“Such a Time as This”

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

[Est 4:14 NIV] 14 For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?”

Mordechai believed that God had placed Esther in a position of influence for “such a time as this.” God’s people were facing destruction at the hands of Haman. The fate of the Jews seemed to be hanging in the balance. However, Mordechai does not place the weight of the world on Esther’s shoulders…, “if you remain silent at this time, deliverance…will arise from another place.” The outcome is in God’s hands, but the opportunity is in Esther’s.  

The weight of the world is enough to stop any of us in our tracks. Esther had to balance her fear of what would happen if she does respond with what would happen if she does not.

Like Esther, we have been placed in a position of influence and access. We are daily faced with the question, has God placed me in this job, family, friend group, school, neighborhood for such a time as this? Opening our mouth may not have the same life and death consequences as Esther, but the stakes are just as high.

Esther’s response, (16) “if I perish, I perish” shows Esther’s faith and courage. We are not facing death for opening our mouth… but we do have to choose each day to die to our self.

In the midst of this global crisis the time has never been more urgent for us to share the love and truth of the Gospel. Yes, God could send another, but He has placed you and me here for a reason. Let us each pray for the courage and boldness of Esther this week, to die to self and fulfill our role rescuing His people.

“Just a little bit further”

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

And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now, our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. (Romans 13:11)

“Just a little bit further.  You can do it.  Just a little bit more.”  Those are the things that you tell yourself in a long-distance race. Just a little bit more.  Beloved, we are closer than ever to the soon return of Jesus Christ.  So, what kinds of things ought we to be doing at the end of the race?  Paul writes, “And do this…”.  Do what? If you look at the previous verses, it is all about loving others.  If we learn to love others, we will not do them any harm, but we will help them.

Sometimes in this crazy world we are living in it gets kind of easy to criticize others, form judgements against people, or even just avoid them.  But Paul wrote that we are to love others.  Jesus said that by this the world would know that we belong to Him if we are loving others (John 13:33-34).

Try checking up on someone you haven’t heard from in a while.  Try taking time to listen to people you often disagree with.  Remember to put on your mask when you go out in public. Masks aren’t about protecting ourselves; they are about protecting others from what we might be carrying.  Send someone a card. Make someone a nice meal.  Just a little bit further.

“Point of no return”

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

To watch a video presentation of this P2P, click here: https://youtu.be/HI6JtWyFSZc

[2Ch 33:9 NKJV] 9 So Manasseh seduced Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to do more evil than the nations whom the LORD had destroyed before the children of Israel.


The Kármán line is the altitude where space begins. It is 100 km (about 62 miles) high. It commonly represents the border between the Earth’s atmosphere and outer space. Crossing this line without the right equipment means there is no coming back.
Manasseh was arguably the worst King in Israel’s history. He became king at twelve and reigned as Israel’s longest King (55 years). If anyone would seem irredeemable it would be him. 2 Kings 21:11 says, “he acted more wickedly thank all of the Amorites who were before him.” He was an idolater, he sacrificed his children to demons, he used witchcraft and sorcery and even desecrated the temple. His life of sin and rebellion led to the destruction of Jerusalem and the exile of the people.
If anyone deserved judgment, and no mercy, Manasseh would seem to be high on that list. However, something miraculous happened while in exile… [2Ch 33:12-13 NKJV] 12 Now when he was in affliction, he implored the LORD his God, and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers, 13 and prayed to Him; and He received his entreaty, heard his supplication, and brought him back to Jerusalem into his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD [was] God.
Manasseh humbled himself before God and God heard his prayer. This didn’t change his destructive legacy, but I believe it changed his eternity. Manasseh reminds us that even the worst of the worst still have a chance. God’s discipline is rooted in His mercy. God used these consequences to bring Manasseh to a place of repentance and relationship. Let us remember this week to pray for those who seem like they have crossed the point of no return. That God would bring them to a place of repentance and restored relationship.

“When you don’t know what to do, PRAISE HIM”

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

Psalms 147 begins with: “Praise the Lord! How good it is to sing praises to our God for he is gracious, and a song of praise is fitting.” In these times that can be so confusing, infuriating and bereaving – praise the Lord. I do not mean that as an empty gesture of hoping for things to be different. Praise Him for He is worthy, 3He heals the brokenhearted, and binds up their wounds.Worship helps to restore in us that which is broken, that which was lost. Praising Him literally works inside us and through us and best of all it glorifies Him!!

Praising and singing to the Lord restores the peace to our own soul that we desperately crave. 7 “Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving make melody to our God on the lyre.” My boys asked last night “Daddy, can we do some guitar tonight?” By that they weren’t asking for musical excellence (otherwise they would have asked for Dave Dunnigan or Uncle David) but they were asking for worship, what dad could say no to that!!!

I know that times are still rough and unsettling, but I have a prescription for that… Psalm 147 ends with “Praise the Lord.” Beloved, let us do it together!

“Close Air Support”

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

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

[2Ch 7:14 NKJV] “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 will forgive their sin and heal their land…”
In military tactics, close air support (CAS) is defined as air action such as air strikes by fixed or rotary-winged aircraft against hostile targets that are in proximity to friendly forces. The overwhelming firepower our air force can unleash has turned the tide in many a conflict.
In chapter six King Solomon is dedicating the new temple to the LORD, at least 12 times He prophetically asks that this temple would be a place where the Lord would hear and respond to prayer.
Whether it was the King or the people (21) Whether those seeking justice (24) or those who have sinned (26) Whether a foreigner (32) or those exiled to a foreign land (36) Solomon asks that God would “hear” and “forgive” (30) His people.
In chapter 7 God now responds to Solomon. He says, “I have heard your prayer,” and God gives instructions for how we are to call out to Him.
First, we begin with humility. The recognition of our need for God. I can’t fix it myself; I need His help, His grace. Second, we must ask for His help. We do this through prayer. However, prayer is not just a passive step where we wait for God to respond. We are told to “seek” and “turn.” Notice the order. We first seek after God which will result in turning from our wicked ways. Like a choice in a relationship, choosing one means losing the other. This choice becomes even easier when we realize that He has already demonstrated His love for us (Rom 5:8)!
God says when we do these things He responds with His forgiveness and healing. While there is not a temple standing today, Jesus told us that, “If I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men to myself.” (Jn 12:32) Anyone from anywhere can cry out to Jesus. May we lead in this example this week! 

Survival

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

So how has life been treating you lately?  Are you finding that life is easy to handle, or have you been faced with more than a few hurdles to negotiate? It seems that as we learn how to navigate one difficulty, another one arises.  Sometimes it seems like we’re getting beat up from both sides, just like this kid… (it’s okay to click on the link) https://youtu.be/l0D_95YAw8c
I hate to say it, but Jesus said it would be this way at times.  He said, “In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)So how do we tap into that “overcome” thing?  How can we be of “good cheer” when parts of life seem so scary?  How can we find the peace of God when everything around us seems unstable?Jesus told a story about two builders.  One fellow built his house on a rock while the other built his house on the sand.  Then came the storm.  We all go through storms. Only one builder survived.  The house built on the rock withstood the storm.  The person who builds their life by hearing and obeying God’s word is the one building on the rock (Matt. 7:24-27).  The Psalmist wrote, This is my comfort in my affliction, For Your word has given me life (Psalm 119:50). Invest time today in something that will pay out dividends of stability and peace in your life.  Invest time in God’s word.

To watch the video of this post, click here

“Cross or Color”

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

[Mat 25:40 NKJV] 40 “And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did [it] to one of the least of these My brethren, you did [it] to Me.’

           Matthew 24 – 25 are filled with prophecies and promises surrounding the events of Jesus’ return to earth for His bride. In Matthew 25 Jesus speaks about our need to be ready at any time (parable of the lamps). That we will be accountable for how we use this time (Parable of the talents) and this last parable gives us an example of how we should use this time (parable of the sheep and goats).

           Jesus calls this the judgment of the nations. What is interesting is that these nations will not be grouped by the color of their skin, language, or geography. Instead, the deciding factor of which group they join comes down to a change in heart.

      35 ‘for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 ‘I [was] naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’

           Jesus is not teaching a works-based salvation, but He is talking about the evidence of the Spirit in our lives. How we treat others matters to God. When they asked Jesus about seeing Him in need of these things, He said when they did it unto the least-of-these, they did it unto me. It is not just compassion for our friends and family, but it is compassion for the least. The despised, the marginalized, the outcast and the downcast. As the church we must remember that we will be accountable for how we show love to the lowest of society. Jesus showed us the value of every human life on the cross. We will be judged on the basis of the cross not the color of our skin.

“What has stayed the same this year?”

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

What a year it has been… Fires in Australia, conflict with North Korea. Covid 19, stay at home orders, the terrible death of George Floyd, oh and murder hornets. So, what can we depend on, when our loved ones are sick? When people are scared? When people protest and then people riot?

Psalms 91 tells us “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress; my God, in Him I will trust.” Lean into the Lord almighty. Step onto his shade, let Him protect and defend you. I had an older brother growing up, who was strong and fierce (in a good way). I always struggled to be in his shadow but there came a day when a bully, who was much bigger and stronger than me threated me, grabbed me by the throat. In the coolest way possible my BIG brother exercised his BIG shadow, and the guy NEVER dared lay a hand on me again. Psalms 91 tells us to dwell in God’s VERY big shadow. Let HIM protect you! HIS truth will be your shield. God doesn’t change, even in the craziness of 2020. God is way more protective of us than my Big brother was of me!! It is the love of God that will deliver us and set us high upon the ROCK. Hold on to that, and reach out to your loved ones this week, and check on them?

“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.