Another Pastoral Epistle 8/7/18

“Sunshine without rain makes a desert.”  That Arab proverb reminds us that all living things can’t live on sunshine alone.  We all understand the need for rain.  Without rain, drought conditions make it ripe for the latest wildfires burning across California.  Please pray for the thousands affected by this deadly blaze.  
 
Without rain, things dry up.  Sunshine without rain makes a desert.  That is true for our spiritual lives.  Without storms our souls are at risk of drying up.  I am reminded of the prophet Jeremiah.  All was not well for him.  There is an entire book written about his experience with storms. Have you read through the Old Testament book of Lamentations lately?  Why read a book of laments?  That would be just too depressing.  In Lamentations we find these statements;
   
   “All the people groan”
   “My groans are many”
   “My heart is faint.”
   “See, how distressed I am”
   “My eyes overflow with tears.”  
   “I am tormented within”
   “My eyes fail from weeping”
 
Why would anyone look to this book for edification? I admit, it isn’t as fun to read as say the book of Ruth or the book of Esther, but it is rich in its usefulness to our lives.  The Bible meets us where we live life.  It has room for every element of human experience including overwhelming human sorrow. Do you know sorrow?  
 
Lamentations does not offer quick and easy solutions to the suffering we are experiencing.  It will not give you cheap cures.  But it can show you how a loving and gracious God can work through even the most painful moments in your life.  It is in the book of Lamentations that we find those familiar words, “His mercies are new every morning, great is your faithfulness.”  
 
Be honest, when are you most likely to speak of God’s faithfulness?  Under what conditions do we sing with enthusiasm, “Great is thy faithfulness”? For Jeremiah, it was when he was at the lowest of lows.  These words came after, “I have been deprived of peace; I have forgotten what prosperity is.” It is on the heels of these words, “My splendor is gone and all that I had hoped from the Lord.”  (Check out Lamentations 3:1-20).  
 
When the storms come into our lives; when the rain falls, “call this to mind,” Jeremiah says in verse 21, “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions (his mercies) never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”  He then puts his finger on why he can praise God in the storms- verse 24, “I say to myself, ‘The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.’”
 
So when the rain of life comes remember that the Lord is your portion and without the rain your soul would dry up.   God is faithful to speak to you in the storm. Great is God’s faithfulness! Always!
 
Sufficient in Him,
Pastor Brian

Looking Forward

Sermon Direction

“When to be intolerant of tolerance”
Revelation 2:18-29

Link to View Last Sunday’s Sermon

video

ELMM

The next meeting of the Military Ministry (ELMM) will be Saturday Aug. 11 @ 0800 in the Fellowship hall. Veterans, retirees, active duty military, men, women and all denominations are welcome. So please come join us in fellowship, prayer and discussion of our common bond of those who serve.

Financial Review Meeting

A Financial Review is an opportunity to learn in more detail our budget for the coming year in a discussion format. Budgets are still available on the back Ministry Counter. 
August 12th9:50-10:25 Room 104

Communion

We will be sharing communion together this Sunday. Please consider donating to EBC’s deacon’s fund. This fund helps those in need in our congregation as well as in our community.

Women’s Ministry Bible Study

Tuesday August 14th “Armor of God” led by Anna Yasharian

Baptism Class

August 19thfor those under 12
August 26thfor ages 12 and older
Meets in Room 104 9:50am-10:20am

Discovery Class

Sundays @ 8:30am for 4 weeks starting September 9thMeeting in the Fellowship Hall
This class is for those who desire to become members or anyone who would like to learn more about our church.

Church Picnic

Will be held on Sunday, September 9that Opechee Point after the 2ndservice. 
Bring some chairs, a picnic for your family and outdoor games to share! 
Baptism will take place between 2-2:30pm weather permitting.