Author: fcog8600

LIFE IN HUMILITY

Easter is next Sunday, and it is during this time, I feel we must look at how we serve our Lord Jesus.  Do we serve Him fully, humbling ourselves before Him and man or do we serve Him when it is convenient for us?

This Sunday, April 9th 2017 in both the Traditional and Contemporary services, I will be preaching on Christ-like Humility.  It amazes me how the Apostle Paul never meeting Jesus face-to-face seemed to know Him very deeply and personally.

In the text we see How Jesus humbled Himself and everything He did during His ministry was to fulfill the Father’s will.  Sometimes, I wonder in the society we live in today, how do we show Jesus’ qualities in the life we live?  Do we actually show Christ-like humility or does everything we do have selfish, greedy, and bias connotations attached to it?

As we grow and mature in Christ Jesus through our daily walk with Him, the more we practice His humility and give into His will, the more, I believe others will see Him living within us.

May this Easter bring forth in us the humbleness that Christ Jesus showed to His Heavenly Father and may we do the same as we serve our living Savior which is Jesus Christ our Lord.

Rev. Harold Boyd
Pastor, First Church of God, Norfolk

 

SPIRITUAL GROWTH SERMON SERIES

Some may ask; How do I grow and mature in the Lord?  In this sermon series we have experienced many different facets that we need to obtain growth and to mature in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

We started out by asking the question; “OK, Now What?”  We know that Jesus saves us from our sins, so what comes after that?  Next we asked the question; “Are We Grown Yet?”  This talks to us about have we reached that growth and maturity yet in our walk?  In our third week, we asked the question; “Whose Will Are We Going To Follow?”  This really is our choice whether we go with our own will, the enemy’s will, or if we will stay in God’s good, acceptable, and perfect will for our lives.  Yesterday at service we asked the question; “God, Am I Gifted?”  Once we ask Jesus into our hearts and are baptized, the Holy Spirit blesses us with Spiritual Gifts.  Please don’t confuse those with talents that God gives us to use throughout our lifetime.

This coming week, we will conclude this sermon series.  This week, we will ask the question that we have been asking since we were created.  That question is; “Where Do I Fit In?”  So, many times in our lives, we may have been an outcast and maybe did not have many friends. Sometimes, when we come to Jesus, it seems to take awhile before we fully understand what our place is within the body of Christ.

If anyone has missed this sermon series, we do have CD’s available for a donation and they are also out on our web page.  We would love to have anyone come and visit and experience either a traditional service at 10:45am or a Contemporary Service at 12:45pm every Sunday.  We are a loving church and either congregation will welcome all with open arms in the Spirit of Jesus whom we serve.

My prayer is that everyone has a blessed week and that we continue to grow and mature in Christ Jesus our Lord.

FOR THE LOVE OF GOD AND COUNTRY

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This past Sunday, I did the first of a two part series on Veteran’s Day. My wife and I both served on Active Duty as well as so many others within our congregation here at First Church of God, Norfolk, VA.  First, let me say, we are a non-denominational church and being a military town, we support and love our military men and women for what they have done for both God and country in fighting for the freedoms that we still possess even today.

However, we know our Nation and our country has fallen away from God.  We know that it only took one person to remove the prayers from our schools and the Ten Commandments from every federal building.  We as a church, which is the body of Christ Jesus our Lord, need to stand up and speak up for our rights as a nation and as Christians.  We need to win back our freedoms as believers so that all of those who made the ultimate sacrifice for the Love of both God and Country will not have died in vain.

This upcoming Presidential election that we will vote on tomorrow will be a tell all for all of us.  No, I am not siding with one or the other of our candidates, but what I do know, is we need to be in prayer right now and through this election process that God’s will prevail and that our nation comes back to humbling themselves before God Almighty.

Our Forefathers built a nation honoring God.  We see it in the pledge of allegiance, we see it on all of our currency, we see it in the court rooms, and yes in every aspect of our daily lives.  So, the question arises and forces us to ask ourselves; “How did we allow things to get so far out of whack?”  Stand up church, and as the Apostle Paul states, paraphrasing, Finish the race, keep going for the ultimate prize which is eternity in Heaven with Christ Jesus.  May God add a special blessing to us all this day and may we also be reminded, His grace is and always will be sufficient.

So, if you would like to hear the second part of this sermon series, please come to our beloved church this coming Sunday, November 13, 10:45 AM and lets together honor our brave servicemen and women who served both God and country in Christian Love.

 

Status Quo Or A Breakthrough?

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Everyone that knows me, knows I like to read.  In my reading this week, I came across an article entitled, “Praying For A Breakthrough” and it really caught my attention.  It is from ChurchLeaders.  I want to do a spin off from this with what I feel churches are dealing with today.

In our churches today we are bombarded with persistent and constant attacks. The enemy wants us to remain in the status quo to where we are no longer active or even have a desire to participate in worship.  We come to church on Sunday, we listen to the words but then during the remaining days of the week we do nothing to help in the building of God’s Kingdom.  In fact, some of us do not even attend any other service or other opportunities the church may be offering.

So, it should be easy to understand when the enemy is satisfied with status quo, it then opens the door for him to be able to separate us.  The enemy loves status quo because it is during that stage we become quiet, remaining unfocused and undetermined.  He convinces people they need a change.

Church, I guess the first thing we need to understand is what does the word breakthrough really mean?  A breakthrough is a military act where one army can weaken another army and while the invading is occurring, one can expect fierce opposition before the breakthrough is achieved.  Christians know this is the same in the spiritual battles we face every day against our arch enemy, Satan.

It doesn’t matter whether we are trying to fight off our own fleshy sins or just trying to gain ground in our fight against the enemy, Satan will continue to try to bring us down.

In Psalms 103:1-22 King David gives us a glance into seeing what it takes to receive a breakthrough.  He states in verses 1-5; “Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name!  Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits; who forgives all your iniquities who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from destruction, who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, who satisfies your mouth with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”

David is saying to receive the breakthrough, we need more of Jesus and less of us.  When we come to worship, we have to understand it is not about what the church can give us; however, what can we give to the church in glorifying and honoring God.  Worship is not about the music.  It is not about who likes who and who doesn’t.  It is also not a country club where we can all come to socialize. Worship is and should always be strictly about serving and following God Almighty.

If you are looking for a breakthrough, come join us because as Jesus says in Matthew 18:19 where two or more come together and agree concerning anything here on earth, when they ask, it will be done for them by His Father in heaven.

Church, let go of the past hurts and pains, live in the present, and retain the hope that comes from Christ Jesus our Lord to one day be with Him in heaven.  Amen.

Pastor Harold’s Blog

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“How Does Your Resume Measure Up?”

A few weeks ago I did a sermon on “How Does Your Resume Measure Up?”  It catapulted us as Christians into a realization of what God means to be workers with Him.  The scripture text came from 2 Corinthians 6:1-10 (NKJV)

I have seen first hand by working in the Nextstep program, a program then under Tidewater Community College that assisted military spouses to go to college.  Also under the Workforce Development Office through the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) on assisting people with Resumes, Cover Letters, interviewing skills, and other employment help aids.

It is imperative to understand, Corporations today want to know they are getting the best fit for the job they are hiring for. So, when they partner with the VEC, they are expecting very qualified, ready-to-work individuals. Writing a resume and a cover letter are very important papers anyone can ever write because they will either help an individual or deter an individual in the hiring process.

Scripture shows us The Apostle Paul is informing the Corinthian church the importance of being a worker for Christ.  It is also the fact that Paul is sharing his own resume to the church in Corinth so they too see the the importance of being a committed follower; which is doing the work.

Paul is saying to everyone; God wants us to be workers with Him for our own good.  You see the word “workers” has some significance for us.  We are workers with Him not the other way around.  God doesn’t help us with our work, it is His work that He wants us to help Him with.  We spend so much time trying to get God to help us with our work instead of us finding out what God’s work is, and doing it joyfully with Him.  The last thing God needs is a bunch of Christian couch potatoes or pew warmers.

God’s grace is freely given. It is given to us because we have shown faith in Christ Jesus our Lord and have become obedient.  God doesn’t want us to receive His grace and become passive.  Paul knew God gives His grace, we work hard, and the work of God is done.”

Paul quotes Isaiah 49:8 to express a sense of urgency to the church.  He is also sharing this urgency to all of us today.  We need to let go of our self-focus, we need to let go of complacency, and we need to let go of just being comfortable where we are in our lives.  We need to be busy for the Lord working together with Him.  God has told us when Jesus returns He should find us being busy with the calling He has given us on our lives.

Paul lists his first quality as patience?  We don’t ask for patience because we think of patience as the ability to sit around and wait on God for something to happen.  The Greek word used here is hupomone which means an active endurance.  It means the ability to bear trials and tribulations to the point that it changes them as we continue to maintain our faith and trust in God.

You see, we go through life and we continue to build our resume, we obtain things that we are told to put in our personal tool belt aren’t we?  This is no different in our Christian walk either.  I would like to ask you a question at this juncture; would you go to a Dr., pharmacist, lawyer, and yes even a minister if those individuals did not carry certain credentials or have available resources to be able to perform their job?  No, I don’t think I would either.

Paul is describing resources such as; “by purity, by knowledge, by long-suffering, by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by sincere love, by the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left.”  It is with these resources that God enables us and equips with our constant spiritual battle with our enemy.

It is paramount to understand God wants us to work with Him.  He wants us to produce, accomplish, bring about some change, and lead others to Christ Jesus our Lord.  He wants us to be able to profess His Holy Word in all situations.

Our resume needs to be up to par and it needs to include Jesus because it is He who we profess to believe in.  If your resume does not show everything it needs to show as a Christian, then we need to come back to Jesus and ensure everything is on our resume as He would want it to be.

The Word tells us not to forsake the assembling together.  Where is it that we learn about God in such a way that we can take what we learn and apply it?  We have to stop picking and choosing when we want to be a committed follower or when we don’t.  Let’s build our resume, so like the Apostle Paul we can not only show our strength, we can also show the resources we have in our tool belt as we continue to fully exhibit every characteristic of a committed follower, an Ambassador, and a worker for Christ Jesus our Lord.  So, as this blog and my sermon asks the question, I too ask the question now, “How Does Your Resume Measure Up?”