Sunday, March 13 we spent time with Paul’s letter to the believers of Philippi. The church of Philippi was dealing with a group of folks who were insisting that all followers of Christ had to first become Jewish before they could become a follower of Christ. This was being shared with a mostly Gentile population and therefore very troubling and confusing. Paul’s words basically stated that this was not true. Belief in Christ was not based on what we do it is based on Christ and Christ alone. Paul gives this list of credentials as a Hebrew above Hebrews to show that if anyone had reason to make this requirement it would be him and he never made this requirement. He pushes the fact that belief in Christ, salvation, is based on what Christ has done, is doing and will do! Paul also points out that faith in Christ is a lifelong process. He compares it to a foot race, forgetting what is behind, I press on to the upward call in Christ Jesus. He claims he has not attained it yet but continues on to the goal. Spend the time and reread this text Philippians 3:4b-14. So what does this have to do with us, Jasper UMC in 2016? We need to be reminded as well that our faith is not based on us it is not based on what other people think it is based on Christ and Christ alone. Often we allow someone else to set the tone for how we should live as faithful Christian people. This causes us to question and second guess everything we do and we end up doing mostly nothing. The world has a way of telling us we are not good enough to be loved by God and we believe this message because it is easy to point out our flaws and our short comings. Therefore we need to focus on the fact that our life in Christ and our faith is based on God’s actions not our actions. There is nothing we can do to make us holy, righteous. This took the willingness of Christ to be the sacrifice for the fallen creation. The crucifixion is the act of love that is given to a fallen creation once we receive and except the gift the way we then live our life is in response to this gift. This is the pressing forward, the running the race that Paul is speaking of in the latter part of the text. Once we except the gift of grace and love offered by God we then chose how we will live our life in response, we live every day and chose how we will respond to the amazing gift of grace offered to each of us. So where are you living? Are you stuck in that place believing the world who states you are not loved by God, or are you basking in God limitless love knowing that faith is based on Christ? Do you find you are running in place and not really growing in your relationship with Christ? Your faith is based in Christ but you are not responding well right now and therefore your faith is not growing. Or are you running with the strength and knowledge that every day you are responding to the call of Christ? I encourage us all to put our focus on God and keep running the race that is before us so that we can grow deeper in love with God and in turn God will teach us to learn to love one another!
The audio of the 9:45 service from March 13th can be heard on our website. Please click on the link below.
This Sunday get ahead by reading Luke 23: 26-49 and we will focus on the title “Passion”.
Just a reminder that next week March 21-25 we here at Jasper UMC will be hosting the Pickens Ministerial Lenton Lunch each day beginning at 12:00PM. Everyone is welcome and I encourage you to come out and support our missions committee as the lunch donations will be used to support various mission ministry. A detailed schedule can be found in the bulletin on Sunday.
Here are two upcoming golfing events to support worthwhile ministries.
North Georgia United Methodist Men Golf Fundraiser!
This will be a 1;30 PM shotgun start on Friday April 22nd at Woodmont Golf and Country Club. The dinner afterward will be a BBQ dinner with sides followed by ton of raffles and auction items. Please invite your non-golfing friends too for dinner. To register; Please fax or email your registration by midnight Monday 29th to take advance of the discounted golf for registering! Please call Larry Delbridge with questions at 404.493.2288 or email him at LarryDelbridge@gmail.com.
Do we have any golfers in our congregation? How about any golfers who feel high education is important? How about golfers who feel higher education at a United Methodist affiliated university is worth supporting? If any or all of these applies to you I invite you to join me for the 23th annual United Methodist Scholarship Golf Outing, Wednesday, May 18, 2016 at Bent Tree Golf Course here in Jasper, Georgia. I would really love to have two or more teams of four playing in this worthwhile golf outing. The cost is $145 per player can be paid through the church. If you are interesting in playing please let me, Pastor Greg, know. I am planning to play and I am looking to hear from the first three folks who are willing to join my foursome. Thank you in advance for your support and consideration.