By Bill Young
With all the information coming out from the secular news media on the Coronavirus, I thought I would let everyone know what I am seeing.
This is from Eddie Moody, national Free Will Baptist executive secretary: “We must treat this virus with the seriousness it deserves. At the same time, we must not give in to panic and fear; instead, remember that our faith in Christ and the hope of the gospel give believers a firm foundation in times of personal and international crisis. The coronavirus, as terrible as it is, provides a wonderful opportunity to demonstrate faith, courage and compassion to our communities.”
President Matt Pinson of Welch FWB College in Nashville stated, “Recently I came across a quotation from Corrie Ten Boom: ‘Never be afraid to trust and unknown future to a known God.’ In this time of uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus and its effects, this truth comforts us, reminding us that God will meet all our needs, now and in the future.”
We had a lighter crowd at church but a wonderful day to assemble. Prayer request are for Linda Cheever, Susan Ryder, Shirley Sell’s granddaughter, nursing home patients, the homebound, Kari Hurst, Holly Hayes, Larry Letterman, Mark Johnson, Bobby and Brenda Atkison, Bonnie Grogan, Judy Young, Kourtney Everett, Alice Garton, Sandra Dill and those with past requests.
May God bless and give you today everything you need to accomplish the work that he has given you.
Brentwood Church of Christ
By Matt Hodge
Since everyone is talking about the coronavirus, let’s talk a little about its origin and what it reminds us of spiritually.
First, it’s interesting that the vast majority of viruses are good. We all know that our bodies contain millions of bacteria in our digestion systems, mouths, skin, etc. Well, we need viruses to control the bacteria in our bodies so they don’t overpopulate. In fact, there are many more viruses in our bodies than bacteria, even when we are healthy! We need these beneficial viruses! So why do some make us sick?
When the first sin brought death into the world, sicknesses that sometimes caused death probably entered or started entering at the same time. Many of the viruses that make us sick probably originally escaped from an animal that they are helpful to, or even necessary to. Bird flu and swine flu are examples of this, and scientists think the current coronavirus may have escaped from bats, but we don’t know for sure yet. Even though viruses can never evolve into bacteria or other species, they can mutate or adapt within their own type. Sometimes they change the part that latches on to the cell they are entering to be able to attack cells other than that of their original species. This is when they become dangerous and cause disease.
It’s a powerful reminder that sin messes up the world around us! The world as God originally created it is described as “very good” in Genesis 1:31. This means there were none of the things that plague us today, like suffering and death. Many wonder how God could bring these things on us humans if he really loves us. But in fact, our human race brought these things on ourselves by bringing sin into the world.
This should motivate us to want to go to heaven, no matter what sacrifice is needed, so we can get back to a “very good” world that God has made for those who love him enough to obey him instead of sinning, which brought on death and suffering in the first place.
Stay well and take care.
Crossroads Evangelical Methodist
By Lacey Cantrell
Crossroads EMC wants you to come worship with us! “We pray always for you that … the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you” — 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12.
When we have friendship with Jesus, our lives take on a completely new quality and nature. We are indwelled by his Holy Spirit. Our lives automatically move away from sin and toward purity. Our lives begin to reflect the character of the Holy Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23). A friend may influence your life, but no human friend can ever totally transform your life from the inside out in the way Christ does.
We want to thank everyone who made it to revival — we all had a wonderful time in worship with Kevin Brouillette!
Elkland Independent Methodist
By Joyce Inman
We did not have church in person in Elkland on Sunday. Our church board voted to follow the recommendations of the Webster County Health Department and to try and protect all of our church family, especially the older and at-risk members. They will meet again this week (by phone) to make a determination about next Sunday.
Although we did not gather in person, we had a wonderful worship experience through our Facebook prayer chain. This has been a page that has been active for several years and connects most of our church on a daily basis.
Through this page, we were able to have church in a different format with everyone taping something from home. You gotta love technology!
Pastor Nicholas Inman posted a video welcome and explained the format. Butch Alcorn taped the announcements. Ruthie Davis played a prelude on her piano, “To God be the Glory,” followed by words of encouragements (from scripture) recorded or posted by several families in the church: Barb Ramey, Michael and Amber Brand family, Steve and Patty Swartout and me.
Deena Johnston taped an explanation on how to send in your tithes, while her brother Justin Robertello played an offertory in the background, followed by the doxology. If you would like to mail in your tithes, the church address is PO Box 133, Elkland MO 65644.
Sunny Fuller read off the prayer list and led us all in congregational prayer. Pat Allen led our morning song service and accompanied herself. She led us all in “Great is thy Faithfulness,” “Amazing Grace” and “Love Lifted Me.” Special music was taped and posted by Earney Smith, Ella Lewis and Libby Morgan. Libby also submitted a devotional for the adult Sunday School class.
Brett Dudenhoeffer played “How Great Thou Art” on his fiddle, accompanied by Russ Weeks. Pastor Inman brought the message from Luke 21. The Bible speaks about such times as we find ourselves living in today. It was a great reminder to pray for our nation, our church, each other, our families and ourselves. Sunday was declared a National Day of Prayer by the President of the United States. We all needed to hear this message.
Ella Lewis played the postlude on her piano, “The Family of God.” This was a great way for everyone on the prayer chain to worship, including those who live out of state and are still part of our church family. Yvonne Cline, Amber Brand and Laurie Ford posted about how much they appreciated each video, taped at home and shared on the church prayer chain. It was such a great and clever way to keep connected during this difficult time.
May God bless our nation and each of you as we go through the trials ahead together.
By Sue Epperson
Family Reflections: Exodus 17:3-7 — Israel’s repeated complaining against Moses is actually a lack of trust, indicative of their rebellion against God.
Psalm 95 — If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts. Romans 5:1-2, 5-8 — God’s past action of raising Jesus from the dead has an ongoing effect in the present and gives believers hope of future sharing in God’s glory.
John 4:5-42 — Jesus’ passing through Samaria was not out of necessity, but to bring the messages of salvation beyond Judaism, even to Samaritans.
“Why would Jesus desire the love of someone who was not only a Samaritan, but who had a checkered past and was living with a man who wasn’t her husband? Because that’s who Jesus is. Like the Father and the Holy Spirit, Jesus loves each one of us. No matter who we are or what our sins, he who is love cannot help but seek after our love. He thirsts for all of us” (“Word Among
Us,” March 15, 2020).
By Autumn Summers
Two of our members shared a little about Annie Armstrong and the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering. They talked about needs over wants and giving up a want for a month and using that money saved to go into the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering. This offering will be collected at least through Easter.
Be in prayer for our world as we are in uncertain times. Use the wisdom God has given us. Pray for one another as we all have trials.
From John 17:31-33:
“Jesus answered them, Do ye now believe?
“Behold, the hour cometh, yea, is now come, that ye shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave me alone: and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me.
“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”
By Doris McFarland
“I Shall Not Be Moved” was sung to begin services Sunday morning. Those mentioned on the prayer list included the family of Vivian Davenport, Orb Underwood, Fred Replogle, Kay Graves, Ron Firestone, Mary Harman, Ray Koch, Diane Robertson’s son, John Lawless, those involved in the coronavirus and many others. Phillip Ragsdale had the call to worship. Clint Young led the adults in “Consequences for Injustice.”
For worship service, cards of thanks were read from the Davenport family, who lost their mother this past week, and from Mary Harman and family for their recent loss. Robert Carroll had the special music Sunday morning, “Just a Closer Walk with Thee.” Gary McFarland had the communion message from Luke 15:5-7, “Rejoice Over One.” Pastor Davenport’s message was titled “Jesus Calms the Storm” with emphasis on how God calms the storms of life.
Pastor Davenport’s evening message was “There’s my Preacher Boy.” He spoke about his mother, and how Jesus did his job as an earthly son. Specials were by Karen Blazer, Tom and Robin Rost, and a quartet by Richard and Diane Robertson and the Davenports.
Thought for the week: “Heaven is full of answers to prayers for which no one ever bothered to ask.” God bless you this week.
Peace Lutheran Church
By Pastor Edwin Lehmann
Of all the physical gifts that God bestows on us, which is most precious to you? I will suggest the gift of sight.
With it you can marvel at the beauties of creation; you can read a book and watch entertaining things; you can see the happy faces of children and grandchildren. What is it like to be without sight — seeing only a monotony of perpetual darkness? We with eyes that see too easily take for granted such precious gifts from God.
Eyes that see are of no lasting value unless those same eyes see the Savior and acknowledge the eternal gifts he offers in the forgiveness he won on the cross. As he said in Sunday’s lesson after healing a blind man, “I am the Light of the world. … I came into this world in order that those who do not see will see” (John 9). That is always the result that Jesus seeks — that all might know him more as the only Savior from sin and death.
I need the Savior every hour to cover my sins. I need the Savior every hour to carry me in life. I need the Savior every hour in joy or in pain. I pray that understanding takes place in this present epidemic of the coronavirus and in all troubles that affect us. In this hour of need, God grant that eyes are opened to see the Savior. Then our troubles will prove a blessing, and Christ shall be glorified.
Pleasant Hill United Methodist
By Jeanie Replogle
We opened our services this morning with “I Saw the Light.” The responsive reading was Psalm 95. The morning scripture was “The More I Seek You” with scripture from Exodus 17:1-7 and John 4:5-42.
Brooke Hyder and Bailey Cook took up the morning offering.
Please be in prayer for Fred Replogle, Gary Morse, Tom Byrd, Pat Smikle, Mary Willis, George Pendergrass, Celia McCluan, Mary Chessor, Wendel Watts, Margie Davis, Clella Estep, Jan Smikle, Genny Huelan, Bill Brinkley, Walter Peck, Keith Marlin, Brian Grabher, Burless Dye, Dr. Charles Mahaffey, Faith Gossett, Patti Garretson, Layne Dunn, Sarah Mahaffey, Rita Zaer, Don Goeden, Curtis and Linda Lloyd, Sondra Grey, Glory James, Jeff Ward, the leaders of our nation and the men and women of the military.
Restoration Community Church
By Kevin Wright
We continue our conversation this week concerning the intent and promise to make us whole. Another word for whole is “sound.”
Bringing soundness to the human requires miraculous work. There is an old term used by Christ known as being born again. In general, most people who view themselves as born-again boil this down to accepting Christ as their Savior. While it is true that one must confess him to be Lord, a problem arises when we only view him in light of being our forgiveness of sin.
Forgiveness is only a small part of what Christ was sent to do. Somehow we forget that God had allowed for forgiveness under the law of Moses so what we see in Christ was the end of sacrifices and the beginning of the new priesthood, new temple an altogether new covenant. Romans 8:3-4, 6 states, “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. … For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.”
The former law might have been able to offer forgiveness, but it couldn’t produce righteousness on the inward part of mankind, and therefore could not produce peace for the inner man.
Search for Restoration Community Church of Marshfield on Facebook and stream live with us or view our archives.
Rogersville First Baptist
By Betty Lou Tutor
Unfortunately, our nation is going through a difficult time. We need to pray for our nation and our president for strength and encouragement to make proper decisions.
The coronavirus isn’t the only thing we are being attacked by in relationship to our wellbeing. This is another one of Satan’s attempts to cloud our minds and take our eyes off Jesus Christ. Our faith needs to stay strong in believing that Almighty God is here for us.
As a member of your community, it’s our godly duty to reach out and help others. This means speaking about salvation if one isn’t saved and reading scriptures of John 14:6 when Jesus says, “I am the way, the truth and the life; no man cometh unto the Father except by me.” Sharing the powerful love God has for all his children will create hope.
Pastor Winston’s sermon began by focusing on God’s will first allowing us to face this enemy. Our faith must stay strong to survive the consequences of this earth. Winston added how God never sleeps, and we can come to him anytime. God is watching over, protecting, keeping and with us always. Let’s give our creator back the love he deserves. Winston’s references came from Isaiah 25:1, Psalms 121:6, Isaiah 27:3 and Revelation 2:20.
God holds this universe in his hands. We offer a special dedication to all who are involved in this virus situation working together as a team all around God’s world. Prepare yourselves spiritually, health and financially. Our Lord wants nothing to come in between to destroy us. God bless.
By Brother Bob Holden
As young boys growing up, my brother and I were introduced at an early age to "cussing" by Dad and Grandpa. Mother told us if she ever heard us using those words, she'd wash our mouths out with soap! Mother was faithful to her word, and I tasted the bitterness of soap a couple of times! I was quickly healed of, as mother put it, “a nasty mouth”!
The world is in need of some serious healing. The news media tells us there is no vaccine yet to prevent coronavirus, and people should stay home to limit exposure, wash hands often, and keep surfaces that we touch disinfected. This is good, common-sense advice we should be following all the time.
Common sense also tells us this great nation, and indeed, the world, needs to be cleansed. The last 20 years alone scream for a return to God, godly principles and godly values. What is it going to take for mankind to stop cussing?
Matthew 8:1-3: “When he had come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him. And behold, a leper came and worshiped him, saying, ‘Lord, if you are willing, You can make me clean.’ Then Jesus put out his hand and touched him saying, ‘I am willing; be cleansed.’ Immediately his leprosy was cleansed.”
The leper knew Jesus had the power to cleanse him from his disease. God is willing and has the power to cleanse this nation and the world as well. Sometimes, however, that cleansing can leave a bitter taste in the mouth. From experience I can say it will all be worth it in the end. Blessings to all.