Since our little mission (Hope Bible Chapel) closed a little over two years ago, I will say that it has honestly been good to take a break. My wife and I were feeling burnt out, but over the last few months have been longing to take a more active role in ministry.
Recently, we learned that a few evangelical churches in our town have found themselves without a pastor or leadership. With that in mind, we learned of Yellowstone Baptist Church. This is a Southern Baptist Church, but have a desire to learn the Scriptures. Over the last couple of months, we have gained a love for these people as we attended Sunday morning, Sunday evening, and Wednesday Bible studies.
A couple of weeks ago, I was invited to teach the next passage from the Book of Acts which then led to being invited to do so again this past Sunday. While social distancing is important, the vast majority of the assembly are at home but had no way of joining in the service. Through the assistance of one of my sons, we were able to broadcast this last Sunday for the first time and, Lord willing, this next Sunday will be our very first Livestream.
I am thankful to the Lord for His goodness and the privilege of being involved in a ministry that cares for her people and for the mission of the church. I am sharing this video for those who might be interested, especially if you are locked in during this time of self-quarantine.
The text for the lesson was Acts 26 and is the first half of Paul’s defense before King Agrippa. If you are able to watch, then I pray it will be a source of encouragement and may God be glorified through the teaching of His Word.
This really puts me to shame, and gave me much food for thought.
Now here appears Christianity in its true colors. To be of such a spirit as this is to be of such a spirit as Christ so often requires of us, if we would be His disciples. This is to sell all and give to the poor. This is to take up the cross daily and follow Christ. To have such a spirit as this is to have good evidence of being a Christian indeed, a thorough Christian, one who has given himself to Christ without reserve; one who hates father and mother and wife and children and sisters, yea, and his own life also; one who loses his life for Christ’s sake, and so shall find it.
And though it is not required of all that they should endure so great sufferings as [the Apostle] Paul did, yet is required and absolutely necessary that many Christians should be in a measure of this spirit, should be of a spirit to lose all things and suffer all things for Christ, rather than not obey His commands and seek His glory.
How well may our having such an example as this [speaking of the Apostle Paul] before our eyes make us ashamed, who are so backward now and then to lose little things, to put ourselves a little out of our way, to deny ourselves some convenience, to deny our sinful appetites, or to incur the displeasure of a neighbor.
Alas! What thought have we of Christianity to make much of such things as these; to make so many objections, to keep back, and contrive ways to excuse ourselves, when a little difficulty arises! What kind of thoughts had we of being Christians when we first undertook to be such, or first pretended a willingness to be Christians? Did we never sit down and count the cost, or did we cast it up at this rate, that we thought the whole sum would not amount to such little sufferings as lie in our way?
Edwards, Jonathan. Pursuing Holiness in the Lord.
P&R Publishing, 2005. 77-78.