Hi everyone. Well, 2020 is coming to an end. There’s been many challenges this year that came in different forms. With the challenges came changes.
When a storm comes, clouds form and the sky gets darker and darker. And then it hits. The length of a storm varies, but after the storm there is a freshness, a washing of sorts, of nature and civilization. Where once there was dirt, grime, and heaps of leaves, now there are flowers pushing their way through all that to reach up and bloom with an array of color and foliage. Even streets look brighter. They have been changed by a storm.
Through this storm may we be changed and emerge with a freshness, a renewed passion for the life we have been called to as children of God. He is speaking to us! I ask myself and each of you “are we listening?”
Christmas may be different this year, not large gatherings, but the meaning and the focus has not changed. Emmanuel, God With Us. Jesus left all of glory and came to be our Redeemer, giving us life eternal through his death, burial. and resurrection. We can REJOICE in that truth and celebrate our life in Him.
We love each one of you and wish you A Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year.
We really enjoyed our time together at the annual Ornament Swap! 2020 has been a rough year, but Jesus still sits on His throne! And today we celebrated our Savior! There was fun, encouragement, laughter, and even a few tears. And boy, oh boy, were there beautiful ornaments all up for grabs! Thank you, ladies, for joining us. We hope you left today with joy in your heart and were encouraged in your faith. Now go share those special invitations with someone who needs to hear the real reason for the season!
I feel like I don’t pray for my kids enough. Do you ever feel that way too? Sure, I pray for them for the everyday stuff, and believe me, there are A LOT of breath prayers throughout the day. You know, the ones where you need to have a moment with Jesus before you lose it? And I pray for their safety and protection.
But sometimes I feel like I am missing out on the big, meaty prayers. Do I pray enough of those for them? The prayers that have the possibility of literally changing their world. But I have come to realize my BIGGEST prayer for them covers ALL the other big areas that I worry about for them.
My biggest prayer for them is that they will really know Jesus – that they will have a vibrant, active, living relationship with the One and Only Savior of the world. And that, my friends, covers ALL the others. If they have Jesus, they will have strength beyond measure. His strength. Even when they face the trials in this life, He will be their strength as they make their way through the storm.
But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one. 2 Thessalonians 3:3
If they have Jesus, they will have love and compassion for others. His love. His compassion. They will be a beacon of light to a lost and dying world.
Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Philippians 2:1-2
If they have Jesus, His love will overflow out of them to others. They will want to tell others about what He has done for them.
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 1 Peter 2:9
If they have Jesus, they will know how much they are worth. Worth dying for. They will read God’s Word and know just how loved and valuable they are to their Father.
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
If they have Jesus, they will work as unto the Lord. They will be excellent and responsible employees. They will be a committed spouse. They will be one day be a hard-working parent raising Godly children.
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. Colossians 3:23-24
The list goes on and on. If they have Jesus, everything else just falls into place. How I pray for that for them! He is all we need.
You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on a stand and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16 NIV
In this passage are hidden jewels. First, it says we are the light of the world. Not that we might be but that we are the light. As a disciple or follower of Jesus we are light in a dark world. We are that city on a hill. Our actions and words should always point others to Jesus. Second, the life we have received through Jesus is to shine outwardly so others can see our good deeds and praise our Father in heaven.
Sometimes our lights burn brightly and at times they may be dim. They burn the brightest when we stay connected to the source. We are different from the world and we have what they need. People need Jesus. They are searching and wanting something they cannot find in the darkness of this world. Light dispels darkness! By sharing Jesus, we share light and hope.
HOPE. It is something we all want and need…yet so many don’t have it. I was counted among that number. I want to simply share how I have hope. Maybe right now you can relate. My life had ups and downs – things happened I just did not understand. Hurts, loss and disappointment. Even now things happen I don’t understand but I have hope. How? Through the love of the Cross. God reached down through His Son and told me, “I love you” and offered me life in Him. I came to realize things I did were wrong in God’s eyes and I needed Him. No matter how much wrong I had done He would welcome me just as I was into His family. That alone was mind blowing. I accepted God’s offer of love and forgiveness and now, even though things occur I don’t understand, I have hope and His Name is JESUS. Maybe you have questions. Maybe you want to know more. Please call 803-359-2681 and ask for Pastor Jeff, Pastor Mike or Pastor Matt. #hope
We had such a great time at our 2020 Ladies’ Brunch! Mrs. Jean Padgett shared a powerful message to us about cleaning all of the “junk” out of our attic (our spiritual attic!). And the food and fellowship were simply the best. Thank you to everyone who joined us.
You know everyone makes a big deal over the super bowl. Well the game of life is not once a year but each day. I want to give a shout out to all parents who are everyday trying to instill values into the lives of their children. It can be overwhelming at times and those who are single parents feel that even more. You start with a foundation and then you build on it everyday in some way that encourages them to respect others and themselves.
Building core life values ensuring the foundation is strong. Let’s face it we all need help to navigate this parenting race and take care of this wonderful new and precious life that has been entrusted to us.
Those parents who have a personal relationship with Jesus have Him in their corner and they can call on Him anytime and look to Him for guidance and wisdom and discernment. It is not easy. The world throws everything it can at them and you as you desire to bring them up in the right way. It takes perseverance and courage to stand against all the shouts of the world. You have one of the hardest and most rewarding positions.
On those days when you feel battle worn remember you can stand on truth and against evil and they will learn and stand also. Will there be times in your parenting that you get it wrong? Yes, but with God’s grace and strength you can stay the course and run the race. You are super stars!