Encounters With Jesus: The Fishermen

Pastor Joy reminds us that Jesus meets us wherever we are and that we are still encountering Jesus today!

#EncountersWithJesus

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Encounters with Jesus: Mary Magdalene

This Resurrection Sunday Pastor Joy brought the message from John 20:1-18 and focused on Jesus’ encounter with Mary Magdalene and how Jesus uses ordinary people and things to share the Good News!

Next week, we will continue with Encounters with Jesus after his resurrection and before his ascension!

#EncountersWithJesus #ResurrectionSunday #EasterSunday #ResurrectionToAscension

Near the Cross

Near the CrossOur message this week was from Matthew 26 and Pastor Joy took us through the Last Supper, the betrayals and trials, and finally, the crucifixion.  It was a lot of ground to cover but she left us with a challenge to see the Gospel through the eyes of a child.

Here is the message from our Facebook live stream:

 

#HolyWeek #PassionWeek #NearTheCross

Unwrapping Gifts for SPIRITUAL INSIGHT

Starting this Sunday, Jan. 14th! (12)

We’ve unwrapped the spiritual gifts of shepherding, serving, strengthening, salvation; and our final gift package is spiritual insight: interpretation of tongues, discernment, knowledge, wisdom, and prayer.  Those with the gifts of spiritual insight will connect with God in a way that allows them to clearly share God’s desires.  It’s all about communication.  Think of these as a link between God, us, and the lost.  What is God saying now and what does He want us to do about it?

We went off-line right after the message began, not realizing it until half way through.  Please catch the last half of the message here, picking up with wisdom and prayer:

Next week we will wrap up our series on spiritual gifts.  If you haven’t taken the spiritual gift test yet, PLEASE, please, do.  The test is available online and it adds up your responses, too!  Please enter Whitney Friends and whitneyfriends@gmail.com for the church information.  God has equipped us with everything we need but if only one of you has a certain gift and you aren’t using it; think how much healthier our Body will be when you are!  Roy and Joy will be back tag-teaming next week as we wrap this series up before we head in to the final week of Jesus’ life.

#SpiritualGifts

Forgiving and Forbearing

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Fellow pastors: Joy and Sherri

Pastor Sherri Sheirbon preached Sunday, the 18th, while Pastor Joy and her family were on a week sabbatical.  Her message was meaningful and applicable for us!

You can read the summary of the message God put on her heart for Whitney Friends below.  Feel free to share your thoughts with us in the comment section.

 

 

We don’t often talk about the reality that if you are connected to a church body for any length of time that you will invariably be wounded by that very institution that promises us hope and healing. How we react when we are hurt or offended by those within the church body is important because we can become bound up in bitterness and anger and even worse disillusioned with the church as whole if we don’t respond appropriately and seek God’s healing.

How should we respond when we are hurt or wounded by those within the church? Before we can answer that question we need to understand the importance of maintaining relationships within the church body. When we enter into relationship with God, we also enter into a relationship with God’s people. A strong Christian life includes personal prayer, Bible study, and fellow believers, relying on less that these three spiritual pillars is like trying to sit on a one or two legged stool. We need all three to have a strong foundation!

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The New Testament is full of admonitions on how we are to be the church to one another. We are given spiritual gifts for the benefit of ministering to one another and our love and unity as the church are one of the key ways that people will know that we are followers of Christ.

Colossians 3:12-17 (NLT)

Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.

Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.

In this passage we are called to make allowances for, overlook, put up with and forgive the offenses of others. The King James version of verse 13 reads, Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another. But for some reason when it comes to those around us in the church, I think we have a tendency to be thin skinned, easily wounded and not very forgiving. I wonder how much we are really willing to suffer for one another.

For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for him – Philippians 1:29

I think we assume that if we are to suffer for our faith it will come at the hands of unbelievers. But have we ever asked ourselves if we would be willing to suffer for the person in the pew next to us….how about if we were willing to suffer because of the person in the pew next us.

Are you willing to be overlooked or wounded by someone within the church in order to maintain relationship with that person and to be an example of the forgiveness that Jesus showers upon us daily.

Henri Nouwen said, “When we have been wounded by the Church, our temptation is to reject it. But when we reject the Church it becomes very hard for us to keep in touch with the living Christ. When we say, “I love Jesus, but I hate the Church,” we end up losing not only the Church but Jesus too.

I want us to have a passion for God and his word and also a passion for his Church because the three are all so intertwined. If you read his word you come to know and love God better, if you know and love God better you want to read even more of his word – and if you know God and his word then you will also know his deep love for his church.

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her – Ephesians 5:25

Are you willing to forgive an offense from someone in the church in order to maintain fellowship and friendship with that person? Are you willing to forbear with difficult people, to put up with a critical spirit or an insensitive word in order to show that person the love that Christ has shown you?

Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. – Matthew 16:24

Are you willing to be wounded for Christ?

#ForgivingAndForbearing