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Showing posts from 2017

A Christmas Miracle - Assurance for the New Year

This past Sunday, Christmas Eve, I concluded the teaching series at our church; LaFayette Church of God. Waiting, not only a series for teaching, but also one that I have written about over the last few weeks. However, as we brought this to a close we were reminded perhaps of the greatest Christmas miracle, ever. Sure, the birth of Jesus Christ is the greatest one, but who God chose to include in His birth story, perhaps, makes it that much better.

A familiar story, to believers, found in the Gospel according to Luke, chapter 2; gives us insight to some intentional planning of God. In fact, the reality is, I wouldn't have chosen Mary but He did. Sure I know the prophet foretold it would be a virgin birth, but surely there were other virgins in the city of Nazareth. I doubt I would have chosen Joseph. Again, I know that even the angel gave us insight that Jesus would be of the lineage of David, and I know that Joseph met this need. But why a carpenter, to raise the Only Begotten? M…

A Christmas Promise

This past Sunday, December 17, 2017; I was privileged to continue preaching the series, Waiting; at our church. The text of choice came from the Gospel according to Matthew chapter 1, verses 18 through 25. Throughout this series we have discovered that we are all waiting on something. However, after countless prophecies given in the Old Testament of the birth of a Savior, there was a season of silence, lasting 400 years (note the blog post, Waiting.) 

The angels visit to Joseph, or Gabriel's visit to Mary recorded in Luke 1, came no longer as a prophecy, but rather as a promise! The Old Testament prophecy had become the New Testament promise. We discovered in our Morning Encounter service at LaFayette Church of God (LaFayette, GA) that the same promise given to young Joseph and Mary of a baby that would save the people from their sins, is the very same promise to you and I today. The angel told Joseph in v. 23, "Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall…

Waiting

A devotional I recently began, through the Advent season, Waiting Here For You by Louie Giglio has brought incredible insight to my position in prayer. One of the greatest quotes so far, Waiting is not wasting when you are waiting on the Lord. 

Currently we are in a four week teaching series at our church, Waiting. We've discovered that were all waiting on something. However, what were waiting on is what really matters. Some are waiting on the special holiday season. Others on a report from the doctor. Perhaps, a few are waiting on a baby or the arrival of a loved one that they have not seen in some time. While maybe there are those waiting for the final notice of eviction, or letter of regret from the bank. Whether the wait is on something grand or something tragic, we are all WAITING...Often times the wait is the hardest part. The unknown is the scariest. The negative what ifs' or what about' somehow seem to blur the positive.

Paul the Apostle said in Romans 8:18, For I …

Peace in Chaos

This, perhaps, is one of most peoples favorite time of year. However, it can often be a blur. It seems that in an effort to make every party, every play, every get together, every cantata and to see every family member and friend, we somehow lose sight of the true meaning of this season. In fact, all of these good intentions become nothing more than another item on our agenda or to do list. Those things that we all sigh in relief too, when they are finished.

Just last night Kaye (my wife) and I had this conversation. She had asked to slip away for 1 day, only 1 day, to retreat and find rest in this very busy and obviously chaotic season of life. After a near coronary while looking over our calendar for December, adding things to it that I had yet to record, I gave in with hesitation and frustration. I gave her every reason that we shouldn't or couldn't find one day this month to retreat and find peace. Truthfully, this morning, as I began to review the next few weeks and all t…

Keeping In Step With the Spirit

Occasionally, as part of my daily devotional, I will pick up Sarah Young's, Jesus Calling. Today was one of those days and I found myself so encouraged. She, led by the Holy Spirit, said; "Try to depend on the help of the Spirit as you go through this day of life. Pause briefly from time to time so you can consult with this Holy One inside you. He will not force you to do His bidding, but He will guide you as you give Him space in your life.

What a thought, the Holy Spirit (the Holy One) lives inside me. I don't have to be depressed today. I don't have to worry today. I don't have to sin today. If I will consult with Him and give Him space in my life, He will guide me! It's up to you. It's up to me. He wants to be our comforter. However, we having freewill, must remove ourselves and give Him space to lead; then must be willing to submit ourselves and follow His instruction!

Young quoted the words of the Apostle Paul to the church at Galatia, 5:25; Since we…

A Heavy Heart-In A Thanksgiving Season

Today the hearts of Americans are heavy. More specifically, the hearts of Christians; as we continue to try and process the events of Sunday, November 5, 2017 in the small, rural, town of Sutherland Springs, TX. As I reflect over this tragedy, it seems difficult to "Give Thanks." However, while this calamity was unfolding, all while many others around the world were gathered for worship, I was preaching a message entitled, "Give Thanks, for His presence." 

The women, men, girls and boys were gathered at First Baptist Church (Sutherland Springs) for that alone; His Presence. They were prepared to worship, hear a message of hope in Jesus and encounter His presence. My heart breaks for the families who tragically have to say goodbye to loved ones here on earth. I pray for them. I pray for victims who survived and face days without their family and friends. But, I celebrate with those who came expecting His presence and today are living in the fullness of His glory! Pa…

Halloween

Today, October 31, is for some a day of evil and for others a day of community building. The truth is this, Halloween was established by the Celts many years ago. To them it was a day where the line between death and life became blurred and so they would gather to corporately attempt to ward off evil spirits through the dark months of winter. For them it was a day of separation. The abundant harvest they had seen had now become withered and was dying, due to the cold months approaching. However, as Christians, we too have attempted to manipulate this day into something that perhaps we could use to advance our agenda. Scripture, though, tells us that we have been brought out of darkness into His (Jesus) marvelous light (1 Peter 2:9.)

I see no problem with us gathering together and enjoying the cooler season that God has blessed us with, around campfires and enjoying a hot dog together. Though there is a line where perhaps even protestants have began to cross. You, I nor any potion or s…

Thankful

Paul, the apostle, said; Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you (1 Thessalonians 5:18.) This past Sunday, Oct. 22, 2017 was a day to remember. Our wonderful church family (LaFayette Church of God) honored us with a Pastor Appreciation Day. As I have sat and reflected on the days events, I was reminded of this simple, elementary principle. Frankly, it's easy to be thankful when you receive countless gifts, hear numerous words of affirmation and are given an opportunity to see and hug so many familiar faces that you hold dear.

But, what about the days that seem so rough, you don't know if you can bear them. What about the disappointing report from the doctor; or the final notice from the bank? How do you give thanks when your family is falling apart? How do you celebrate days that you simply want to forget ever existed? Often I am asked these and at times I think I have all the answers :). Then there are times I find myself posing t…

You're a Representative of The Lord Jesus

The past two weeks, during our Morning Encounter services at LaFayette Church of God, we have been discovering the importance of our story. The part of the story we play in advancing His kingdom, and literally being the hands and feet of Jesus, through the story of our life.

I love it when every piece of the puzzle seems to fit just perfectly. Today, Oct. 17, 2017, my daily Bible verse is found in Colossians 3:17. It's the words of the Apostle Paul, speaking to the church at Colossae.  The English Standard Version reads like this, Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father. The New Living Translation reads like this, And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father. 

Wow, what an incredibly humbling thought that I get to be a representative of Jesus, the only begotten Son of the Father, the second person of the triune God head, the Great I Am.…

Your Private World

Many years ago I read, Ordering Your Private World by Gordon MacDonald. Even now, in the hustle of every day life, I find myself having to be reminded of nuggets of truth he reveals. On page 92, he quotes Elton Trueblood's, While It Is Day: A public man, though he is necessarily available at many times, must learn to hide. If he is always available, he is not worth enough when he is available. 

What a sobering thought. Truthfully, we all have agendas that seem busier and busier as each day passes. We find ourselves quickly approaching the holiday season, already scheduling dates for multiple fall festivals, football parties, thanksgiving meals and yes, for some, planning their Christmas seasonal events. However, as we approach this overwhelming, somewhat enveloping, ridiculously busy time of year; let's make the decision now to hide. Yes, some events of these seasons are required and expected. Others are enjoyable and traditional. Though, I am afraid, at times we have grown so…

JESUS: The Name above every name

Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2017

Paul, the apostle, speaking to the church at Philippi, penned these words; Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name. So that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (Philippians 2:9-11, ESV) 

Today, our nation and world is mourning after another senseless attack upon innocent bystanders in Las Vegas, Nevada; yesterday, Monday, October 2, 2017. We are believing for those injured. We stand with families that are grieving over the loss of loved ones. We send our love to first responders and the countless individuals who are giving their all to provide help.

However, as I reflect over this event, I seem to find myself in a position that longs for the coming of my Lord, Jesus. A sense of desperation, seems almost overwhelming. I can only imagine the pain that many families are facing today. B…

The Disciples' Prayer

The Gospel according to Matthew records the word of Jesus in chapter six. Beginning in verse five, though, we find a rather familiar passage of scripture to believers and unbelievers alike. Jesus begins teaching, as a part of His renowned message; The Sermon on the Mount. 

He says, "when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you." 
Though He was alluding to the passage known as the Lord's Prayer. He was instructing and is instructing His disciples how to pray. One writer said, “We must pray in secret before we pray in public;”pointing out that if in public is the only place we pray, it becomes hypocritical. We could point out that Jesus prayed in public. He wa…

Hello

After more than a year and a half, I have chosen to commit myself to writing a weekly blog again. However, this time with the accountability of the great LaFayette Church of God. I would be greatly honored if you would subscribe to this blog. So that, weekly (Tuesday's) you will receive an updated blog posting.  This will encourage me to continue penning thoughts, convictions, and mandates from scripture. 
Please feel free to contact me or our church at:
Joshua Edwards Lead Pastor  LaFayette Church of God  (706) 450-0872: Main 1002 S. Main St.  LaFayette, GA 30728 josh@lafayettecog.org info@lafayettecog.org www.lafayettecog.org