Trinity Presbyterian Church

Be the love of Jesus!

Being Children of God

Being children of God is amazing! Just the thought of being a child of God is often made to seem as though it’s no big deal. In times of disagreement or conflict, people who want to be generous and inclusive may say, “After all, we’re all children of God.” So often it is assumed that if you are a human being you are automatically a child of God. But, when you really think it through, if that were the case, the concept “child of God” wouldn’t add anything to being human. The idea of being a child of God in itself is a radical thought.

In the New Testament we encounter the phrase “children of God” and we must understand it’s not just another expression for “human being.” “See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are.” (I John 3:1) There is a note of amazement there: Imagine that! — you and I — children of God! God is the creator of the universe, and we are mortal and fallible creatures. How is it possible that we should be in that kind of relationship with God Almighty?

It all begins with each of us accepting Christ into our hearts and lives. How about you? Are you a true child of God?

Come and Drink

We are currently right in the middle of the Lenten Season. It is a season for us to still ourselves and to listen more closely to the voice of the Spirit speaking to our hearts so that we might draw closer of Jesus.

I have a question for you–How thirsty are you? In Isaiah 55:1-9, we are encourage to come and drink deeply of that which the Lord provides for us. In Psalm 42 we have the picture of a deer panting for water and the psalmist crying out that as the deer thirsts, so his soul thirsts after God. How about you? Do you thirst after the things of God? Do you desire to draw closer, to have a more intimate relationship with the Savior?

It is so vital that each and every one of us would during this season of Lent examine our “thirst” and to see what we are really thirsty for.

I would encourage you to seek the Lord while He is near, draw near to Him for your own spiritual sake.

Be blessed this special season that reminds us once again of the love of the Savior for each of us.

Grace–God’s Unmerited Favor

In a book by Ted Loder called Guerrillas of Grace is found this prayer: “Eternal One, Silence, from whom my words come: Questioner, from whom my questions arise; Lover, of whom all my loves are hints; Disturber, in whom alone I find my rest; Mystery, in whose depths I find healing and myself; Enfold me now in Your presence; restore to me Your peace; renew me through Your power; and ground me in Your grace.”

“Ground me in Your grace”, a powerful concept so deeply needed in our hectic and often troubling world. Grace, is a word that brings about a mental picture of perhaps a ballerina moving softly across the floor, or the slow melodic movement of a swan upon the calm lake waters. “Grace” is the prayer said at the table before sharing a meal or the professional ice skater flowing across the ice in a rhythmic routine.

The late Bible scholar Donald Barnhouse described grace this way: “Love that goes upward is worship; love that goes outward is affection; love that stoops is grace.” This God given grace, according to Ephesians 1:8 has been lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding. It is only because we have redemption through the shed blood of Jesus Christ that we receive the riches of God’s grace—His unmerited favor. It is nothing neither you nor I are able to earn on our own. Grace is the free gift of God to our lives.

We invite you every Sunday to worship with us at Trinity at 10:30 and experience together this wonderful gift of God, called GRACE—God’s Unmerited Favor At Christ’s Expense.

Are You Listening?

My all-time favorite movie is August Rush. It is the story of a young boy, who through a series of events grows up in an orphanage. As August grows he becomes a music prodigy. August hears music in everything…the rustling of the grass, the birds song, the train on the track, the chimes in the wind…everything has its own rhythm. How often do we really hear what is going around us. We can get so used to the “noise” of our everyday lives that we don’t always hear what we should. We are pulled this way and that way, we are told to do this or that, we are told to buy this, don’t buy that.
Even so in our spiritual lives. Noise—noise—noise. In the spiritual realm we can hear all different kinds of voices…some true, others not so much. In Philippians 3:10 the Apostle Paul lets out a hearts cry…THAT I MAY KNOW HIM—to really know Jesus in his power, his resurrection…to be like Jesus. This is a determination of the heart. I John 2:6 says that “whoever claims to live in Christ must also walk as Jesus did.” Wow! God’s plan for each of us is nothing short of a new heart that is sensitive to spiritual things resulting in transformation in our lives.
But there is a song we need to hear…it is the music of heaven. Are you listening?

Weekly Newspaper Article May 3

There is an old proverb that says, “Blessed are those who aim at nothing for verily they shall hit it!” In your life what are you aiming at? A successful career, a large bank account, a loving marriage, the ability to maintain health and happiness, or perhaps a stronger relationship with God?
If we want our goals in life to fit together, there is a need for an ultimate purpose to help. In the weeks to come, I will be writing these articles with an emphasis on what it means to have the Holy Spirit leading in our lives. Between Easter and Pentecost Sunday, Jesus told the disciples to wait for the Spirit to come and fill their lives. The Spirit would bring an assurance and power into their lives that nothing else could do. Who is the Holy Spirit and what difference does the Spirit make in our lives?
2nd Corinthians 3:18 says that we are being “transformed.” It is the work of the Spirit to create in each of us God’s design for our lives. The Holy Spirit is the source of all spiritual blessing! Apart from the Holy Spirit, it is impossible to experience a close friendship with God or become the person He intends for you to be—no matter how young or old you are!

Sermon: Let There Be Light

Let There Be Light
Sermon by Pastor Peggy on December 4, 2016

Walking with GOD

As I sit in my office today and look out the window the fog is so thick I can barely see across the parking lot. It triggered a few thoughts that I wanted to share today…especially in the light of this being Advent and a time of searching and waiting. For many, this is a time when emotions are like the fog they see out the window. Perhaps a loved one died this year and its the first holiday since they are gone. The loneliness and grief is palpable. Perhaps someone has been hurt in one way or another and is finding it difficult to find that place of release through forgiveness. The scenarios could go on and on–but the reality is that not everyone during this time of year is Ho! Ho! Ho!

But what does this season really bring to us? This past Sunday we lit the candle of light. Light shatters darkness. Light brings hope and a sense of comfort. But the true Light that has come into the world, Jesus, came that each and every one of us might find life in Him. But there is something very unique about light…even if you cover it up and try to not see it or let it illumine the darkness inside you or around you…the light still remains light. Darkness cannot extinguish it. Eventually the light will penetrate through the seeming darkness and begin to bring love to the lonely heart, encouragement to the discouraged heart, bring joy to the downtrodden heart, comfort to the grieving heart, and courage to the fearful heart.

Walking with God is a day by day endeavor. Yes, there are times in our lives when it seems life has given us a piece of coal…but you can even take that piece of coal and make heat to warm yourself with. When we have a relationship with Jesus, we learn through the experiences of our lives that no matter the situation, the Lord brings us through.

Christmas is a time to remember fresh again that his name is Immanuel–God WITH us–not God against us, or God ignoring us, or God where are you? He is WITH us…through every stage and moment of life.

Sowing and Reaping

The Living Bible says it like this…
Galatians 6:7 Don’t be misled; remember that you can’t ignore God and get away with it: a man will always reap just the kind of crop he sows!
The principle of sowing and reaping is seen throughout God’s Word. It is a spiritual law that can’t be negated. The Scripture says it so simply; a person will always reap just the kind of crop he/she sows. The analogy Paul uses is that of spiritual sowing being compared to sowing seed for a crop. This is not so hard for farmers or gardeners to understand. In the natural you know that if you sow corn you are not going to get pumpkins. This is a biblical concept that we need to consider in every aspect of our lives…not only our personal lives, but those of your family, your work, and here at the church.

Sowing in the Spiritual Realm:
Jesus addresses this idea in Matthew 13:18-23. The Parable of the Sower–18 “Hear then the parable of the sower: 19 When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path. 20 As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy, 21 yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away.[b] 22 As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. 23 As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.”

In Matthew Jesus is talking about having the right kind of soil prepared in your life so that when seeds are sown into it…it is ready to receive that seed and grow. We are responsible for the soil of our lives and how the seed is received and planted into our lives.
Jesus speaks of 4 different kinds of soils:
1. The hardened path—hears the message, doesn’t understand and Satan comes and snatches the seed away.
2. Rocky places—hears the word, receives it with joy, but doesn’t have any root and falls away.
3. Thorny soil—hears the word (receives the seed) but due to the worries of life and other circumstances of life it gets choked and is unfruitful.
4. Good soil—this is the soil of our life that has been tilled and worked in such a way that the rock, are removed, the soil is softened, and the weeds or thorns are removed. This is then becomes a life that is producing fruit.
Soil preparation is crucial! Your heart, which is the place God plants the spiritual seeds of your life must be continually “worked” in order to produce the fruit in your life that God would desire.
In the natural realm it is easy, you take some type of seed and you dig a hole in the ground and place the seed in the hole at a predetermined depth. You also have to water it and so on; however, the seed itself does the work. Because there is life already in the seed, the seed germinates and grows into the type of plant that produced the seed in the first place.
We see this law being put into place by God in the very first chapter of Genesis.
Genesis 1:11-12– Then God said, “Let the land sprout with vegetation—every sort of seed-bearing plant, and trees that grow seed-bearing fruit. These seeds will then produce the kinds of plants and trees from which they came.” And that is what happened. 12 The land produced vegetation—all sorts of seed-bearing plants, and trees with seed-bearing fruit. Their seeds produced plants and trees of the same kind. And God saw that it was good.
God designed the varied plants to produce after their own kind, and He declared that the seed would be in itself. In other words, the plant would produce the seed that would in turn produce another plant and so on forever. The seed has a specific purpose; to reproduce according to the life that God placed in it.
The purpose of planting seed is to reproduce the parent plant. Farmers practice this on a large scale and gardeners do it on a smaller scale. You harvest what you have planted. You sow for the specific purpose of harvesting. You don’t sow because you have nothing better to do. When harvest time comes and it will, you reap the harvest. If you didn’t want a harvest you wouldn’t have sown in the first place, would you? If we want a spiritual harvest we have to sow to spiritual things.
Timing is Crucial in Sowing and Reaping:
Ecclesiastes 3:1-2 says, “there is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot…”
There is a time to sow. You would not sow certain types of seed in the middle of the winter, as they are summer crops, and you would not plant winter crops in the heat of the summer. The temperature of the soil is vital to the germination and growth of the seed into a mature plant. God has a time for spiritual sowing as well.
God leads at certain times to sow into the areas that are needed for growth. He wants you to sow your seed at a very specific time. The spiritual temperature will be just right for that seed to germinate and grow into a mature plant. The mature plant is the plant that produces the harvest. An immature plant might start to produce but then not yield a crop because it is not capable or mature enough to do so.
If you plant your seed at the wrong time, you cannot expect the seed to germinate properly, and grow, and mature, and produce a crop. We sow seed for the purpose of reaping.
We have to follow God’s leading and do what God wants us to do in God’s timing. Knowing when to plant is just as important as knowing what and where to plant. It is crucial to reaping the full harvest. Solomon talks about the timing of God in all things that God has put in our hand to do.
Ephesians 2:10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
God planned way in advance that we should fulfill His purpose. We have to look to God’s leading and work in God’s timing if we are going to fulfill His perfect will here on the Earth. God knows what we are supposed to do and when we are supposed to do it. It is our obligation to get before Him and get instruction in these matters. He promises by His Word that the Holy Spirit will lead us and guide us into all truth. He will guide us into the perfect will of God if we will humble ourselves before Him and get His instructions.
Genesis 8:22 “While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and winter and summer, and day and night shall not cease.”
God has ordained a time to sow. He is not going to do the work of sowing for us.
Example: I refer again to the Olympics. Our athletes had to work (sow) seeds of building muscle, coordination, courage and so forth in order to compete at this high level. Someone who had never been on a balance beam is not going to win the gold!
God has created us in such a way and loves us so much that He has given us the seed so that we can sow and receive the fruit of righteousness. He wants us to be blessed, and to be a blessing to others as well. We cannot reap a harvest if we have not sown. We cannot be a blessing to others if we don’t reap a harvest, or if we take the seed God has supplied to us for sowing and use it on our own wants. God has promised us the seed to sow and it is our responsibility to do the sowing at the proper time and let the seed do its job so that we in due course may reap the harvest.
2 Corinthians 9:10-13 Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness, while you are enriched in everything for all liberality, which causes thanksgiving through us to God.
God has ordained this method for the purpose of blessing His children.
Another thing to consider is the quantity of seed that you sow.
We know that if God supplies the seed, then the seed itself is good, so we must sow what he has given us. The more we sow the more we harvest. The less we sow the less we harvest. But there are also other seeds out there…bitterness, anger, deceit, lying, selfishness…these are also seeds that if allowed to be planted and grow in us will choke out the life of God in us.
2 Cor: 9:6: But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.
Begin to take the seed God has provided and sow it. If you truly want a harvest in your life, then start sowing. This is the way God’s spiritual laws works. He wants us to be abundantly blessed. Not just a little but more than we can handle. That is just the way God is. So when you sow, get ready to harvest. Then you will have more seed to sow and plenty for your own needs and help supply to the needs of others as well.
Luke 6:38 “Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.”
Sowing into Every Aspect of Our Lives:
There is not a single area in our lives that the law of sowing and reaping does not affect.
We have choices on the seeds we are or are not only going to plant into our own lives, but we also have control of the seeds others plant into our lives as well.
If you are going to plant a garden, you are going to choose what you want in that garden. If someone comes by and sees you planting your garden and says to you, I have some seeds you can have…and you take them without really seeing what they are…they could be weeds that would be planted instead of good seeds. We have to take responsibility in our lives for the seeds we plant and receive into our lives.
Take this Word to heart and meditate on these truths, and ask the Holy Spirit to speak to you concerning His law of sowing and reaping.
Remember what the Apostle Paul said in the book of Galatians…
Gal:6:9: And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.
Keep doing what God’s Word says to do and know the harvest is coming. We have God’s Word to stand on. It will never fail to produce what it was sent to do. Just as the seed bearing plants will produce after their kind, the seed God gives us to sow will produce after its own kind.
I keep preaching…be the love of Jesus. That is powerful seed to plant in the lives of those we encounter in this community!

God’s Love is Enough

Freedom, a word that so often we take for granted. The freedom our Founding Fathers believed in was not only freedom as a nation, but freedom as believers in our Creator. All 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence were church-going gentleman. But there is a greater freedom, the freedom in our souls of knowing Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Savior.
The world today can be a very scary place if you do not have an assurance of the care and peace that come from knowing Jesus. Jesus said in John 16:33, “…here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” The love of Christ in our lives sustains us in the turmoil of life. Jesus also said in John 14:27 that he was leaving us a gift—the gift of peace of mind and heart. Having Jesus in your life helps you gain a perspective of hope and peace despite the difficulties life can often bring.

Burdened? Tearful? Sad? Stressed? Grieving? Disillusioned? Angry? So many different emotions can run through our hearts and minds. We can look at today’s world and wonder how it is all going to get fixed. How do we live our lives in such away as to promote love and mercy in this world and not hate toward those who seem different than you or I?

There is only one answer–the love of God. God’s love is powerful enough to break down any barriers that would divide us. God’s love is gentle enough to cradle a broken heart until it is healed. God’s love is wise enough to help us make life decisions that matter. God’s love is sweet enough to feed the hungry soul and satisfy it with good things. God’s love is enough to mend a broken marriage. God’s love is enough to help us find a better way to communicate with one another. God’s love is available to ALL who would open their hearts to receive him. God’s love restores hope!

John 3: 16-17: “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.”

We are in this life together–not apart! We need each other to love, to encourage, to support at all times.

At Trinity Presbyterian our goal is to be the love of Jesus to our community and to one another! Won’t you join us in this walk of love!

God’s Grace

Recently I was reading a prayer written by Ted Loder which said, “ground me in your grace.” This is a powerful concept so deeply needed in our hectic and often troubling world. But what exactly is “grace” and how do I respond to it in a way that affects my life? Grace is a word that brings a mental picture of a ballerina moving softly across the floor, or the slow melodic movement of a swan on calm waters. “Grace” is the prayer said before sharing a meal or the professional ice skater flowing across the ice.
Donald Barnhouse says, “Love that goes upward is worship; love that goes outward is affection; love that stoops is grace.” In other words, to express grace is to extend favor or kindness to one who doesn’t deserve it and can never earn it. I have a favorite acrostic for the letters of grace: God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.
God shows his grace toward us, not because we deserve it, but because he remains true to his promise to be merciful and to love those who belong to him. This grace has been lavished on us through Christ. Grace is the free gift of God to our lives. For further insight into grace read Hebrews 4:16, 1 Corinthians 1:4-9 or Philippians 2:3-11.
Join us this week for our Fellowship Breakfast at 8:00 on Tuesday and our Fun & Game night on Friday beginning at 5:30. Our Sunday School is at 9:00am and worship begins at 10:30.
Be the love of Jesus!

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