From the Pastor

Am I Making Enough Progress?

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Jesus' teaching in the Sermon on the Mount is a great discipleship tool.  We are being taught how to be more human through the help of our Father in heaven.  But I am also realizing, as we near the end of Jesus' sermon, that I have a long way to go in my sanctification.  The journey from seedling to a fully grown oak tree takes decades.  For those of us who are always nagged by the feeling of not doing enough I want to leave you with the wise words of David Powlison, a Christian counselor and teacher. 

An Open Letter to those Frustrated by their Progress in Sanctification

The Sermon on the Mount is also a helpful tool in waking up the uninterested and spiritually lethargic because we are shown what life with God can and will look like.  So for those who are aware that they don't care enough, here is another letter from Powlison:

An Open Letter to those Apathetic about their Sanctification

 

Mundane Mondays and God's Work

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For those of you who have a case of the Mondays.  We just started Tim Challies chapter on Vocation/Work in our adult Sunday School class. 

One of the surprising discoveries was this one simple idea: God hides His love for the world behind our work.  Your job is one of the ways God pours out his kindness and care for our neighbors. 

The work of others is how God the Father provides for us even through the self-oriented motivations of ordinary people. 

You and I get to eat because our Heavenly Father gave gifts, skills and talents to farmers, bakers, truck drivers, cashiers at the grocery store and even bankers.  Despite those who roll out of bed on Monday dreading the day's work because it is not fun, God uses the desire to pay the bill to provide for and serve both the just and the unjust.  The work of others is the means of God's hidden fatherly care for you.  Truly, we are valued more than the birds who do not plan ahead! (Matthew 6:25-34).

Here is a quote from Gene Veith, who has thought about faith and work more clearly than I: 

"In his vocation man does works which effect the well-being of others; for so God has made all offices. Through this work in man's offices, God's creative work goes forward, and that creative work is love, a profusion of good gifts.

With persons as his "hands" or "coworkers," God gives his gifts through the earthly vocations, toward man's life on earth (food through farmers, fishermen and hunters; external peace through princes, judges, and orderly powers; knowledge and education through teachers and parents, etc., etc.). Through the preacher's vocation, God gives the forgiveness of sins. Thus love comes from God, flowing down to human beings on earth through all vocations, through both spiritual and earthly governments.

Thus, God is graciously at work, caring for the human race through the work of other human beings. Behind the care we have received from our parents, the education we received from our teachers, the benefits we receive from our spouse, our employers, and our government stands God himself, bestowing his blessings."

You can read more from Veith in his article found here: 

  https://www.monergism.com/thethreshold/articles/onsite/christiancalling.html

On this Monday be comforted that even the most mundane work has dignity in God's kingdom and God's world. 

For we are designed to  imitate our Heavenly Father who joyfully does the mundane every day for our sake. 

The sun rises and are given another day to enjoy our 'daily bread.'  And coffee.  It is Monday after all!

Posted by Nate Thompson with

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