yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall exalt you." -James
March 21, 2017
you’ve heard the story of a good citizen who was being tailgated by
a stressed-out woman on a busy street. Suddenly, the light at the
intersection just in front of them turned yellow. The good citizen did
the right thing by stopping at the crosswalk – even though he could
have beaten the red light by gunning it.
tailgating woman hit the roof – and her horn. She was screaming in
frustration because she had missed her chance to get through the
intersection. As she was still in mid-rant – alternately pounding
the steering wheel and making an ugly hand gesture to the fellow in
front of her – she heard a tap on her window and looked up into the
face of a very serious police officer.
officer ordered her to exit her car with hands up. He put handcuffs on
her. He took her to the police station, where she was searched,
fingerprinted, photographed, and placed in a holding cell. After a
couple of hours, a police captain approached the cell and opened the
woman was escorted back to the booking desk where the arresting
officer was waiting with her personal effects. He said, “I’m very
sorry for my mistake. You see, I pulled up behind your car while you
were blowing your horn, flipping off the guy in front of you, and
cursing a blue streak. Then I noticed the ‘Choose Life’ license
plate holder, the ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ bumper sticker, the
‘Follow Me to Sunday School’ bumper sticker, and the chrome-plated
Christian fish emblem on the trunk. Naturally, I assumed you had
stolen the car.”
Somewhere through the centuries, an idea has gained currency that says
we can be Christians in the same way most people are Democrats and
Republicans, Rotarians and Lions Club members. We show up for
meetings, pay our dues, and wear the insignia. For the most part,
however, it is acceptable to be “just like everybody else.”
We’re devout Christians on Sunday, but we curse or cheat or tell
racist jokes the other six and a half days of the week.
have so institutionalized the Christian faith that church
membership has come to count for conversion!
isn’t just Vito Corleone of “Godfather” fame who could live as a
criminal so long as he attended Mass and gave gifts to his church.
our faith is anything more than self-delusion, it must inform our
lives in all the routine and ordinary events of life. Even at traffic
look forward to seeing you Sunday with a Bible, a smile, and a
positive word! RA
Will of God
we study the “will of God” we find several contrasting
Some view the will of God as domination.
This would assert that God is in complete control and
totally manages all events in our lives. Humans are little more than puppets, with every action
predetermined by God’s governance.
Some view the will of God as “hands off.”
God has started everything in motion and is now just
watching it unfold. This
allows little or nothing to occur providentially.
Some view the will of God as a
legislative code. God
has given us guidelines for life.
If we disobey those laws, He takes action.
Bible examples would be the consequences for the
Israelites after worshipping the golden calf.
Likewise, Ananias and Sapphira were struck dead when they
“lied to the Holy Spirit.”
Seems to me that a better view
of “God’s will” would be to see it as a journey of faith.
Shouldn’t we take into account what the Scripture says
about transformation and growth?
Obviously, God has told us what
to do and how to live a life that pleases him.
Human beings, however, don’t follow those directions
completely. Jesus acknowledged that his own band of 12 would fall away,
but he restored them and motivated them to go forward in the
So God expects us to fail at
times, but promises to forgive and strengthen us when we do.
He has a plan. Jesus
fulfills that plan. God
has told us that His word is complete and it is our guide
through life. Jesus tells us that the Spirit, our comforter, will help us
at all times, both good and bad.
believe that God can act at any time in any way He wishes in our
daily lives. I
believe He does act in ways we may not recognize.
We can in no way understand totally how
God works. We
can know that He does work, though. Scripture
tells us over and over that God has our back if we’ll just
trust him. “He
has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’ So we
can confidently say, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not fear;
what can man do to me?”” (Hebrews 13:5).
we viewed the movie, Is Genesis History? I noticed that a
major point was made on presuppositions.
Our study and beliefs are biased by the paradigm we hold
to. I think the study of God’s will is like that.
I think we must believe that God is working in our lives
and hears our prayers and knows our hearts.
Without that belief it seems to me that prayer would be a
waste of time. That’s
my paradigm – I believe that He is active in our lives and His
word should guide our choices and actions.
next delivery to A.I.M. is planned for March 25. Please
continue to bring food items to help their
Southside Area Youth
sympathy of the congregation is extended to Chris and Shannon Greenwald as well
as Chris' family. His father, Gary Greenwald, passed March 9.
A memorial will be conducted later.
Friends at Cedar Grove
you very much for beautiful plant you sent to our dad's funeral.
Your thoughtfulness and generosity are very much appreciated.
and Ricky Wright
and Dennie Knight
Cedar Grove Family,
you very much for flowers you sent while I have been suffering with my
back. They really brightened by room! Thank you also to the many who
send cards and notes -- it is such a help to know someone is thinking
Cedar Grove Family,
you very much for all the cards, phone calls, prayers, and the beautiful
It is such a blessing to be a part of such a loving Christian
family! I love you all.
Cedar Grove Family
you very much for the concern you showed when my arm was broken.
We appreciate your prayers, calls and the meals you brought.
We give thanks for you all!
and Eddie Brown
you so much for the beautiful fruit basket!
I really enjoyed it and I appreciate your thinking of me.
Cedar Grove Family
past year has flown quickly – thank you for making it a positive year for
the Cedar Grove church and for the Kingdom.
Thank you for your continual encouragement and partnership.
Thank you especially for the gift that was presented to us recently.
We love and appreciate our church family!
Ross & Paula
Continue to remember Susan Carson, Stan
McBride, Linda Moore, Lanier Richards, Janice Smith, Keith Tatum and Jimmy
Bible Reading Schedule for