add to that by saying we must vote with the consciousness of Christ.
Rev. Charles Dixon, Jr.
Enjoy this week's encouraging word from Bro. Coleman by clicking here
Have you ever had a problem, crisis, or issue that you thought would be your demise? Better yet, when was your last problem, crisis, or issue that that the Lord delivered you from? One text, I often share with my son, younger brothers, family, friends, and others is written in John 16:33. “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Twenty years ago I closed one of the first -of thousands of residential mortgage loans. My supervisor told me I did a great job on what we considered an almost impossible deal to close. My experience was minimum, the borrower had substandard credit, inconsistent income, and the borrower did the opposite of almost everything I recommended she do to get her loan closed. Approximately 75 days after we started the loan application my borrower finally closed on her new house. She was elated and I was thrilled, my thoughts and feelings were, every loan after this one would be a piece of cake. Additionally, my other thoughts were, Thank God for giving me the patience, knowledge, and ability to overcome this crisis, now I have the mortgage experience to get everyone I work with to the closing table. In my mind, my mortgage banking career would be successful, enriching, and monetarily rewarding. Although I enjoyed the ride for almost 20 years, that was not my last problem loan or banking headache.
The older we are, the more life experiences we will confront, and in most cases there will be more problems during the journey. The stronger our relationship is with God, the better equip we are: when life happens, problems occur, health issues surface, financial hardships meets us in the driveway, and when trouble finds our address. This memory stands out for me because after I retired from the US Army, I became a mortgage banker. My understanding was all of my major headaches and problems were over when I finished my commitment with Uncle Sam. Unfortunately, that borrower and loan wasn’t my last problem, disappointment, or crisis. However, every now and then I have to remind myself that God told us this was part of life. God’s son demonstrated for us, the Bible instructs us, and His spirit dwells in us when life happens, that’s during both good and bad events. Let’s Thank God for giving us the spiritual muscle to exercise, endure, encourage, and engage each other. More importantly, let’s use this scripture as a reminder that Jesus overcame death, this world is temporary, and He has promised us eternal life! May the Lord continue to smile you on us and Bless us with everything our hearts desire.
Good Morning Green Castle Brothers and have a Blessed Week!
-Bro. Keith Reynolds
Feed My Sheep
I would like to open with a question. Are we, the United States of America the greatest , richest, wealthiest, most powerful country in the world or are we another third world country? Where poverty, homelessness, lack of health care for all, inequality in education/employment, lack of clean drinking water and food insecurity is the norm.
Yes! Everybody has struggles, hard times, and difficulties. But during these times isn't the time to give up and throw in the trowel. It's time to be obedience to GOD's word. Scripture: John 21:17 (FEED MY SHEEP)! If we love HIM. It's time to commit, dedicate or rededicate our life to the Master (FATHER). We don't have to have a lot to do this. Remember, Matthew 14:17 with only five loaves of bread and two fish HE feed 5000. Faith with out works is dead, brothers!
Are you a brother/sister who is doing nothing, but is always asking GOD to do everything for you. How can we feed GOD's sheep? Here are a few ways....
Making donations to the High Five Ministry - financial/foods items
Honor and Memorial Giving for passed love one
Volunteering at local food bank
Deliver meals/Thanksgiving dinner to senior citizens
Have a food fundraiser/drive
Partnership with a corporate Partner
Will the FATHER say to you on that great day, for I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink.
Our future doesn't have to be determined by our failures, let's feed GOD's sheep.
Be safe and blessed, and remember GOD loves you and so do I,
A Spiritual Champion’s sphere of Influence
Scripture: John 15:26-27, “But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me. And you also will bear witness, because you have been with Me from the beginning.”
The most important thing any of of us can do for our families is to be filled and controlled by the Holy Spirit. Nothing we do will have a greater impact on our families than this. If we are not being filled with the Spirit, we are opening the front door of our home to Satan and saying to him, “Come on in.” It is as important for the leader of the family to be filled with the Spirit as it is for the pastor of the church to be filled with the Spirit. With the Spirit, there is leadership and unity; without the Spirit, there is chaos and confusion.
-Rev. Derek D Mills
God Don’t Move My Mountain, Just Give Me the Strength To………
Mountains (a.k.a, obstacles, hard times, pandemics, social separation, addiction) can cause us to become cynical or crestfallen. Know that the Lord your God is able, in all situations, to help you overcome. The “how” we overcome may not feel or look like what we expected but God is there with us through it all.
God has a very specific plan for each of us. He wants to develop a better relationship with each and everyone of us so that he can reveal His plan to us. The Corona Virus has interrupted our normal schedules and presents us an opportunity to strengthen our relationship with God.
Do we “go around, climb or tunnel through” our mountains?
Go Around: The Magi on a journey to celebrate the birth of the King had an encounter with Herrod. Herrod was desperate to get his hands on the newborn King Jesus. His intent was to have the Magi locate the babe and then reveal his location so he could be killed. However, God’s plan was different; he sent the Magi back home via a different path. God’s plan was for them to “go around” the mountain on their trip back home.
Mat 2:8, 12 He (Herod) sent them (the Magi) to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.”….12And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.
Climb: Jonathan, Son of King Saul, was trying to take an outpost from the Philistines. He and his armor bearer would have to climb up the mountain to face the Philistines alone or return to camp. God’s plan was for them to “climb” the mountain. Climbing the mountain and taking the outpost would be a monumental task, but with God on their side Jonathan knew they would succeed.
1Samuel 14:10-12 But if they say, ‘Come up to us,’ we will climb up, because that will be our sign that the LORD has given them into our hands.” 11So both of them showed themselves to the Philistine outpost. “Look!” said the Philistines. “The Hebrews are crawling out of the holes they were hiding in.” 12The men of the outpost shouted to Jonathan and his armor-bearer, “Come up to us and we’ll teach you a lesson.” So Jonathan said to his armor-bearer, “Climb up after me; the LORD has given them into the hand of Israel.”
Tunnel through: God had a specific plan for the Israelites, it was the Land of Canaan. God made a promise to Abraham that his seed would possess the land for ever. The Israelites return to Canaan from Egypt required them to “tunnel through” Egypt and the Pharaoh, through the Red Sea, through the wilderness and through their own doubts and fear to possess the land. Truth be told the doubts and fears (which led to disobedience) of the Israelites made the tunneling more difficult, but it was necessary to prepare the nation to possess the land.
Gen 13:12-15 Abram lived in the land of Canaan, while Lot lived among the cities of the plain and pitched his tents near Sodom. 13Now the people of Sodom were wicked and were sinning greatly against the LORD. 14The LORD said to Abram after Lot had parted from him, “Look around from where you are, to the north and south, to the east and west. 15All the land that you see I will give to you and your offspring forever.
So, what do we do when we encounter “mountains?” Do we “go around, climb or tunnel through” our mountains? The answers will be revealed while talking to our “Daddy God.” He wants to hear from you, and He wants you to hear from him.
Charles Jenkins, Fellowship Chicago - Keep The Faith (Uncut)
Deacon Fred Henderson
by John Greenleaf Whittier
When things go wrong as they sometimes will,
When the road you're trudging seems all up hill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest if you must, but don't you quit.
Life is strange with its twists and turns
As every one of us sometimes learns
And many a failure comes about
When he might have won had he stuck it out;
Don't give up though the pace seems slow—
You may succeed with another blow.
Success is failure turned inside out—
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell just how close you are,
It may be near when it seems so far;
So stick to the fight when you're hardest hit—
It's when things seem worst that you must not quit.
Be Blessed and Don't Quit
James F Brooks
Mighty Men of Green Castle Baptist Church……………
Worshipping In times like these…………….
Worshiping in times like these have proven to be very challenging and far from the norm that we have become accustom to. In the hymn “In Times Like These” by Ruth Jones it says:
like these you need a Savior, In times like these you need an anchor;
Be very sure, be very sure, Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock!
This Rock is
Jesus, Yes He's the One, This Rock is Jesus, the only One;
Be very sure, be very sure, Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock!
During this time of quarantine/pandemic/social unrest/political mistrust God is forcing us and giving us an opportunity slow down and to develop a true relationship with Him. He wants us to invite Him in and worship Him as an audience of one. Tuning out all the noise and distractions, things going on in our minds and totally focus on Him.
You may ask how do I start, what is the first step. Here are a couple of preliminary things that we can do to prepare our hearts for this audience of One Worship experience with God.
Before/During use worship music to prepare your heart and mind – (Worship Him, Christ the Lord)
1st – Pray - Examine yourself & your personal life & repent where needed (Invite God and the Holy Spirit in to guide you).
2nd – Pray - Include/Intercede and confess on behalf of our own communities
3rd – Pray - Include/Intercede and confess on behalf of other communities.
Here are 10 ways to worship God at home while social distancing and staying in quarantine.
1. Set a prayer time. -
2 Chronicles 7:14 14if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
2. Do a daily devotional.
3. Hold on to your faith.
“That is why the Lord says, ‘Turn to me now, while there is time. Give me your hearts. Come with fasting, weeping, and mourning." — Joel 2:12
4. Music – To speak to your heart - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t0roQR42MPo
Worship music provides a soothing and sacred holy ground for us to feel completely open to God
Taking the time to write our blessings helps us become more humble. Writing every day about everything and everyone God has blessed you with. Journaling every day is essential to our overall self-care. It’s a reminder to share our thoughts and feelings daily. Showing gratitude daily helps us keep connected with our loved ones, appreciate the basic essentials around us to avoid greed.
6. Love others.
Staying connected with others by expressing love. (Calls/writing others/facetime/Zoom)
God didn’t give us a heart to simply pump blood throughout our bodies.
We have been threaded together to serve others, and to love each other enough to get through difficult times.
7. Be fit. (Get Physically Active)
Take the time to take care of the mind and body God gave you.
I cannot stress enough how important self-care is for each and every individual person. (Some as basic as a walk for 30 minutes 3-4 days a week can help reduce anxiety or depression.
Our body is a holy temple. God desires us to feel good in it no matter what our size is.
8. Attend church online.
Online church services keep us connected to listening to the word of God.
Continue to give Tithes to your church to help support the ministry that continues.
When we stay in tune for church service online, we express dedication not only to our church but also to God.
If you’re in a Men’s group or young adults, it’s important that we all stay connected to pull each other through this time.
It’s a fantastic way to encourage each other weekly/monthly to trust God and His word.
9. Look for opportunities to serve others (neighbors/church member/family members) and be a source of encouragement during these times.
10. Subscribe to a podcast.
Listening to Inspiring, Christian podcasts can keep us looking forward.
The podcast has become a trend that has made millions of recorded interviews from preachers, speakers, artists, and more.
Taking this time now to learn how to focus our worship of God and an audience of one will prepare us for when we are able to come together corporately to worship and if we keep that same mindset that God is the center of our worship. He isn’t concerned about what we have on, what we have planned after service, where we work, what kind of car that we drive, if we are singing the right notes, He wants our worship to be of humble submission focused on Him and only Him. Knowing that if it had not been for the Lord on our side where would we be.
Romans 12:1 1I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
Submitted by: Steven D. Kniffley Sr.
On Sunday, August 16th Reverend Pitts message title was when “GOD says No” with the scripture text being 2nd Corinthians 12: 7-10. A story of Paul and his “Thorn Infliction” that GOD said no to its removal. GOD’s reason being that “His grace was sufficient” for the work Paul had to do with the Thorn in place. GOD said No—Paul submitted to GOD’s will—-and as they say—the rest is Biblical History.
This message brought to mind another time GOD had said No—or maybe it’s better stated that GOD did not immediately answer positively to a prayer request for deliverance.
I am speaking of Joseph, son of Jacob, the dreamer. (Gen. Chapter 37–50)
Joseph, one of Jacob’s twelve sons and perhaps his favorite son, because Joseph was the first born son of his most beloved wife Rachel and he had been born to Jacob in his old age. Jacob gave Joseph the “Coat of Many Colors” plus a special place in his heart and household. The Bible also says “GOD was with Joseph”—however GOD allowed mishaps to befall Joseph—Joseph’s brothers begin to despise Joseph and eventually sold him into slavery in Egypt. (The Bible says “GOD was with Joseph”.)
In slavery Joseph rose to a prominent position in his master’s house only to have his master’s wife falsely accuse him of sexually abusing her—-thus, Joseph was put in prison in Egypt (The Bible says “GOD was with Joseph”.) While Joseph was in prison the Bible says the LORD was with him in all he did. Joseph was in prison a long time before finally being released when he proved valuable to the Egyptian Pharaoh.
The Egyptian Pharaoh made Joseph an overseer of Egypt’s affairs second only to himself (the Bible says GOD was with Joseph) and Joseph prospered and saved not only Egypt but also his family—and by default—the nation of Israel.
Now one may question “Did Joseph have to suffer in this way for his family and Israel to prosper? Why did GOD” will it to be done this way? Was there a better way? Personally, I do not know—however what I do know is this—GOD’s ways are not our ways (Isaiah 55:8-9).
Soooo….Brothers, as a child of GOD, when you find yourself in peril remember the following:
- GOD is always with You
- Your peril maybe a part of GOD’s plan
3) GOD’s grace is sufficient for You.
Your Brother in Christ
Our Friend Jesus
John 15:13-15 says “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants: for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.
Since Jesus is Lord and Master he could easily call us his servants, but he chooses to call us his friends. He wants to have a relationship based on friendship. He showed this by being willing to go to the cross and to die for all of our sins. What greater act of “friendship” had there ever been there ever been in history. All that he asks in return is that we praise and worship him.
What does it mean to be a friend? What are some the behaviors that are associated with being a good friend? Let’s take a look at our interactions with our earthly friends. If you are friends with someone you typically have some type of communication with them on a frequent basis. We do this through phone calls, emails, texts, and in person meetings. There has to be some level of communication to maintain and sustain the friendship. Well, how often do we call on our Friend Jesus? I will speak for myself, but most of the time when I call him it because I’m either in trouble or need help. How often do I just call him to say how thankful I am about how good a friend he has been to me. How would you feel if you had a “friend” and the only time they contacted you was when the needed something? Is this person really a friend?
When we are friends with someone, we will go to them for advice when we have a problem. Well, we have this “friend” named Jesus and how many times do we go to him for advice. We normally go to everyone one else first to get advice before going to Jesus. There is nothing wrong with going to our friends or family for advice, but shouldn’t our first option be our Friend Jesus? Who better to solve our problems and to give us peace. As I said above too many times he is our last option instead of our first option.
Here are some things that our Friend Jesus does for us:
Fulfills your every need
Restores your strength
Intercedes on your behalf
Eases your pain
Never lets you down
Defeats your enemies
So if you haven’t given him a call in awhile why don’t you reach out this week to tell him how much you love him?
-Bro. Rick Saunders
Count it All JOY
By AL Wilson
James 1:2-3, KJV says: My Brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.
It was James the Brother of Jesus that wrote this scripture from the perspective of a Church (Jerusalem) leader in the midst of hard times and extreme persecution of Christians in the Roman World before 50 A.D. Our Saviour Jesus Christ had been Crucified on the Cross. Many Christians had been brutally murdered for their Discipleship. Stephen had been recently martyred, and Christians like us were scattered throughout Jerusalem and all of Rome in attempts to avoid persecution as well as execution. The Church at that time did not have a well defined earthly organizational structure, so that left most Christians with very little support from people in government and society to encouraged in their Faith (somewhat like we see today). James knew this and he uses the word Temptations as a reference to the trials and testing of the times (not as an enticement to do evil). God does test us, but he does not provoke us to Sin! This scripture is so relevant today many of us are simply tired of the year 2020!
We as Christians have had a year of test and trials. As strange as it may seem, this Scripture clearly tells of a few things that have been consistent with any of us that try to walk in a life of increasing Faith in God. The first thing that James tell us is that we should “Count it All Joy” What? With all we face, how does that happen? It happens because if we truly embrace the words of James, we know that he does not tell us that we may, or could possibly face these Temptations, but he tells us “WHEN We Fall into Divers Temptations.” Knowing that we will be ‘tested and tried in our Faith leaves us very few questions as to what we are to expect. If we let our Joy of knowing that God is still on the Throne, we will continue to live in that Joy WHEN we fall into Temptations. This Joy that James writes about is what should carry us through every trial and test that we face. James then tell us that since we know the Temptations are coming, then we should also know that if we live within a heart and mentality of Faith in God, this Faith will worketh patience. Our patience will be developed not from what we see with our eyes, but with the Faith we allow in our own Hearts! This is what allows us to count it All JOY!!! This is the Faith that facilitates our Joy in both good, and bad times. This is the Faith that lets us know that God has placed Angels both seen and unseen to watch over us as we live through these days of divers Temptations (test and trials). Finally, as we obviously see the test we can physically engage with our eyes, and as we feel the pain and suffering of this present age. We must lean on our Faith and not our own understanding to see and feel the JOY of The LORD our GOD manifest itself in our hearts daily, and let our light from that Joy shine in this dark world filled with divers Temptations. As the Scripture says so clearly “Weeping may endure for a night, but JOY cometh in the morning. As you continue to strengthen your Faith in God, remember what the Apostle Paul wrote in Romans 15:13. “Now the God of Hope fill you with all JOY and PEACE in believing, that ye may ABOUND in HOPE, through the Power of the HOLY GHOST!!” Count it All JOY!!!
Man to Man!
So, what have you been doing the past five months?
Did you hear me?
What have you been doing the past five months?
In the military, we have this term called “marking time.” It's the concept of walking or moving without making any progress. So, have you been “marking time” for months? Have you made any significance gain? Are you a better man? Are you a better friend? Are you a better father? Are you a better husband? Are you a better Christian?
So, if you're tired of movement without any advancement, make a change.
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens...” (Ecclesiastes 3:1) This is the season to do something different. Join us for Men's Bible study, the second Saturday of each month.
Helpful or Hurtful
The Persuaders sing a story of how fragile relationships are. They warn their listeners “it’s a thin line, between love and hate.” In their story, it does not take much for things that seemingly go unnoticed, or unaddressed to cause irreparable harm. So, it also goes with our words, actions and deeds with each other. There can be a thin line between being helpful or being hurtful.
In the 9th chapter of the Gospel According to Mark, we find the disciples getting a series of lessons from both Jesus and life experiences. In verse 33 Jesus and the disciples arrive in what some preachers call “Holy Ghost Headquarters”; Capernaum. As the disciples argue about which of them is to be considered the greatest, Jesus resets their thinking by teaching “if anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all.” This lesson did not seem to stick with the disciples, for in verse 38 we find them bragging to Jesus about shutting down a man they encountered. This man was casting out demons in Jesus’ name, or under His authority. However, this man was not one of them…he was not one of the twelve, so they stopped him. They thought they had done something righteous; they were protecting the name of Jesus, or so they thought. Once they finished telling Jesus what they had done, He admonishes them that they should not have stopped that man. He explains “the one who is not against us is for us.” Although they disciples believe they were doing the right and noble thing, they had crossed the line from being helpful, to being hurtful.
Brothers let us make sure our words are true words of encouragement and not enablement; helpful and not hurtful. Our calling is one of teaching others as we have been taught – that is an integral part of the Great Commission. We are also called to the “ministry of reconciliation” (2 Corinthians 18-20). Our words, guidance, advice, suggestions need to be grounded in a spirit of Godly love and sound Biblical interpretation.
Let us make certain that as we “pour into” someone else’s life or offer our opinions that we are not crossing that thin line from being helpful, onto the side of being hurtful.
May the Lord bless you and keep you.
Rev. Charles Dixon, Jr.
A Baseball Dream
"Do You Really LOVE the Lord?"
One Night I was watching the final game of the World Series and I fell asleep during the early innings. I thought I woke up, but I noticed instead of the Atlanta Braves and New York Yankees playing it was Satan's Team in the field. God's team was up to bat. On the mound Satan was pitching. The first baseman was Confusion, at 2nd base was Hatred, and Complacency was at 3rd. In left field was Murder, center field was Despair and the Right fielder was suicide. The Catcher was Death. The shortstop was the infamous, divisively spirited, grossly unqualified, #45, Evil.
I looked at the score board and it was the bottom of the ninth, two outs nobody on base and the score was Satan's team 4 and God's team 1. God sent up Faith to bat. Satan rears back and throws him the heater but CRACK, Faith gets a hit. With a man on first base two out and the scores is 4 to 1. I tried to guess who God was going to send up next. But I've heard it said, "God's ways are not our ways and His thoughts are not our thoughts." Next up to bat was....Works; Well you do realize Faith without Works is dead. So Satan throws the ball and CRACK another hit. Bottom of the ninth, Faith on 2nd Works on 1st Next up to bat was Love. If you have Faith and Works, but no Love, you cannot please God. Well Satan pitches the ball and CRACK, a hit.
Now the bases are loaded in the bottom of the ninth, with two outs and a score of 4 to 1. Faith's on Third. Work's on Second and Love's on first. But there was a problem. God's bench was empty. I didn't know what He was going to do. He looked up into the stands and called me out of the crowd. God told me, "I have given you what you need to win, but you have to step up to the plate." I looked at Satan. He was laughing and shouting out vulgar language. I could see his hot sulfurous breath and I became afraid. Satan threw the first pitch and I swung, strike one. He and his demons really began with more insults and devilish laughter. Satan threw the next ball. I swung and missed, strike two.
Bottom of the ninth, two outs, the score was 4-1. I stepped out of the batter box. God sent one of his coaches to me. His name was Peace. Peace said, "fear not, Have you prayed about the situation?" I said no. So I began to pray and the Holy Spirit came to me and brought to my remembrance that Satan likes to throw you a curve ball. I stepped back in the batters box with a renewed confidence.
Satan was laughing and cocky and he reared back and threw the ball. CRACK, a deep high fly ball to center field. The ball hit the wall. Faith scores 4-2, Works scores 4-3, Love scores 4-4. I was rounding third and the third base coach who was Jesus waved me home. I was running as fast as I could toward home plate. I saw the ball come past me into the catcher's mitt, who was Death. I slid but felt the tag before I touched home. But to my surprise the Umpire said "Saved!" I looked up at him, asked his name and he said "Grace."
God calls us to get in the game and do His work. You must have Faith, Works, and Love, because this is your reasonable service. It is by God's GRACE that we get to go home and that home is Heaven. You can't earn it, buy it or steal it. Salvation is an unmerited gift from God.
I am an avid baseball fan. I was a Division I baseball umpire in several Power 5 conferences for 38 years I currently assign high school baseball umpires. One thing I often say to guys is to remember this when you get personally conflicted with umpiring, "GOD, FAMILY and BASEBALL!"
I pray for my Church family to stay safe and PRAYED UP!
Yours in Christ,
Bro. Clarence Coleman
A Sermon the Lord blessed us with on October 24, 1999 by Rev. M. David Lacey
Matthew 22: 36-38.
In most situations we tend to visit or reference where we are comfortable, in other words “we” reference our foundation. One of the first things I learned as a Christian and still lean on in my daily spiritual walk is the First Commandment.
Matthew 22:37. Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. Matthew 22:38. This is the First and great commandment.
When I think about our current global pandemic, the state of affairs as it pertains to race relations in these United States, and our new normal for work, relaxation, and entertainment- I wonder how many of us fail to make God our number one priority. We are bombarded with news stories about COVID-19, BLM, the upcoming UofL Football season, politics, protests, the NFL season, and the return of the NBA. We hear more about these things than God Himself. As quiet as its kept, some of the biggest culprits of spending too much time on these subjects are those of us that are Christians. Is God still getting ALL the glory He deserves during these challenging and tumultuous times?
In our scripture, Jesus reminds us that God must come first. He is not interested in our personal agendas, our denominations, our titles, our bank accounts, favorite sports teams, homes, social organizations, or the number of friends we have on social media. At the end of the day, HE wants to know if we really love HIM. If we love HIM, then we must show HIM by speaking truth to power and living according to the Word of God. I often ask myself, “what can I do better as a Christian, am I growing enough in Jesus, is HE getting the attention HE deserves”? Sometimes I do extremely well but most of the time not so well. My personal challenge is to align more with the First Commandment and love God more! Less attention to distractions and more focus on our creator and the lover of our souls.
Bro. Keith Reynolds
Be a Buoy
Praise the Lord brothers! I pray all is well with you and your families. With all the things that are going on currently. It is hard to stay balanced with work, family, and time with the Lord. We are overwhelmed with the loss of loved ones, with the loss of a jobs, with social isolation, social injustice, as men the weight of our families to carry.
As I was meditating on the Lord, I thought about a buoy, a buoy is floating object anchored to the bottom to mark channel or something lying under water. When the wind crashes against it, the buoy holds its place; when it tossed from side to side and back and forth by the waves it never stays down. The buoy stays in place by what it is anchored to, and floats by how it is centered. When we are anchored in Christ nothing and no one will be able to move us, and when we are centered in His Word, we will be able to withstand all the trials and tribulations this world has to offer. Be a Buoy, “Be steadfast and unmovable.”
I hope to see you all at Men’s Bible study, every 2nd Saturday of the month via zoom. I am sure you will be encouraged by the word and the fellowship. If you are interested in attending, please email firstname.lastname@example.org If anyone has not told you today that they
Love, God Loves you and so do I.
Be blessed Brother Dave O
It's All Good
It is evident that the world is full of suffering today, (sickness, poverty, systemic racism, social inequality, police brutality, unemployment and the COVID 19 pandemic). From this we learn that physical, emotional, and spiritual pain has been and will be an intrinsic part of our life.
John 16:33 states, I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Trials are unavoidable, but that doesn't mean that they have to be unprofitable.
Jesus Christ suffered, HE was persecuted and crucified. If HE suffered why NOT you or me. Yes, suffering will indeed come and we all will experience trials and tribulations. It's a fact of life.
The good news, Romans 8:28 says we know that all things work together for the good of those who love GOD, who are called according to HIS purpose for them. Brothers it did not say just painful things or just pleasurable things. It said ALL THINGS. The promise is, if believers are not loving GOD and progressively being conformed to HIS image, they will not see things working together for their good.
We know and believe that behind the seen during painful bad things GOD is working on our behalf. Sometimes GOD rescues us from things. Sometimes HE rescues us out of things. And sometimes HE changes us in things. HE knows best. Because of our relationship with the FATHER, our faith in JESUS CHRIST, hope, trust and promises of CHRIST, we will have victory. All things will work for our good.
So brothers hold on a change is coming. GOD loves you and so do I!
Bro. G. Griggs
Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.”
The difference we make in others will never be any greater than the difference which has been made in us by Jesus Christ. The impression we make will be “God-size” when we allow the power of Jesus Christ to flow through us. God can do more in a moment than you and I can do in a lifetime.
Are you “Fireproof” or “Fuel for the Fire?”
During this time of social separation and social unrest, it is important to often stop and assess where we stand.
Fuel for the Fire – We become kindling when we are gripped by fear, anxiety or hopelessness. Given the state of the circumstances in our local communities, cities, states, country and yes, the world; it is quite easy to feel overwhelmed. Today’s state of events can make us feel isolated and/or angry.
If we submit to negativity and forget that God is truly in control, we become “Fuel.” Fuel is usually consumed and very little, if anything, is left behind. That which is left behind is considered waste and disposed of in some manner.
Consider the events surrounding Elijah’s discourse with King Ahab and the priest of Baal in 1 Kings 18. Elijah called down the fire of the Lord, that fire consumed everything, even the dust.
1Kings 18:38 Then the fire of the LORD fell, and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.
Let’s not be victims of an all-consuming fire.
Fireproof – When we are “Fireproof” we are walking in the knowledge of our Savior and Lord. No thing or no one can stand against us, not now nor in Eternity. This is not to say that we won’t have struggles in the fallen world in which we reside, but we have a Comforter with us always.
Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
When cast into the fire, we are not consumed, but purified and come out better. Impurities are removed and we come out stronger.
Job 23:10 But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold
When we are cast into the fire, we are not consumed, but shackles and bonds are broken. We are set free from that which ensnares us allowing us to continue to serve.
Daniel 3:25 He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.
When we are cast into the fire, we are not consumed, and the world will see God’s Shekinah glory upon us. They will stop and investigate giving us an opportunity to witness.
Exodus 3:2 And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed.
My brothers and sisters; know that you are not alone. We are not alone. Even when we can’t trace His hand, know that the Lord is with us. He has promised never to leave us, nor forsake us.
Also know that we, the GCBC Men’s Ministry, are here for you. If there is anything, we can do please let us know. No matter how large or small, we are here to offer support. We are praying that you and your families are “Fireproof.”
Bro, Fred Henderson
Roman General Publius Flavius Vegetius in Epitoma Rei Militars (Concerning Military Matters) writes, “If you want peace, prepare for war.” He believed that the Army grew weak from being idle during a long period of peace. He believed that they had become so complacent with peace, they had lost all taste for war. They stopped wearing their protective armor, this would make them vulnerable to their enemies’ weapons, and to the temptation to flee from battle.
Ephesians 6:13 GNB says, “So put on Gods armor now! Then when the evil day comes, you will be able to resist the enemy’s attacks; and after fighting to the end, you will still hold your ground.” Paul is telling us to put on the armor that God has provided for us and never take it off. When we take off our armor, we become vulnerable to the enemy’s attacks. Brothers, the first thing the devil will attack is our homes, our wives, our children, and our relationship with The Lord. The enemy is waiting for us to relax and get comfortable and complacent so he can attack.
So I urge you brothers, to keep on the belt of truth, so you can see through the lies of the enemy, keep on the breast plate of righteousness so you remember who you belong to, shrod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace so you will follow where the Lord leads you, and above all else keep on the shield of faith to block the enemy’s relentless attacks. And keep on the helmet of salvation and the sword of the spirit, which is God’s sword so you will be able to stand firm when the enemy attacks.
Brothers, I encourage you to stay on guard and always be ready for the for war, so you can retain your peace.
I hope to see you at Men’s Bible Study every second Saturday of the month at 11:00 am via zoom.
God Bless and keep you,
The Measure of a Man
Not “How did he die?” But “How did he live?”
Not “What did he gain?” But “What did he give?”
Not “What was his station?” But “Had he a heart?”
And “How did he play his God-given part?”
Not “What was his shrine?” Nor “What was his creed?”
But “Had he befriended those really in need?”
Not “What did the piece in the newspaper say?”
But “How many were sorry when he passed away?”
Was he ever ready with a word of good cheer,
To bring back a smile, to banish a tear?
These are the units to measure the worth
Of a man as a man, regardless of birth
How do you walk through life? What do you measure and how do you measure up?
Be Blessed my Brothers
Press on in Patience
Hebrews 6: 12
“Be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience
Inherit the promises”.
You’ve been walking by faith. You’ve been believing God to meet your need.
But what do you do when the results seem slow in coming and you are tempted to give up?
There is not much said about patience these days. But, when it comes to receiving from God,
It is just as important as faith.
It will make the difference between success and failure for you.
Patience undergirds and sustains faith until the result is manifest. After you have meditated on the
Promises of God and have them in your spirit, patience will encourage you to hold steady.
Patience is power. It has the courage to refuse the lie of Satan that says the Word is not working for you.
It knows that God’s Word has never failed. Patience will not draw back in fear but will press forward in faith until you have the answer.
When the results of your faith seem slow in coming, Don’t Give Up!! Continue to put the Word first,
With patience, and you will surely receive the promise of God.
Don’t Give Up By - Dallas Fort Worth Mass Choir - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=11EH2ngYTWc
GOD Loves YOU!
Sometimes this “old world” can seem harsh and cruel and the way forward seems very dire—-Pitfalls everywhere—-how can you/we make it through the day? However we do make it through the day and then the next day and things seems a little better and brighter.
Having gone through certain pitfalls of life as men we want to pass on this knowledge and spare our children these pitfalls. However this desire in itself can be another pitfall—if/when our children do not listen and fall into the aforementioned pitfalls.
But--be of good cheer even though some pitfalls will come into your life--the Lord your GOD loves You. Know that HE only wants the best for you the same as you want for your children!
The Lord our GOD loves us just as deeply as we love our children because we are his children. In Hebrews chapter 12: 5 & 6 reads “My son, do not take the Lord’s discipline lightly or lose heart when you are reproved by him, for the Lord disciplines the one he loves and punishes every son he receives.”
No matter the situation you may find yourself in—know that “your” Lord and Savior is bigger and stronger! Please Keep your eyes and faith on and in HIM.
Try this “Love the Lord your GOD, Love your neighbor as yourself—Love your family as Jesus loves the Church”.
Be Well my Brothers in Christ,
Bro. James Embry
I have been struck how many times recently I have heard when watching or reading the news how lonely people are due to all the social distancing requirements. For those of us who have a relationship with Christ, we should know that we are never along. We have the Holy Spirit, which is always there for us. All we have to do is seek it. I think about John 14:27
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let your heart not be troubled, neither let, it be afraid.
As the passage says, the peace provided by the Holy Spirit surpasses that which we can get from any earthly source. So in these times when everything seems so crazy and out of control, it is important that we seek the Holy Spirit and know that we are never alone. This means that now more than ever wee need to stay in the word and prays. So I encourage all my brothers to join us in the Men's Bible Study. This not only allows us to tap into the "peace" provided by the Holy Spirit, but it will provide some much needed fellowship.
God Bless and Stay Safe!
Bro. Rick Saunders
As we continue to advance God's Plans for our lives; We find it sometimes difficult to understand crazy things and uncertain times as they continue to surround our daily lives. For example, the current Global Crisis, the illnesses and deaths that many of us are currently experiencing within our Communities and even within our own Families. When I think about the last three months, I have been drawn to Proverbs 3:13- "Happy is the man that find the Wisdom, and the man that get the Understanding" This passage is one that tells us that in order to gain knowledge we must first seek a sincere Consciousness of God within our own Hearts and Souls. As we struggle with the World around us, and yes, the Struggle is Real!! I ask that each of you continue to seek the True Spirit of God within ourselves and not from external affairs and events. If we continue to follow and understand Proverbs 3 we will truly understand and gain the Eternal Wisdom that God has placed within our grasp. Proverbs 3:5 simply says " Trust in the Lord with All Thine Heart; and Lean Not unto thine Own Understanding! Brothers we are God's people. Trust Him, and only then will we understand both His Will and the Blessings that he has already set aside for those that Truly Seek His Wisdom! Get to Know Him!!
Join us for Online Bible Study!
Yours in Christ,
As men we know, “Transparency” does not come easy for us.
In general, transparency is the quality of being easily seen through. It means being completely honest, open and accountable.
What if we (men) would embrace the opportunity to entrust each other with our thoughts and feelings, our presures, our priorities, and our struggles?
Would you do it?
Would you “jump out the tree” and be vulnerable?
We men often view sharing our deepest feelings as weakness, but what if sharing together could actually make us stronger, mightier men?
God's word says: “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid. Nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
Take a risk. Join our men's
Bible study online. Come be encouraged, be connected and be stronger.
Join us online for our men's Bible study.