“Some people stay away from Christianity not because they don’t know any Christians, but because they do.” Not sure who said that, but it got me thinking. At first, I feel that this is an overstatement. It sounds like nothing more than an excuse. I mean, if you want to find reasons to not explore the claims of Christ, then there will be plenty of evidence to support your decision. But Scripture speaks of “being without excuse” on the day of judgment.
On the other hand, even though someone might not hit the bullseye, doesn’t mean that they missed the target completely. The truth is that our example as followers of Jesus Christ can get in the way of people seeing the true Christ.
This past week I was talking to one of the parents of a girl on my basketball team when he referenced a church that didn’t have a good reputation. I am familiar with the church. He knows I am a pastor, and I could tell he was waiting for a response from me. I have the best comebacks…three days later. What I said was, “Don’t lump all churches together.” What I thought of later to say was, “Yeah you agree with Jesus. He had a serious problem with hypocrisy.”
What is hypocrisy? We are not hypocrites because we can’t condone certain behaviors. We are not hypocrites because we sin. We are not perfect and will fall short. But that is not hypocrisy. Hypocrisy is pretending to be something we are not. Hypocrisy is giving the appearance of godliness, but our actions reveal a heart that is more concerned with power or money or the praise of people.
Our actions and words as Christians matter! Our behavior can either attract or repel.
What if our love for Christ was more deeply grounded in the character of Jesus? What if we showed a more profound hope in what we have in Jesus? What if we lived more for His glory? What if we took seriously, “In everything give thanks”? What if…
As we begin a new sermon series this Sunday on the book of Daniel, we will see the power of one man’s faith. We shouldn’t super humanize Daniel, for like Elijah, he was a man just like us. But he was a man of influence in a very dark time in Israel’s history. We too can be a bright spot in a dark world! Are you excited for this study in Daniel? I am!
I am also excited about worshipping with you this Sunday. And hopefully with some others I have not worshipped with in person for a while. Don’t forget that we have added the first service at 9:00 with a few changes to mask protocol. For the first service only, we are requiring that masks be worn throughout the service, except for those leading in worship. No changes to the second service.
Have you heard about the two four-week Sunday studies beginning this Sunday? See the descriptions below. They will be at 9:00 in the classroom’s downstairs of the church. Masks should be worn to and from the class and the chairs will be arranged in compliance with social distancing.
Have a great rest of the week! My thoughts and prayers are with you! Blessings, Pastor Brian
Cooperation Without Compromise
Link to This Sunday Worship Service
New Sermon Series
A Bright Spot in a Dark World
A study in the Book of Daniel
Begins this Sunday
Beginning this Sunday February 7th , we will be offering 2 services.
The 9 am service, masks will be required to be worn for the entire worship service.
The 10:45 am service will continue as is and you may choose to remove masks once you are seated. Masks must be worn while entering and leaving the building as well as during fellowship time. We will continue to livestream at 10:45 am.
We are doing this on a temporary basis to be considerate and loving of those who would like to attend but prefer stricter guidelines around masks.
We will be celebrating communion this Sunday during both services. If you are worshipping with us from home, please have your communion elements ready Sunday morning.
Just a reminder to bring back the Valentines Cards for the residents at 2 local nursing homes. These cards will be used to show each one of the 370 residents God’s love. Thank you to all who participated in this local missions project.
All cards are due back no later than this Sunday February 7th
Join us for 4 weeks beginning March 7th on Sunday mornings at 9am. This class is for those looking for more information about our church and those considering membership.
EBC Sunday Study
We’re excited to offer two four-week adult studies this February. Each study will meet at EBC, Sunday morning from 9-10:15 AM. See below for a detailed description of each study.
Take The World, But Give Me Jesus
With Adam Hayes
Overexposure is one of the greatest threats to peace in the modern church. With access to every corner of the world and into the living rooms of so many individuals, church members often willingly put themselves in the way of fear and envy. While this feels like a modern problem, the heart of the matter is ancient. This class will be an opportunity to turn your attention away from all that’s robbing you and others of peace and reconnect you with your God who promises to protect and provide.
Objectives for this study:
· Address the temptations of fear and envy that stir when we dwell on the world’s prosperity and progress apart from God.
· Replace rumination with God’s eternal promises, so that we can live our calling confidently; trusting that He is our strength and portion forever.
With Susan Lyle
The Living Grace Class is a discipleship growth experience intended for people who struggle with mental and emotional challenges (e.g., anxiety, panic, depression, and/or other diagnoses). As a group, we will explore biblical truths, scientific research, and practical tools to cultivate healthy hearts and minds. Topics include identity in Christ, renewing your mind, managing stress, and relaxation and joy.
Objectives for this study:
· To better know and understand who we are in Christ specifically as it relates to our mental and emotional struggles.
· To help build individual resilience in navigating mental and emotional challenges.
· To cultivate a safe and supportive network of individuals with mental and emotional challenges.