“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land” (2 Chronicles 6:29).

A simple request – join me in prayer. Join me in praying:

  • For our country – our president, his cabinet, the senate and the congress, our military
  • For our city – our leaders, first responders, health care workers, schools, homeless neighbors, those battling mental health, and those battling addictions
  • For our Little Church and Lakewood Grace – for the weekend services, for small groups, youth, children, for our members

The ministry of the church is not about human innovation or effort. If the ministry is to impact lives and change the world it will because God unleashes his Holy Spirit to do that work. God promises when his church humbles themselves, pray and seek God’s face, turning from our wicked ways, God will hear from heaven and forgive our sins and heal our land.

That’s the ministry of the church. Human beings cannot make that happen. That only happens as God’s people pray and God unleashes his Holy Spirit.

Please, join me in praying. We’ve made it very easy for you. You can join me by zoom or in person in the church offices at 6:30pm on Wednesday evenings. Prayer is the backbone of ministry.

I know many of you pray on your own. I am asking that you take the time to join me in prayer so that corporately we can call upon God to do what only God can do. God loves answering prayers.

The Little Church has many important decisions to make. There is much ministry to be done.

Church, will you join your pastor in praying?

See you Wednesday.

Pastor James <><

No More Addition

“You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:22-24).

One of the reasons why so many have difficulty and fail in their faith journey is because of addition.

When Christ invites us to receive him as Lord and Savior, he is not asking us to add him to our selfish, sinful, dying old self. Christ is not asking us to clean some stuff up and make room in our old life for Christ. This is the problem of addition. This is the problem of addition.

Old, Dying, Nasty, Sinful Life + Christ

Look at the text for this day.

  • PUT OFF your old self which is corrupted by deceitful desires
  • PUT ON the new self created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness

This is not adding Christ to our old life. This is renouncing our old life for Christ and the new life he offers. This is not making room for Christ, this is taking the fulness of Christ and the new life he offers.

New ways of living. New priorities. New perspectives. New life.

Any time we attempt to hold on to our previous way of life – a life that was under the control and influence of the flesh and sin – we will struggle.

Just because we choose to take on the new life Christ offers doesn’t mean that it’s easy sailing from that moment. The old flesh will continue to fight. Our old ways of being and thinking will still wriggle its way in. It will be a constant battle to reject the old ways of living.

If we’re going to struggle either way, what’s the point?

Great question. The point is joy, contentment, peace. If these things matter at all to you, you will want to put off your old self and put on the new self Christ offers. You will battle and struggle, but should you choose Christ you will have joy, contentment, and peace.

No more addition. PUT OFF the old self.

A transformed life. PUT ON the new self.

He’s Right Here!!!

“For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings” (Hosea 6:6).

In Hosea, God asks Hosea to marry a prostitute who continues to cheat on him to show how Israel continues to prostitute herself as a nation with other gods. I know. Kinda brutal. But so is adultery and prostituting yourself with other gods.

In this book you can literally feel the heartbreak of a God who longs and loves a people who continue to cheat on him. Now, it wasn’t that the Israelites were not offering sacrifices or keeping their holy days. They were doing all those things while they were pursuing other lovers.

What God wanted from the Israelites was their hearts, their loyalty, their allegiance, their fidelity, their love. It is absolutely possible to go through the motions of religion while being absolutely distant in heart.

I share this with you because I have a confession to make. I found myself going through the motions of reading the Bible, praying, and journaling everyday while my heart remained distant. Even while I was reading God’s word and praying I acted as if God weren’t even there! Can you imagine? God sitting right across the table from me as I am reading his word and praying to him, and totally ignoring him and acting as if he weren’t even there?!?!

Goodness gracious!!! What an idiot!!!

So, every time I read God’s word and every time I pray, I talk to him as if he’s really there. You know why? BECAUSE HE IS!!!!!

So, the next time you read God’s word and pray to him, won’t you read and pray as if he were really right there with you? You know why? Because he is!