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Three Metaphors for Christian Service

As we prepare for our Vacation Bible School next week on the adventures of the Apostle Paul, we are struck by his example of humble service to the church. In his first letter to the Thessalonians, Paul uses three images to describe his attitude toward these believers he loved so much: a nursing mother, a hard-working servant, and an encouraging father. May we adopt this same attitude toward all those we serve in the Lord.

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Trust and Obey

During our open Sunday School this week, Brother Laurel Smalling shared this encouragement to the whole family to value obedience as a path to true happiness in the Lord.

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Two Mother's Day Messages

This Mother’s Day, Brother Richard Ledgister shared briefly on the prayer of Hannah, who cried out to the Lord in her desperation and was heard by Him. Then Brother Luke Harriman used the word TULIP to show the way the relationship with our mother can show us deep truths about our relationship with God, as both of them treasure, understand, love, instruct, and protect us.

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God's Rules are not Burdensome

For our open Sunday School today, we heard a message on the commandments of the Lord. While many may think God’s rules are meant to merely ruin our fun, the Lord gives us rules because he loves us and wants to keep us safe. Not only that, but he also gives us the help we need to fulfill those commands.

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Who Do You Say That I Am?

The most important question you will ever be asked is the one the Lord Jesus asked His disciples in Matthew 16. He took them to a region at the north of Israel called Caesarea Philippi—long a center of idolatry and false worship—to ask them, “Who do you say that I am?” And today, He is still asking. How would you respond?

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What Does the Resurrection Mean?

On this Resurrection Sunday, Brother Richard Ledgister ponders the meaning of the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead in the light of several of the Lord’s claims about Himself in the gospels. When Jesus was raised from the dead, all the powerful claims about Himself were confirmed and established by God the Father. Before the message, Ken and Carolyn Huebner shared the stirring song, “Hallelujah, Jesus Christ Is Risen.”

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We Love Because He First Loved Us

During a visit to South Florida, Sean Bristol shared a message from 1 Corinthians 13 — the “love chapter.” Inspired by the love the Lord Jesus has shown us, we are called to show sacrificial, other-directed love to those around us, both to our brethren in the Assembly and to the neighbors we come into contact with day by day.

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Lessons for Young & Old from the Prodigal Son

The story told by the Lord Jesus in Luke 15 of the loving father with two sons holds several lessons for us as we learn to walk in a way pleasing to our Heavenly Father. During his visit to South Florida, Brother Ruell Clarke shared from this story during our monthly Open Sunday School.

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Give Careful Thought to Your Ways

The prophet Haggai warned his Israelite hearers of the dangers of putting anything above the Lord as priority in our life. As pointed out in this message, even good things can become idols when they are mistaken for the primary thing. May we “consider our ways” carefully to discern whether anything or anyone else in our life is taking God’s place as preeminent.

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You Must Be Born Again

In John 3, we see three “musts”: the “must” of the sinner, “You must be born again”; the “must of the Savior, “so must the Son of Man be lifted up”; and the “must” of the servant, “He must increase, and I must decrease.” In this message, Brother Richard Ledgister focuses on the “must” of the sinner as he draws several parallels and differences between our physical birth and our spiritual birth.

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Revive Us Again

As we anticipate our time of prayer and fasting this weekend, Brother Viv John offers this encouraging message about the need we have for revival in our lives, our homes, and our churches. God can truly bring new life to seemingly hopeless situations.

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Have No Fear

As we see the Lord encourage His closest followers in John 14 to have no fear in the face of their many challenges, we who are in Christ can similarly take courage when we face decisions about the future. The example of Joshua’s charge in Joshua 1:9 can inspire us to boldly trust the Lord in the midst of fearful circumstances.

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Rise and Walk

During a visit to South Florida, Brother John Pickering shared an encouraging message from John 5 for our monthly family fellowship hour, challenging us all—young and old alike—to walk in a manner worthy of the calling we have received. Before the message, Brother Laurel Smalling sung a convicting song about taking the Lord’s name in vain.

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Do Not Fear: Thoughts on Isaiah 43

What comfort we find when we remember that the Lord is with us in the midst of the trials we pass through. Though we pass through the water or the fire, we will not be consumed. Anyone who is struggling or longing for comfort can find it in God, as seen in this message and song.

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God Desires Mercy Rather than Sacrifice

Two messages were given on the Lord’s Day that mutually reinforced each other: the first walks us through the Samaritan’s godly response of mercy to his neighbor in need (Luke 10), while the second emphasized the theme throughout Scripture that the Lord desires our merciful obedience and love above any sacrifice we might bring. As Keith Green put it years ago, “To obey is better than sacrifice / I want hearts of fire, not your prayers of ice.”

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Insensitivity to Hannah's Sorrow

The troubling relationships portrayed in the first chapter of 1 Samuel among Hannah, her husband, and his other wife Peninnah can show us the harm that comes when we are insensitive to our brothers’ and sisters’ sorrow. It is truly comforting to know that the Lord is always near to the brokenhearted.

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Mephibosheth and Our Great God

The story of Mephibosheth reveals a lot about how amazing the grace of God. This message is from the first of our First-Sunday Family Hours, in which we hope to keep everyone together during the Sunday School hour. So enjoy the lively participation from our Sunday School children!

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A Holy Priesthood

While visiting South Florida from his home in Charlotte, North Carolina, Brother Joe Deviny shared this challenging message on what it means to say that all believers are a part of a “holy priesthood” (1 Pet. 2:5).

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Thankfulness in/for All Things

Sometimes we forget to give God thanks even for the blessings in our lives. But how much more challenging it is to thank God in the midst of our most trying circumstances! These two messages share several scriptural calls to God-honoring gratitude as well as discussing some obstacles we might have to giving thanks.

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New Beginnings

As we enter the new year, Brother Viv John encourages us to feed on the Lamb and on the Bread by considering the Passover feast and the Lord’s feeding of the 5000 as a challenge to find all our sustenance in Christ.

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