“Hitting the Wall”

This week’s Pastor to Person was written by Pastor Caleb Beller.

To watch a video presentation of this P2P, click here:

[1Ki 19:4 NIV] 4 while he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness. He came to a broom bush, sat down under it and prayed that he might die. “I have had enough, LORD,” he said. “Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors.”

            Endurance athletes often describe that moment when their mind and body collide over whether it is possible to finish the race. How do you push forward when everything inside is telling us to stop?

Elijah didn’t descend into this pit of discouragement because he was disobedient but as a result of his obedience. We see that God’s greatest servants are not immune to the emotional and physical fatigue of life. Elijah hits the “wall” running the race God had given him. He was running for God not from God when the attack came. Let’s look at a few warning signs we can see from Elijah’s journey that led to his despair.

He was afraid (3) he was alone (4) he was exhausted (5) he was discouraged (4 & 10) All of these things can lead to a dangerous combination for God’s children. I want you to notice two things the Lord did for Elijah to help him through the darkness.

First, God met his physical need. Food and rest. God knew Elijah was exhausted and rather than rebuke Elijah He had him eat and sleep. Secondly, God meets His spiritual need. God spoke to Elijah. He was not in the wind, the fire, or the earthquake but that still small voice (12). When God spoke to Elijah he reminded Elijah of the next step (15-17) and that he was not alone (18)

Maybe you have hit a wall in this emotional marathon. Maybe you are ready to give up. Remember hitting the wall means you have been “running the race.” Let God minister to you today. Find a place of rest, find a place where you can hear His still small voice.  Let Him remind you that you are not alone, and He will show you the next step.

“Missing God”

This week’s Pastor to Person was written by Pastor Rich Cathers.

To watch a video presentation of this P2P click here.

God—you’re my God! I can’t get enough of you! I’ve worked up such hunger and thirst for God, traveling across dry and weary deserts. So here I am in the place of worship, eyes open, drinking in your strength and glory. (Psalm 63:1–2 The Message)

David spent more than a few days in the desert wilderness of the land of Judah.  He knew what it was to anxiously long to get to that next oasis, that next place of water

Are there things in your life that you’re missing right now?  I would imagine that three months of staying at home and social distancing have made us long for more than a few things.  I would love to take my granddaughter to Disneyland and ride Dumbo.  I’d love to visit the movie theater, popcorn in my lap, sitting next to my honey, and watching a good movie. And don’t get me started on baseball.  Will we ever get to see Mike Trout hit a baseball in person?

David was acquainted with the thirst of “missing” things. He recognized the hunger in his own heart for the presence of God. We associate the “place of worship” with being together in the sanctuary, singing songs of worship, and listening to God’s word.  Many of us are missing that very thing. Yet Jesus said the actual “place of worship” is really in our heart (John 4:23-24). Are you “missing” God?  Did you know He misses you too?  Take time today do draw near to Him.

Seeds of Grace

This week’s Pastor to Person was written by Pastor Caleb Beller.

To watch a video presentation of this P2P, click here.

“[2Sa 19:23 NIV] 23 So the king said to Shimei, “You shall not die.” And the king promised him on oath.”

            In Oct 20, 2000, the movie “Pay it Forward” was released. It chronicles the launch of a national movement by a 14-year-old boy who had an idea based on a simple act of kindness. The movie had an impact that still resonates today. Three thousand years before the movie, King David sowed a seed of grace that would harvest generations later.

In 2 Samuel 16, Shimei calls down curses on David, as he is fleeing from Absalom. David spares his life the first time recognizing that Shimei may be wrong to curse the King but right that these consequences were from God (:11). David knew there would be consequences for his sin, but He also knew God had forgiven him. Forgiveness doesn’t always change our consequences.

            In Ch 19, David is now returning back to Jerusalem. Absalom is dead, and those who betrayed the king would have expected the same fate. David sows the seed of grace. He receives the apology of Shimei and rejects the advice to kill this man who cursed him. Little did David know that act of grace would not just prolong Shimei’s life but one day save the nation.

            The book of Esther tells the story of how God saved his people from annihilation. God uses Esther and Mordecai in a powerful way. In Esther ch 2:5 when the genealogy of Mordecai is given, we learn that he is a descendant of Shimei, the Benjaminite. David had no way of knowing that his choice to walk in grace could result generations later in the saving of all of his people.   

            I believe David’s act of grace was rooted in the grace he had received from God. Those who have experienced the grace of God, are called to do the same. Are you struggling with how to respond to someone who has cursed you or wronged you? Remember how God in Christ has treated you. As Christians may we respond with the grace we have been given, who knows what God will do when we sow the seeds of grace! 

“Dealing with Disappointment”

This week’s Pastor to Person was written by Pastor Daniel Grant.

David, the mighty king of Israel made a big mistake. He moved the ark of the covenant in a way it was not supposed to be moved. He put it on a cart. He had a brand new one made, but it was still going against what God said and wanted. 2 Sam 6:3a So they set the ark of God on a new cart, and brought it out of the house of Abinadab…

David’s plans to honor the LORD ended in disaster, and he was REALLY disappointed. The scriptures tell us that David was angry with God, and that David was even afraid of God. He didn’t know what to do. He retreated, and waited.

Do you feel a little like David? Frustrated, waiting or maybe even angry at God? Or are you fearful? David recognized his mistake, and made it right! Maybe you haven’t even made some BIG mistake, but what is it that God wants to do in your life, in the waiting? God hasn’t abandoned you; He hasn’t forsaken you. He has inscribed your name in the Lamb’s book of Life, make sure to keep your own hand, in His all-powerful hand. I can’t wait to see y’all in person and be able to give out BIG hugs!!

“When Heaven Seems Silent

To watch a video presentation of this P2P click here.

This week’s Pastor to Person was written by Pastor Caleb Beller.

“[Mat 15:23 NIV] 23 Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.”

            We have all experienced that moment of frustration where the person you are trying to reach is not picking up. Is it my phone? Are they busy? Are they mad at me? It is easy to take something personally when the situation is urgent, and people seem silent.

            This woman is desperately seeking Jesus’ help and it could seem at first that Jesus’ response was not very compassionate. Let us jump to the end and see that Jesus heals the daughter and commends the mother for her faith. In light of this, I think what does this passage teach us?

            I believe this passage teaches us two things about prayer. Jesus’ response is going to engage the Canaanite woman to express her faith and show her persistence in prayer. It also to reveals her posture of humility as she acknowledges Jesus’ authority in the situation.

            Jesus himself experienced silence when He prayed in Gethsemane those three times. We know that the Father was not mad at Jesus and that Jesus had not done something wrong. On the contrary, the Father’s silence was rooted in His love and perfect will. Jesus teaches us this as He finishes, “not my will but thy will be done.” God’s closed doors and open doors are both rooted in His perfect love.

            When we are struggling with prayer. Let us remember, like this woman, that we are to be persistent, to pray without ceasing. We must also remain in a posture of humility not demanding but trusting in Christ’s character. We can have faith in the promise of His love for us as we say, not my will but thy will be done. 

What’s Cookin’?

To watch a video presentation on this P2P, click here: https://youtu.be/HgiAAiqFKRE

This week’s Pastor to Person was written by Pastor Rich Cathers.

“Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:31–32)

 So how are you holding up my friends? I’m a little concerned that for some of us, our relationships risk developing a bad taste. My mom used to cook with a “pressure cooker” years ago, and that’s what some of us are in right now.  The pressures many of us face can either make or break any relationship.

So, let’s try adjusting the ingredients in our pot a bit and see what happens.  There are some things we should definitely keep out of the pot – Paul mentioned attitudes like anger or bitterness.  Be careful about putting the wrong “words” in your pot as well – work at keeping some of those hurtful things from getting past your lips.

Now, let’s talk about intentionally adding some of those exotic ingredients like being kind, compassionate, and forgiving.  We have been given so much grace from Jesus, there is quite a bit available for us to draw on.

Some of you might be alone right now.  How about making a point of calling or texting one other person each day and adding some of those delicious things on the menu.  Bon Appetit my friends!

“Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop”

To view a video presentation of this P2P, click on this link: https://youtu.be/g-QwUYGK3eU

This week’s ‘Pastor’s wives to Person, was written by Kimberly Beller.

“Instead, they had some points of dispute with him about their own religion and about a dead man named Jesus who Paul claimed was alive.” Acts 25:19

I love the Book of Acts. It’s such a simple name for the beginning account of the mighty force that God was fully spearheading! Amongst this surge of believers of this new Way, was the man Paul, who had been changed, and who had decided with every turn that he would not collect, but instead, hand out his passion for the Christ.

                   Here, we see Paul, who has been captured, being strengthened in his Witness, day by day, year by year. He was telling everyone what he has seen and heard, including Felix, and now Festus the new governor. They found no fault, but the unresolved envy coming directly from the religious-leading Jews who wouldn’t let him go from their hostile grasp of judgment.

But here’s what I love. You’ll notice that in every opportunity, Paul looked to share the Gospel. When the grasp got tighter, instead of looking towards the problem, he found a chance to create a new way of opening his message to a greater audience. He couldn’t be stopped.

                   And as you see the conversation between Festus and King Agrippa, you hear a very ordinary outsider’s conversation, preaching the very elements of the Gospel! Paul’s life shared that fragrance of the Gospel, and it multiplied in spite of his circumstances, and with no chance for words himself!

Today, our circumstances do not stop the Gospel. Our feelings do not stop the Gospel. I pray that when we are willing and with little courage, we can trust and pray with confidence that the Holy Spirit in us, will go for us. After all, that resurrecting power in them is the same power in us. It can’t stop, it won’t be stopped. 

“Pouring Out, Pouring Into”

Two hands hold a broken pot with water pouring out.

To watch a video presentation of this P2P follow this link: ttps://youtu.be/IOTSnNLcgik

This week’s Pastor to Person was written by Pastor Daniel Grant.

So many of us are out of our element. We have been asked to stay at home, sidelined or maybe even retrenched!! Let me ask you a simple question, where has your focus been? I challenged the youth this week focus on “what is true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.”

 Has your focus been on productivity, on ministry, on family? Where have your BEST efforts been spent? If ever we had time to think and re-evaluate, now is the time!! Lastly, I would like to ask you whose life are you pouring into? Acts 18:26  “So he began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Aquila and Priscilla heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately.” Whose life have you been pouring into these last couple of weeks? Who have you been discipling? Who have you been leading? Who have you been praying for? Beloved, each of you have things that God wants you to invest your time in, set your gaze on HIM, and hold fast to HIS realigning of our lives!

My Inheritance

To watch a video presentation of this Pastor to Person please click on this link: https://www.facebook.com/CalvaryFullerton/videos/655849355270022/

This week’s Pastor to Person was written by Pastor Caleb Beller.
[Jos 14:9 NIV] 9 So on that day Moses swore to me, ‘The land on which your feet have walked will be your inheritance and that of your children forever, because you have followed the LORD my God wholeheartedly.’

Here “Caleb” is asking Moses for that which God had promised him. Caleb, now an old man is passionate about receiving all the Lord had promised. Yes, there were still giants in the land, but he was confident the Lord would deliver on His promise.
In perhaps the largest sum ever inherited by someone who did not know the person who bequeathed it to them, we have the case of Zsolt and Geza Peladi, who were literally living in a cave near Budapest when they were painstakingly tracked down and then, once found, were informed they had inherited over $6 billion- from a grandmother they’d never met!
Could you imagine living as a beggar when someone tells you, you have inherited a fortune? Today on “Good Friday” we are reminded of the price that was paid and the inheritance made available to us through Christ’s death. Because of what was done on the cross we all have access to the riches of Christ (Rom 8:17).
What is our inheritance that comes from His death? We can have our sin and shame paid for in full! His righteousness and perfect life can be added to our account! We can be filled with His power to overcome sin and walk in love!
Are you walking in the fullness of your inheritance? Let us all ask today for the fullness of our inheritance! Let’s also remember the price that was paid for us, and that we can tell the other beggars that they too have an inheritance waiting for them!

Companions

This week’s Pastor to Person was written by Pastor Rich Cathers.

Click this Link to watch Pastor Rich give a video P2P Devotion: https://youtu.be/66EK-zMmTrw

Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus. (Acts 4:13)

So here we are, several weeks into this phenomena called “social distancing”.  Some folks considered “essential” are still going to work, but a whole lot of us have been staying home.  Thanks to the wonders of telecommuting, some of us working at home are busier than ever.  Some of you are bored out of your heads. And it looks like we may have at least one more month of it.

Besides bad haircuts and expanding waistlines, have you taken a moment to think how you are going to emerge out of this next month?  Do you think you will have changed? I find that I am affected by the people I spend time with.  If I’m hanging out with companions from Texas, you might hear me picking up a slight drawl.  If talking like Yoda I am, think you might of whom I have been watching.

Peter and John had been arrested for healing a lame man and pointing people to Jesus.  And now, after a night in jail, they stood before their accusers and spoke the beautiful words of truth. It was obvious who they had spent time with.

Turn off the TV.  Take a few minutes to read your Bible and pray. He is longing for you to set aside some time for Him.