PASTOR'S ARTICLES

Article for Newspaper 06/17/2020

 

…Waiting For You

 

Where is the American Dream? Whether you look at headlines or read the articles in full it is easy to see we live in turbulent times.

 

For weeks we have seen news crowded with Corona-Virus pandemic death and sickness scares. There have been at least 15 deaths attributed to violence, riots, and looting resulting over the George Floyd killing in Minneapolis. Arson has resulted in the burning of more property and destruction of local businesses taking away people’s means for making a living for themselves, their families, and those employed by these same businesses. Healthcare businesses have been targets of destruction too.

 

We have read and heard all the distressing claims over President Trump where he supposedly has done things against the law, and against people of color. Currently we find investigations of corruption are rounding toward previous President Obama and his administration instead. This might surprise a few people; that Trump is providing more funding for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) than any president in history. (check White House report of June 6, 2020)

 

In different countries Boko Haram and other extreme Islamic Jihadists are maiming and killing people in their neighborhoods. You can read of the terrorist kidnappings and murder. They are also responsible for extensive destruction of homes and other’s property.

 

Now some people claim we would be better off to do away with police! So let’s put it this way, “If law enforcement are called because someone is stealing from your house should they arrive and help them carry off your TV or stop them?” That’s more crazy stuff somebody dreams up.

 

We discover drug use, alcohol consumption and suicide are on the rise. Murder of babies is still going on here as even some parents choose abortion as an answer to their ‘problem.’

 

There is so much bad news today it can lead us to become depressed. With all this mess how do we fight our own distress and depression? Sickness, destruction, killing, and corruption seem to be all-consuming. People are losing hope and are progressing into a spiritual darkness.

 

There is a solution to the world’s problems! You can discover the solution in print with versions of the Holy Bible that you can read and find in most of our homes. The great solution to these problems is having a relationship with God’s Son Jesus Christ. All this rioting and destruction is obviously not done by Christians following Jesus.

 

We are created as social beings. It is no wonder participating and attending Bible-believing worship services in churches leads us to live longer and better lives. Walking with Jesus’ love lifts you up.

 

You can enter into this better life starting today. It is possible even if you were part of the evil in the past, even if you led others into it. Your turning to focus on Jesus brings the Light of His Love into clarity.

 

“And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, nor rulers, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39 New Living Translation (NLT)

 

Yes, this can be for you regardless of all the senselessness going on today if you choose God’s way.

 

“Now may the God of peace…equip you with all you need for doing His Will. May He produce in you through the power of Jesus Christ, every good thing that is pleasing to Him. All glory to Him forever and ever! Amen.” Hebrews 13:19-21 New Living Translation (NLT) 

 

You see Jesus is waiting for you to repent, turn from evil, to come to Him. He desires a personal relationship with you. He desires you to be saved from the senselessness happening today.

Jesus offers a better life today and later peace in eternity. He is waiting for you.

 

Pastor Leslie White, CrossFire Church, West Union, IA

 

 

 

Article for Newspaper 03/25/2020            ….In Fear No Longer

A great deal of fear exists centered around COVID-19. It is called by a common name, Coronavirus. You see it in the news, on Facebook, and all sorts of media exclaiming the danger. We are warned to stay away from large crowds, to be careful, use common sense. All of it is not so much how bad it is but how severe the problem might become at an uncertain time in our future. People are scared, some government entities have declared a state of emergency!

Events have been canceled, games and other gatherings called off. Various institutions ban outside people from visiting. Certain items from stores are hoarded. Authority figures tell you to stay home, afraid they might lose control of the masses. So much fear exists that even the stock market halted growth. People are angry their normal way of living has been interrupted. It appears a matter of life and death is imminent.

One student who attends our local school stated doubt that coronavirus exists. I wonder what he has heard from his sources of information. Do his parents doubt the news and voice their doubt? Perhaps it is a good thing to discover a young person uses critical thinking to figure out what is right and what is wrong; to not be taken up into ideas so many around them come up with which are not based on truth.

Soon we celebrate Easter. Whether you gather with others or stay home alone you can be assured this Holiday is based on truth. Events surrounding the time of the first real Easter were recorded by witnesses. People were living their own way, making up their own rules. Then Jesus the Son of The Living God made Himself known.

 

Jesus walked among the race of humans talking to us, performing miracles, telling us what was truth and what was untrue regardless what others decried.

 

Three days prior to the first Easter Jesus was put to a painful death on a rugged wooden cross. Even that this Jesus was guiltless, innocent, people were incited into becoming an angry crowd of people demanding Jesus be crucified. One root cause were a few authority figures afraid they would lose their control of the masses. One authority figure decided to wash his hands of the responsibility of Jesus being put to death.

John 10 tells us Jesus’ words:  “The Father loves me because I sacrifice my life so I may take it back again. No one can take my life from me. I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have the authority to lay it down when I want to and also to take it up again. For this is what my Father has commanded.”

People were mistaken. Jesus’ death was a temporary thing. He arose very much alive on that third day following what He had said would happen. He told them He can lay down His life only to take it back. He did it that first Easter!

Jesus stated, recorded in Matthew 10:32-34 New Living Translation (NLT)  “Everyone who acknowledges me publicly here on earth, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven.  But everyone who denies me here on earth, I will also deny before my Father in heaven.34 “Don’t imagine that I came to bring peace to the earth! I came not to bring peace, but a sword.

 

This was a major disruption because no longer could people realistically claim there was no God. Nor could they make up Father God to be whatever they wished he would be, like using ideas so many around them made up. The myth that there are many ways to heaven was dismissed and rendered useless words.

The reality to be faced is that certainly we will die at some point. Our earthly bodies will all fade away, no longer our home. The thing to truthfully fear today, a matter of life and death, is where you will spend eternity.

Those who have accepted the Risen, Living, Son Of God, Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior will not be in fear but living in everlasting joy in heaven. Those who reject Him denied.

Take some time now to get to know this Jesus personally. Accept and declare Him as Lord and Savior. Then you will experience the joy of knowing that you will one day spend eternity in heaven with Him living in fear no longer.

Pastor Leslie White

CrossFire Church, West Union, IA