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May 24, 2024

Our Word of God comes from Romans 15:2, and is titled, "For Their Good"...

 

Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up.

 

As I sit here behind this keyboard, I would love to tell you about the responsibilities we have as children and Servants of God, but we all have so many responsibilities already, I'm afraid if I used that word, you and most people would simply tune out and say, "God knows I have enough to do already, I simply can't take on any more responsibilities!"  So, I'm not going to talk to you about our responsibilities.  What I am going to talk to you about are the things that can make our lives so much richer; so much more enjoyable, and I believe we could all use a little more of that in our lives.  So what I am going to talk about is the opportunities we have as children and Servants of God.  

 

Actually, as Servants of God through this ministry, I pray you are already experiencing a richer, more enjoyable life.  I know I certainly am.  Being active in life is a blessing in my life.  But one thing I have discovered over the years is this.  Our world is filled with two kinds of people.  People who do and people who don't.  Those who don't make up about 90% of our population.  These are the people who are focused on 4 things, me, myself, I and mine.  They are so focused on what is theirs; on what they want, that they simply don't want to be involved with anything else.  The other 10 percent are the ones who are getting things done.  We've all seen it in our Optimist clubs, Churches, Schools and other community activities.  There is always those 10 percent who go above and beyond.  Are they simply great organizers, or are they great opportunists?  Now believe me, I know I am preaching to the choir on this matter, because each and every one of you took the time, made the decision, to be a part of this ministry.  Adding something to your life that you hoped would be amazing; would fill a void in your relationship with God.  And over the years, you have continued to open the messages and pray for the people in need.  That in itself is an amazing opportunity.  To lift your voice to God in concern for others.  As for me, well I pray these messages have brought you closer to God, as you desired, but Paul hit on a topic here today that so many people overlook.  Our neighbors.

 

Now I'm not talking about the people who live across the street, to each side or behind you, I'm talking about talking to people instead of ignoring them.  Talking to people you are standing in line with.  And I'm not talking about spending an hour or two with them talking about everything that's going on in your life and asking about everything going on in their lives, like a neighbor of mine might do.  I'm talking about a simple greeting and a smile.  An acknowledgement that you are aware of their presence in your life and that you are happy they are there.  It would likely amaze all of us if we were to find out how many people felt alone in this world, even in a crowd.  It would also likely amaze us how much a smile and a simple greeting would mean to them.  A simple conversation singling them out for a few moments in time might brighten their day and give them the spirit they may need to lift their head and look up, instead of at the floor in front of them.  How much it would "build them up" as Paul so correctly put it.  For their good, not for ours.  We are children of God!  We already have the very best!  But I believe if we look at strangers and greet them as we would greet our true neighbors, we will not only be giving a blessing to others, but will receive a blessing from our Father as well.  The opportunity presents itself daily.  All we have to do is be a part of that 10% that recognizes an opportunity and takes advantage of it, for their good...

 

Let us pray...  Father, help us to see our fellow man as our neighbor.  Help us to see them as a brother or a sister.  And help us to treat them as we would treat a neighbor, a brother, or a sister.  You have provided us the opportunity to have our hearts filled to overflowing with love.  Help us to not let those moments pass.  For their good.  For our good.  In Jesus' name we pray...  Amen...

 

Pastor Elmer

May 13, 2024

Our Word of God comes from Proverbs 18:10, and is titled, "A Fortified Tower"...

 

The name of the Lord is a fortified tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.

 

My dear brothers and sisters, in service to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, this verse is what we are praying for tonight.  In fact, this verse is what we are praying for in nearly all our prayers, for our brothers and sisters, and more so for those who have yet learned to seek the Lord.  Every time we are praying for someone, they are usually facing a terrible situation.  The Christian brother or sister knows the first place to turn, when trouble has found our doorstep, is to the Lord, and we are lifting our voices to fortify their pleas for help.  But for those who do not know the Lord, even though troubles can often be a nudge to turn them toward the Lord, many do not often think of the Lord the way you and I might.  They don't know that the Lord is a fortified tower of protection.  Thus, it is our responsibility to lift them up in our prayers, with the love God has taught us over our years of service, that He might hear and answer our prayers and protect them as we have done tonight for Leanna and her daughter.  Tonight, they need a fortified tower of protection to surround them from all harm.

 

I hope this explanation of what we do as we go about serving our Lord through this ministry, gives you an understanding of just how important our work is.  Believe me, the sinners out there are not lifting Leanna, her daughter, or anyone else up in prayer.  They may be sending them well wishes, but well wishes do about as much good as giving them a greeting as they pass by them on the street.  The prayer of the Christian is personal.  Every word spoken in prayer is lifted on high by the Holy Spirit and directed straight to God's ear, where He hears and recognizes our voice.  We are not praying just to hear ourselves speak, we are getting personal with our Father in Heaven who loves us as His children.  Who loves us for the work we do for others and one another.  Who loves us for our faith, for the love we show and the caring in our hearts.  He loves that we identify those we pray for as one of His children, as our brother or sister.  This is what He has taught us to do, and He is very pleased that we have learned and practiced His teachings well.

 

This relationship we have with God is not only something special to us, it is equally as special to Him.  Yes, there have been many who have served just as we have over the millennia since all this began with Adam and Eve, but equally there have been many who have never paid attention to His calling.  Who have turned their back on the Lord and did things for themselves and nothing for others.  They served themselves rather than God.  They made themselves a god.  A god with no powers.  And still, God loves them so much that should they beg His forgiveness before they draw their last breath, He will be quick to forgive them.  But what have they done for God?  What have they done for their fellow brother or sister?  You, my brothers and sisters, have stood at the ready and responded when called.  You have served brothers and sisters that you don't even know, and you have served them as if they were part of your family, for that is what they are.  Without them even knowing it, you handed them the keys to the fortified tower of God.  How proud of your children would you be if they did that for others?  That's how proud God is of you.  Face it, my fellow Servants, you are amazing!!!

 

Let us pray...  Father, we thank you for the gift of teaching us how to serve.  The gift to serve our brothers and sisters as we serve you.  This was and is your desire for your children.  This is the desire that Jesus passed along to us when He said, "Love your neighbor as yourself."  The true guide to being a servant of God.  We give thanks in Jesus' name...  Amen...

 

Pastor Elmer

May 10, 2024

Our Word of God comes from Psalm 43:5 and is titled, "Why?"

 

Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise Him again— my Savior and my God!

 

I am a firm believer that discouragement and sadness have no place in our lives as Christians.  Of course, my life before I received the Lord held what I would call an adequate amount of discouragement and sadness.  But I would be hard pressed to describe an event to you where these emotions filled my life after I received the Lord.  I was present at the death of my sister; holding her arm and feeling the last beat of her heart, and I can't say that I was sad.  Not because I didn't love my sister; far from it.  But I knew the pain she was in before her passing, and I knew God took her to a place where she would never feel nor even remember that pain again.  I was a Christian for 8 days at that time.  Some years later, I lost my mother, and though I was sad because she was no longer here where I could call her on the phone and talk to her like I had done so many times, my sadness was for my loss, not hers.  For my mother didn't lose anything.  She went to join my sister, and she still has me and my brother.  As for me, I was there to hear her speak my name; the last word she spoke in this world.  I was there to receive the last goodbye kiss she would give.  And I was there to preach her funeral and tell everyone present of the relationship she shared with our Father in Heaven.

 

Have I been through trials?  Most certainly!  You have heard about all of them.  Heart attack!  Died three times!  Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia!  Blood clots!  AFIB, twice!  And now a pacemaker!  The only discouragement I've had through all of these is that I can't go fishing for another 9 days, but I will be back fishing.  I will be back having lunch with my friends.  I will still be calling friends and fellow Servants.  I am back at my keyboard sending you what I hope are inspiring messages that lead you to seek a closer relationship with your heavenly Father.  And though it may seem like I am using this message to tell you how wonderful my life is, I still believe it is our Father in Heaven guiding this message so that each of you can get His message.  For there is something else that I firmly believe.  I believe that each of us have the ability to block God's blessings from our lives, and I have never felt that until I began typing this message.  If we are focused only on the terrible things in our lives, then our focus is more likely to be on the worst things that can come from those terrible things in our lives.  Instead, the things that happen in our lives should have us focusing on how God is going to take care of us as He promised to do.

 

Look again at the verse above...  King David did not write about discouragement and sadness!  King David was asking himself, Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad?  And he didn't give an answer to what he had just asked himself.  Instead, he recognized these things as faults in his character and then he went on to write what he would do to correct those faults; I will put my hope in God! I will praise Him again— my Savior and my God!  Even David was telling us there is no room for these things in our lives.  If we allow them in, they take up space that could be filled up with God.  David figured it out.  I figured it out.  Which would you rather have in your life?  Discouragement and Sadness, or God?  The answer is pretty clear to me...

 

Let us pray...  Father, the greatest thing that has ever come into our lives, or is in our lives, is you!  So why do we fill our hearts and our minds with anything other than you?  Teach us, Lord!  Teach us that just because bad things knock on our door, we are not required to let them into our lives.  Teach us to keep the doors to our hearts and our minds closed to the bad things Satan throws at us, that we may allow more room for hope and praise, and faith that you are there to handle whatever comes our way.  Teach us that the only thing we need concern ourselves with, is you.  In Jesus' name we pray...  Amen...

 

Pastor Elmer

May 1, 2024

Our Word of God comes from Romans 13:7-8, and is titled, "Give What You Owe"...

 

Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor. Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.

 

As each of you know, I have had some issues with my heart.  Some of which I am still working on.  But I give thanks to my God for giving me the heart He gave me and for filling it with all the things to fulfill His Word.  I also give thanks to God for not destroying me for the times I have failed.  Paul laid out all these things that you and I might know what is expected of us.  I may not like the way the government handles my tax dollars, but I pay my taxes.  If I am not willing to be the loudest voice in the room, why should I expect our government to do with my tax dollars what I desire.  I am responsible to certain companies and businesses for goods and services I use to aid me in living this life God has given me, so I am faithful to pay them their due revenue.  It is not their fault if my desires exceed the amount of revenue I have to pay them.  I must make changes to my lifestyle, not deny them payment for their goods or services.  Respect and honor place no burden on my welfare.  I have a never-ending supply of each to give, and I am happy to say that there are many people in my life that I am fortunate enough to owe these things to, and I do my best to pay these debts in full.  However, not everyone in my life is deserving of such gifts.  These are gifts that must be earned.  To receive these, one must first give these.  

 

That paragraph takes care of verse 7, so now let's talk about verse 8.  I think love is where God has excelled in my heart.  I have learned a lot more about my heart in my 23 years as a Christian.  Moreso in my 19 years of being a minister and pastor.  As far back as I can recall, love has always been a part of my heart.  Unfortunately, hate was also a part of my heart for a lot of years.  I grew up in more of an environment of hate than I did in an environment of love, but God placed a lot of people in my life to teach me about love.  Love can be very painful at times, especially when it comes to first loves, and second loves, and so on and so on until we find that true love.  That love that fits like a warm glove over our heart.  That love that can frustrate us to the point of wanting to pull our hair out, but never hurts.  God led me to that love through my wife and fellow Servant, Debbie, who I recently celebrated 50 years of marriage with.  I didn't think it could ever get any better than that.  That is until I discovered the love of God on April 19, 1997.  I never knew I could be loved that completely.  There are things I could do to cause my wife to fall out of love with me, but there is nothing I can do to make my God fall out of love with me.  

 

Once you understand that love, then you yourself can love so much better.  That government we don't like paying taxes to?  Well, we may not like what they do, but we can love them just the same.  That person who comes to collect the owed revenue?  We may not like them either, but we can love them.  And those people who deserve our respect or honor?  Yes, we can love them too.  We can even go as far as to love not only love our neighbors as we love ourselves, but we can also love our enemies as we love ourselves.  That is a debt we owe to our Father.  The One who loves both us and them, unconditionally.  Like God, we may not like what they do, but we are to love them just the same.  Our desire should be the same as our Father's desire.  That not one should be lost.  When we were lost, through one way or another, He saved us.  We should love everyone and pray that God, through one way or another, is able to save them too.  Let us pay our taxes, our revenues, our respect, our honor, and open our hearts to the greatest of all debts.  The continuing debt to love one another.  For whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.

 

Let us pray...  Father, we who do not deserve your love, bathe in it daily because you have given it to us so plentifully.  But that love comes with a price.  Though it is more precious than gold, silver or platinum, it is not to be stored away for ourselves only.  It is to be passed out to all we come in contact with as you have given it to us.  We praise you for this lesson, and we praise you that no matter how much love we give away, we will never be without.  We will never want.  Our cup truly runneth over.  In Jesus' name we lift our praise to the God of all creation...  Amen...

 

All my love...

Pastor Elmer

April 17, 2024

Our Word of God comes from Psalm 23:4 and is titled, "Fear No Evil"

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

 

In my previous message, "Do Not Be Afraid", with God's guidance I tried to convey the reasons why fear and anxiety have no place in the life of a Christian as long as God is beside us.  And God will always be beside us.  And tonight, with the news we have received from fellow Servant Jim Harmon, I believe God was placing an exclamation point on the end of the previous message.  This world is not our world.  We are merely passing through it on a journey to eternity.  This world is Satan's domain, and in this world, there will always be things that will try to move the Christian away from the Father. 

 

One of the things mentioned in the previous message was a diagnosis received from a doctor.  Well, John received that diagnosis yesterday, but remained faithful in our Lord.  Today, that faithfulness paid off in spades.  Evil tried to creep in and destroy his world, but God was with him and His light shown through the darkness and demonstrated that His light will never leave us.  As Christians, we will never walk in darkness.  The same message King David wrote down in this 23rd Psalm more than a thousand years before the birth of Christ, was delivered again this day through our Father in Heaven.

 

So, as we finish this praise message this evening, let us end it with the same words King David recorded for us so many years ago.  Let us reaffirm what he wrote was true...

 

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let us pray...  Father, as you provide your words to us on this 17th day of April, in the year 2024, we give thanks that you have reaffirmed the words King David wrote down over 3000 years prior.  Though we may be surrounded by evil in this domain, thou art with us.  And when you are with us, evil cannot control our lives.  Not as long as we allow you to lead us through.  You have proved once again that what you spoke so many years ago is still relevant today.  For this we give thanks in Jesus' name...  Amen... 

 

Pastor Elmer

April 13, 2024

Our Word of God comes from Deuteronomy 20:2-4, and is titled, "Do Not Be Afraid"...

 

When you prepare for battle, the priest must come forward to speak to the troops. He will say to them, 'Listen to me, all you men of Israel! Do not be afraid as you go out to fight your enemies today! Do not lose heart or panic or tremble before them. For the Lord your God is going with you! He will fight for you against your enemies, and he will give you victory!

 

Tonight, we have prayed for a young man suffering with anxiety and fear.  He most certainly is not the first, and he is likely in company with every person who has ever walked on the face of the earth.  Even the bravest among us have had to deal with anxiety and fear at some point in our lives.  Be it the monster under the bed, the evil that lurks in the shadows, or the diagnosis we have just received from our doctor.  Some people live in places where it is not safe to even walk down the streets.  Many of the elderly live with locked doors, boarded up or barred windows.  Anxiety and fear come at us from a plethora of directions, and it is something we must all face and deal with.  Not dealing with it can consume a person just as easily as any monster, evil or disease.

 

But for the Christian, God is our night light.  When we were small, our parents may have left a light on in the hallway.  As parents, we may have had a night light in our children's rooms to provide them comfort from the monsters too afraid to come out of the darkness.  God is that light!  He is our security blanket that nothing can penetrate.  I remember when I had my heart attack, my wife remained calm because she knew God had this.  Well, God not only has this, God has you!  For you there are no boogie men.  There are no monsters.  And even though diseases can steal your earthly life away, it cannot steal you away from God.  This, THIS, is the message we need to believe about our Father in Heaven.  THIS is the message we should be sharing with others, Christians or not.  THIS is the rock the men of Israel were standing on as they marched into battle against what seemed to be a far superior adversary.  THIS is what they gave thanks to God for as their enemies fell at their feet.

 

If God is on your side, you are undefeatable.  If you are a child of God, nothing can destroy your soul.  God has you and will always be with you no matter the battle that lays before you.  And when death finally claims the body your soul resides in, the body is all death will receive.  Your soul will be riding first class to the promised land we all know as Heaven, where we will live throughout eternity in the presence of our Father.  When the earth, the stars and the universe have all turned into cosmic dust, your days in Heaven will have just begun.  Do not be afraid!  For the Lord your God is going with you! He will fight for you against your enemies, and he will give you victory!

 

Let us pray...  Father, we give thanks that we need not fear.  We give thanks for all the things you have done for us to become your precious children.  We ask that you write those precious words, "do not be afraid," upon our hearts and minds that we may never know anxiety or fear.  And place them on our tongue as we testify to others of your glory.  In Jesus' name we pray...  Amen...

 

Pastor Elmer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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