Steadfast and Willing, Pastor Doug’s Newsletter

LFF Screen ShotPastor Doug’s newsletter for June 26, 2013 can be read below. His daily word of encouragement can be read by connecting with him on his Facebook page.

Dear Friends,

I am sensing a lot of Christ followers today, weary and troubled with many things. Things like the state of the economy, or what is happening in our nation as a whole, the world situation or generally with what we might be facing personally with our health and getting older.

Now that’s a happy thought in light of what happened to me yesterday, “my son and his family were with us for a few days, his second son Andrew (5 yrs old) was playing with me after lunch and all of a sudden got a big kick out of grabbing one of my three chins, and wiggling it. He started laughing and shaking it harder, and; harder much to the rest of the families hilarity. Getting older, there is a little more flab than there used to be, you know what I mean. Even my wife laughed harder than I have seen her do in decades………Back to the serious things…..

Read with me a great prayer from Psalm 51:10-12 that is so good to present before the Lord, “Create in me a clean heart O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me away from Thy presence, and do not take Thy Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of Thy salvation, and sustain me with a willing spirit.”

Friends, what I have learned along the way is that our view of our salvation will determine our stability and motives for living each day. I am so grateful, that for all eternity, the Christ follower will be in glory, but knowing that His deliverance is each and every day that we are here on earth is so crucial to each of us as well. 2 Corinthians 3:18 tells us from glory (the moment we accepted Christ as our Savior) to glory (the moment we go home to be with Him in Heaven), He is changing us! His Hand is upon us, He will never leave or forsake us, He dwells within us, He is our joy and hope, a very present help in times of trouble etc…etc….with His present and future promises that are richly ours.

What do these promises and truths do for us? Well friends, a right focus on these, produce a steadfast, secure, holy walk and a willing spirit to “keep on keeping on” for His glory until He calls us home to heaven.

It is a joy to know Christ and to make Him known through our life and witness! Have a great day friends!

Yours for His glory,

Doug

Pastor Doug’s Newsletter, June 19, 2013

LFF Screen ShotDear Friends,

Have you ever heard this little voice in your head saying things like: “your worthless, your no good, you’ll never amount to anything,” or, “I can’t believe you would do such a thing and you call yourself a Christian,” or, “you can’t be really saved, your not good enough,” or, “you didn’t accept Christ right, there’s something more you have to do, your not saved.” I could go on and on with statements like these and other accusations that Christ followers face.

Christian friends, understanding where these come from and what we are to do with these accusations are so vital in our walk of stability and significance, that walk of victory that Christ wants us to have each and every day.

Revelations 12:10 says, “Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, he who accuses them before our God day and night.” As we learn in reading Job, Satan has access into the very presence of God as the accuser of Christ followers, he is one that brings a charge against each of us before God of one sort or another.

The greatness of being a Christ follower, is that not only do we have an accuser, but we have an advocate, that defense attorney before God’s throne as well. When the accuser comes and mocks us for this or that, our Advocate, Jesus Christ the Righteous, merely says, “under the blood.” 1 John 2:1 says, “My little children, I am writing these things to you that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.” How powerful and great is that!!!!!

So, what are we to do when we hear that little voice, accusing, mocking, ridiculing, condemning us as Christ followers? I love the truth found in James 4:7, which teaches us to “Submit to God, resist the devil and he will flee from you.” I have found first and foremost, if there is sin in my life, get it confessed and repented of. Secondly if there is no sin and only the accusations are there, I smile both on the inside and outside because Christ has already defeated sin on the cross and I am forgiven and accepted as His child by grace through faith in Him. Nothing can take that away because it is dependent on the All Powerful One, Christ the Lord and His finished work that Good Friday & Resurrection Sunday long ago! So, I just quote a text of scripture, “oh my,” is that powerful!

See the accuser can mock and go after us all day long but he cannot stand against the very Word of God, so don’t give into those accusations ever, never!!! I love texts like 1 Chronicles 29:11,12, or Psalm 91:1-3 when accused friends, until I memorized them I wrote them on a 3 by 5 card and kept it with me. You will never know when the accusations will hit you so being wise and prepared is so vital!.

Have a great day friends! What a thrill to be a Christ worshiper with you,

Yours for His glory,

Doug

Vacation Bible School, 2013

Pastor Doug’s Newsletter, June 12, 2013

LFF Screen ShotPastor Doug’s weekly newsletter for June 12, 2013, “Expectations“, can be downloaded here, or read below. His newsletter can be received via email by contacting him a dgshada@gmail.com. His daily word of encouragement can be read each day by connecting him on his Facebook page. Please join us for worship each Sunday at 10:00 a.m., at the Merryman Performing Arts Center.

Dear Friends,

Have you ever been caught in a situation where someone you “expected” something from did not come through? How did it make you feel? Anxious, frustrated, uptight, sometimes “mad,” etc. etc……

Expectation is defined as “a strong belief that something will happen or be the case in the future.” The problem with “expectations” is that they are dependent upon humans who are imperfect, frail and in-complete beings.

I know I try and do all that I can to follow through with what I said I would do to not let anyone down, but there are times when we fail others. We can never quite meet the expectations they have placed on us.

What’s a Christ follower to do? I believe my wife has said it best when she said in front of a couples group that she “quit expecting things and then was not disappointed.” (I think she was talking about expecting things from me and I had missed some things, oops)

Friends, the only ones we can control is self, making sure we follow through on that which we have committed to in an appropriate time and manner with the highest motive possible of honoring God. Don’t let others or even circumstances that you “expected” better from, control your attitude and speech. Instead fix your hope on the One True and Living God who will never fail us or turn His back on us. All that He has promised will come to fruition in His perfect time (maybe not as soon as we want, but it will be His perfect time, for His glory. That’s good enough for me!

Represent Him in each facet of your being with eyes fixed on Him (Col. 3:1-2, Heb. 12:2) understanding, “this side of Heaven we will still struggle and even fail at times, but His love for us never changes, His forgiveness is always there and glory is coming.”

Now that’s an expectation I look forward to that will not fail!

Have a great day friends,

Doug