This is the Ordination Charge that was given during my Ordination Ceremony.
My Ordination Ceremony was conducted by Pastor Jim Cain and Pastor Chris Gehring. My Family, Small Group, Friends, and Elders of the Church are in attendance.
It isn’t very often that I sit at my keyboard to write a blog post. Most often, my time is spent preparing Bible Studies and Sermons, but I felt like an explanation of the events from this last week deserved … Continue reading →
Once again this year, I attended the Rosh Hashanah service at a local Messianic Jew church (http://www.facebook.com/TheCongregationOfTheOneNewMan).
Rosh Hashanah is known as the Feast of Trumpets. It’s feast name is Yom Teruah. The feast has prophetic significance in that it is the feast that no one knows the day or hour of. Traditionally speaking, the feast does not begin until three witnesses all agree that they have seen the first sliver of the new moon. Depending on the weather conditions, the sighting could occur immediately or it may take several days for the moon to be visible.
Since Jesus said that no man would know the day or hour of His return, many Christians believe that the Lord will return during Rosh Hashanah.
I enjoyed my evening with the One New Man congregation. The sounding of the shofar was particularly exciting. If you have never heard one, you should go look it up, it’s quite unique. Everyone should hear it so they know what to listen for upon the Lord’s return! After the service, the entire congregation was invited to stay and eat honey and apples. This is supposed to signify blessings for the new year. The people there were very welcoming and there is a great love for our Messiah here. 🙂
Please visit their Facebook page to learn more.
I am a member of the Starfish Ministry at our church. If you are unfamiliar with the starfish story, you may read about it here. The basic concept of this ministry is that if we can help just one person come to Christ, then everything we do is worth it. As such, we will occasionally go out to a local park to both feed and witness to whomever we find there. Typically, we encounter many homeless individuals, but given the close proximity to Indiana University, we often meet wayward college students as well.
Last December was my first experience with the Starfish Ministry. That was a very special event for me as I had never “hit the streets” to witness before. We were in the park for over three hours in sub-freezing temperatures. We gave away hot soup all day from a variety of crockpots and pray for needs of many people. It is an amazing feeling of peace and humility that you receive when lifting up others in prayer to the Lord. I believe that it prepared me for what happened next.
I encounter many unbelievers and outright atheists in the course of my day. Sadly, it is sometimes difficult to find the opening and engage these individuals in a good theological discussion. As such, I am not as well practiced as I would like to be. I am eternally thankful to the Holy Spirit for guiding me as I encountered Max.
Max was an atheist. While he inquired about what I, and Christians in general, believe, I could tell that he had some prior knowledge. After I had described something to him, he began trying to find the weak points in my argument and exploiting them. It was at this time that I was thankful for David Ball’s “Defending the Faith” series (if you haven’t listened to it, do so…now). Every question from “How do you know there is a God”, to “What makes the Bible different from any other book”, and “Well, that’s a good truth for you, but doesn’t every religion claim to be the true and only path to heaven?” To date, I had never been challenged so hard on my beliefs by a person who had obviously constructed their own reasonable defenses.
I knew that Max was solid in his atheistic belief and nothing I said was going to change that. After struggling for a little bit after our conversation, trying to think of something I could have said that may have swayed his opinion, I remembered Matthew 10:19, where the Lord says, “When they deliver you over, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour.” I began to understand that everything that I said was what I should have said. Only the Lord offers salvation, and the only way Max is going to find it is if the Holy Spirit leads him to it. I now pray for Max that the Lord will lead him to Righteousness.
This past Sunday, August 26th, we again visited the park. This time, it was pizza and prayer, with much more acceptable weather conditions (85 degrees and sunny). We had more volunteers show up to help witness this time than any previous time we had gone out. I again had the opportunity to witness to people that may not otherwise hear the Good News. While I was not challenged to the extent that I was in December, I was still able to speak with at least one person who had some sincere questions and wanted a dialogue. I praise God for that blessing and pray for the Holy Spirit to guide Kenneth to salvation.
So, now the question is…What are YOU doing for Christ? We are all called to spread the Gospel using whatever means that we have. There is enough work that all of us can find something to do. An old preacher once said that even if you know very little about the Word, go out and find someone to share that knowledge with…they likely know less than you. The question is, if you are a Christian and you are not doing service for the Lord, what would you say you are doing? Just something to think about… 🙂
Approximately seven weeks ago, our church started something new…a Men’s Ministry. When I began hearing the whispers about the recreation of this ministry, I was very excited. Evidently, the church tried to do this same thing back in 2006/2007 (before my wife and I began attending), but the interest was so minimal at the time that it slowly waned into non-existence. Thankfully, the church has grown both in size and commitment to service since then. We have had three meetings thus far, and at each meeting, we have averaged around twenty men. It is such a blessing to get good, Godly men together and hear ideas on how we can help further the Kingdom. This Sunday, the men of the church will be signing a covenant to show our commitment to our families, God, and to service. I was blessed to be part of the group of men that designed the wording for that document.
Our plan is to have each man that wishes to make this commitment sign an 8 1/2 x 11 document that they will be able to keep for themselves. This will be printed on quality paper and be suitable for framing and display. This will act as a reminder of their service and the guidelines that the Bible lays out for Christian men. Secondly, there will be another document that will be blown up to “Constitution” size. This document will have an additional sheet page (equally as large) that all the participating men will sign. This document will be on display in the church, acting as a public announcement that those men have committed themselves to service and can be called upon to lead, teach, or just help out as their abilities permit.
I believe that the men’s ministry has a great goal. The training and development of the men of the church is sometimes overlooked, but this new initiative aims to address that. Below I have included the text from the covenant that was created. Please read it and be encouraged!
Men’s Ministry Covenant
I believe that Jesus is the Christ, Son of the Living God. I believe Him to be the Lord of all Creation and the only means of Salvation and Reconciliation with the Father. I am a sinner, but through Christ and His Grace I have been redeemed. I am a servant of the Most High God and will strive to do as He commands.
I affirm the Bible teaches that:
• I have been saved by grace through faith. This is a gift from God and not the result of any works that I perform. (Ephesians 2:8-9)
• True faith will produce good works. Faith without works is dead. (James 2:14-26)
• Jesus commanded His Disciples to go into all the world and preach the Gospel (Mark 15:16). As His servant, this is my responsibility.
• A servant of God should live a blameless life and serve as an example to both nonbelievers and fellow believers. (1 Timothy 3:1-1)
• A man should act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with God. (Micah 6:8)
As a member of the South Union Men’s Ministry:
• I will strive to have a personal relationship with God, loving Him with all my heart, soul, and mind.
• I will strive to love my neighbor as myself.
• I will strive to engage fully with and be supportive of my spouse, children, and church family.
• I will strive to lead, motivate, and teach the Word of God to my family, fellow believers, and non-believers.
• I will strive to confront evil, pursue justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with God.
• I will strive to forgive those who have wronged me and make amends with those I have wronged.
• I will strive to be honest with my time, words, and actions.
• I will strive to stand accountable for my behavior before God, my family, fellow believers, and non-believers.
• I will strive to attain the standard for Christian living as described by the Word of God.
I pledge my service to the Lord. I pray that He would help me serve and witness to my family, fellow believers, and non-believers. In unity, the South Union Men’s Ministry will win and commit people to Jesus Christ, training them for service in His Kingdom. As a member of this ministry, I will commit my time and energy to further the Kingdom of God for His glory alone.
Name:___________ Date: ________________