Do Not Be Anxious

Due to human frailty and imperfection, the audio of the last few messages have not gotten recorded. Oops. I do apologize and promise to try to figure out the best way to remind someone to push the button on the recorder! 🙂

But, I suppose I shouldn’t worry about it too much, because Pastor Steve has been giving us messages on the cure for anxiety, found in Matthew 6:25-34.

Do Not Worry
25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink;
or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body
more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or
store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not
much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single
hour to your life?
28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow.
They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his
splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass
of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he
not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying,
‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For
the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that
you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all
these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about
tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough
trouble of its own.

Last Sunday, Pastor Steve reminded us that when our priorities are messed up, we tend to worry. We choose what he calls “Careful Infidelity” — choosing to abide by something, to put our faith in something, other than God. That is when Jesus says to us, “O, ye of little faith” (Matthew 6:30). Worry is infidelity because we are not trusting that God is in all the details, and that He is taking care of it all. Our Heavenly Father knows what we need (Matthew 6:31-32); it is but for us to be faithful, to increase our faith through time in the Word, in prayer, and in meditation (Psalm 1:1-2).

There will always be sorrow, there will always be hardship, but God is in control. The antidote to worry and anxiety is increasing our faith, with prayer and thanksgiving (Philippians 4:4-7).

It is with the cares of this world that faith gets choked (Matthew 13:22), so don’t have too tight a grip on worldly things. Hold tightly to Christ Jesus. And remember that in Him, we are more than conquerors (Romans 8:37).

This Sunday, Pastor Steve told us that we need to choose this day, and every day, how we will live — will we seek the things of this world first or will we seek God first? Matthew 6:33 tells us that if we seek Him first, above all else, He’ll give us everything we need. Hebrews 11:6 reminds us that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

Worry is failure of faith. When we worry, we are putting our time and devotion into the things of this world, instead of heavenly things (Matthew 6:19-20). When we worry about the future, we are borrowing trouble (Matthew 6:34), we are wasting today (John 11:9).

Instead of worrying, we need to hold fast to Christ, for He is always faithful (Hebrews 10:23, 1 Corinthians 10:13, 1 Thessalonians 5:24).

Pastor Steve read a poem which ended with “I’ll bear the sorrow that comes tomorrow, but I’ll borrow none today.” There will always be trouble, trials, hardship, and struggle, but the Lord tells us that worrying will get us nowhere but further from Him. Instead of being anxious about what the future holds, remember Who holds the future.

Have a blessed, worry-free week!

Preventing Infection

Hello again! Here’s is Pastor Steve’s message from this morning, as he continues his teaching in Matthew chapter 5. To listen to the message, simply click play on the audio player below. Also included is the Call to Worship and a list of Scriptures that Pastor Steve references in his message.

Call to Worship
Psalm 138
I will praise you, Lord, with all my heart;
    before the “gods” I will sing your praise.
I will bow down toward your holy temple
    and will praise your name
    for your unfailing love and your faithfulness,
for you have so exalted your solemn decree
    that it surpasses your fame.
When I called, you answered me;
    you greatly emboldened me.
May all the kings of the earth praise you, Lord,
    when they hear what you have decreed.
May they sing of the ways of the Lord,
    for the glory of the Lord is great.
Though the Lord is exalted, he looks kindly on the lowly;
    though lofty, he sees them from afar.
Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
    you preserve my life.
You stretch out your hand against the anger of my foes;
    with your right hand you save me.
The Lord will vindicate me;
    your love, Lord, endures forever—
    do not abandon the works of your hands.

Scripture References

Matthew 5:13

1 Peter 2:9

Hebrews 4:12

Genesis 6:3

Numbers 18:19

1 Samuel 15:22

Romans 12:2

Ephesians 4:29

Colossians 4:6

John 9:1-7, 24-25

Praying that this message blesses you as it has blessed me, and that your week is filled with the joy of the Lord! 🙂

Rejoice in Tribulations

Good evening! So, Pastor Steve took two weeks off to fill up his freezer with some elk meat. I, apparently, took three weeks off, because I completely forgot to post last week’s message! I apologize! Pastor Steve came back refreshed and ready to continue in his lessons in Matthew. To hear his message, simply click play on the audio player below. I’ve also included the Call to Worship and a list of Scripture references to help you.

Call to Worship
Ephesians 2:14-18
14 For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups
one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility,
15 by setting aside in his flesh the law with its commands and
regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new
humanity out of the two, thus making peace, 16 and in one body
to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he
put to death their hostility. 17 He came and preached peace to you
who were far away and peace to those who were near. 18 For
through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit.

Scripture References

Romans 8:29

Matthew 5:11-12

Hebrews 12:2

Acts 5:41

1 Peter 1:16

James 5:10-11

1 Peter 4:12-14

2 Corinthians 4:17-18

James 1:2-3

And, in case you missed it and/or wanted to remember it, Pastor Steve said that Satan’s 3 Ds are discouragement, doubt, and deceit. Watch out for those!

Thank you for your patience with my all-too-human forgetfulness. I pray you are blessed by this message and today’s message, which I will post as soon as I get the audio uploaded! 🙂

Persecution

Good morning! Yesterday, Pastor Steve gave his message about Matthew 5:10, the last of the Beatitudes. To listen to this message, simply click the play button on the audio player below. Also included is the Call to Worship and a list of Scriptures referenced in Pastor Steve’s message.

Call to Worship
1 Peter 4:12-19
12 Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has
come on you to test you, as though something strange were 
happening to you. 13 But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in 
the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his 
glory is revealed. 14 If you are insulted because of the name of 
Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests 
on you. 15 If you suffer, it should not be as a murderer or thief 
or any other kind of criminal, or even as a meddler. 16 However, 
if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God 
that you bear that name. 17 For it is time for judgment to begin 
with God’s household; and if it begins with us, what will the 
outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And,
“If it is hard for the righteous to be saved,
    what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”
19 So then, those who suffer according to God’s will should 
commit themselves to their faithful Creator and continue to do good.

Scripture References

Matthew 5:3-10

1 John 3:13

Matthew 10:16

John 15:18-20

James 5:10-11

2 Timothy 3:12

Acts 14:22

Isaiah 51:7-8

1 Peter 4:14-16

Philippians 1:29

2 Corinthians 12:9

2 Corinthians 5:7

When darkness veils His lovely face,
I rest on His unchanging grace;
In every high and stormy gale,
My anchor holds within the veil.

From "The Solid Rock" by Edward Mote

Praying you have a beautiful first full week of Fall!

Peacemakers

Good morning! Pastor Steve continued his series of wonderful messages about the Beatitudes yesterday with a lesson on Matthew 5:9. To listen to this message, simply click play on the audio player below. Also included is the Call to Worship and a list of Scripture references with links to those verses on Bible Gateway for your convenience.

Call to Worship
John 14:22-28
22 Then Judas (not Judas Iscariot) said, “But, Lord, 
why do you intend to show yourself to us and not to the world?”
23 Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. 
My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make 
our home with them. 24 Anyone who does not love me will not 
obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they 
belong to the Father who sent me.
25 “All this I have spoken while still with you. 26 But the Advocate,
the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will 
teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have 
said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do
not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be
troubled and do not be afraid.
28 “You heard me say, ‘I am going away and I am coming back to 
you.’ If you loved me, you would be glad that I am going to the 
Father, for the Father is greater than I.

Scripture References

Matthew 5:9

Jeremiah 17:9

Psalm 86:11

Isaiah 9:6-7

Romans 12:18

1 Peter 3:11

John 14:27

Ephesians 2:11-22

1 Timothy 2:5

Matthew 15:19

John 12:25

James 3:6-10

James 1:19-20

Romans 12:20

Philippians 2:5

Praying your week is abundantly blessed in Christ!

State of the Heart

Good afternoon! Pastor Steve gave a wonderful message this morning regarding the state of your heart in reference to Matthew 5:8. To listen to this message, simply click play on the audio player below. Also included is the Call to Worship and a list of verses Pastor Steve references in his message. Enjoy!

Call to Worship
Psalm 51:1-10
Have mercy on me, O God,
    according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion
    blot out my transgressions.
Wash away all my iniquity
    and cleanse me from my sin.
For I know my transgressions,
    and my sin is always before me.
Against you, you only, have I sinned
    and done what is evil in your sight;
so you are right in your verdict
    and justified when you judge.
Surely I was sinful at birth,
    sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb;
    you taught me wisdom in that secret place.
Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean;
    wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness;
    let the bones you have crushed rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins
    and blot out all my iniquity.
10 Create in me a pure heart, O God,
    and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

Scripture References

Matthew 5:8

Jeremiah 17:9-10

Psalm 51:10

Matthew 15:3-9

Matthew 15:16-18

Matthew 15:19-20

Psalm 86:11

Romans 7:14-25

Hebrews 11:27

1 Corinthians 13:12

1 John 3:1-3

1 John 3:19-21

Praying your week is abundantly blessed and full of the grace and peace of God!

Mercy Triumphs Over Judgment

Hello! Pastor Steve gave us another wonderful message in his series on the Beatitudes about mercy this week. To listen to this message, simply click play on the audio player below. The Call to Worship and Scripture references (with links to Bible Gateway) are also included.

Call to Worship
Psalm 146
Praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord, my soul.
I will praise the Lord all my life;
    I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.
Do not put your trust in princes,
    in human beings, who cannot save.
When their spirit departs, they return to the ground;
    on that very day their plans come to nothing.
Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob,
    whose hope is in the Lord their God.
He is the Maker of heaven and earth,
    the sea, and everything in them—
    he remains faithful forever.
He upholds the cause of the oppressed
    and gives food to the hungry.
The Lord sets prisoners free,
    the Lord gives sight to the blind,
the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down,
    the Lord loves the righteous.
The Lord watches over the foreigner
    and sustains the fatherless and the widow,
    but he frustrates the ways of the wicked.
10 The Lord reigns forever,
    your God, O Zion, for all generations.
Praise the Lord.

Scripture References

Matthew 5:7

Ephesians 2:8-9

Numbers 23:10

Matthew 18:21-35

Luke 10:30-37

James 2:12-13

Psalm 19:7-11

Titus 3:4-5

Praying your week is blessed!

Drought, pt. 2

Good afternoon! Pastor Steve continued his message about hungering and thirsting for righteousness this morning. To listen to the audio of his message, simply press the play button on the audio player below. I’ve also included the Call to Worship and links to the verses he references in his message.

Call to Worship
Psalm 37:1-11
Do not fret because of those who are evil
    or be envious of those who do wrong;
for like the grass they will soon wither,
    like green plants they will soon die away.
Trust in the Lord and do good;
    dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Take delight in the Lord,
    and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord;
    trust in him and he will do this:
He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn,
    your vindication like the noonday sun.
Be still before the Lord
    and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways,
    when they carry out their wicked schemes.
Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
    do not fret—it leads only to evil.
For those who are evil will be destroyed,
    but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.
10 A little while, and the wicked will be no more;
    though you look for them, they will not be found.
11 But the meek will inherit the land
    and enjoy peace and prosperity.

Scripture References

Ephesians 2:8

Isaiah 64:6

James 4:6

Isaiah 53:6

Numbers 23:10

Matthew 6:21

Matthew 4:4

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Philippians 3:10

Matthew 7:7

Praying you have a truly blessed week, hungering and thirsting for righteousness! 🙂

Drought, pt. 1

Good evening! Pastor Steve continued his teaching on the Beatitudes this morning with the first part of a message regarding Matthew 5:6, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” To listen to this message, simply click play on the audio player below. There is also a list of links to verses he references in his message. Enjoy!

Call to Worship
Psalm 42
For the director of music. A maskil of the Sons of Korah.
As the deer pants for streams of water,
    so my soul pants for you, my God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
    When can I go and meet with God?
My tears have been my food
    day and night,
while people say to me all day long,
    “Where is your God?”
These things I remember
    as I pour out my soul:
how I used to go to the house of God
    under the protection of the Mighty One[d]
with shouts of joy and praise
    among the festive throng.
Why, my soul, are you downcast?
    Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
    for I will yet praise him,
    my Savior and my God.
My soul is downcast within me;
    therefore I will remember you
from the land of the Jordan,
    the heights of Hermon—from Mount Mizar.
Deep calls to deep
    in the roar of your waterfalls;
all your waves and breakers
    have swept over me.
By day the Lord directs his love,
    at night his song is with me—
    a prayer to the God of my life.
I say to God my Rock,
    “Why have you forgotten me?
Why must I go about mourning,
    oppressed by the enemy?”
10 My bones suffer mortal agony
    as my foes taunt me,
saying to me all day long,
    “Where is your God?”
11 Why, my soul, are you downcast?
    Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
    for I will yet praise him,
    my Savior and my God.

Scripture References

The Beatitudes – Matthew 5:1-12

Matthew 5:6

Amos 8:1-3, 11-12

Romans 10:3-4

1 Peter 1:15-16

Luke 15:11-20

Praying you have a week that is abundantly blessed and filled with joy!

Self-Control

Good morning! Pastor Steve shared a wonderful message yesterday morning, continuing his lessons on the Beatitudes with “Self-Control.” To listen to the message, simply click the play button on the audio player below. There is also a list of the verses he references with links to those verses on Bible Gateway. Enjoy!

Call to Worship
Psalm 146
Praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord, my soul.
I will praise the Lord all my life;
    I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.
Do not put your trust in princes,
    in human beings, who cannot save.
When their spirit departs, they return to the ground;
    on that very day their plans come to nothing.
Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob,
    whose hope is in the Lord their God.
He is the Maker of heaven and earth,
    the sea, and everything in them—
    he remains faithful forever.
He upholds the cause of the oppressed
    and gives food to the hungry.
The Lord sets prisoners free,
    the Lord gives sight to the blind,
the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down,
    the Lord loves the righteous.
The Lord watches over the foreigner
    and sustains the fatherless and the widow,
    but he frustrates the ways of the wicked.
10 The Lord reigns forever,
    your God, O Zion, for all generations.
Praise the Lord.

Scripture References

Matthew 5:5

Matthew 11:28-30

Philippians 2:5-8

Ephesians 4:1-3

Titus 3:2

2 Corinthians 6:10

1 Corinthians 3:21-23

1 Corinthians 6:1-3

Luke 14:11

Romans 12:18-21

Have a blessed week! 🙂