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Summary: As the Lord has blessed each one of us to enter into a new year, 2010, I have been in prayer and have found myself very contemplative about the healthy and consistent spiritual growth of this congregation. Looking back over 2009, it is probably evident t

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Evangelist Herman E. Wesley III

LORD MAKE US A STRONG CHURCH

Acts 4:23-31 (NIV)

The Text

On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them. When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. "Sovereign Lord," they said, "you made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David:

" 'Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain?

The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the Lord and against his Anointed One.

Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch out your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus."

After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.

INTRODUCTION

As the Lord has blessed each one of us to enter into a new year, 2010, I have been in prayer and have found myself very contemplative about the healthy and consistent spiritual growth of this congregation. Looking back over 2009, it is probably evident to all who seek to view things with a spiritual focus, that we have allowed our intensity to wane, our commitment to decrease, and our creativity to be compromised by a preoccupation with the things of this world, and a misappropriation of priorities. What’s really important. When I use the term, “misappropriation of priorities,” I simply mean that those of us who have been baptized into Christ did so willingly, not under physical threat or compulsion, other than that of the Holy Spirit. we voluntarily committed our lives to Christ, and, using a spiritual metaphor, put our hands to the plow. It is important to note here the words of Jesus, when He says in Luke 9:62:

"No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God."

As a matter of fact, The Word of God is clear on this subject of falling back into the pattern of the world being distasteful to God, for Peter writes to the early church in 2 Peter 2:20-22:

“If they (speaking of Christians) have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning. It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them. Of them the proverbs are true: "A dog returns to its vomit," and, "A sow that is washed goes back to her wallowing in the mud."


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