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 | Wednesday Weekly Blog |

An Encounter 4/15/15

Good Morning,

The last several weeks we have been talking about being people of the Cross.  We have looked at scripture, we have watched the news, the current events that are taking place all across the globe and asking the question, “Where is God in all of this?”

Last Sunday morning we looked at the story of the two disciples on the Road to Emmaus on the afternoon of Jesus’ Resurrection.  We know that they were divinely kept from recognizing Jesus.  Luke tells us that they had no idea what when on and when Jesus Himself “came up” and walked along with them, asked them questions and then eventually opened up the Word of God to them about Himself and why He had to be crucified.

Luke tells the story and after He is revealed to them and suddenly taken from their sight Luke tells us that their response was, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?”

When you walk with Jesus there is going to be some of that same effect when He really gets down to business in your life.  This wasn’t just an afternoon stroll in the park, or more appropriately on the road in the afternoon – this was meant to be a life-altering encounter with the Savior.  They were NEVER going to be the same as they were before that afternoon.  Everything was already in place; Jesus had been raised from the dead; the women had seen it and testified to it; Peter and John had seen the evidence, but before their encounter with Jesus it didn’t affect these two disciples.  They were “downcast” and they had given up hope . . . UNTIL . . .

Have you encountered Him today?  He is right here beside you.  Look again!

One word about tonight’s study.

How do you find God’s will for your life?  What is it that God wants you to do?  How can you know for sure that what you’re doing is what God wants for you to do or where He wants you to be?

Tonight in our Wednesday night study at 6:00 we are going to watch a video by John Ortberg that deals with these questions and so much more.  There is a sense where every one of us is asking these kinds of questions.  Ortberg says to us that God’s primary will for your life is not found in asking questions about what should we be doing, or where should we be going, but that God’s primary will for your life is the person that you become.  He is interested in your character and your integrity more than what you do or where you go.

Why not come and join with us in the sanctuary at 6:00!

I love you

Rick

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Upcoming Activities

Today, Wednesday April 15– We have our regular Wednesday evening activities beginning at 5:00 with dinner.  Come out and join us!

Sunday April 19 – We have our regular schedule of services on Sunday and we hope to see you here at the 8:45 or 10:30 services or the Hispanic service at 4:00.

We are beginning something new this Sunday.  Once a month, typically on the 3rd Sunday of the month, we will be having a “newcomers” dinner at 5:00 p.m.  We are doing this so people who are new to Angus Church over the last year or so can come out and have dinner with our staff and some of our leaders, ask questions and find out what’s going on.  This dinner is filled up but watch for the opportunity to sign up for next month!



Humbly Before God 4/8/15

Good Morning,

Last Sunday I shared with you that God has blessed us with a “new” van.  The way it all came about, the price that we’ll pay for it and all of it is a gift from God.  It came at a time when we really needed it and the man responsible for getting it for us has blessed Angus Church immensely.

All that said, we have an obligation now to pay for it.  In order to get such a good deal we have to come up with a down payment that is bigger than we originally thought we would have to come up with.  The teens have set aside $1000 for each van they will have to rent to go to the Regional Activity Days in San Diego in May.  Since we now have this van it is one less van to have to rent so they are prepared to pay that $1000 toward the down payment.  We need another $2000 to make that down payment.  Last Sunday, with no prior notice, we had $400 come in for this and that means we need $1600 more this week.  I am not pleading with you I am simply stating the need that we have.

The Bible says, “And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).  This is a need that we have and I know God will meet it.  It is like the preacher who went to his congregation and said, “I have good news and I have bad news.  The good news is that we have the money to make the mortgage payment; the bad news is, it is still in your pockets.”  Well, I believe we have good news and we have better news.  The good news, we have the money to make this down payment; the better news, it is in our pockets!  Thanks for listening to God and being faithful in helping us meet this need.

God challenged me this morning as I met with pastor friends in Capitan.  His challenge to me is in the area of prayer.

As a church, EVERYTHING that we do must be dependent upon God.  We’ve talked about this, I’ve preached about this, and we’ve reiterated this over and over so it isn’t new, but God reminded me again today that I need to pray more.  EVERYTHING that we do must start with prayer.  This does not excuse us from doing what God asks us to do, but the beginning place of all that we do is prayer.

God has placed me here as the spiritual head of this congregation.  I do not say that with anything except humility, fear and trembling.  As I thought of this during and after the pastor’s time together this morning it caused me and still causes me to tremble before God.  I AM NOT to take this position lightly.  I AM NOT to ever take this responsibility flippantly.  I have a responsibility and accountability before God to make sure that my leadership is of God and not of Rick.  I have been reminded of that this morning in a pointed way and I do not take that lightly.

I say that to say the following three things:

First, I commit to you that I will spend more time in prayer for you, for Angus Church and for what God is calling us to do.

Second, I ask you to pray for me that I will never take this responsibility in any other way but humbly and respectfully before God.  And pray for God’s direction for us AND that we will be faithful and obedient to that direction.

Finally, this prompting and direction today is an indication to me that God wants to do something IN us, WITH us and THROUGH us.  God is moving, He is speaking and He does not do that without a reason.  I want for me and I want for us to be ready to listen and then be obedient to follow.

I love you

Rick

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Upcoming Activities

Today, Wednesday April 8– We have our regular Wednesday evening activities beginning at 5:00 with dinner.  Come out and join us!

Sunday April 12 – We have our regular schedule of services on Sunday and we hope to see you here at the 8:45 or 10:30 services or the Hispanic service at 4:00.

We will have a Memorial service for Patti Huston Sunday afternoon at 2:00 p.m.  We have a dinner planned for 12:30 for family and friends – we ask you to pray for Dave and the family and to be a part of this and share your thoughts and condolences with Dave.

Monday April 13 – Men we will meet for breakfast at Smokey Bear Café in Capitan at 8:00 o’clock Monday morning.  All men are invited to join us.

Church Board meeting Monday evening 6:00 p.m.



Are We Listening? 4/1/15

Good Morning,

“It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour, for the sun stopped shining.  And the curtain of the temple was torn in two.  Jesus called out with a loud voice, ‘Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.’  When he had said this, he breathed his last.  The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, ‘Surely this was a righteous man.’”  Luke 23:44-47

The verses above are Luke’s narrative on the last few moments of Jesus’ death on the Cross.  There are two things that I want to highlight briefly this morning out of that narrative.  I won’t elaborate very much, more than anything I want to ask you to consider what God is saying to you.

The first is the darkness that came over the land.  The Bible tells us that God uses signs in the heavens to speak to us.  It also tells us that everywhere we look we can see the hand of God.  It is obvious that this darkness was an indication of the horror of what was taking place; the Son of God, murdered like a common criminal on the Cross.  And yet, it was and is God’s plan for the salvation of mankind.  God loves us so much that He went to the most extreme measure to pay the price for our salvation.

Over the last two years we have seen some incredible signs in the heavens that I believe are indications that God is speaking to us.  Last year and this year there have been four “blood moons” or lunar eclipses – and as incredible as that is, the timing of each of these eclipses is not haphazard; both years the eclipses have and will take place on the Jewish Feast of Passover and the Feast of Tabernacles.  This is not a coincidence.  We have already had a solar eclipse this year and another one will occur just before the Feast of Tabernacles.

The second thing that I would highlight out of this passage is the centurion’s recognition of Christ.  He had, no doubt, been a part of this execution from the very beginning and more than likely had been a part of many executions in the course of his service as a Roman centurion.  He watched the participants here on this day and had probably watched many others who had been executed as well.  But this one was obviously different.  Something happened, or a collection of “somethings” that affected him deeply.  He recognized that Jesus was different; he recognized that this was not a normal execution.  We don’t know anything about his life after this and I will not speculate as to it, but at this moment in time there was a realization that God had stepped into time and this man was greatly affected by it.

God is speaking . . . are we listening?

I believe with all of my heart that God is trying to get our attention.  God doesn’t play “hide-and-seek” with us; He isn’t trying to baffle us; He doesn’t want to hide His will from us; I believe with that God is “shouting to us”, as it were . . . are we listening?

This week gives us a pointed reason to listen.  This is what we have called Holy Week – it is the week that we commemorate the last week of Christ’s life before the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.  There are special opportunities to “listen.”  The Ministerial Alliance has scheduled special mid-week services at noon today, Wednesday, and on Thursday and Friday as well.  These services will take place at Mt. Annie’s in Ruidoso mid-town where the Body of Christ will come together and remember.  Pastor John Marshall, pastor of Calvary Chapel will speak on Wednesday; Derick Jones, the preaching minister at Capitan Church of Christ will speak on Thursday, and Father Juan Carlos, priest at St. Eleanor Catholic Church will speak on Friday.  It would be a wonderful time for us to come and “listen.”

On Sunday morning we have a special schedule for the day.  We’ll begin at 6:45 a.m. at the Prayer Pond for our Sunrise service together with our brothers and sisters from Christ Community Church in Capitan and Grace Harvest Church in Ruidoso.  We have a special breakfast planned for 7:30 in the gym and then we have a combined Resurrection Celebration Service at 9:30 in the gym as well.  There will be special children’s activities from 8:00 – 9:00 a.m. as well.

God is speaking . . . are we listening?

I love you

Rick

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Upcoming Activities

Today, Wednesday April 1– Holy Week service at Mt. Annie’s in Ruidoso at noon – we will have a worship service and then lunch will be served.
There will be no activities here at Angus Church tonight due to Spring Break.

Thursday April 2 – Holy week service at Mt. Annie’s in Ruidoso at noon – worship service & lunch

Friday April 3 – Holy week service at Mt. Annie’s in Ruidoso at noon – worship service & lunch

Sunday April 5 – Our Resurrection Day (Easter) schedule will be as follows:  Sunrise Service at the Prayer Pond 6:45 a.m. – Donation Breakfast in the gym at 7:30 a.m. – Combined Celebration Worship Service at 9:30 a.m. in the gym!  There will be special activities for the children from 8:00 a.m. until 9:00 a.m. as well.