Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you…
-1 Peter 1:3-4 (NIV)
As we endeavor to meet the challenges of these days in America, it becomes increasingly clear that our peace and confidence are found only in one place: Jesus Christ. Our success in overcoming the trials and adversity is not dependent on the ways of the world around us, but comes by focusing on our faith, our belief, and our trust in the Son who was willing to suffer more than we ever will.
Why would He ever choose to give up so much honor and glory for those that still reject His free gift of salvation? It’s because of love. A love that is so deep, strong, and powerful that, once we have it, there isn’t anything on earth or in the universe that can take it away from us (Romans 8:35-39).
As we accept the challenges of these times, it becomes especially critical to properly dress yourself each day for the spiritual battles ahead. If you put on the “belt of truth” you won’t be persuaded by the lies of this world around us. Your “shield of faith” becomes your defense against the fiery darts of Satan, which he uses to cause doubt and disobedience in your affairs. And it is your “helmet of salvation” that will remind you, in this season, that by God’s grace, through faith in the atoning sacrifice and resurrection of Jesus Christ, we have nothing to fear (Ephesians 6:10-18).
Perhaps we should not be asking “why” is this happening, but “what” is it that God wants me to learn from this. “What” is in it that will cause me to grow closer to Jesus through this time?
By God’s grace and the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit, we can be confident and secure when we employ the Spiritual Armor of God.
These are difficult days, but just because God delays does not mean He is inactive. His timing is always perfect. I can’t help but sense He is working on the hearts of this world to come back to Him, just as He did with Israel. He sits as a refiner of silver, and the outcome will be all things working together for the good of those who loveHim.
Let us be more focused on learning the lessons He has for us in the time of trial, rather than on yearning for the hour of deliverance. Take joy in your salvation during this time, and praise Him continually for His unending Mercy.
**Note: Though we have cancelled services for this week to do our part to help stop the spread of Coronavirus and allay fears, we do plan to reopen as soon as possible. We are trusting in God and His provision, and pray you are all doing the same. He is in control!
The first Sunday in July brings a tradition here at Colona Community Church. In recent years, every first Sunday of July our little church has joined with Ridgway Community Church to have Sunday in the Park in lovely Hartwell Park just up the road in Ridgway, CO. We gather for a few hours of praise, worship, and reflection on the freedoms we have been blessed with through the sacrifice of others, plus a wonderful lunch and time of fellowship.
This year, nearly four hundred people came out on a gorgeous western Colorado day to hear the music of JustOne Ministries out of Durango, CO, and an inspirational message from Randy Gradishar, former Denver Bronco. Mr. Gradishar reminded us that we don’t want to gain the whole world at the cost of our souls (Matthew 16:26). One of my favorite moments was when he said that someone told him he should be in the Hall of Fame. His response was that he’s already in the Hebrews 11 Hall of Fame! That’s the only one I can see that would ever matter 🙂
Here are a few poor cell phone shots from my vantage point on the far side:
Should the Lord tarry, we plan to do this again on the first Sunday of next July. Hope to see you in the park! Have a blessed day 🙂
I was watching golf with my dad a few weeks ago, when Tiger Woods made another return to the course. Even with all the controversy that has surrounded him in recent years, the cheers for his appearance were loud and long.
Almost two thousand years ago, another controversial person made a triumphal entry–not onto the golf course, but into the city of Jerusalem. For three years, Jesus had been traveling the countryside, stirring up people with His rebellious ideas. Then, when the time had come, He headed back to Jerusalem. Matthew 21:1-11 describes the Triumphal Entry of Jesus. As Jesus rode a donkey into the city, people laid down their coats and cut palm fronds to lay in the street to honor His passing. They shouted, “Hosanna!” The Hebrew word hosanna means “save us.” They did believe Him to be the Messiah, but misunderstood the way He would save us. They thought the Messiah would come to lead the armies to crush their Roman oppressors and usher in an age of unparalleled prosperity. But He didn’t come to save us from government oppression or financial woes or hard times. He entered Jerusalem knowing He would die to save us from so much more–from our own sin and death to righteousness and eternal life with Him!
Tiger Woods can’t save us–he honestly can’t even save himself. Only Jesus can save us. Has He saved you? Has He made His Triumphal Entry into your heart? If not, there’s no better moment than now to make a decision to follow Him out of death and into life.
I pray that this Holy Week, you would be abundantly blessed and that we would all take time each day to reflect on all Jesus did for us.
And if you’re in the Montrose or Ridgway area, please join us next Sunday for a special early Easter worship service at 8:30 am, followed by a fellowship breakfast, and regular Sunday service at 10:30 am at Colona Community Church. We hope to see you there!
If you received our newsletter, you know that at the regular board meeting in January, it was agreed to pursue the following outreach endeavors for this year:
The 17th Annual Harvest Dinner – held on the last Saturday in September
Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes – donations accepted throughout the year; “packing party” in November
Christmas Food Boxes – fill and deliver the week of Christmas
Remember that our outreach is only as good as its volunteers! So please be in prayer about YOUR involvement in these ministries.
The Board also approved a possible Church picnic sometime in June. We are investigating possible locations as well as determining the scope (for example: will it be just a barbecue/picnic or will we have our regular church service there as well?) of this endeavor.
In March we will be taking a poll to determine interest. If the membership does not show an interest, we will be forced to NOT pursue any outreach that lacks sufficient support. Please pray about these ideas and how you can be involved.