Good morning to you! Welcome to Monday Morning With Pastor Vic.
Pour yourself a cup of coffee or a glass of juice and let's chat awhile. How has your week been? I hope yours has been terrific! Mine was OK with the exception of some of life's little glitches along the way. Do you remember me telling you several weeks ago about the part that fell off my car? Well, Wednesday night on our way to church, it fell off again about four blocks from home. Once again I had to crawl under the car and try to repair it. Please keep in mind we live on dirt roads and I was in my church clothes. However, unlike the last time, I was unable to fix it as the entire bracket pulled loose. I was able to baby it back home at about 3 mph. Thursday morning Carl, our mechanic, sent a truck and the car left home on the hook.
Someone told me to visualize in my mind the car of my dreams. I visualized a Jeep. I do not know the model, but it is a 4 door hard top that looks like a mini-Hummer from the side. It has 4-wheel drive and is silver in color. If you knew where we live, you'd understand why. If you could visualize something into existence, what would it be?
As believers we do not need to visualize and hope the desires of our heart will magically appear. We have the right of prayer. The beauty of it is we are not praying to an impersonal god sitting on a throne arbitrarily dispensing goodies. We are praying to the Almighty King of Kings, the Great Jehovah, that just happens to be our Father. We can cry to Him, "Abba, Father," as Jesus did in Mark 14:36. Abba means
"daddy." While Father speaks of who He is, Abba says it's personal - He is my Daddy!
Church attendance was up just a smidge from the week before. I finished my Provoking God series with Provoking God To Withdraw. The three main point were:
I. Sometime people pray and ask God to withdraw from them. Job 21:14 says, "Therefore they say unto God, Depart from us: for we desire not the knowledge of thy ways." It is reported that the late actress Joan Crawford said on her deathbed, "Don't you dare ask God to do anything for me."
II. God can even withdraw from a believer. We looked at I Samuel 15 where King Saul had been told by Samuel that because of his sin, God was taking the kingdom from him. His soul was secure, but God's presence and blessing were to be withdrawn.
III. God withdraws as a wake up call. Isaiah 54:8 says, "In a little wrath I hid my face from thee for a moment, but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee, saith the LORD thy Redeemer."
He talks about hiding His face. That means removing His favor. Remember, salvation is secure according to Psalm 51:12. It's a sealed deal according to Ephesians 4:30. The only thing worse than provoking God to anger is provoking God to withdraw. Tragic! Very tragic! However, there is a cure. It does not have to be fatal. The cure: repentance. A line in a song says, "I shall return to the God of my fathers." That's repentance.
Well, I'd better run on and let you get on with your day. I've got visits to make, sermons to prepare, and just day to day "pastor stuff." Don't forget the contest; I sure need your help! Please contact those in your e-mail address book and ask them to subscribe to Monday Morning With Pastor Vic. It's totally free. All they need do is go to www.preachercooper.com and click on subscribe on the right hand side of the main page. Be sure to tell them (or you can) go to bottom of my article and click on comments and tell me who recommended them. For more information, scroll down to my article from last week, June 21. I hope to see you again next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic.