With a show of hands, anyone ever anxious, worried, fretful or fearful? I can see all our hands raised, except for - okay, now it's everyone. Of course. We all have, let's be real. Anxiety is real. It's grip is tight. Caused by a person, place, thing - an encounter triggers a preexisting unsettling life event and anxiety kicks in. Heart pounding. Sweat pouring. Mind pondering. Body pacing. And we begin to spiral downward, especially during the holidays.
This instance reminded me of Dr. Seuss’ Christmas story ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’. It was almost as if Grinch himself had quietly snuck into my mind and began to steal my Christmas joy. Isn’t that how it goes. One moment it’s the most wonderful time of the year, the next moment it’s the most difficult – even the most dreaded time of the year. For some, the holiday season is filled with happiness and joy, while for others it conjures up feelings of being overwhelmed, stressed out, depressed, anxious, envious or even just lonely. And a couple lines from Dr. Seuss’ book began to replay in my mind, “The Grinch hated Christmas! The whole Christmas season. His heart was too small is the most likely reason. He tried to steal Christmas and learned he could not.”
I sat down and took a moment to chill. Just to momentarily rest, be still, ponder and reflect on the life events of the day; okay, the week; alright, the month! I grabbed my Bible and it fell open to Luke 23. I noticed that I had previously highlighted verse 46 and began reading, "Jesus called out in a loud voice, 'Father, into Your hands I commit my spirit...'" At that moment, it was like the God's Spirit was whispering in my ear, "Doug, commit it all to God. Entrust it to Him. He's got this." So, I placed both of my hands out directly in front of me with palms up and began praying. "God, into Your hands I commit this...I entrust it all to You." I finished my prayer and turned to a section of the Psalms that I enjoy reading.
We are honored to have Pastor Alan join our Central Christian Church family this Sunday, September 27 during both services as he brings us an inspirational word for our lives from God's Word. You won't want to miss this. I look forward to seeing you here in person or online this coming Sunday.
What an unbelievable year it has been and continues to be. Because we value each person who attends our services here at Central Christian and desire to keep everyone safe and healthy, for several weeks we have been recommending that face coverings be worn as our church staff has been doing so in the past few weeks. We also shared that we would keep you updated as to any important changes because of COVID-19 that would necessitate further communication.
We are honored to have Pastor Louis join our Central Christian Church family this Sunday, July 26 during both services as he brings us an inspirational word for our lives from God's Word. You won't want to miss this. I look forward to seeing you here in person or online this coming Sunday.
Ponder this statement: God uses our life struggles and successes, trials and triumphs to test, forge and refine our faith and friendship with Him. To determine if we will truly trust Him through the ‘valley of the shadow of death’ that we are experiencing; okay, will experience – to completely trust that He is WITH us.
God had a personal friendship with Abraham that was forged and refined is his life's successes and struggles, trials and triumphs. God desires the same with each and every one of us. He so desires a personal friendship with us - yes, us! The question is, do we truly desire a personal transformational relationship with God?
We had such a great service this past Sunday! It was great being able to come together for worship -- and for the Good Lord to provide such a nice breeze! Weather permitting, we will have another outdoor service this Sunday at 10:00 AM.
This is what I truly love about our Central Christian family. You are generous helpers. In fact, all glory completely to God-our church family is becoming known in our local community and beyond as being generous with our time, talents and financial treasures so God's ministry will continue to impact in a great way.
We continue to see blessings from God during this time. We are having decisions for Jesus, including baptisms, our online services are reaching people we have not previously, and our members have continued to be faithful by giving financially thus blessing individuals and local ministries with their generosity. God is faithful!
In January of this year during our ‘One Word’ sermon series I challenged every one of us to lean into God and His Word in search of one word to guide our spiritual journey this year. Personally, my word for 2020 is ‘Dwell’. But then I shared a word, one word that I truly believe God has given me – rather, given our entire church family at Central Christian for this year – ‘Greater’. I truly believe with all my heart that God is calling all of us to something greater…much greater than ourselves especially right here and now!