December 16, 2021December 16, 2021
February 10, 2022February 11, 2022
Dear Pine Glen Church Family,
Happy New Year! 2022 is off and running and I must say I am excited about this year and all that God is going to do in our midst. I trust you had a restful time over the holiday season to be with family and friends and reflect on the miracle of the incarnation – how God became a man and dwelt among us (John 1:14). We are finally getting some real winter weather now, so I trust you are staying warm and cozy.
I received a letter last week from Virginia Reed. Mrs. Reed, of course, was the wife of our first pastor, Fern Reed, and here is an excerpt from her letter:
“Thank you for your most generous and very unexpected Christmas gift. All I could do was weep and ask the Lord to abundantly bless the work there at Pine Glen. I pray that you grow in love and steadfastness to the Lord. Keep faithful to Him and the work of the Kingdom.”
Yours in Christ,
It’s been almost 40 years since her husband passed away. Let’s continue to pray for Mrs. Reed and we can certainly praise God for how He has worked through her prayers over all these years.
There are a few “new” things that I can report on in the new year. The first is a small group that Steph and I will be hosting starting this Sunday evening. Hearts and Hand’s is kicking off another year with an event on January 21st. And Todd is going to be finishing up the book of Colossians very shortly and starting into the gospel of John in our adult Sunday school class. Obviously, Sunday school and Hearts and Hands are not new, and we already have a couple small groups going here at Pine Glen. I simply mention them so that you would cover them in prayer and ask that God would use them to strengthen and mature this body of believers.
As I am sure you know, we are experiencing another Covid surge as the Omicron variant rapidly spreads. Thankfully, it doesn’t seem to be as potent, but people are still getting sick, and in some cases, very sick. Continue to pray for God’s mercy upon us and upon this land, and that through it, many souls would be saved.
As we look at the cultural landscape around us, things are not good. It’s been on a downward spiral for years and it can be summarized in this way – what is wrong is right and what is right is wrong. Morality has been flipped on its head, the culture is constantly affirming what God hates and what directly opposes biblical truth (Isaiah 5:20). No doubt we lament over this.
So…..how do we respond as Christians? The solution is not as some might think to try and flex our “Christian muscles” and put pressure on politicians and the elite culture makers of our day. I’m old enough to remember hearing that kind of rhetoric 20-25 years ago in the Christian community and nothing has changed. In fact, you could easily argue that things have gotten worse.
What is the solution? We find the answer in God’s inerrant word. “Flee the wrath to come” (Matthew 3:7). God has provided a way of escape and it is only through the Lord Jesus Christ (John 14:6). The culture of our day can be likened to the most famous ship disaster in history – the Titanic. 110 years ago, on its maiden voyage, “the unsinkable ship” sank off the coast of Newfoundland.
Friends, the ship is sinking…..fast. We need to stop putting our trust in government, our bank accounts and retirement plans, etc. etc. and put our complete and total trust in God our Savior (Romans 1:1-6).
Often, instead of telling people of that there is a Rescuer and a way to escape God’s judgement, the activity of Christians is the equivalent of re-arranging deck chairs as the massive ocean liner is sinking. People need to know that there is hope! People need to know they can be forgiven of their sins! People need to know that there is a lifeboat in Christ and that they can escape eternal death!
Brothers and sisters in Christ, during these dark and perilous times, let us be about our Master’s business (Luke 2:49). It is easy to complain about things in this world, but let’s always remember that we have hope in Jesus Name! He has provided a way of escape, but we must always look to Him in faith (Isaiah 45:22).
As I conclude this letter, let me offer a quick reminder to continue to lift one another up in prayer. There are countless physical and spiritual needs in our Church family and God has given us the amazing gift of prayer.
Along with that, continue to serve one another in love (Galatians 5:13, 6:9-10). Never tire of doing good and reaching out to those in need. That is what God has called us to and that is how the world will know that we are disciples of Jesus (John 13:34-35).
With much love,