Gardendale Nazarene

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Archives for June 2014 | Pastor's Blog | Gardendale Nazarene

Restorative Wisdom of the Word

 When we speak of generosity, our thoughts go to our finances.  Finances are an important part of living of generous life.  However, I believe that we also must we willing to invest something greater- we must be willing to invest ourselves in the lives of others.  The problem is that many of us live lives without any thing left over to give to others.  We are to be people who are generous in the fruits of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control). 

These fruits do not come from you.  They are the fruits of the Spirit.  They come from the Spirit. Author Paul David Tripp writes, “When I daily admit how needy I am, daily meditate on the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and daily feed on the restorative wisdom of his Word, I am propelled to share with others the grace that I am daily receiving at the hands of my Savior.”

My challenge to you is to make sure you are carving out time in our daily life to spend time ‘feeding on the restorative wisdom of his Word.’  I would like to share a couple resources with you that I mentioned on Sunday.  The first is my favorite devotional book, My Upmost for His Highest, by Oswald Chambers.  You can purchase this book at most bookstores or Amazon.  You can also read the daily reading on  I have been using this little book since I was in high school and I am still challenged by it.  Jesus Calling is a newer book that has gained popularity over the past few years.  There are many versions of this book.  We use the children’s version with our kids.  Most Christian bookstores will have them available (as well as Amazon).

I hope you will find one of these books useful in your walk with our Lord. Grace and peace,  Pastor John

Devoted to Prayer

Last night, we discussed a chapter on the Early Church in the book Multiply.  It was a great chapter that focused on Acts 2:42-47.  In verse 42, Luke records that the early church devoted themselves to four things: the apostles’ teaching, fellowship, the breaking of bread, and prayer.  All four of these items must continue to be important things for the church today.  

A couple weeks ago, I asked you to pray with me.  Prayer has to be a central part of the church.  Francis Chan writes, “Could it be that we have lost sight of our absolute dependence on God? Have we lost the urgency of our mission and the sense that if God does not work through us, we will not be able to do what we have been called to do? Prayer is exactly this type of declaration. A church that is devoted to prayer is a church that knows God’s mission is the most important pursuit on earth. It is a church that knows it cannot succeed without God. May this type of devotion to prayer define the attitude of our churches.”

I was struck by that last line.  We continue to talk about our values and I believe that prayer is one the keys to God’s working in His church.  This is a great challenge to us.  I want to encourage you to set aside time for prayer. I pray that as a church, we can devote ourselves to God’s mission.  

Grace and peace,
Pastor John

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