[Copy+paste from Pastor Mark Melton’s weekly email…]
Good afternoon brothers and sisters,
Well, this is one of many “lasts” I have experienced over the last several weeks…my last Pastor’s Post-it. It has been a rewarding experience for me and I trust that many of you have benefited as well. I want to take a minute to publicly express my immense gratitude to a dear sister in Christ who, for at least the last 10 years, has plied me with lots of material each week from which I choose six or seven articles that catch my attention for one reason or another. I shan’t mention her by name lest I rob her of any blessing she might receive from her heavenly Father. A few of you know who she is, just let me say, “Thanks sis…well done…well done.”
Since I will not be in regular contact with you as a group, let me take this opportunity to emphasize how important it is for you to be in attendance at the Special Meeting of Presbytery on August 30 here at our building. On that occasion the Presbytery will be installing Rev. Tim McClymonds as pastor of CCOPC. Your support for him as your pastor begins that evening and your presence indicates a willingness to follow his lead.
The installation service is actually a worship service. There will be most of the elements of a typical Lord’s Day worship service.
Following the service, there will be a time of fellowship in the cafeteria. We’ll need everyone to bring finger foods to eat and our Deacons will take care of drinks. This will, in many respects, a historical evening for Christ Covenant.
Patti and I leave tomorrow morning for a ten day vacation. We’re driving down to Gulf Shores with Damien & Jess and the kiddos. Then on the way back, Patti and I are planning on stopping at Mammoth Caves and do a little exploring for a couple days.
Jim Strietlemeier will be in the pulpit for the next two Lord’s Days and then he and David Franks will alternate Lord’s Days for the remainder of the month. On September 1, Pastor Larry Wilson will be filling the pulpit as he will be down for Pastor Tim’s installation service. The Order of Worship for this Lord’s Day and next are both attached.
· July 27–Work day at Miss Gee Gee’s
· July 28–Neighborhood Fellowship
· August 4–Fellowship Meal
· August 4–Season of Prayer
· August 11–Young Adults Fellowship Group
· August 18– Adults Fellowship Group (westsiders)
· August 25–Neighborhood Fellowship
· August 30–Installation Service for Pastor Tim
“Only when we weigh ourselves against the weight of the glory of God do we begin to realise our need is infinitely greater than we could ever imagine.” –C.S. Lewis
Just going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than standing in your garage makes you a car. —G.K. Chesterton
Instead of a river, God often gives us a brook, which may be running today and dried up tomorrow. Why? To teach us not to rest in our blessings, but in the blesser Himself. —Arthur Pink
Some people think God does not like to be troubled with our constant coming and asking. The way to trouble God is not to come at all. —D.L. Moody
Contending for the faith and contentiousness are not the same thing. —Hershael York
Make church attendance such a habit that there’s never a need for your kids to ask, “Dad, Mom, are we going to church tomorrow?” —Paul Tautges
The Unlikely Ways of God
Would you pick an 80-year-old man to lead a slave uprising?
A timid man to lead an army against an all-conquering hoard?
A mild whisper to inspire a dejected prophet?
A shameful cross to bring us to a place of life and honour?
In a world accustomed to social media influencers and brand consultants, would you have picked a rag-tag bunch of nobodies to see your message of salvation went to the ends of the earth?
We live in a world where the big, the powerful, the influential and the instant are what matters. And it is easy for that to permeate our psyche, to colour our expectations of what God is doing.
For that reason we need to be recalibrated by scripture. READ MORE…
J. I. Packer’s Thoughts on Holiness
A Habitual Attitude
There is no holiness or Christian life that does not have repentance at its core. Repentance is not merely one element in conversion, but a habitual attitude and action to which all Christians are called. It is, argues Packer, a spiritual discipline central to and inseparable from healthy holy living. But what is it? How should it be defined? What are its characteristic features? A close reading of Packer reveals that he understands repentance to entail a number of interrelated themes. The most important dimension in godly repentance is the fundamental alteration in one’s thinking with regard to what is sin and what God requires of us in terms both of our thoughts and actions. READ MORE…
Ten Thoughts about the “Billy Graham Rule”
Earlier today, I saw an interview on CNN about a Christian politician who practices the “Billy Graham Rule” (watch above). It is an awkward interview to watch, but it illustrates the cost to men and women who are making a good-faith effort to avoid compromising situations. This is by no means everything that can or should be said about the so-called “Billy Graham Rule.” Nevertheless, I thought I would update something I wrote previously on this topic. I personally believe that the rule is wise and ought to be pursued with rigor by Christians who are serious about holiness and witness. So in that spirit, here are ten brief reflections on this particular discipline. READ MORE…
Jesus Repulses, Jesus Draws
I think we all love the story of the Garasene Demonaic, don’t we? It is the story of a poor, pathetic, hopeless, demon-oppressed man and his life-changing encounter with Jesus Christ. And there is something in the story I find particularly fascinating. READ MORE…
Orientation Identity and the Church
In this bravest and newest of worlds, people have taken upon themselves the responsibility to self-identify. Looking inwardly for their truth, they examine their thoughts and passions to determine who they are. If their heart is inclined, or oriented, in a certain direction, then that proclivity becomes who they are.
Just a few short years ago, the big battle in this area was for people to be identified by their sexual orientation. As this article makes clear, this battle was basically won when the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage. In those days, things were “simpler” as you were either straight, lesbian or gay. READ MORE…
6 Effects of God’s Power
We cannot read the Scriptures without at some point coming to terms with the extraordinary display of the awesome power of the God it portrays. And power, by very definition, must have an effect. The power of God is not simply some intellectual truth to grasp and recite. The power of God is real, and it is dangerous, and it is wonderful, and it is comforting; and we must come to terms with how we will respond in the face of it.
Among the countless effects the power of God has, I have chosen six that are significant for us to grasp today.
Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Ephesians 3:20-21)
“In the sphere of religion, as in other spheres, the things about which men are agreed are apt to be the things that are least worth holding; the really important things are the things about which men will fight.” J. Gresham Machen
“When Christ calls a man – he bids him come and die.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer