Love From Your Pastor

Hello FBC Family!

 
Give Your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern Your people, that I may discern between good and evil, for who is able to govern this Your great people?
 (1 Kings 3:9)
 
What would you ask for if the Lord came to you and said, “Ask me for one thing, anything; whatever it is, I’ll give it to you”?  I had an interesting discussion about this with a couple of our kids yesterday.  They had good answers, about wanting to go to heaven, or wanting to see Jesus face to face.  
 
In 1 Kings Solomon had the chance to ask for anything he wanted, and what he asked for pleased the Lord.  He wanted the wisdom and understanding to be a good king for the people of Israel.  It’s a great true story, but also sad when we consider how far Solomon fell in spite of his great wisdom.  Not until the perfect Son of David, the ultimate King, the Lord Jesus Christ, who is Himself the Wisdom of God… not until He came do we see perfect wisdom lived out in perfect righteousness.
 
In Colossians 1:9-14, we see Paul asking the Lord for wisdom for the believers of Colossae.  He also asks for other things.  It’s an incredible model prayer.  And it’s convicting to read it and compare how my prayers typically sound.  Please spend some time reading, meditating, and praying through Colossians 1:9-14 in preparation for our message Sunday morning.
 
You’ll see in the bulletin this Sunday a flyer about “Pray 31”, a strategy to get Christians praying for America for 31 days straight.  There is a little prayer guide book on one of the tables in the foyer.  I’d encourage you to pick one up this weekend.  The goal is to pray 31 days, through the month of October for our country.
 
So looking forward to being with you again Sunday!  
 
Love From Your Pastor,
Michael
 
P.S. Now that it’s October (almost), it’s time to start planning how you’ll decorate your vehicle for Trunk or Treat!  And time to look for those good sales on bags of candy!  This year’s contest is Pastor Michael vs. Pastor Justin!  Who will be the “Heavy-weight” champion!  Bring your candy and put it in my container!  Please!


Love From Your Pastor

Hi FBC!

 
For You are my lamp, O LORD, and my God lightens my darkness.
 (2 Samuel 22:29)
 
David expresses a beautiful thought here – even when we live in the midst of darkness, there is One who lights the way for us!  His Word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path.  Jesus is the Light of the world.  Have you ever tried walking through your house in the dark?  It can be painful!  Without keeping your focus on God, it’s easy to stumble around in the dark of this world.  Look to Him to be your light every day!
 
This Sunday we will jump into the first chapter of Colossians in our current sermon series.  Please prayerfully read Col. 1:3-8 in preparation.  It is a great statement from Paul about how he prays always with thankfulness for the believers in Colossae.  This week I was reminded of just how thankful I am for you, the Christ-followers of FBC Brownsville!  And I was challenged again to faithfully pray for you. 
Come Sunday and hear why Paul was so thankful for them, and why I am so thankful for you!
 
Thank you also for praying for Pastor Justin and Lynsey during their time at the D6 Family Ministry Conference in Louisville!  Things seem to have improved since a rocky start to the trip!  Pray for a better trip home tomorrow.
 
Thanking God for you!
 
Love From Your Pastor,
Michael


The Disciples Path

Who is your Paul? Who is your Timothy? Who is your Barnabas?  Watch this video: 

http://bcove.me/huhkg7v2



Love From Your Pastor

Hello FBC!

 
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brothers (and sisters). Amen.
(Galatians 6:18)
 
Paul concludes Galatians with the most appropriate word:
grace.  This is the message of Galatians for guilty sinners, like me, and like you.  It’s also the message of Colossians.  Paul begins his letter to the believers at Colossae with the same word.  This Sunday I will be starting a new series, COLOSSIANS: Christ in You.
  I’m excited about this study!  I’d like to encourage you to take some time to read the whole letter (only 4 chapters) between now and Sunday.  I plan to read the whole letter in the worship service.  That is, after all, how the original hearers would have received it.  I’ll also do an introduction to the book, and we’ll take a look at the first two verses.  I hope you’ll plan to be with us as we start this series on this incredible, Christ-centered epistle!
 
Men, a reminder that tomorrow is again our monthly Men’s Breakfast at 7am!  Please join us for a time of spiritual and physical nourishment.  The Saturday morning men’s group will soon be starting a new study in the book of James.  Now would be a good time to decide to be a part of the group!
 
Husbands and Wives, is your marriage in need of a tune-up?  The Family Life Weekend to Remember is an excellent opportunity for you to get away with your spouse and work on this very important relationship.  It is coming to Portland November 18-20, and through this weekend they have a Buy One, Get One free offer!  So if you register one of you, your spouse is registered free.  For more info and to register, click here: 
 
Looking forward to a great weekend with you!
 
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brothers & sisters. Amen!
 
Love From Your Pastor,
Michael


Love From Your Pastor

Hello FBC!

 
As soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.
(1 Samuel 18:1)
 
Do you have a friend like that?  Do you have a prayer partner whom you can share anything with?  I love this description of the loving friendship experienced by Jonathan and David.  There was genuine selflessness and caring between them.  If you don’t have someone like that in your life, I pray you will soon!  In fact, I appreciate this verse so much it found it’s way into my sermon notes for this week!  You’ll have to come Sunday to find out how!
 
Before I begin a new in-depth study of the book of Colossians (starting Sept. 18), I will be speaking this Sunday on “Pray for Me”, the campaign we’ve been promoting to get adults in our church to pray for the youth, children, and families of the church.  I want to urge you strongly to join in as a Prayer Champion, and if you have youth and/or children, to have them be a part of it.  You can see more info at
.
 
Please spend some time meditating on Luke 2:52 and 1 Timothy 4:12 as these two passages will form the backdrop for the message.
 
After the service, there will be a light lunch and opportunity to match up adults (pray-ers) with youth and children (pray-ees).  Please stick around and join us!
 
Tonight (6-7:30pm) is registration for AWANA!  Hot Dogs provided as well!
  Make sure you get your kiddos signed up for this outstanding ministry.  Please pray for the Awana ministry and for the children and leaders for this upcoming year.
 
I want to thank the church for the blessing of allowing me time away with family.  We had some refreshing and enjoyable times together.  I’m so thankful for Pastor Justin filling the pulpit so admirably.  What a blessing he has already been to FBC!
 
May the Lord bless you with His love and peace today and always!
 
Love From Your Pastor,
Michael


Love From Your Other Pastor

Dear family,
 
I was reminded this morning that I’ve been asking you all you memorize Joshua 22:5.  I was
reminded,
because I haven’t been doing a very good job myself.  I must ask forgiveness, I fell short on what I asked you to do. So for those of us who haven’t yet memorized it, let’s rise to the challenge today.  That meant for me, this afternoon I wanted to be intentional to make sure I had it memorized. I also wanted to share with you the context this verse comes from.
 
Joshua was thanking the Reubenites, Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh who came from the east side of the Jordan river and helped their brothers conquer the west side of the Jordan river.  In verse 2 Joshua commends them for keeping all the Lord’s commands.  In verse 3 he tells them they have been careful to “keep the charge of the Lord your God.”  So then in verse 4 he releases them to return home to their families.  And this is where we find ourselves
with
verse 5.  I found it very challenging that Joshua doesn’t let them off the hook.  These people have followed God, obeyed his commands, helped their brethren; but we don’t see Joshua say, good job, go home, relax, and take it easy.  No, instead he starts verse 5 with “Only be very careful to observe the commandment…”  He reminds them that they have been faithful, but now that the tough stuff is over, to still be careful to remain faithful.  It’s easy for us to lose focus on the Lord’s commands when we have everything we need and we’re settled in peace.  It’s in those moments we need to be very careful to continue to observe all that God has commanded us.

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Love From Your Other Pastor

Dear Friends,
 
Remember to keep praying for the Beaches and a time of refreshment for them and quality family time. 
 
In 2 Kings we see a remarkable story.  In chapter 22 Josiah comes into power and reigns in Jerusalem for 31 years.  “And he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and walked in all the way of David his father.” (vs. 2)  This is especially unique
because
his father, Amon, did evil for the two years he reigned, and his grandfather, Manasseh, who reigned for 55 years was worse.  Not much of a legacy.  I wonder what caused Josiah to be a man that did what was right in the eyes of the Lord.  If you continue to read chapter 22 you’ll read about the discovery of the Book of the Law (the Torah, Genesis-Deuteronomy) in the house of the Lord.   Any copies that weren’t hidden had been destroyed by the previous kings. So not only did Josiah follow the Lord, but he did it before he had the little bit of God’s Word that had been written. 2 Chronicles 34:3 gives us a bit of insight, “For in the eighth year of his reign (16 years old), while he was yet a boy, he began to seek the God of David his father…”
 
But I wanted to focus on verse 7 back in 2 Kings 22.  This verse comes about when Josiah decides to repair the temple.  His father and grandfather had destroyed it as they chased after false gods.  He gathers money and sends it to the “workmen who have oversight of the house of the Lord (vs. 5).”  Then verse 7 says “But no accounting shall be asked from them for the money that is delivered into their hand, for they deal honestly.”  Same story in 2 Chronicles 34:12a “And the men did the work faithfully.” 
 
I know if I was King Josiah I would be keeping close tabs on that money.  Our culture has taught us to trust no one.  Yet, King Josiah says don’t worry about it, they are honest men.  I wonder if we have built that kind of reputation for ourselves.  Are we people who deal honestly, are we people who are trustworthy, are we people who reflect Jesus in a broken world?  Not only that, but they were faithful to the work they had been called to.  I bet they had hard days, things went wrong, but they were faithful.  Are you faithful in the job God has called you to; whether in a
workplace, or at home with your children.
  If your boss (like King Josiah) were to give a review of you would they say you are honest and work faithfully?  I pray that those we work with would recognize consistency in our lives because we work “for the Lord and not for man.” (Colossians 3:23)
 
Updates on prayer requests:

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Love From Your Other Pastor

Dear friends!
 
I hope you are growing in the Lord this week.  I am filling in for Pastor Michael while he takes much-needed vacation time to spend with his family.  I am thankful to be a part of your church family and to be able to support him in this way.  As he is away please pray for refreshment for the family and quality time together.  Pray for continued unity among our church family as well.
 
I have recently been reading in James.  This morning James 4:5 really hit me.  “Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, ‘He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us?'”  First off, what a blessing!  God gave us the Holy Spirit to dwell in us.  We have much to be thankful for, knowing that we were given a helper as we navigate life. 
 
What struck me though, was that God yearns over our spirit.  If we look back at the context we recognize that “friendship with the world is enmity with God.” (vs. 4)  And as James mentions earlier in his book “But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire,” (1:14) we give in to sin by our own desires.  Our passion for Him brings our focus to Him instead of things that could cause us to sin. It’s also easy to fill our days with what the world tells us is good (and are good); family, friends, technology, job, etc.  There is nothing wrong with those things, but if they are what drives us and consumes our spirit, we are driven by the wrong things.  God yearns for your spirit to be passionate for Him and out of that He will bring joy to those other areas of our lives. 
 
What, or better yet WHO, does your spirit yearn for?
 
A couple of prayer request reminders.  Please continue to pray for Don Marsh who is in the hospital again.  Also, pray for George Van Leeuwen who is in a nursing home.
 
This Sunday I will be starting a mini series on parenting.  I hope you will all plan to attend even if you don’t have children living in your home.  There is much that applies to all of us.  I have been reading many books and thinking about this for awhile and am excited to share with you what Scripture teaches.  Parenting isn’t easy, and we make mistakes and learn as we go, I hope you will find challenge and encouragement from the next few weeks.  Please read Deuteronomy 6 in preparation for Sunday.  We will jump around all three weeks, but Deuteronomy 6 is the basis for the whole series. 
 
A reminder the men’s breakfast is this Saturday at 7:00 am.  Please plan to join for good food, fellowship, and time together in God’s Word.
 
Men’s Roundup is almost upon us.  If you have yet to register please do so!  There is also a sign up in the foyer to let us know if you plan to attend so we can all camp together.  Hope you can join us.
 
Have a blessed rest of the week.  See you Sunday!  With Love, -Pastor Justin


Love From Your Pastor

Greetings FBC Friends!

 
Gideon said to them, “I will not rule over you, and my son will not rule over you; the LORD will rule over you.”
 (Judges 8:23)
 
Gideon is an interesting character in Scripture.  In him, we see some great examples of faith, as well as some serious stumbles.  Hmmm, sounds a lot like us, doesn’t it?  But as I was reading Judges this morning this was the verse that stood out to me.  I love Gideon’s statement.  Israel constantly forgot that the LORD was to be their true King.  The same is often true of us today.  Let’s always remember who the true and rightful Ruler is.  He is Lord and Ruler and of our lives, and He is Lord and Ruler of our church.  Is Jesus Christ your Lord?  Is He ruling over your life?  I hope so!
 
This Sunday I will be speaking on Psalm 119:33-40.  This is just a small portion of what is the longest chapter in the Bible.  It’s a fascinating part of this wonderful psalm that gives praise to God for His awesome Word.  Please chew on these 8 verses in preparation for Sunday.  In fact, this stanza would be a great guide for our prayer lives in the days ahead.  Try it!
 
Remember that Jeff and Laura Stoneberg are starting a new Sunday School class this week, called Digging Deeper!  They will be facilitating a discussion based on the previous Sunday’s sermon.  I’m excited for this!  I hope it will help the truths from my messages to sink in deeper.  Sunday School begins at 9am.  I believe the Digging Deeper class is going to meet in the Fellowship Hall.
 
Men, please remember it’s time to get registered for Men’s Roundup at Camp Tadmor (Sept. 9-11).  I’d love to know if you are thinking of going so we can plan on camping together!
 
Looking forward to seeing you Sunday!
 
Grace and Peace to you from Jesus Christ…
 
Love From Your Pastor,
Michael


Love From Your Pastor

Hello FBC!

 
But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness.  If the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
 (Romans 8:10-11)
 
What an absolutely amazing truth!  Is Christ in you?  If so, this promise is true of
you
!  We have the incredible resurrection power of Almighty God available to us, to dwell in us by His Spirit.  Are you living the resurrection power kind of life today?  For more on walking in the Spirit, and on God’s unshakeable love for us, read Romans 8 today!
 
Ladies –
don’t forget that tonight at 7pm is the baby shower for Lynsey (and Lincoln!) Hostetter here at the church.  Thank you for being a blessing to their family so much already.
 
All-Church Picnic
 – everyone is invited to our annual picnic following this Sunday’s worship service!  This year it will be at Pioneer Park.  We have the Pavilion (covered area) reserved for our meal time.  Please bring potluck food to share – main dishes, sides, salads, desserts, etc.  We suggest you bring your own drinks and plates, forks, etc.  (We’ll hopefully have some extra there on hand for those who may need it.)  Also, please bring horseshoes, lawn games, frisbees, footballs, or whatever other games you might like to play.  There is a playground available for the little ones.  This will be a relaxing and fun time to just be together as a church family in the park – please join us!
 
Directory photos
 – This is the last Sunday scheduled for the directory photo updates – so if you haven’t had your picture taken yet, be ready this Sunday!
 
Sunday morning I will be preaching on
Psalm 116
, “Precious in His Sight”.  This is the second of three messages from me in the Psalms this summer (Pastor Justin may also be preaching on one of the Psalms in a few weeks.)  Please read over this incredible Psalm, maybe more than once, as part of your prepartion to worship our great Lord.  Notice especially the first 4 words!  (That’s ok, look at it now, since I know you’re curious…)
 
Thankful for Christ in me (and you), the hope of glory…
 
Love From Your Pastor,
Michael



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