Summary: For us to continue in the love God has shown us we must pass that love on to others. In Acts 6 we see love being passed on even before there were Elders in the church. In Acts 6 we see the church moving on a road map God had laid out for the new group o
Still in the Beginning!
Back in Dec. I started a series of messages about being in a new beginning, and we still are. We have fallen short of goals we set but not in the spirit of which we set them. Weather, sickness, vacations, travel and priorities have slowed us down. Yes even discouragement has played a part in this problem. But God is greater than any of the problems we face and have faced in the past weeks. Starting in March we will have the café open, we will have the first movie night, the hangman’s curse, a Frank Perettie movie on March 24. We will get back on track moving forward for the Kingdom of God. But first today we will be installing our Deacons to serve the congregation, to make it easer to move in the direction God is leading.
31 “The time is coming,” declares the LORD,
“when I will make a new covenant
with the house of Israel
and with the house of Judah.
God has taken the old law and has given us a new covenant, a covenant of love and of order and direction.
Only God can make the days and weeks flow together in rhythm.
Only God can put meaning and purpose and direction into life.
As Christians we still experience difficult seasons…
…trials and hardships. There is winter as well as spring.
But God causes even those times to have purpose.
We soon learn that “in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” God has given us a new beginning, a new way at looking at things. In scripture it says….
6He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
The church is alive and thriving because of the Spirit of God. God has giving us the direction, the means of travel (His word), And a navigator to show the way (His Spirit).
God has given us a picture to follow, A likeness, to show what we are to become like. He wants to be transformed into His likeness. To be like Him in every thing.
17Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
Wow can you see, How we can look at the new beginning God has given us. With open eyes and hearts.
34“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
A wealthy man and his son loved to collect rare works of art. They had everything in their collection, from Picasso to Raphael. They would often sit together and admire the great works of art.
When the Vietnam conflict broke out, the son went to war. He was very courageous and died in battle while rescuing another soldier. The father was notified and grieved deeply for his only son.
About a month later, just before Christmas, there was a knock at the door. A young man stood at the door with a large package in his hands.
He said, "Sir, you don’t know me, but I am the soldier for whom your son gave his life. He saved many lives that day, and he was carrying me to safety when a bullet struck him in the heart and he died instantly. He often talked about you, and your love for art." The young man held out this package. "I know this isn’t much. I’m not really a great artist, but I think your son would have wanted you to have this."
The father opened the package. It was a portrait of his son, painted by the young man. He stared in awe at the way the soldier had captured the personality of his son in the painting. The father was so drawn to the eyes that his own eyes welled up with tears. He thanked the young man and offered to pay him for the picture. "Oh, no sir, I could never repay what your son did for me. It’s a gift."
The father hung the portrait over his mantle. Every time visitors came to his home he took them to see the portrait of his son before he showed them any of the other great works he had collected.
The man died a few months later. There was to be a great auction of his paintings. Many influential people gathered, excited over seeing the great paintings and having an opportunity to purchase one for their collection.