“In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable…” (I Cor 15:52)
At the funeral of Richard Nixon, our 37th President, Bill Graham told the story of Winston Churchill. Being convinced of the resurrection of Christ and the eternal life based on faith in His raising from the dead, Churchill planned his own funeral at St. Paul's Cathedral. He instructed that a bugler be positioned high in the dome of the cathedral. After the benediction, he was to play the sad melody of taps, declaring that the days of a man’s life on earth are over. But he had also instructed another bugler to be positioned on the opposite side of the dome. This bugler would end the service by playing the exhilarating tune of reveille, a call to arise to a new day. In dramatic fashion Churchill illustrated what the Scriptures proclaim. For those who put their faith in the resurrected Christ, our last notes will not be those of sorrowful taps but those of triumphant reveille. Nothing gets our attention like death. But nothing deserves our attention more than the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. So what will be played at your funeral?
This Easter season let the power of God’s truth wash over your heart as you respond to Christ’s gracious invitation to “repent and believe in the gospel.” (Mark 1:15)
“He is risen!” (Matt 28:6)
“…just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with Him in a death like His, we shall certainly be united with Him in a resurrection like His.” (Romans 6:4-5)
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you.” (1 Pet. 1:3-4)
“For I know that my Redeemer lives…” (Job 19:25)
“That you may know what is the hope to which He has called you, what are the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come.” (Eph. 1:18-21)
“Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with Him. For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, He cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over Him.” (Rom. 6:8-11)
“If the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.” (Rom. 8:11)
“That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like Him in his death…” (Phil. 3:10)“Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised— who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.” (Romans 8:34)
FORUMS We are winding down our Men’s Forum theme of Built 2 Bless from God’s love letter to the Colossians. Pray that the men whom we teach would live out these powerful truths between Sundays. Pray with us that the theme verse, Colossians 2:6-7, would sink deep into our hearts. “As you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude.”FUELED SUMMER FORUMS
Ministry Prayer & Praise
Ask the Father to deliver the forum men from the temptation to take a vacation from God this summer! Pray for fruit from our summer “Fueled” series as we walk through Paul David Tripp’s devotional, “New Morning Mercies.” This kicks off the second week of June.DISCIPLESHIP Our Spring season of GRIP Discipleship comes in for a landing on May 13th. Pray, however, that the discipleship would continue and that each man (78) would allow God to have an increasingly firm grip on his heart.
FINANCES YTD through March 2019, our shortfall revenues to expenses is 21% ($15K). We look to God for his provision and we praise Him for our donors’ partnership with us in the Gospel! We joyfully live within the means God is providing and seek His wisdom for stewarding these provisions.STAFF We are pleased to announce that Karl Reed, our ministry apprentice for the last two years, will be joining us on staff full-time in May! God has provided through a special designated gift to fund Karl through the fall of 2020! We receive this gift, and we receive Karl, as a confirmation that the Lord wants to impact the next generation through Focused Living. (More to come about Karl in the next prayer letter☺)
Pray for the 70 men who are paired up and enrolled in our current GRIP season of discipleship (Feb 4-May 13). Pray that each man would be established in these three core rhythems: 1) meeting with God during unhurried times alone in His Word, 2) man to man encouragement/accountability, and 3) indentifying and acting on a few Action Points in this season of life. Pray that the GRIP planning team of Tim, Sinclair, Karl, German, Perry, and David would listen to the Spirit as we lead this season.
We praise and thank our Father who, yet again, provided for us in 2018. We start the year in the black and are humbled by His 25 years of faithfulness.
2/4 – Grip Discipleship Kick off. Remaining Spring dates = 2/18, 3/11, 4/1, 4/22, 5/13
2/10 – David Andes Preaches at Columbia Crossroads
3/1 – 3/3 – FLM Couples Core Retreat
Perry – My focus word/phrase for 2019 is “Present” inspired by Moses’ heart to see God’s glory (Exodus 33) and ‘present’ himself before his Creator as the Lord proclaimed His character of sovereign grace (35:1-8). Pray as I continue to love and pray for our 6 grands who are growing so quickly.
Janet – My focus phrase for 2019 is “fearless belief” inspired by Jesus’ words to His timid disciples in John 6:20 “It is I. Do not be afraid!” Pray that I will recognize God’s presence at work in some specific areas/relationships that He is calling me into.
Joy & Eddie – Serving as a family as part of a new church plant. Continual wisdom, strength and patience for parenting 4 kids 12-6 years old.
Megan & Marc – The snow and cold temps aren’t slowing down the Hunsakers this Winter. Please pray for Hannah as she works hard in all her classes in 3rd grade. She is a blossoming writer, avid reader and works hard in math. pray for Logan as he continues to learn how to make friends, be responsible and all the basics in Young-5’s all day Kindergarten. Pray for Megan as she continues to build the art program at her Elementary school. Pray for Marc as he enters the final lap of his PhD. Pray for perseverance, clarity of thought and fruitful writing.
David and Katherine–In the midst of our largely “programmed” weeks, pray that we would walk each day strongly connected to Jesus so that we can love whoever God brings our way. Pray we would be intentional about reaching out to new neighbors.
Austin(20) – Continue to Pray in the “peace from above” for Austin. Pray for some concrete plans to begin to come together for what is next for Austin after he finishes school this year. Praise that he is recapturing his love for music.
Cameron(15) – Praise that Cameron loves to learn and is doing well in school. Pray that his heart would be captivated by Jesus and that he would have some good Christian friendships.