Love From Your Pastor

Go on up to a high mountain, O Zion, herald of good news; lift up your voice with strength, O Jerusalem, herald of good news; lift it up, fear not; say to the cities of Judah, “Behold your God!” (Isaiah 40:9 ESV)

This week we begin the second major section of the book of Isaiah (chapters 40-66)! To help us get an overview of this large section, I will show the “Bible Project” video before the message. But if you’re anything like me, you may need to see it more than once to start to get a handle on it. So here is the link to it if you’d like to see it ahead of time:  Bible Project Video

Isaiah 40 is perhaps the most popular and well-known chapter of the whole book.  I’d encourage you to read through it a few times between now and Sunday. It’s packed full of powerful truths about our Lord and our relationship to Him.  The title this week is “Behold Your God!”  I hope you’ll be here to worship our great God and hear from His incredible Word this Sunday at 10:30!

We will have a brief quarterly business meeting immediately after the service. It will be a time of sharing of information about what the Lord has been doing the past few months here at FBC. He has been faithful in response to our prayers! We want to acknowledge and celebrate that. We don’t have anything to vote on in this meeting, and anyone is welcome to stick around for the meeting.

20 days to Trunk-or-Treat! We have a goal once again of 500 lbs. of candy! The contest is between cats and dogs (go dogs!). Please be on the lookout for good bargains on bags of individually wrapped candies, and please consider a generous donation! Thank you to those who have signed up to decorate your vehicles (and perhaps yourselves)! Of course, Elizabeth is still looking for some more cars to fill up the parking lot!

Zachary had his surgery today to remove a tumor. He is home recovering now. The surgery went well according to the doctor, but there is concern about the possible spread of the cancer. They will have more information hopefully early next week to determine the next steps for Zach’s treatment. Please continue to pray for him and for the Blake family at this time.

Love From Your Pastor,

Michael



Love From Your Pastor

Then Hezekiah said to Isaiah, “The word of the LORD that you have spoken is good.” For he thought, “There will be peace and security in my days.” (Isaiah 39:8 ESV)

Sunday we will be talking about “A Foolish & Selfish King” from Isaiah 39.  It’s a short chapter, so please read ahead and plan to join us Sunday at 10:30am! Hezekiah was one of Judah’s best kings, but near the end of his life he displayed some serious folly and selfishness! We can learn from negative examples as well as positive ones, so there are some good lessons for us in Hezekiah’s story. But even more importantly, we will compare and contrast King Hezekiah with our far better King Jesus.  We will also be sharing in communion this Sunday, so let’s prepare our hearts to remember what Jesus has done for us.

For those who are interested in membership at FBC but were not able to attend the membership class this past Sunday, we will be doing another class on Saturday, October 13th, from 9am to Noon.  Please let me know if you plan to join us!

We have also had a few people express interest in being baptized (Amen!), both children and adults.  So if you have not yet been baptized as a believer and want to find out more, please contact me.  If you have a child who is interested, please contact Alice Tetamore or Doris Trimble.

A couple of prayer requests:

Please pray for Pastor Justin, Tina Kittel, and Dave Ezell as they finish up their ministry with teenagers who are missionary kids in Alaska. They will be returning home tomorrow!

Also, most of you know our beloved Zachary. His mother Zsuzsa has informed me that he has a large mass. They had an appointment with a urologist, and it looks like it is a contained cancer, but won’t know for sure until after surgery.  Surgery is scheduled for October 17th. Let’s be lifting up the family!

Love From Your Pastor,

Michael



Love From Your Pastor

“Behold, it was for my welfare that I had great bitterness; but in love you have delivered my life from the pit of destruction, for you have cast all my sins behind your back” (Isaiah 38:17 ESV)

This Sunday morning we will be back into our study in Isaiah. The message is called “I Have Heard Your Prayer” from Isaiah 38.  This passage parallels parts of 2 Kings chapters 18 & 20.  This is an amazing account, full of lessons about prayer, faith, and God’s deliverance. I hope you will read Isaiah 38 ahead of time and join us Sunday!

Thank you so much for praying for Caleb and me while we were in Brazil! It was somewhat of a whirlwind, but we had an incredible experience. It was exhausting at times, but also a tremendous blessing. Bruce Tissell was very grateful for the church allowing me the time to go and assist with his ministry. We’ll have more to share about the trip in the near future, but for now let me just express my gratitude for your prayers. Praise the Lord for pastors and churches that were encouraged and edified.

We will be having a membership class this Sunday from Noon to 3pm.  A light lunch will be provided. Please let me know if you’d like to join us for this class. We will be able to get to know you a little better, and you will be able to learn about what we believe, how we are organized, our hopes for the future, and how you can be a part of what God is doing here at FBC Brownsville!

We have also had a few people express interest in being baptized (Amen!), both children and adults.  So if you have not yet been baptized as a believer and want to find out more, please contact me.  If you have a child who is interested, please contact Alice Tetamore or Doris Trimble.

A note for the men: Our Saturday morning prayer and Bible study times are changing! The prayer time will now be at 7:00am and the Bible Study will begin at 7:45am. Please consider coming and joining with other men. The current study is in the book of Acts.

Love From Your Pastor,

Michael



Love From Your Pastor

Hi Friends,
Thank you so much for your prayers for us during our time here in Brazil! We are on Day 11 of 16, so we can begin to see the finish line! It’s been a combination of busyness and some opportunities for rest. Bruce Tissell has been taking good care of us, making sure we have plenty of water and are well fed! Since last Thursday I’ve been able to lead the eschatology seminar twice, speak at Sunday school at a local church, preach the evening service at another church, share with pastors at their weekly prayer breakfast, and with two groups of seminary students two evenings. We’ve walked around the shopping center in downtown Teresina (4 miles in about 100 degrees!) We’ve also been to two malls here to eat and get a couple souvenirs. Caleb battled a little illness, but thank the Lord it was only 24 hrs. Today we will experience a popular Brazilian BBQ place, and tonight we’ll visit a preschool with one of our translators. Tomorrow we’re leaving at 5am for a 6-8 hour drive to another town. I’ll do the seminar again all day, and Caleb will participate with the youth that evening. Sunday we’ll drive back to Teresina, and early Monday we begin the journey back to Oregon! We’ve really enjoyed our times with Bruce and the other pastor from Portland, Mark Newman. At times I’ve felt a bit in over my head. I’ve been physically exhausted sometimes. But I can tell you are praying as God has been giving me strength and grace. Please pray that we’ll finish these last days strong. All the travel can be challenging with the diabetes, but so far no major problems. We’re looking forward to being back together with you, and sharing what God has taught us and ways He’s used us thanks to your prayers. 
Love from your Pastor,
Michael (and Caleb)


Love From Your Pastor

“For I will defend this city to save it, for My own sake and for the sake of My servant David.” (Isaiah 37:35 ESV)

This Sunday’s sermon comes from Isaiah 37 (which parallels 2 Kings 19).  I’m calling it “The Best Strategy for War”.  The best way to win our battles is to seek the Lord’s help through His Word and prayer.  Hezekiah demonstrated the value of handling a great threat in this way.  We can learn a lot from this passage about how to experience victory in our own battles!

Please be in prayer for the men who are heading up to Camp Tadmor this weekend for Men’s Roundup.  Pray God will meet us there in a meaningful way and we’ll come down the hill changed (for the better) men!

This Sunday is Promotion Sunday, where we will honor and thank our Sunday School teachers, as well as allow some of the kids to be “promoted” up to the next grade level classes.  It will be an exciting Sunday!

Please also be in prayer for Caleb and me as we prepare to leave Monday for Brazil.  I will be doing a 6-8 hour seminar for pastors on eschatology 3 times, preaching, speaking at a seminary, and whatever else Bruce Tissell plans!  Caleb will be assisting me and having opportunities to speak with a number of youth.  There is a yellow sheet on the table by the office in the foyer.  On one side is our itinerary so you can pray specifically for us each day.  On the other side is a map of Brazil with the 3 cities we will be in marked so you can know “where in the world” we are!  Thank you for praying!

I am planning a membership class for Sunday, September 30, from Noon to 3pm.  A light lunch will be provided. Please let me know if you’d like to join us for this class. We will be able to get to know you a little better, and you will be able to learn about what we believe, how we are organized, our hopes for the future, and how you can be a part of what God is doing here at FBC Brownsville!

We have also had a few people express interest in being baptized (Amen!), both children and adults.  So if you have not yet been baptized as a believer and want to find out more, please contact me.  If you have a child who is interested, please contact Alice Tetamore or Doris Trimble.

Love From Your Pastor,

Michael



Love From Your Pastor

“On what do you rest this trust of yours?” (Isaiah 36:4b ESV)

This Sunday I will be sharing a message entitled, “Who Will Deliver You?” from Isaiah 36.  This chapter in Isaiah relates very closely with 2 Kings 18, so I would actually encourage you to read both chapters before Sunday in preparation for the message. King Hezekiah and the people of Judah were confronted by Sennacherib, the king of Assyria.  They were threatened, insulted, and their God was mocked.  The similarities to our spiritual lives are profound. The enemy of God and enemy of our souls threatens us, tries to cause us to doubt God, and tempts us to be faithless. When threatened by God’s enemies, we must decide Whom to trust! Please join us Sunday morning!

Also this Sunday, Chris and Kai, will be here to share with us during the Sunday School hour (9am), and also in the worship service. This is an incredible young family that you definitely will want to meet and to hear from. They have amazing faith and will bless and encourage us.

Men – it’s not too late to sign up for Men’s Roundup at Camp Tadmor (Sept. 7-9)!  This is such a powerful time of fellowship with other men, worship, and Bible teaching (not to mention great food and fun activities). If you haven’t yet, register here: ROUNDUP.  And let me or Pastor Justin know if you are going so we can plan on camping together!

Thank you to everyone who set up tables and participated in our Ministry Fair last Sunday!  If you missed it but would like info about possible areas in which you can serve, contact me, Justin, or Elizabeth.

I am planning a membership class for Sunday, September 30, from Noon to 3pm.  A light lunch will be provided. Please let me know if you’d like to join us for this class. We will be able to get to know you a little better, and you will be able to learn about what we believe, how we are organized, our hopes for the future, and how you can be a part of what God is doing here at FBC Brownsville!

Love From Your Pastor,

Michael

 
 
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Love From Your Pastor

As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace. (1 Peter 4:10 ESV)

I am so thankful for Pastor Justin’s messages the last two weeks! He tackled the first two points of our series, “Equipped to Serve.” First it was “why” we serve – because Jesus is our ultimate example and He calls us to follow Him. Next it was “who” – all of us in the body of Christ are to be equipped to serve to build up the body into Christ’s image.  This week we will look at the “how” we serve.  Please read 1 Peter 4:7-11 in preparation for Sunday.

As part of our series about being equipped to serve, we want to encourage you to check out our Ministry Fair. Numerous ministries of FBC will be represented in the Fellowship Hall on Sunday between 10 and 10:30am, and immediately after the worship service. You will see areas where we are in need of help and perhaps you can find a great fit for your gifts and talents! Please bring a finger food to share and come peruse the many ministry displays.

We as elders and pastors will be going away Friday and Saturday for a time of prayer, seeking the Lord’s face, and discussing the direction and ideas for our future as a church. We would grateful if all of you would be praying for us during this time.

Lastly, I was asked to share a prayer request: Friends of Patrick & Jessica Fitzmorris, a family from Sweet Home has experienced a battle with cancer. They are asking for prayer for the family, and especially the wife, named Mo. Thank you for your prayers.

Love From Your Pastor,

Michael



Love From Your Pastor

Hello FBC Family!

 

O LORD, God of hosts, who is mighty as You are, O LORD, with Your faithfulness all around You? (Psalm 89:8)

 

There truly is no one like our God!  He is holy, He is mighty, He is faithful.  All of that and so much more.  Exalt Him today simply for who He is!

 

This weekend, Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 21-22, is our FBC Family Missions Conference!  Doug Hazen, who focuses on prayer mobilization with WorldVenture, will be our guest speaker on Sunday morning.  While speaking with him a little while back, he recommended I read Pressure Points by J.D. Payne.  I started looking online for the book, and then noticed it on top of a stack of books that had been given to me!  Anyway, in the book, after showing some charts describing the number of adherents to various religions in specific countries around the world, Payne makes the following statement:

 

“A glimpse at these numbers… should move us to prayer and service as we recognize the enormity of the challenge in seeing the nations come to adore their Creator” (pg. 52).  That thought is in line with what Doug will be sharing with us Sunday morning from Matthew 9:36-38, “God’s Staggering Promises.”  Please spend some time in that passage in preparation for Sunday.

 

Remember this is a conference for everyone, for the whole family.  It begins Saturday at 9am.  Nursery will be available, there will be hands-on and inspiring activities for kids, opportunities to interact with some of the missionaries we support locally and globally, prizes raffled off, including one each of my three favorite books on missions and coffee shop gift cards, a time for families to pray together for our missionaries, a great brunch including sub sandwhiches, a fun quiz to see how well you know about some of our missionaries, Turkish coffee, videos from a few of our supported missionaries, and what I expect to be a very interesting panel questions and discussion time, with a special focus on experiences of answered prayer, specific prayer requests, etc.  Various missionaries will have displays up in the fellowship hall for you to browse, learn, and meet them.  We hope to close Saturday and raffle off prizes at 12:45pm, so we should be done by 1:00.

 

On Sunday at 9am (Sunday School hour), adults will be in the worship center for presentation and interviews with Pastor Justin, and a few local missionaries, while the children will have 3 activity stations focusing on Haiti, Japan, and Turkey.  The fellowship hall will be open again between services for browsing the displays and meeting the missionaries.  The worship service (10:30) will include music led by Teen Challenge worship team, and of course the message by Doug Hazen.  As mentioned before, we will take a special “loose change or whatever you want to give” offering to complete the project of raising funds for the swing set structure at Camp Praise in Alaska.  Please plan on being here for the exciting events of both days!  I think you’ll be glad you did!

 

12 days to Trunk-or-Treat!  I don’t know the candy competition totals from this week, but this I do know: the 2 leagues are close in weight, and we need a lot more candy!  Please consider a generous donation of candy to the baseball league of your choice.  We are also in need of more vehicles.  If you haven’t signed yours up yet, please do so this weekend!  We want to fill our parking lot with the friendly folks of FBC, their decorated cars, trucks, boats, tanks, etc.!  This is a fun event that brings us together and is a great blessing to families in our community.  It’s our desire to shine the light of Jesus Christ brightly on this dark night.  So please consider joining us.  Please be inviting families you know.  And please be in prayer for God to work through this effort to draw people in our community to Himself!

 

Finally, thank you to all of you who have been praying for Molly while she’s in Mexico.  The Lord has been working mightily in her life.  We are so grateful.  She has started a blog to occasionally record her thoughts about what she is experiencing.  Below is a link to her latest post:

 

https://mollyelizabethbeach.wordpress.com/2017/10/19/a-step-of-faith/

 

Looking forward to seeing you all Saturday and Sunday!  Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

 

Love From Your Pastor,

Michael

 



Love From Your Pastor

Hello FBC!

 

But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. (1 Thessalonians 5:8)

 

I like what the ESV Study Bible says about the above verse:  “Paul is drawing on Isaiah 59:17, where the Lord is portrayed as a warrior wearing armor.  Here Christians, as those destined to stand alongside the Lord on the last day, are called to put on His armor (see Eph. 6:10-20).”  And referring to the faith, love, hope, “The triad of essential Christian traits (see 1 Cor. 13:13; 1 Thes. 1:3).”  Since we are people of the day, as opposed to people of the night, we need to “armor up” with faith, hope, and love!

 

This Sunday will be message 4 out of 5 in our 5 SOLAS series, looking at the key doctrines emphasized in the Reformation.  This week we will look at SOLUS CHRISTUS: Christ Alone, which is about the uniqueness of Jesus Christ as Savior.  We will again look at numerous passages, but let me give you a few to prayerfully read between now and Sunday: John 1:1-14; Colossians 1:15-20; Hebrews 1:1-4; and Hebrews 9:15-28.

 


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Love From Your Pastor

Happy Thursday FBC Friends!

 

Has God forgotten to be gracious? Has He in anger shut up His compassion? (Psalm 77:9)

 

Thankfully, the answer to the psalmist’s questions is, “No!”  God has not forgotten to be gracious.  In fact, He couldn’t possibly forget to be gracious, because graciousness is part of who He is!  He does get angry over sin.  And He is certainly a Mighty God to be feared.  But He is also “The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious…” (Ex. 34:6-7)  I’m so thankful that is true about our God, aren’t you?

 

This Sunday, the 3rd message in our “5 SOLAS” series is about SOLA GRATIA: Grace Alone.  It is critical for us to understand salvation (and all of the Christian life) as a gift of God.  We will look at a number of aspects of grace, and consider numerous passages.  A few good ones for you to chew on in preparation would be: Titus 2:11-12; Exodus 34:6-7; Isaiah 6:5-7 & 53:4-6; Ephesians 2:8-10; and 1 Corinthians 15:10.  

 


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