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The Prayer of an Idolater
Passion Week Meditation: Why was Judas necessary?
36,500 days and counting, every one of them, written by God: An Encouragement to the Elderly
Christmas Year-Round
What are elders for?

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Building the Calvary family into a dwelling for God by reflecting on Sunday's sermon text together.

Sermon Reflections

36,500 days and counting, every one of them, written by God: An Encouragement to the Elderly

Several days ago I experienced the improbable - I attended a 100th birthday party.  We will attend countless birthday parties in our lifetimes, but most of us will not have the privilege of attending a party in which the guest of honor has turned 100.  

An estimated 53,000 centenarians live in the United States.  With so many you would think there is a reasonable chance of being invited to the big bash, but think again.  This equates to less than two people in 10,000.  So unless your social network is well into the thousands, attending a 100th birthday party is unlikely.

Christmas Year-Round

As always, the Christmas season blew a flurry of activities and busyness into our lives.  And now that Christmas has come and gone, some of us are breathing a sigh of relief while others feel a little sad to see it go.

Looking back, our church family at Calvary celebrated the true Christmas story on many occasions and in many ways.  The women of Calvary celebrated Christmas through their "Favorite Things" gift exchange.  We enjoyed Christmas dinner complete with the telling of the Christmas story from the gospels and caroling at St.

What are elders for?

Three Sundays ago Calvary Bible Church commissioned elders.  Including the pastor, Calvary will be led by a team of four men.  God's intent for His church to be led by a group of elders is clear:

"This is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and appoint elders in every town..." (Titus 1:5).

"And when they had appointed elders for them in every church, with prayer and fasting they committed them to the Lord in whom they had believed" (Acts 14:23).

Free to Feel Affliction

What is it like to be a Christian?  The Apostle Paul said, "We are afflicted... perplexed... persecuted... struck down... always being given over to death... (2 Corinthians 4:8-11).  This is not what you put on a billboard to get people to join your group.  Paul's description of his life following Christ repulses many would be disciples.  In fact, several in the Corinthian church looked at Paul's life and decided that a beat up "jar of clay" like him could not possibly be an ambassador for the Resurrected Christ.

Surprised By Silence

After three years of kindred spirit friendship and walking with the Lord together, Augie told me he was done with God.  At first I was speechless.  Then I fumbled with my words in a frantic effort to get Augie to change his mind.  All I could think of was reciting lyrics from a song that helped me when I doubted that God was really there: "Seeking you as a precious jewel; Lord, to give up, I'd be a fool."  I was sure that Augie had experienced God's loving-kindness.

Following the Lord... Imperfectly

Deception, brutality, joining the ranks of the wicked - we do not associate these actions with following the Lord.  Jesus said, "By their fruit you will recognize them" (Matthew 7:15-23).  Surely this is a list of fruit hanging from a bad tree, not a tree planted by streams of living water whose delight is in the law of the Lord (Psalm 1:2-3).  We would not ordinarily join such contemptible behavior with "A man after God's own heart" (1 Samuel 13:14).  But in chapter 27 of 1 Samuel, we do.

Deja Vu

Chapters 24 and 26 of 1 Samuel have uncanny similarities.  Both narratives recount how David spared Saul's life even though the circumstances seemed to imply that God handed Saul over to David to be killed.  In both situations David chose to trust God's righteous planning instead of using lethal force on God's anointed king.

Many secular scholars have a problem with the similarities between the two narratives.  They choose to believe that the stories are fabrications of the author.

But for the grace of God...

"But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor 15:10).  Paul said this because he felt unworthy to be called an apostle.  He persecuted God's people, yet God appeared to Paul and made him the last of the apostles.  Paul, the murderer, was made an apostle not because he was qualified but because God chose to use him in this capacity.

David, centuries earlier, was humbled by God's grace just like Paul.  1 Samuel 25 reports that David had been good to Nabal's shepherds, giving them safe escort through the wilderness.
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