This morning I want us to start by watching a another one of the “I Am Second” testimonies. This one is a musician named Danny Gokey and we’re going to listen to a bit of his journey in coming to realize that God truly is enough. Let’s watch together
What Danny came to realize and live out of, is a confidence in God. He grew in understanding of who God is and that God is true to his words. The promises of God are powerful reminders to us, to rest in Jesus because this is what he has promised to do.
What I would like to do now is to simply read some scriptural promises and then pray that we would rest in them and trust God to be true to his word. These scriptures speak to who God is, what he is doing and what he will do. The key being that he is the central figure to all of them.
Promises from Scripture
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.
So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
11 “All who rage against you
will surely be ashamed and disgraced;
those who oppose you
will be as nothing and perish.
12 Though you search for your enemies,
you will not find them.
Those who wage war against you
will be as nothing at all.
13 For I am the Lord your God
who takes hold of your right hand
and says to you, Do not fear;
I will help you.
You, Lord, are forgiving and good,
abounding in love to all who call to you.
Matthew 7: 9-11
“Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!
“And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”
I John 1:9
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
II Corinthians 1:20
“For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.”
Spend time in prayer acknowledging God’s promises. If there is one that stood out to you (or another one not listed), feel free to focus your prayer around that.
All of these promises start with God and are realized as we place our belief in him.
As we transition to communion, I want us to read from I Corinthians 11:23-26…
For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
The practice of communion is a time where we add our amen in agreement that through Jesus all the promises of God are realized. We acknowledge our need for him and our belief that he is the resurrection and the life.
Christ’s body given for you…
We start with a piece of bread or cracker that represents the sacrifice of Jesus’ body for us. He willingly gave himself up for us.
Before eating the bread, take time in prayer to thank God for the willing sacrifice that was made for us.
Let’s partake of the bread
Christ’s blood shed for you
Likewise, the cup represents the blood of Christ being poured out for us as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. It is called the cup of the new covenant. Gone is the practice of yearly sacrifice of atonement and in its place, we live as children of God because of the grace of Jesus which has brought us eternal life.
Before we drink the together, take time in prayer to thank God for his eternal sacrifice which has brought us forgiveness from our sins.
Let’s partake of the cup
One of the promises from scripture that I didn’t read is from Matthew 16:18 which says,
“And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hell will not overcome it.”
God continues to build his church even in this present day. One of the benefits that I have noticed during COVID-19 is the awareness of Christians to the needs of the poor and vulnerable in our midst. The Lord knew this to be the reality and a couple of years ago started us into the Motel Ministry with John Russell. This isn’t to say it is a work without it’s heartbreak, but God is definitely at work in it.
John Russell will be sharing with us online about this work, but let me share with those of you going through this at home some of the encounters John continues to have:
- Regular visits to tent city in Kingston allowing John and others to connect with many of the most vulnerable in our community
- Weekly Bible study (this past week they were talking about the problem of evil)
- Pastoral care for many, including one lady who is making choices that are making the end of life come quicker (please pray)
- Reconnecting family – John has been working to re-connect a mother and daughter
- New Opportunities – John recently spent time out in Verona where the Lord is opening another door for ministry relationships
Please take some time to pray for John and this ministry. If you are in a position to give over and above your regular offerings to the church, you can support this ministry further by designating “New Venture Vision Fund – Motel Ministry” through E transfer OR Canada Helps.
Before we close, I just want to share a few announcements:
- Tuesday Prayer Meeting – We will again meet for prayer online via ZOOM. Watch your email for the link to join and share your prayer requests with Pastor Dave at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Although regular office hours are suspended we continue to work. If you need anything please contact myself (email@example.com) or Pastor Greg (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Feel free to share this and other email communications with others. Some from the church are not on the email list and we have had a few that have not received it even though they are on the list. Please help us make sure that people are keeping connected.
- Kids Online Gathering – Don’t forget to join Mrs. Olding online each Wednesday. JK – Grade 3 from 4-5pm, Grade 4-8 from 7-8pm. Watch for the zoom links on Wednesday.
I encourage you to do two things with your giving that may help a little.
- Do your giving each week as part of this devotional/worship time. I know it is not exactly the same thing, but it does help us view our giving as worship rather than simply a financial transaction
- Take time to pray as you give. Thank God for what he has given to you, acknowledge your trust in him for tomorrow, and tell him why you give to him and the work of his church.
- Best – E-Transfer (no fees)
- email@example.com is the email address you will need to make an e-transfer
- Please include your first and last name in the memo box
- If you know your envelope number please include it in the memo box (*Do not include the # sign as it will not accept that)
- Still good, but with fees – Canada Helps
- https://bayridgealliance.ca/give-with-canada-helps/ and click on the donate button to give
Thank you for honouring God by supporting the Church.
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
25 the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you;
26 the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace.”’