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Shepherd’s News

August 2017 Pastor's Message:

“On What Will You Build Your Faith?”

We completed an enriching Vacation Bible School (hence the lateness of this month’s newsletter) and there is something I observed while shuffling boxes and arranging the settings for the week’s group settings and Bible stories. First, a big THANK YOU to all who supported our VBS this year with your prayers, your donations of food for the snacks, donation of money for covering expenses, and for those who helped in the kitchen, with games, registration, storytelling, crafts, and in many support roles. We also offer a big thank you for the ample and abundant supply of cardboard boxes which were used in staging our activities.

We constructed the Walls of Jericho and by the morning’s end, all those boxes came a-tumblin’ down. Joshua would have been proud! Then, those boxes were ‘repurposed’ and made into the King’s palace as well as the fortress where we learned a total of five Bible verses for the week. By the last day, those boxes saw another use, that being made into the tomb from which Jesus was raised from the dead. Each child was able to enter the tomb, have the stone rolled in place, then after about 15-20 seconds, the tomb was opened and they came out.

As I was clearing out the gym, I realized how ‘flimsy’ those boxes were, even though we used them as mighty blocks to build the city of Jericho’s walls. The boxes fell rather easily and we could rebuild them into something else.

Now, cheap as they were, they wouldn’t be used to making a real building, would they? Yet some people today will use flimsy boxes, not in real life buildings, but in real faith building. Let me explain.

World philosophies are man-centered, and people will adopt them as their foundation. They may be led to subscribe to the teachings of worldly people, but in the end and in times of trial, those foundations are found empty.

Biblical foundations are Christ-centered, and those who read, mark, learn, and inwardly take to heart the precious teachings of the Word of God will know of their salvation in Jesus. You can’t get that from a cardboard box! Yet people take the philosophy of the world and try to make it through the tough faith-challenges in their lives. They are building on sand, and that building will crash once the storms of life beat against that house.

Those who build on the Word of God will be like the wise man who build built his house on the solid rock. The adverse things of life will come, but the house will stand because of its firm foundation on the Word.

So would be your faith.

This month we see the beginning of school and the resuming of our Bible Classes. Confirmation class for those entering 7th grade will also begin. Daily devotions through Portals of Prayer, My Devotions, and other daily Scripture readings also help build and preserve faith. Attending worship regularly and faithfully each week also builds a healthy and resilient faith. The children attending our Day School will also have regular lessons that teach about God’s deliverance and love in Jesus Christ.

Ask anyone who has moved recently and they will tell you they don’t want to see another box! The boxes we used in our VBS were empty. They have since served their purpose. But the Word of God endures forever! Be blessed as you consider how you will build your faith as this new school year begins!

Pastor Ron Brauer

Matthew 11:28-30

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