Be Gentle With Christ’s Church

Matthew 18:21 “Then Peter came and said to him, “Lord, if another member of the church sins against me, how often should I forgive? As many as seven times?”
I had an extra ten minutes and decided that I would run in quick (with my two children) and get my eye brows waxed.  Now, in full disclosure, this is not something I keep up with so every time I go in I get asked how I want my brows shaped.  Frankly, I don’t really care so long as they don’t wax them off.  So the cosmetologist meets me at the door and walks me to her station and she says, “Just your eye brows, or your upper lip as well?”  I was stunned a bit.  I said, “No thank you.  Just my eye brows.”  She seemed to really think I should reconsider and she responded, “Are you sure?  Nobody has ever suggested you take care of that mustache?”  Again, I’m stunned.  (I really don’t think I have a mustache.)  I said, “Nobody has suggested this before.  You are the first.”  As I laid my head on the sink at her station she brought it up again.  “You should really consider it.  If not today, soon.”  Then she left me to go heat up the wax.  I got up, took off my little cape thing she had put on me and walked out.”  The woman at the front desk asked, “Are you leaving?  Will you be back?”  I said, “I will not be back–ever.”  And I was sure to look as if I was in some great pain.  
I sometimes hear stories like this about the Church.  Somebody in the congregation said something stupid, or mistaken, and quite possibly offensive.  And so a person never returned.  Maybe they never returned to ANY church?  This happens.  People say stupid stuff.  People do stupid stuff.  Be gentle with Christ’s Church…they’re just people who need to be loved and forgiven.  Be gentle with yourself…you’re just a person who needs to be loved and forgiven.  That’s why we gather together as the Church.  So that through the hearing of God’s Word, and the assembly of the Body of Christ, we may know love and forgiveness being lived out.  
Father, forgive us for we know not what we do. Jesus help us to be gentle with one another.  Holy Spirit, lead us back to you and into community with one another.  Through Jesus who loves us no matter what.  Amen
Shared by Pastor Kari Vadis


Trust in The Lord

It’s simple. It’s short. Yet it’s incredibly powerful. Proverbs 3:5-6 is one of the most familiar passages in the Bible–with good reason. It sets forth a life-changing truth that is worthy of our attention. Spend three minutes reading this article, and see if you agree.

Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

Trust in the Lord.

It starts with trust. Any real relationship has to start with some level of trust. It’s the only way a friendship will endure. It’s the only way a marriage will work out. It’s the simple reason why an employer hires workers, or why the workers stay employed. It’s all about trust. Trust in the Lord, however, takes on an entirely new dimension. This is our trust in an eternal, all-powerful, all-wise, all-loving God. He is worthy of our trust. The trust is important, not just because of who God is, but because of the way in which we must trust him: with all your heart. It involves every fiber of your being. That’s the kind of trust we can have in God–a complete, unshakable, deep, abiding trust.


Read part 2, Don’t Lean On Your Understanding


Do Not Lean on Your Own Understanding

Read part 1 first, Trust In The Lord.

Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.


Don’t Lean on Your Understanding

The verse involves a positive–something you must do. But it also involves a negative–something you must not do. Don’t lean on your own understanding. Basically, the verse is telling us that we ought not to be self-reliant. We cannot pursue a course of action, a financial decision, a business move, a relationship, or an educational choice, simply based on our own understanding. It must be founded in our trust in God.

Self-reliance is such a deceptive trap. We begin to pride ourselves in something–our savvy, our looks, our intellect, our spirituality, our family, whatever. And when we do, it takes away our trust in the Lord. It has become trust in self. The result is a dangerous compromise that will lead to destruction.