Summary: This is my testimony. I preached this message after preaching at the same Church for thirty years... God has taught me a few things!
“Barrels, Cups, and Flying Saucers”
This is the message that the Lord laid upon my heart to preach at our Church’s 30th Anniversary Sunday. My wife, Judy, and I began the work in the basement of a home in East Muskegon 30 years ago on this date 1976. We are still here and God has taught me a few things about him and about myself. This is a testimony of my reflections.
1. There has always been food on my plate...
(1 Ki 17:9 KJV) Arise, get thee to Zarephath, which belongeth to Zidon, and dwell there: behold, I have commanded a widow woman there to sustain thee.
(1 Ki 17:13 KJV) And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son.
(1 Ki 17:14 KJV) For thus saith the LORD God of Israel, The barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the LORD sendeth rain upon the earth.
(1 Ki 17:15 KJV) And she went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, did eat many days. (1 Ki 17:16 KJV) And the barrel of meal wasted not, neither did the cruse of oil fail, according to the word of the LORD, which he spake by Elijah.
Elijah was a great prophet of God. Part of his greatest came from how many times the Lord had to humble him. It is a humbling thing to be fed by ravens. It is even more humbling to be sustained by taking the crumbs of a widow! But that is how the Lord has taken care of this Church and this preacher and his family for thirty years!
We have never have had much. There is no money, I mean "no money," in our Church savings account. In fact, we don’t have a Church savings account. We live from offering to offering and always have. We have had to learn to live by faith.
But God has always provided. There has always been food in the bottom of the barrel! We have always had food on our plate, and room for a visitor to set with us at the table!
2. There has always been oil in the cup.
(Psa 23:5 KJV) Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
Note, that in the text with Elijah, the oil in the kruse did not fail either.
In this text in the twentythird Psalm. David said that God’s annoiting oil had not only filled his cup, but that his cup was running over!
Can you imagine how many sermons that I have preached from my pulpit in thirty years? Can you imagine having a daily half hour television program for nearly the same time? But every time I have opened my mouth for the Lord, he has blessed my words with his annoiting oil. My cup has been running over for thirty years now!
3. I have always been aware of the presence of Jesus at my table.
Ezekiel saw some UFO’s in this text:
(Ezek 1:14 KJV) And the living creatures ran and returned as the
appearance of a flash of lightning. (Ezek 1:15 KJV) Now as I beheld the living creatures, behold one wheel upon the earth by the living creatures, with his four faces.
(Ezek 1:16 KJV) The appearance of the wheels and their work was like unto the colour of a beryl: and they four had one likeness: and their appearance and their work was as it were a wheel in the middle of a wheel.
The children of Israel looked out over the desert floor and saw some UFO’s in this text...
(Exo 16:15 KJV) And when the children of Israel saw it, they said one to another, It is manna: for they wist not what it was. And Moses said unto them, This is the bread which the LORD hath given you to eat.
John the Baptist wanted to know if Jesus was a UFO in this text!...
(Mat 11:1 KJV) And it came to pass, when Jesus had made an end of commanding his twelve disciples, he departed thence to teach and to preach in their cities.
(Mat 11:2 KJV) Now when John had heard in the prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples, (Mat 11:3 KJV) And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another?
Who are the UFOs’s? Unidentified Flying Objects?
They are the many people that have flown in and out of my life these past thirty years! I have not always known of what to make of them. Some come and stay. Some come and stay for a while. But most people fly in and fly out of our lives!