RSS
 

Archive for the ‘Pentecost’ Category

Fifth Sunday of Pentecost-B

29 Jun

Para-church organizationsMinistry beyond the church In the beginning, para-church organizations to minister to the community were supported by the churches which provided oversight as well as supplying funds and volunteers. As a result, many church members were able to get training and experience through the programs. However, many churches no longer support the parachurch organizations and the organizations get very little support from individual churches, so they are often forced to draw their support from the community at large. As a result, churches often see them as competitors for money rather than as avenues for ministry and church members are finding few avenues to serve and no training in how to serve. Many para-church organizations can provide volunteer opportunities for members to serve God and often provide needed training. (see “The Important I”-LULU  Press) If you are interested in serving Christ beyond the local church check with the local Salvation Army or other church related ministries to see what volunteer opportunities are available in your area.

 

Fifth Sunday of Pentecost-A-July 3

29 Jun

Parachurch Ministries Ministry beyond the church In the past, many members learned to minister to others as they ministered to other members and to those who  came to the church for help. Today, church members are so scattered they rarely know each other well and few people come to the church seeking help anymore. As a result members get little experience in ministering to others and few church members have the experience to help. Many problems in small churches do not warrant separate programs to deal with them, however many problems formerly associated with the inner-city are moving to the suburbs as the poor move to the suburbs where rent is cheaper, housing is better, and there is less violence. Many suburban and rural areas do not know how to deal with the problems and many problems are too big for individual churches to handle. As a result, many churches today have withdrawn from ministry to those around them so many community needs are not being met. Parachurch organizations have grown up to help, such as Habitat For Humanity, Crisis Pregnancy Centers, etc. to carry on ministries and to meet the unmet needs in the community.

 

Video-study course-Christian Celebrations-promo

22 Jun

I have a course on Basic Christian Beliefs for new Christians and as a refresher for long-time Christians, which is posted on Udemy.

It is available by posting the following link in your browser.

https://www.udemy.com/course/christian-celebrations/?referralCode=D706C0B4E96819B18699

 

Fourth Sunday of Pentecost-June 26

22 Jun

Put out into the deep. Jesus challenged Peter to put out into the deep water and cast down their nets. They had been out all night and caught nothing so why should they go out again. Peter was a career fisherman and knew how to fish. He figured that Jesus was a teacher and probably didn’t know a lot about fishing, yet he was willing to trust Jesus and do as He said. As a result, they caught so many fish they had to call for help to haul it all in. The church today feels that unbelievers don’t want to know Jesus, yet many have never heard of Him and are seeking something that doesn’t move in our unstable society. The Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and even satanic societies reach out to them and they join them in search of help, but none offer them what they need. Jesus asks us to put out into the deep and reach people where they live. He said, “Go ye into all the world and preach the Gospel.” He knows where the people are that need Him and He wants us to go tell them about Him. If Jesus asks us to do something that doesn’t make sense, maybe He just wants to teach us to trust Him.

 

Third Sunday of Pentecost-June 19

16 Jun

Not just for Pastors-Many people think that only preachers can lead people to Christ, but Jesus said to His disciples, “Come, follow me and I will make you fishers of men. While there have been times when evangelists like George Whitefield and Billy Graham have risen to call God’s people to repentance, the main response has come mainly from within the body of believers. Few outside the church responded until revival had swept through the church and unbelievers saw the change in the life of believers and wanted that life. When the church has had a highly trained and highly paid clergy, the church has generally not been very effective in reaching the lost because members leave evangelism to the clergy. The greatest inflow of unchurched people occurred during the early church before they had paid clergy, during the Wesleyan revival when Wesley organized small groups of converts under lay pastor’s, and in the American wilderness when believers gathered to pray and study the Bible while waiting for the Lord to send them a pastor. Although John Wesley and George Whitfield preached extensively and circuit riders rode throughout the American wilderness establishing churches, members of those churches continued to reach out to those around them, inviting unbelievers to hear the traveling preachers. It has been said that church isn’t a haven for saints but one beggar telling another where to find bread.

 

Second Sunday of Pentecost -Trinity Sunday-B-June 12

08 Jun

The season of Pentecost occurs during the summer and today is a time when the church reaches out through special ministries to reach those who don’t know God that they may see God’s love and turn to Him. The zeal of the church in its ministry testifies to the presence of the Holy Spirit in it just as the tongues of fire testified to the presence of the Holy Spirit on the first Pentecost after Jesus rose from the dead. The church’s goal should be to be a witness to God’s love and to introduce unbelievers to the love of God in the hope that they will desire that love and turn to Christ for their salvation. The church’s main emphasis should be to reach out to those around it, conduct charity, and minister to the needs it finds. While these should be carried out all year round, Pentecost should be used to expand the church’s outreach. 

 

Pentecost Sunday-June 5

30 May

Many churches celebrate Pentecost, the second major celebration, on the 50th day after Passover (according to Jewish tradition) which is a Thursday, but some churches start the count of 50 days with Easter and celebrate it on the seventh Sunday after Easter. The color is Red, symbolizing the fire of the Spirit. When the Holy Spirit fell on the disciples, there appeared tongues of fire over them Acts 2:1-6. Pentecost was a time when the Jews celebrated the giving of the Law to Moses and predicted when God would write His law in our hearts. The coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost fulfilled the prophecy as the Holy Spirit comes into our hearts and dwells in us, teaching us God’s Law, and guiding us in doing all that God would have us do, helping us carry out God’s will. Pentecost occurs during the harvest of the first fruits and is considered the birth date of the church. It was fulfilled when many who witnessed the coming of the Holy Spirit joined the church and became the first fruits of the Gospel.

 

Fifteenth Sunday of Pentecost Aug 29

26 Aug

Finding the Resources-Many churches tell me they don’t have the resources to do outreach. My wife and I once belonged to a house church with only six families. One day I spent an hour on a railroad bridge convincing a teenage girl that she didn’t really want to jump. I later related the story to the church. They were very concerned about the high suicide rate in the county and that galvanized them to act. They contacted an organization called Contact USA which helped them plan and organize the needed organization. They were able to recruit and train 129 volunteer phone workers and secure enough local funds to pay the cost of office rent, utilities, and the phone bill. The phone bill alone was over $1500.oo a month for feeder lines allowing someone to call from anywhere in the county toll-free. They went on the phones just a year after I sat on the bridge with the girl and have continued to serve that community 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for over 40 years with no government help. Can you imagine what the average church could do if they had a half dozen couples that were that committed to a ministry.

 

Fourteenth Sunday of Pentecost-Aug 22

21 Aug

Neighborhood Bible Studies Neighborhood Bible Studies-Many people in neighborhoods are becoming isolated and have little interaction with neighbors. With families moving a great deal, they often have no family nearby and the only cheap entertainment available is to go to a bar or neighborhood parties where beer is often abundant. Church families can start family friendly get-togethers and even Bible studies in their neighborhood by getting to know their neighbors and inviting them to cookouts in the back yard or other activities where neighbors can get to know each other and do things together. Once they get to know the church family in their neighborhood, they may be more open to attending church and even more so as some of their neighbors begin attending the church

 

Thirteenth Sunday of Pentecost-B

11 Aug
Mother’s Clubs-Mothers who do not work may feel isolated and become frustrated with no social interaction besides their kids, especially if their
 husband is gone all day at work and even more so if they are a single parent and have no other adult interaction. Today, many mothers no longer 
have family living nearby to help. Since families are having fewer children, many mothers did not grow up with younger siblings and did not learn 
to care for children. As a result, they need help learning to manage their kids. They are glad to get together with other mothers who can help them 
to deal with the problems they face caring for young children. In addition, many parents no longer let their kids roam the neighborhood and it gives 
children the opportunity to play together and learn to deal with others. Mobile home parks, apartment complexes, and new neighborhoods often 
have a lot of families with young children, and are fertile for neighborhood mother’s clubs. It is good to have an older church woman whose kids 
are grown who can work with the young church mother who hosts the group to help her deal with problems she hasn’t experienced yet. Older
unmarried college age girls can help watch the kids and keep them occupied while their mothers meet giving them valuable experience dealing with
 kids, or the mothers may take turns watching the kids if no one else is available. You may also have older women whose kids are grown teach a 
children’s Bible Club for the children of the mothers who participate and other neighborhood children who wish to attend.