What makes you blessed?

This evening I arrived home around 5:45, just as the sun was setting.   I parked the scooter in the shed and shivered all the way to the front door.   When I got inside I discovered the temperature had already fallen to 52 degrees.   Subtract a 40mph wind chill, and it turns out I had been riding in the equivalent of 26 degree temperatures!  Brr!

I felt blessed to step into our warm little house.

What makes you feel blessed?

Jesus said that we are blessed when we mourn.  That’s good to know.  One thing though… Jesus’ definition of mourning has nothing to do with funeral homes, cemeteries, or anything of that sort.   Jesus has a completely different take on Christian mourning.  He’s talking about mourning ourselves…

It all sounds perfectly ghastly, but in fact it’s the key to living a full life in Christ.   No mourning… no joy.   Come this Sunday as we celebrate God’s blessings, and try to get a handle on Jesus’ blessing to those who mourn.

See you Sunday!  – Pastor Mac

(Read Mt 5:1-11 here if you want to get ahead.   The Holman Christian Standard Version does an excellent job at accurately translating the text)

Are you truly blessed? How do you know?

Everyone loves a blessing.  “Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow” was a tune many of us sang years ago as the offering plate was carried up the aisle.   The idea was that we were returning a portion of God’s blessings back to Him each week through our tithes and offerings.

Blessings from God are often assumed to be linked to financial prosperity.

Yet when Jesus talks about people who are blessed, things get a little freaky.   If you’re poor in spirit, Jesus says you’re blessed.   Ditto if you’re mourning.  Winners in life aren’t mentioned… but rather it’s the meek who receive the honors.

What’s going on here?   How is it that people who seem such losers (by most societal measures) go to the top of the ‘Blessed” roster?

Sunday we’ll begin a new series on the Beatitudes… those wonderful and yet mysterious blessings that Jesus pronounces as He kicks off His most famous message, The Sermon on the Mount.   Come find out what it means to be truly blessed!

See you soon – Pastor Mac

(Read Mt 5:1-11 here if you want to get ahead.   The Holman Christian Standard Version does an excellent job at accurately translating the text)

Disaster Relief Supper – September 30th, 5 PM

Disaster Relief Supper – September 30th, 5 PM

Disaster Relief Supper

All Proceeds Benefit Recovery Efforts

Saturday, September 30th, 5 PM

 

This Hurricane Season has brought massive destruction across the Gulf & Caribbean. Please Join us this Saturday September 30th, 5PM at West Falmouth Baptist Church for our fundraising supper. We’ll be serving a Buffet Dinner with an assortment of options: BBQ Pulled Pork, Mac & Cheese, Beans, Hot Dogs, Cole Slaw, Potato Salad, and more, plus our Desert Table with a mountain of Home Made Pies. All proceeds will support Disaster Relief efforts in the Gulf & Caribbean with Samaritans’s Purse Disaster Relief.

Adults $8 , Kids $5, 5 & Under Free.

 

 

Even if you can’t attend, you can still make a huge difference, please give online through:

Red Cross Disaster Relief & Samaritans’s Purse Disaster Relief

Storm Proofing Your Life!

Amidst all the celebration last Sunday we began an informative new series called “Storm Proofing Your Life”.    With all the hurricanes flying around the Atlantic it seemed an appropriate title.  Of course, our life-storms aren’t like those low pressure systems.  They don’t come with any warning.  They descend upon us in a heartbeat.

This Sunday we’ll peek into the New Testament to answer the question:  How can I survive the storm when it hits?   Because it’s one thing to prepare yourself for a storm… it’s a whole different thing to actually ‘hang on’ through those difficult days when everything seems against us.   We’ll see what Jesus has to say about that!

In the meantime… we’ve got a MAGIC SHOW for kids and adults coming up tonight!   This is a free event.  Come along at 6:30 and grab a snack before the show starts at 7:00.   Be sure to invite a friend, a grandchild, or a neighbor!  See below for more info.

And oh yes… we’re going apple picking at noon this Sunday!   I hope you can join us!

Don’t forget to ask Kim Walker what you can do to help make our Disaster Relief Supper (Sept 30th) a success.  We need your help.  All proceeds will go to help those who have lost so much in the storms.

Love, Pray, Serve… Together.

See you soon – Pastor Mac

Is God’s Message still Relevant?

There were some incredible science stories that broke this week, not the least of which was as story about the Voyager 1 space probe, laughed 40 years ago this Wednesday.  That amazing piece of 1970’s technology is still sending us data and photographs from the edge of the solar system… on its way into deep space.  Unbelievable!

Some people insist that the Bible (especially Genesis) becomes less relevant with each passing year.  They say that we don’t need a bunch of dusty old stories about the universe… we’ve  got the tools to figure it out for ourselves.  An all powerful God creating the earth out of nothingness… pish tosh!

So just show does God’s story fit In the age of science?  Or does it fit at all?  How can Genesis 1 inform us about the world, even today?

Come Sunday and we’ll explore the question:  Is God’s story still important?

Got Projects?

A fellow named Nehemiah had more than his share of projects on his mind.  He felt compelled to restore an entire city!

It took a lot more than just gut determination and a hammer to do what Nehemiah had in mind.  It took a lot of backing from various parties… including God himself.

Ever feel like your life is ‘under construction’?   Come this Sunday as we open Nehemiah’s journal to see what guidance he offers for those really big projects… including life itself!

See you in worship!

– Pastor Mac

Is Following Jesus Helping or Hurting You?

Some folks revel in their relationship with Jesus.   Others find it tedious.    So which is it for you?   Do you find following Jesus a joy, or is it a chore?  Be honest… this is just between us!

You might be surprised how many people would say: “a chore”.  Especially so in private company.

For some, the act of worship (or prayer, or reading the Bible) is an absolute drudgery.   You can see it in their faces on Sunday morning.   You can tell by the way they walk into the sanctuary.   They honestly love Jesus… but following Him is a daily chore.

If you feel like Jesus is a chore (like church is more about saying and doing everything you’re expected to say and do, rather than about celebrating), you’re not alone.

People living in first century Rome thought the same thing.    They thought that making Jesus happy was all about how well they behaved.  What’s more, they thought that going over their lives with a fine toothed comb on a daily basis was the only way to stay on God’s good side.

All of which I suspect generally made them a bit miserable to be around, I suspect!

If your relationship with Jesus has become a bit of a drudgery… then this Sunday’s message from the Apostle Paul is for you.   Read ahead if you’d like… I don’t mind spoilers!

See you in worship!

– Pastor Mac

Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord

If you’ve ever seen the movie “Godspell” then you probably remember that fantastic scene where a modern day ‘John the Baptist’ sings “Prepare Ye The Way Of The Lord” while standing in a city fountain. People come running from all around, tossing off their shoes and jumping into the water, frolicking with joy over the news that God will soon be in their midst. You can’t help but be caught up in that moment of joyous celebration.

What does it all mean? How do we prepare?

Come and see this Sunday!

~ Pastor Mac

I am Groot, Who is Jesus

Last Sunday afternoon as Diane and I were buzzing down 295 on the scooter we spotted a shiny new car with this license plate: IMGROOT.

We both laughed out loud!   That plate told us something about the driver.   He was obviously a movie fan (click here if you’re really confused), and apparently possessed a great sense of humor as well!

Understanding a driver simply by reading their license plate is fun.

But understanding who Jesus is through his own words is more than just trivia… it’s vitally important to our faith, both present and future.

Don’t get me wrong: It’s great that we’ve spent this month learning his teachings on discipleship, prayer, and even on Hell.   Jesus was a great teacher.     But who is He, really?   What are his credentials?  What did he say about himself?  And how does that change US?

Jesus’ true identity, revealed.   It’s all on for (you guessed it) this Sunday at 10am.

See you in church!  ~ Mac

Be Brilliant!  Read ahead in Matthew 14:22-33

Now I lay me down to sleep… pray to the Lord my soul to keep.

Many of us treasure that simple childhood prayer.  It does have a few weaknesses though.   For one thing, it’s centered almost completely on our ‘to-do’ list for God.     “Here’s what I need done this night.  Take care of this for me, won’t you?”

I guess that’s ok for kids.   Life really is all about you when you’re seven!

But God has a lot more in store for us when we come to him in prayer.   Something deeper & richer by far than simply passing him a list of needs and wants.

Thankfully, Matthew wrote down Jesus’ advice on prayer.   It’s pretty powerful stuff.    If your prayer life feels a bit tread-worn — or maybe you just don’t get around to praying as often as you’d like — this message is especially for you!

Come this week as we continue our series “Jesus Said It” with a look at Jesus’ advice for (and example of) a rich prayer life.  Sunday at 10am.

See you in church!  ~ Mac

Be Brilliant!  Read ahead in Matthew 6:5-8