Brothers and Sisters,
I hope these last few days have been uplifting even if your days have been filled with discouragement. This past Sunday reminded us that we are not alone in our discouragement. Even the Bible itself indicates that dark days are not a new invention (Ps 42). We may have days, weeks, months, and even years of deep discouragement. The challenge is not to figure out how to avoid such things but what to do during them. Many things were discussed during Sunday’s gathering but lets review two of them.
First, Pastor Chuck mentioned what has been commonly called “means of grace.” These “means of grace”—preaching, Lord’s Supper, singing, ministry to others, etc.—provide additional blessing for the Christian life. The Psalmist in Psalm 42 indicates part of the reason for his downcast soul is lack of presence in the corporate worship gathering with other brothers and sisters. When we are removed from a “means of grace” for far too long discouragement has a potential to overcome us. It is very unlikely for a Christian to grow and thrive with prolonged absences from gathered worship. If this be the case, then a way to keep discouragement away is consistent gathered worship. Psalm 34:8 has the same sense in that gathered worship is how we “taste and see that the Lord is good.”
Second, learn to speak to yourself more often than listening. Sounds a bit foolish and perhaps childish, but the rehearsing of God’s truth daily—even minute by minute if needed—is extremely helpful to ward off discouragement. This is the practice used in Psalm 42:5 and 11. The Psalmist is simply having a conversation with himself and concludes each time to place his trust in God not how he currently feels. We would do well to know and memorize scriptures to repeat to ourselves as dark days become our reality. Brothers and Sisters, would you commit this summer to memorizing a few scriptures with a few other members? Psalms 42 strongly encourages us to do just that and more.
Moves and Mergers
Please plan on being back at the Auditorium at 2pm this Sunday (June 5th). The Transition Team will lead a time of celebration as we discuss a merger of ministries and a generous gift that will enhance ministry through the
Church on Mill Distinctives
Church on Mill is passionately engaged in both our community and the world. As a family of believers who have been and are being changed by the gospel, we cannot help but be moved with compassion for the spiritual, physical, intellectual, emotional, and mental needs of both our community and the world at large. God has called us to leave a geographical footprint in the Valley. He has also called us to participate in extending the gospel around the globe. We yearn to engage people in spiritual conversations, demonstrate the love of Christ through acts of mercy, and live in such a way that God will draw people to salvation through our words and deeds. (Lk 4:18-19 / Jn 20:21 / Acts 1:8 / 1 Pt 3:13-17)
Grace be with you,