Message From Matt | February 15, 2019

Surrender!

 I have been re-reading the book 

Absolute Surrender by author Andrew Murray.  In the first chapter of the book he quotes 1 Kings 20:1-4 which states in part…”And Benhadad the king of Syria…sent messengers to Ahab king of Israel into the city, and said unto him…Thy silver and thy gold is mine; thy wives also and thy children, even the goodliest, are mine. And the king of Israel answered and said, My lord, O king, according to thy saying, I am thine, and all that I have.”

At this point, much could be said about how weak and evil a king that Ahab was…no doubt this is true.  I wonder if King David would have done this.   Most likely not!  But it’s not Ahab’s weakness that grabbed my attention…it is what he said during his surrender to the king of Syria.  I think this is what attracted Andrew Murray to write this book as well!  

I have “surrender” on the brain as 15 of our church members are in Costa Rica this week with 3 missionaries that have surrendered their lives to God’s call.  It is as if they said to God “

I am thine, and all that I have.” 

when God called them.  Maybe many would think that it is easy to leave the States to live in Costa Rica;  after all, the weather and scenery are fantastic!  But I can tell you from my experience of seeing behind the scenes that surrendering to leave your home, family, friends and security is not easy!  In fact, there are some very hard parts about it!  So why do they do it?  

It has to be because when God puts something on your heart like this and it won’t go away – surrender is the only thing to do!  Doing anything else would be unfulfilling!

So how do we know when God is calling us to do something for Him?  

Maybe there are multiple answers to this depending on the circumstances and person, but I reflect back on what my father in law, Ron Pollard, told me when I asked him years ago about being called into ministry.  He said that I would know it is of God “when it’s all that I can think about!”  At that time, getting into full-time ministry was constantly on my mind! I couldn’t shake it and I tried to, but God was calling me to something different than anything that I could imagine and I knew that I would continue to be miserable if I didn’t surrender. 

Surrender can be scary!  You don’t know what to expect and what the future will hold.  It might even change your plans like it did mine but I don’t regret it!  I am glad that I surrendered (hesitantly at first) and know that I should be ready to do anything that God calls me to do.

What about you?

  Has something been pressing in your thoughts for a long time that you haven’t surrendered to yet?  

What about today?  Will you say to God, “I’m yours and everything that I have”?

What’s next?  You wake up every day and say to God that same thing and see how God directs you.  Work for Him and wait on His direction!  When I surrendered to God, I never thought I would be surrendering to be the pastor at IBT, but that was God’s plan that was fulfilled nearly 10 years after my surrender. 



Message From Matt | February 8, 2019

What are we looking for?
 
In my devotional reading from yesterday, I read about a man that had an “infirmity” for 38 years that waited during a certain season each year (along with other people that were handicapped) to be healed of his physical issues.  The passage in John 5 states that an angel would come and “trouble” the water and the first person to step into the water would be healed.  Can you imagine that?  It’s hard to, but when I envision this I can see hundreds of people constantly watching for the water to be stirred.  Then when it happened the race to the water had to be quite a sight!  I can see pushing, shoving, and stepping over people to try to be the first in but only one could be first.  The rest left dejected and depressed…they had to wait for the next season to have a chance for healing! 
 
But when Jesus came to the man and told him to stop looking for the water to heal him and look to Him…everything changed for him!  
When he heard and obeyed the words of Jesus…he was immediately made whole. (John 5:9)!
Instead of the water – he was made whole by Jesus! This is an old story but it seems like the same can still be true for us…when we look to Jesus, good things happen!  
 
It’s easy to look toward other things rather than Jesus; in fact, it almost seems natural.  We can lean on ourselves, other people, or even substances to help us through our pain, but you already know the obvious answer should be that we should be looking toward Jesus, the Spirit, and His Word for the help that we are needing!  
Jesus really is the problem solver (healer)!  God’s Word really has the answers! 
 
So, what are you looking for?  Keep looking to God and He will continue to help you! If you have been looking elsewhere, choose the right focus today!
“And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart” – Jeremiah 29:13


Message From Matt | February 1, 2019

For God’s Pleasure!
 
Ever watch a movie or listen to music and it affected you so much that it made you want to change a part of your life that needed changing?  I have, and for example, every time that I watch a Rocky movie or hear its famous songs, I have a great desire to get into shape, run through the streets of Philadelphia with a crowd of people cheering me on and get in the ring to fight for the heavyweight championship of the world….then, after a while, reality sets back in and the thought of running crushes that temporary fantasy.  Maybe if I would just listen to Rocky music every morning then maybe I would stay motivated!  Maybe not…
 
When I was a young teenager there was another movie (and its main song) that also influenced me like Rocky.  It was the movie Chariots of Fire.  If you’re my age or older, you definitely remember the movie and its plot based on the real life story of Eric Liddell, a Scottish Olympic track star running for the British team who was also called to be in Christian ministry.  The pivotal point of the movie was when Eric, who was a favorite to win the 100 meter sprint in the 1924 Olympics, chose not to run the race because it was held on Sunday.  His conviction cost him a gold medal, frustrated many, but also encouraged many to live by their convictions.  Eric won the gold for the 400 meter race in that Olympics but he is not remembered for that win, he is remembered for standing by his convictions and his stand for Christ.   Most don’t know that he died 20 years later while being held prisoner in a Japanese prison camp after serving as a missionary in China.  He died as he lived…for God’s pleasure!  
 
There is a line in the movie that speaks to Eric living for God’s pleasure and it is the scene where his sister is urging him to give up running and go “all in” into the ministry.  It was during this exchange that he said, I believe that God made me for a purpose. But He also made me fast, and when I run, I feel His pleasure.
 
What a great quote!  What a great attitude! 
As I have thought about this quote this week, I have been remembering that Bible verse that says that we were created to do good works for Christ!  It’s written in Ephesians 2:10, “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”  
Our purpose is to work for God!   He created us to do good works!  He ordained (appointed) us to walk in those good works!  When we do what we were created for it pleases God and I believe that we can feel God’s pleasure!  
I know that when I serve God by serving others, it feels great!  
I know that when I spend some time in the Word of God, it feels great! 
I know that when I take time to spend time in prayer, it feels great!  
I know that when I resist temptation and have victory over it, it feels great! 
 
I don’t think that these are just shallow feelings though!  I think it comes from feeling God’s pleasure!  God is pleased when we live and work for Him!
Want to feel God’s pleasure – serve Him!  Serve others!  Serve in the church!  There is no greater feeling than that!


Message From Matt | January 25, 2019

Wrestlemania! 

You might find this hard to believe, but when I was younger,  loved Iwatching wrestling!  Not the real wrestling but the fake stuff from the World Wrestling Federation (WWF).  I grew up watching it on Saturday mornings and loved Dick the Bruiser, Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, “Macho Man” Randy Savage, and Ricky the Dragon Steamboat!  I liked the WWF so much that when I was 19 years old I bought a 3rd row ticket to the 1992 Wrestlemania event at the Hoosier Dome in downtown Indy.  There I was, as close to the action as possible, watching some of my favorites beat up on each other and try to finish off their opponent with their finishing move!  One of those moves was the “figure four leg lock” that was the signature finishing move of Ric Flair.   This move wouldn’t last long, supposedly because the pain was too great, and those that were in it would eventually “tap out”!  But again, that stuff was fake!  

What about Jacob wrestling with Jesus in Genesis 32?  That wrestling match was the real deal and it lasted all throughout the night!  

I can only imagine how worn out Jacob had to be and the result was that Jacob walked the rest of his life with a limp…but he survived (he was preserved – Genesis 32:30)!

The result of that all night match didn’t end up with Jacob winning a championship belt, but it was the culmination of a 20 year process of breaking Jacob from his sinful behaviors!  

Remember, Jacob was a deceiver!  Jacob was a liar!  Jacob played favorites!  Jacob was following in his family’s sin patterns (strongholds) but enough was enough…it was time to change!  

When Jacob wrestled with Jesus, Jesus easily could have won!  But, He had a greater purpose!  His purpose was for Jacob to repent…and he did!  

Jacob realized that the life of deceiving was not what it was cracked up to be and through the pain of being deceived and the night of wrestling, he was a changed man!  In fact, his name would be changed and his fellowship with his brother that he robbed would soon be restored!  Jacob repented!  He changed his mind – he changed his direction!  

When we have been going the wrong way in life, God is merciful and gracious enough to allow things to happen in our life to get us to the point of repentance. It is because God is rich in mercy (Ephesians 2:4) that He allows us the ability to repent instead of chastising us to the full extent that we deserve!  Repentance is a great thing:

Repentance brings refreshing (Acts 3:19)!
Repentance is given by the goodness of God! (Romans 2:4)!
Repentance is a gift (Acts 11:18)! 

If you’re living apart from God – repent!  It is God’s gift to us and the best way to start living for God again!    Repentance is changing our mind about our sin and turning back to God’s way!


Message From Matt | January 18, 2019

Breaking Free!
 
Have you heard the story about Jayme Closs in Wisconsin?  I have and all  I can say is that it’s an amazing story of survival!   On October 15th, Jake Thomas Patterson, age 21, decided to kill Jayme’s parents, kidnap her and take her to his cabin about an hour away from her home.  There, for 88 days, he kept her locked up, many times under a bed for hours at a time.  When people would come over to his house to visit, he would put her under the bed and stack things all around it and play loud music to keep people from hearing her.  Once, he left for an extended time to visit family leaving her chained to the bed with no food or water.  This girl, only 13 years old, had witnessed her parent’s murder, was deprived of food, water and security, and locked up like an animal, but somehow was able to escape after 88 days and find help!  
 
As I have read about this story, I have been thinking about how powerless Jayme must have felt!  She’s a young teenage girl and he’s an ex-military guy at the prime of his strength.  It had to seem that she was in a no win situation and that her life would end in that cabin….but thankfully she was able to break out of that stronghold and run to freedom.
 
A stronghold is defined as “a fortified place” or “a place of security”, but for Jayme it definitely was not a place of security but the opposite.  The strongholds that I am talking about are something that we feel locked into because of family dysfunction, or our personality, or the experiences that have shaped our thinking.  These strongholds are things that have formed in our brain and have us locked into negative thinking that we will never be freed from.  Although none of us (I hope anyway) have gone through what Jayme has been through, we all have some strongholds that we have been in before or might currently be in that we need to have a break out experience from. 
Some might have problems with addictions and feel that they are genetically disposed to the addiction and there is no hope of freedom…they need to break free from the stronghold of their thinking!
Some have insecurity problems that have haunted them for a lifetime…they need to break free from the stronghold of their thinking!
Some find no joy in their life as their purpose has been sidelined by bad choices and bad thinking…they need to break free from the stronghold of their thinking!
 
The list could go on and on, but I think that you get the point.  We all have had things that have happened in life that can cause strongholds in our thinking and leave us lifeless!  However, God wants to help you break out of those strongholds and live life to the fullest!  How do we do this???
 
“(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; – 2 Corinthians 10:4-5
 
How do we do this?  We obey God’s Word and use His power to break these strongholds from us!  Our mind is powerful, but it can be swayed by either good or evil.  The things that we put in our mind will determine how successfully we will live for God!  If we allow the devil to have free reign in our minds or allow our minds to be influenced only by the world…we will be in bondage!  
Maybe that is you today!  Let me give you some hope – you can be free!!!
With God’s help, we can break free from the grips of the strongholds of our minds!  Focus your mind on God’s Word, follow it and you can be free!  
Is there more to it?  Come Sunday morning and we will talk more about recognizing and breaking free from strongholds that we have in our mind!


Message From Matt | January 11, 2019

The Resistance! 
        Last week I wrote “What Satan Attacks” that outlined the things in your life that the devil wants to attack.  I only gave three things (your faith, peace and purpose) but we all know that he will use any means necessary to kill, steal and destroy our lives (John 10:10), not just these three things.  I ended the message with three things that we can do to fight off the attacks from the devil.  Those three things are the Word of God, Prayer to God and God’s people!  
  Today, I want to flesh this out a little further from James’ vantage point!  He wrote in James 4:7“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” 
How do you get the devil to run from you when he is attacking?  Submit and Resist!  
 
       Submit to God – Resist the devil!   Sounds easy, right?  Attacks from the devil are never easy, but God’s way of fighting the devil works – we just need to know how to use it.  To know how to use these things we need to understand their meaning.  
 
       Submission has two parts.  The first is surrender or yielding!  This means that I am intentionally surrendering or yielding myself to whatever God wants.  We know what He wants by His written Word as well as the leading of the Holy Spirit who lives inside us.  As we submit to His Word and the Spirit, we are surrendering our will to please Him!  The second part of submission is drawing close to God.  We surrender so we can get closer to Him.  James 4:8states, “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.  Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”  As you choose to surrender your ways to God, the natural byproduct is getting closer to Him!  Submission leads to intimacy!  
 
       Then there is resisting the devil!  Resisting the devil is a deliberate use of the Word of God to help you in the attacks of the devil! Jesus demonstrated how this works during His great temptation in Matthew 4:1-11.  After fasting for 40 days, the devil used three things (things that fall into the category of the lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes, and the pride of life – 1 John 2:15-17) to tempt Jesus to sin.  But Jesus resisted the devil and the devil left.  So, how do we resist?  We use the Word of God to resist!  More specifically, we speak the Word of God to resist.  After each temptation, Jesus said, “it is written…”  
 
        Jesus gave us the example and proof that God’s formula works for resisting the devil and having victory over the devil’s attacks; the question is, are we going to use what He has taught us?  The best time to start memorizing the Word of God is now!  The best time to start fighting the attacks of the devil is now!  The best way to do this is to submit and resist! Let’s be a part of the resistance!


Message From Matt | January 4, 2019

What Satan Attacks!
 
“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.  Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” – Ephesians 6:10-12
 
Have you ever felt attacked by the devil?  If you are a believer of Jesus Christ,  you most likely have been under attack and you definitely will be under attack in the future.  Or maybe, you might be under attack right now!   Whether you have been, are currently or will be under attack, let me express what you already know…the attacks from Satan are not fun, will cause stress in your life and will “mess” with your mind!  
 
But, how do we know what are attacks of the devil and what are things that might be caused from other sources?  If you asked that, good question!  This is something I have been asking as well.  We know that Satan is a multifaceted being that will use any means necessary to kill, steal and destroy you (John 10:10) but there are some specific areas in which he attacks you:  
 
Satan attacks your…
1. Faith!  Satan wants you to disbelieve God!  If he can get you to disbelieve God, then you are on the way of falling away from God.  Satan wants to put fear into your heart and mind and have you believe that God is not helping you!  If he can get you to focus on your problems more than focusing on the One that help you through your problems, then he counts that as a victory.  Fear and worry are the opposites of faith and devices that he uses to attack!  
2. Peace!  Once Satan attacks your faith, the peace that you have from God starts to erode!  It is an amazing experience to have your faith grow and realize that your peace is growing as well. BUT, it’s a sad thing when your faith decreases and your peace leaves!  One of the great benefits of being a child of God is to have peace!  The world is full of chaos, but abiding with God in prayer and thankfulness increases our faith (Philippians 4:6-9).
3. Purpose!  One of the most troubling things that anyone can go through is to not have purpose in life!  A lack of faith and peace leads to a lack of purpose!  When you are given over to faithlessness and worrying, you can eventually begin to wonder what’s the point of the Christian life?  Our entire perspective on life can be altered when we have little faith and peace and living for God can become not worth the effort.
When Satan attacks…
When does he attack?  Usually, it’s your most vulnerable time(s)!  Maybe it’s in the morning or maybe it’s at night in bed.  It doesn’t matter to Satan, he will use any means necessary.  Again, he attacks with fear!  He attacks your peace!  He attacks your purpose!  Peter calls him a “roaring lion, seeking whom he can devour” (1 Peter 5:8) and he is a master at his craft.  This is why we need to know how to fight against him.  
How to fight Satan’s attacks?
There are several ways to fight off his attacks but let me just give you three!  We fight off the devil by…
1. The Word of God!  As I have recently felt the attacks of Satan, the Word of God has been the greatest source of comfort that I have experienced.  There really is something to how the Holy Spirit works in us while we read, meditate and apply the Word to our lives.  If you aren’t already in the Word, make a plan to be in it.  Use your Bible or smart phone app to keep the Word in your mind.  When the devil attacks, read the Word!  
2. Prayer and 3. People!  Talking with God is great, but when you multiple people praying for you, it’s even greater!  You pray – always!  But, don’t be too prideful to ask others for help as well.  Pray that God will give you greater faith; greater peace; greater purpose!  
 
I am praying for us all that we will have greater faith, peace and purpose in 2019!  
See you Sunday!


Message From Matt | December 28, 2018

Exalt!  Equip!  Engage!

“And He said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” – Mark 16:15

I was sitting at Panera again today working on thoughts for this message when I began to notice the sounds all around me.  Normally I am able to focus on the task at hand even in the middle of restaurant noise, but it was the language that I heard that caught my attention and made me stop and listen.  It wasn’t cursing, but rather, it was different languages that I was hearing. Sitting behind me was a Spanish speaking family that were really enjoying their time together.  A few tables to my left there was a family of middle eastern descent that was speaking in their native language.  Then I also heard a European family conversing over their meal that were sitting in front of me.  Then a few tables over from them was a group from what appeared to be the deep south, which had a different dialect altogether!  As I was listening, but not understanding the people around me, our church motto flashed in my mind!  If you don’t know what that is, it is simple (and written above the doors leading to the auditorium)…

Exalt Jesus Christ, Equip Disciples and Engage Community! 

  
The reason that it flashed to my mind is that for 68 + years our church has lived out the command in Mark 16:15 of going into all the world preaching the gospel of Christ, but now it seems more than ever before that “the world” is here!  Here in Indianapolis!  

By stating this truth that the world is with us here in Indy does not mean that we are going to stop our foreign missions focus!  I actually want to increase it!  What this does mean is that we have been given a great opportunity to reach the world in the “Crossroads of America” with the gospel of Jesus!

How do we do this? 

We prepare – Preparation is needed to be ready to share the gospel!  Spending time in God’s Word is the key!  Prayer is the heartbeat that makes it move!  

We look! –  Then we look for people to share the gospel with!  Ask God to help lead you to someone to talk with!  Don’t start slamming them with their eternal destination right from the get go, but begin a relationship with them so that they want to hear what you have to say!  

We talk! – When you find someone to talk with about the gospel, open your mouth and let God help you!  You won’t say everything perfect, but people will get the point. 

God has already done what He needs to do – it’s up to you now.  Let’s reach Indy for Christ!

Finally, I believe that God will do great things through the Indianapolis Baptist Temple in 2019 and I am strapping my seatbelt on for the ride that God is going to take us on!  

We are stronger together!  We are strongest together with God!

See you Sunday!



Message From Matt | December 21, 2018

“Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently inquired of the wise men.  Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not.” – Matthew 2:16-18

 

This part of the Bible has to be one of the saddest that anyone can read!  It is sad because on account of one man’s wrath, insecurity, and pride, many babies were slaughtered so that the threat to his throne would be eliminated.  As a parent, I can’t imagine having one of my kids ripped from my arms and killed by an army that could easily overpower me.  There would literally be very little that I could do to stop it and I imagine  I would be left weeping and mourning and not able to be comforted!  Every time that I read this passage I try to imagine, but can’t fully, the horror that overtook that entire area by the atrocity of the killings.  

Because of this king’s wrath, many were killed, but yet Jesus was saved! 

 

As I have tried to fathom what the parents of the kids that were killed were going through, the thought didn’t escape me of what Joseph and Mary had to be going through as well.  Many kids were killed because of their son’s birth!  They were warned by God to leave so that  Jesus would be safe, but why weren’t the other parents warned?  What did they do to deserve this?  Why did their children have to die?  I wonder if Joseph and Mary thought these things as they had to hear about the slaughter.

 

I know that this event fulfilled prophecy so that  Jesus could be saved when He couldn’t make the choice for Himself, so that one day at age 33 He

could make the choice to die for our redemption (see 1 Timothy 1:15).  He was saved from the wrath of Herod so that He one day would take the wrath of God upon Himself for our sins.   In fact, Jesus became a curse for us (Galatians 3:13) that we might receive the promise of the Holy Spirit through faith (Galatians 3:14

).  

 

God flipped the story!  God’s wrath was put on Jesus so that all can be saved!  

Jesus had to be born like He was (to a virgin) so He could die like He did (all God but still all man).  Christ’s birth was the greatest ever and His death was the most amazing act of sacrifice, but the best part of the story is that we now have life, joy, and hope through Jesus!  

 

This Christmas season, I hope that you will live this life to the fullest and appreciate every moment!  We have been given the greatest gift already – enjoy it!  

 

I hope that you have a great Christmas season and don’t forget that we have one morning service at 10:30 AM this Sunday and our Christmas Eve service begins at 6 PM!

 

See you Sunday!



Message From Matt | December 7, 2018

“The other disciples therefore said unto him (Thomas), We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.  And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.  Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.” – John 20:25-27

 

Ever wonder what those eight days were like for Thomas from the time that he said he would not believe unless he put his hands into Jesus’ wounds until the very moment that he did?  That’s the thought that has been running through my mind but I know that  I won’t know the answer…so I am left to wonder and speculate. I have wondered why he didn’t believe until he saw it.  I have wondered what experiences he had witnessed or influences that he had had that led to his unbelief.  Here are the thoughts that come to my mind…

 

Staying in his stubbornness…

Thomas had to be stubborn!  Since he said he wouldn’t believe, then he was going to stick by it!  The other disciples that saw Jesus had to keep trying to convince him, but Thomas wasn’t going to have any of it.  He saw Jesus die on the cross and be buried and for some reason he decided not to believe that it was possible that Jesus rose again!  Did he forget that Jesus told them that he was going to die and rise again (

Matthew 16:21

)?  Did he think that the other disciples were a bunch of liars?  Or was he just prideful and didn’t want to give in to the hysteria? Whatever the reason is, he was determined not to believe unless he saw and felt for himself!  

 

Wondering “what if”…

Then I think that he had to have sometime in those eight days when he wondered “

what if”?  “What if Jesus really was alive?”  “What if the other guys weren’t lying or crazy?”  “What if I have really blown it for not believing?”  “What if I don’t get the chance to redeem myself to Jesus and the guys?”  

Maybe, just maybe, he wondered “what if” he was wrong?  

 

Then there’s the  moment he saw Jesus…

“What have I done?”  “Why didn’t I believe?”  “Why did I wait 8 days to believe?”  “Why did Jesus wait 8 days to show Himself to me?”  I think that he had to be thinking something like this when Thomas saw Jesus.  He had to have regret and guilt as he was looking in the face of Jesus.  He had to wish that he had chosen to believe rather than to be stubborn!  Can you imagine what it had to be like for Thomas to look Jesus in the face, knowing that he should have believed?  I know that I would hate to be defined by one sinful act or bad decision but maybe that is what Thomas needed to fuel his faith!  He did move from a disciple to a doubter, then being devoted and finally dying for Christ.  

The effect on Thomas seeing Jesus was that he would never doubt in Jesus again!  He took what we believe was the worst eight days of his life and used that to propel his faith moving forward!

 

What about you?

What’s your faith like?  Do you believe what God’s Word says or are you struggling with doubt and worry?  Maybe you have heard all your life about how God is good but lately you haven’t been believing it?  Maybe you have fear about what lies ahead of you for your future and struggle to believe that God is with you or will help you?  Maybe you are just being stubborn or maybe you have been hurt so much that you just don’t know what to believe anymore? If any of those thoughts fit you, let me encourage you with these truths:

  1. God’s Word is true! (Psalm 119:160, John 17:17)
  2. God’s love is real! (John 3:16, 1 John 4:18)
  3. God’s goodness is towards you! (Exodus 34:6-7)
  4. God’s presence is forever! (Hebrews 13:5)
  5. God’s faithfulness is great! (Lamentations 3:23)
  6. God’s power is limitless!  (Ephesians 3:20-21 – “Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us. Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end.”)

Let’s not have the regret of the “what if’s” in our life!  Let’s choose to believe in God, get in His Word and let our faith grow!  A large part of growing a healthy church is growing faith in God!  It’s my hope that IBT’s faith will continue to grow stronger – let’s commit to that! 

 

See you Sunday!