* Theme for public: Connect… * Small Groups in Every Church * Baptismal Class in Every School * The new heroes in Texas Conference will be soul winning small group leaders and soul winning baptismal class leaders!
These items are nothing unusual. But what is unusual is the unified consensus that this is where we need to put our best energies across our field. There is still room for lots of input on implementation. (Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org).
Next Steps… * Executive Committee – Thu June 25 * Survey all Pastors and Teachers * All Teachers – Teachers Convention – Aug 2-6 * All Pastors – Zoom Meeting – Tue Aug 11 * Church Boards by Pastors; School Boards by Teachers/Admin in Aug * All Church Members – Sab Aug 29; Fill Baptistry Sabbath
We can never strategize our way into heaven so let’s be in prayer as this is unpacked and developed across our conference and beyond.
Every day God gives each of us Divine Appointments, people who are open to know more about Him and His ways. But most of us miss most of these opportunities. How can we be more proactive in finding who God is already working with?
The prophecies in the Book of Daniel show us that we are living in the time of the end. The stories in the Book of Daniel show us how to live in the time of the end.
Young people played a key role in the Book of Daniel and young people today will play a key role in God’s Final Movement on earth. The same strategy that Satan inspired Nebuchadnezzar to use back then has been adapted for today. Don’t be fooled by his devices. Stand tall for Jesus! Make decisions you will be proud of for eternity! Jesus will give you power and good friends to help you!
Compassionate people around the world have been horrified as they have watched or learned about the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd. They have seen the evil of racism taken to a new, and compellingly visual, level. These are emotionally intense times. How will you respond?
Racism is not new. Moses experienced it in his own family (Numbers 12:1). Daniel and his three friends experienced it (Daniel 3:12; 5:13; 6:13). Jesus had to help his own disciples overcome it (John 4:1-42; Matthew 15:21-28. Desire of Ages chapters 19 & 43).
As you seek The Lord He will impress you with how best to respond to the current situation in the United States. Here are 20 things I’d like to suggest that every believer can do wherever you live and whatever your background.
Pray for 5 People who aren’t like you. People you know personally from work or school or the neighborhood, or people in the news. Ask Jesus how best to pray for them. Pray for their conversion? Pray for justice to be applied properly? Pray that Jesus will bless them? Pray that Jesus will comfort them? Pray for the five people by name if you can and be a specific as possible. Pray for them each day for at least a week and see what God does and impressed you to do.
Discover 5 Stories of how Jesus treated people who were different from Himself. Skim through the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John) in the Bible and pick out stories. Ask the Lord to give you insight and wisdom as you read and reflect. Ask yourself what is setting for this story? Who are the people in the story? How was Jesus involved and what did He do and say? Then ask yourself the most important question – What can I learn from this story? Write some notes and share your insights with others. Ask Jesus to help you put these lessons into practice.
Clarify 5 Reasons the Three Angels’ Message (Revelation 14:6-12) is needed now more than ever. This is God’s Final Message to Planet Earth that prepares people everywhere for Jesus’ return (v14-20). Focus in on the various parts and become clear on what it means for you as you live it and then give to to others. How does the “everlasting gospel” change hearts, homes, churches and communities? Why is it important that this message go to “every nation, tribe/race, language and people group” so they can be represented around God’s throne someday (Revelation 7:9; 14:6). How will we treat others differently when we “fear (reverence) God and give glory to Him”? How is it good news to hear that “the hour of God’s judgment is here” and that ultimately there will be justice for all (Romans 12:19; Revelation 15:3; 20:12-15)? What will it look like when we truly “worship Him who made” everyone and everything (Genesis 1:1-2:3)? Why is a twisted view of God and false religion (“Babylon”) so destructive to relationships and society (Revelation 18:1-8)? How can we have the “patient endurance of the saints” when we feel like giving up? Why are all Ten Commandments important, not just when written in stone (Exodus 31:18) or in the Bible (Exodus 20:2-17), but in our hearts and minds (Hebrews 8:10; 10:16)? How does the “faith of Jesus” change our worldview?
Build 5 Bridges with people who are different from you. This will take some creativity and persistence but it is essential. It will involve some level of discomfort. It will probably involve some heavy doses of asking questions, listening to others, encouraging, appealing and giving of time and/or money. But as you build these bridges you will see Jesus do some things in your own heart that are needed. And someday in heaven you will see the full results of your initiatives. Please share below about one of the bridges the Lord helped you build.
The religion of the Bible recognizes no caste or color. It ignores rank, wealth, worldly honor. God estimates men as men. With Him, character decides their worth. And we are to recognize the Spirit of Christ in whomsoever He is revealed.—Testimonies for the Church 9:223. Ye Shall Receive Power 337.3
Thus Christ sought to teach the disciples the truth that in God’s kingdom there are no territorial lines, no caste, no aristocracy; that they must go to all nations, bearing to them the message of a Saviour’s love.—The Acts of the Apostles, 20. Ye Shall Receive Power 337.4
The walls of sectarianism and caste and race will fall down when the true missionary spirit enters the hearts of men. Prejudice is melted away by the love of God.—The Review and Herald, January 21, 1896. Ye Shall Receive Power 337.5
Walls of separation have been built up between the whites and the blacks. These walls of prejudice will tumble down of themselves as did the walls of Jericho, when Christians obey the Word of God, which enjoins on them supreme love to their Maker and impartial love to their neighbors—The Review and Herald, December 17, 1895. Ye Shall Receive Power 337.6
When the Holy Spirit is poured out, there will be a triumph of humanity over prejudice in seeking the salvation of the souls of human beings. God will control minds. Human hearts will love as Christ loved. And the color line will be regarded by many very differently from the way in which it is now regarded. To love as Christ loves lifts the mind into a pure, heavenly, unselfish atmosphere.—Testimonies for the Church 9:209. Ye Shall Receive Power 337.7
Someday soon God’s Final Message will go to every nation, tribe/race, language and people group (Revelation 14:6-12). All will respond by either becoming more sensitive to the Holy Spirit or more hardened against the Holy Spirit (Revelation 13:8, 15-17). Jesus will announce that the first phase of the Heavenly Judgement is finished and He is coming soon (Revelation 22:11-12). He will come again for His people (John 14:1-3; Titus 2:11-14). His people will include those from every nation, tribe/race, language and people group on earth (Revelation 7:9).
Can a pandemic shut down soul winning? Of course not!
Pastor John Bradshaw and the It Is Written team were ready to launch Hope Awakens, a city-wide evangelistic series in Indianapolis, Indiana this spring as part of the preparation for the General Conference Session scheduled for summer 2020. But then COVID – 19 swept the globe and the best laid plans seemed to be completely blocked.
When God allows a door to close He may be opening a window. A window of opportunity! The It Is Written team saw a God-given opportunity to take the Hope Awakens evangelistic series globally online at a time when millions would be limited to their homes. Why not spread the everlasting gospel and the Three Angels Message faster than the coronavirus! Major adjustments were made and plans revised. Continue reading →
Check out these amazing insights on what it takes to see God’s church grow! Share any thoughts in the comments below.
“God has given to “every man his work.” He has not left the spiritual interests of the church wholly in the hands of the minister. It is not for the good of the minister, nor for the good of the individual members of the church, that the minister should undertake exclusive charge of the Lord’s heritage. Each member of the church has a part to act in order that the body may be preserved in a healthful condition. Continue reading →
Every church goes through lean times financially. Four years ago it was our turn.1 Our church treasurer came to me with the bad news. “Pastor, as you know, we have been falling behind on our bills each month for several years. Our church is now financially broke. We can’t even pay the utilities bill this month. What are we supposed to do?” But today, four years later, all our bills are paid, we have a reserve fund of four months’ expenses, and our tithe two years ago was almost twice what it was four years ago. When people ask how we did it, I tell them that only the Lord can reverse a downward spiral like that, but there were three key ways we learned to cooperate with Him. Continue reading →