What Is Edification?

[300 words] “Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification” (Romans 14:19). Edification is not a word we use in everyday life. We don’t hear or read about it in the news. It’s not usually found on any TV drama or comedy. However, the Bible urges us…

Bless You!

[271 words] Blessed are you when you come to worship, even when you are not feeling the best in the world – your dedication is helping to inspire many in this congregation. Blessed are you when you leave your contribution, even when you cannot physically be here – you have helped this church to meet…

How To Make Sermons Last

[272 words] A preacher posted recently that someone had commented to him, “sermons are ineffective because they are forgotten by the time people get to the restaurant after church.” This statement concerned me because I feel the person who suggested this idea to the preacher put preachers in a negative light (probably not intentionally). I,…

Securing Their Hearts

[387 words] How shall the young secure their hearts and guard their lives from sin? Thy Word, the choicest rules impart to keep the conscience clean! Where in the world can young people learn what is holy and pure and right? The words of that old song clearly and lovingly convey the solitary truth that…

Family in the Faith

[328 words] Throughout Paul’s missionary journeys recorded in the book of Acts, he interacts with a number of young men who variously traveled with him, ran errands for him, and continued the work in a congregation begun by him. However, while the text mentions a few of these younger preachers, the relationship Paul had with…

Masquerade

[268 words] Some years ago, the singer George Benson had a hit song called “This Masquerade” (1976). I always thought the song was okay, but never smitten by it. The other day I heard it again for the first time. “Are we really happy here with this lonely game we play?” These are the words…

Do You Evangelize and Edify?

[220 words] “But Peter and John answered them, ‘Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge, for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard’” (Acts 4:19-20). On the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit was poured out on those…

Do You Edify?

[217 words] “…teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you…” (Matthew 28:20). Known as the Great Commission, this passage at the end of Matthew is often used, and rightly so, to speak about our core value of evangelism. We understand that the implication to seek and to save the lost is for us…

Bridging Gaps

[353 words] One blade of grass at a time. That’s how the last remaining Inca rope bridge is rebuilt every year. The Q’eswachaka bridge spans the Apurimac river in the Cusco region of Peru. For 600 years, communities from both sides of the bridge have been assembling to cut down the old bridge and rebuild…

It is NOT ‘Just a Church’

[575 words] Jesus promised to do something never before done on earth: He would build His Church upon the great truth that He is the Christ, the Son of the Living God! “And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock l will build My church, and the gates of…

Me, or We?

[458 words] The story is told of an encounter between a high school principal and a young ninth grader. The principal noticed the young man in the hallway with a very defeated and frustrated look on his face. He asked the young man, “Is everything okay?” The boy replied sternly, “No. I don’t understand all…

Let God Send You

[442 words] When we think of the great apostle Paul, we think of a rugged warrior for Christ – a courageous, daring, fearless man who laughed in the face of danger. After all, he was the man who got up and walked back into the town where folks had stoned him, drug him out of…

Affirmation

[379 words] Humans need it. We want others to give it freely, not grudgingly. We want it to come without prompting and we would love for it to happen on a regular basis. However, most of us are of such disposition we do not need it every day or, for that matter, every week, But…

Encouragers in the New Testament

[59 words] Barnabas – “he was glad and encouraged them all” (Acts 11:23) Silas – “encouraged and strengthened the brothers” (Acts 15:32) Paul – “encouraged them with many words” (Acts 20:2) Tychicus – “that he may encourage your hearts” (Col. 4:8) Timothy – “to…encourage you concerning your faith” (1 Thess. 3:2) Us – “Therefore, encourage…

Before You Honk

[228 words] A woman was having difficulty getting her car started after it stalled in traffic. The gentleman(?) in the car behind her insisted on expressing his impatience by blowing his horn every few seconds. Finally, worn out by his thoughtlessness, she walked back to his car and said, ”I’m having some difficulty getting my…

Jump Start!

[361 words] Recently I was shopping at our local dollar store and there was a young woman and her two very young daughters in the store. They were traveling and their car had broken down in the parking lot. It was very cold and I went out to have a look. It seemed her battery…

Encourage Someone Today!

[179 words] You know that feeling when you get something in the mail? It’s so exciting! I can remember getting things in the mail when I was growing up and not even being able to wait until I got inside to open it because I was so excited! My mom is probably the best mail…

You Preach First

  [183 words] The first sermon preached each Sunday is not by the minister, but by you. You preach a message about the importance of the Scriptures when you bring your Bible. You preach a message of good cheer when you say “Good morning!” to those you meet when you park your car and when…

Refreshing the Hearts of the Saints

  [151 words] One of my all-time favorite passages of scripture is found in Philemon 7. There, the apostle Paul commended Philemon “because the hearts of the Saints have been refreshed through thee, brother.” Wouldn’t it be wonderful if that could honestly be said of every member of the church? Every Christian could be like…

It Doesn’t Take Much

  [88 words] Years ago a little girl handed me a piece of paper with a brief note scribbled on it. I don’t remember the girl’s name, but I remember the message: “To you from _______. I love you.”  It was simple. It was direct. And, it was appreciated. What does it take to brighten…

Take Advantage of What the Church Offers

[330 words] Recently, I dropped my son off at the building for an activity that will enhance his ability to develop a budget and be a better provider both financially and spiritually when he starts his family one day. I know our schedules create barriers from time to time and we can’t attend everything. However,…

It’s Best Said In What You Do

[190 words] There are times when we find those around us suffering. When a friend gets the call no one ever wants to get, the diagnosis comes back worse than expected, when tragedy strikes those around us. It can be a very helpless feeling to try and provide comfort to those is the midst of…

Stoke the Folk!

Have you ever just sat around a fire? It is incredibly therapeutic. A fire seems to bring out wonderful moments of reflection and conversation. Fires are beneficial in many ways with the heat, light, and mood it produces. God’s word is compared to a fire in Jeremiah 23:39. Like a fire it enlightens and penetrates.…

Touching Others!

[84 words] Jesus called people to Himself. He promised them rest for their weary souls. Most ignored His invitation. That problem still exists today. Why do so many choose to go it alone? This week, think of those you know who seem to be trying to go it alone. Give some of them a call.…

Greatest Family on Earth

“And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way” (Ephesians 1:22,23). Do we ever feel unfulfilled? Yes. Yet there is no need for this because Jesus can fill us with so…

A Caring Church

[290 words] The title phrase is one commonly heard when describing particular congregations. But what does it mean to be a caring church? Is this church a caring church? Let’s find out. A Caring Church is a Sharing Church. A caring church is thankful Christ has shared with them and thus is willing to share…

Opportunities and Connections

As a family will sit around a dinner table, they will grab hands to say the prayer for the meal. A connection is made in that brief moment that brings them closer together. Each holding a hand, grasped in union with each other and with God—the Father, Son, and Spirit. As a family, they know…

Encouraging Words! 

A group of frogs were traveling through the woods, and two of them fell into a deep pit. All the other frogs gathered around the pit. When they saw how deep the pit was, they told the unfortunate frogs they would never get out. The two frogs ignored the comments and tried to jump up…

A Good Word

Mark Twain once said, “I can live for two months on one good compliment.” We all know what he meant by that. It lifts your spirits to have someone say something genuinely nice to you or about you. Solomon noted this human truth: “Heaviness in the heart of man maketh it stoop: but a good…