Monday, November 28, 2011

Consider Your Ways

Good Monday Morning To You!

Did you have a good Thanksgiving? Did you nearly eat yourself into oblivion on turkey or whatever your family likes. Here at the Cooper's we had the traditional turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes (which Pastor Vic doesn't eat,) pumpkin pie, (which Pastor Vic wouldn't eat with a gun held to his head) and Miss Bessie's home-made applesauce. She had never made it before, and quite frankly, I didn't realize you could make it! Remember- I was born a city boy. Our applesauce came in a glass jar from the Mott's factory. I'll never eat store bought again. Miss Bessie gets an A+ in applesauce making!! I married her for her cooking. When we first met I was a scrawny, 160 pound , six feet two inch dude with surfer boy blonde hair, and Elvis Presley sideburns. Look at me now. After all her good cooking I'm still six feet two inches, only now it's proportioned differently!

Yesterday was a good day at Friendship Harmony, but we missed Ken and Margaret as there was some illness. We are praying for a return to good health soon for Margaret. I had to lead the singing which is nowhere like Ken does it. The best part of my song leading is when I announce the page. After that, it's pretty unremarkable.

The message yesterday was from Psalm 119:57-64. In these verses the psalmist is extolling the mercy of God. He asks God to be merciful to him, “... according to thy word.” (v58) Why? In verse 57 he says, “Thou art my portion, O Lord: I have said that I would keep thy words.” He is saying he trusts God's words. You are probably thinking, “Where do you see that in that verse, Pastor Vic?” It comes from the phrase, “Thou art my portion, O Lord.” It means “allotment; ie something given.” It is a statement of ownership. He is saying, “You are MY Lord. He knows God is a Lord. That fact is a given. He also grants that God is the Lord. That too is true, but it does nothing for him personally. However, when he claims him as, “my Lord,” he has personalized it. Once He became HIS Lord, he would have full trust in God's word. Asking God to grant mercy according to that word shows complete trust in it, and total dependance on it. My question to you is, “Is Jesus Christ YOUR Lord?” I'm not asking if you recognize Him as The Lord; even Satan does that! I want to know is He your Lord. Join the psalmist in verse 59 and, “think on your ways.” Are they the ways of holiness? Are they His ways, or your ways? Think on that.

The psalmist goes on to say three things about what he did after he considered his ways. First, he turned to God's testimonies, ie God's word. (v59b) Jesus said in John 5:39 “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.

Next the psalmist says he hurried to keep God's word. The old English word here is he did not “dilly dally,” If you procrastinate upon receiving God's mercy, you are either not serious, or you are not convinced. You have faith or you do not. It is really that simple! Our psalm writer testifies he had faith. Do you have faith? Would you like some? The Bible says, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:19) If you want faith, get into God's word. Really, there is no other way.

Finally, he says, “At midnight I will rise to give thanks unto thee because of thy righteous judgments.” (Psalm 119:62) Are you grateful for the mercy God has bestowed upon you? Does the life you live indicate that? Have you ever even received God's mercy, pardon, and grace? If you want to talk privately about it, contact me. I'd be happy to help you.

Last week I told you about a dear lady of our church, Irene Bodziak. Later today, the doctors will likely shut down the respirator she is on. They say there is nothing more they can do. We still believe God is able to heal her, but from our human vantage point, it appears He has chosen not to do so. Maybe He will heal after all of man's efforts have expired; only He knows. Whatever God chooses, pray for the Spirit's comfort for her husband and family.

I'll see you next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic!!!


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Sister Irene Bodziak

Good day to you. Welcome to this special mid-week edition of Monday Morning With Pastor Vic. Happy Thanksgiving to you!!!

As I promised on Monday, here is an update on Sister Irene Bodziak. As you might recall, Irene fell Sunday morning and hit her head on a closet door. The fall caused bleeding in her brain, and she had emergency surgery Sunday evening. The surgeon said the first 48 hours were the most critical. She is now past that point, but is still in critical condition. The doctors are using phrases such as, “if she survives,” and “brain damage,” and “paralysis” and “the inability to speak or walk.” These are frightening words. I encouraged the family to hold on to hope until God says different. Irene is indeed in need of a miracle, but the Great Physician is very able. Please continue to bombard Heaven with your prayers. We are asking that you pray for a complete and total healing. Our LORD wants us to pray “specifically,” so on behalf of her husband, children and family, that is what I am asking you to do. Pray also for the Spirit's comfort for her loved ones at this time.

Thank you for praying, and I'll see you next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Special Edition

Good Monday Morning To You.

I’d like to ask all you readers to please remember Irene Bodziak in your prayers. While getting up to get ready for church yesterday, Irene lost her balance and fell, hitting her head against a door. She seemed alright, but her husband, Don, wisely insisted that she let him drive her to Cape Hospital to have it examined. They admitted her, but about 5:00pm she took a very quick turn for the worse and had to be rushed into emergency brain surgery to relieve the pressure. She came through the surgery fine, but the doctor cautioned that the next 24 to 48 hours were the most critical. He is cautiously optimistic. Pray for her recovery, and for Don as well. Also, family members are flying in, so pray for their safe journey.

While visiting the ICU, we met a man whose name I am not free to share at this time. He had sent word that he wanted to see me. Bill and I shared the gospel with him, and he said he was saved, but I wonder. I’ve been doing this for forty years this coming April, and I’ve learned to “read between the lines.” His answers were correct, but the way he said them caused red flags to go up in my mind. I’ll just ask you to pray for “Bud.” Again, that is not his name, but God certainly knows him. I just pray he truly knows God!

For an update on Irene and Bud, I will post a Monday Morning supplemental on Wednesday morning, and again on Friday.

Thanks for your prayers. I know the families appreciate it as well.

Please be sure to stop by our new Facebook Fan Page and click "LIKE." We will be updating the site regularly, so please be sure to stop by and visit and share with your friends and family! It's a great way to stay updated and to keep in touch with us...

Stay well, and have a good Thanksgiving!


Sunday, November 13, 2011


Good Monday Morning To You!!

Can you believe Thanksgiving Day is upon us? As of today, it will be here in only 10 days. Are you ready for it? I hope yours is special, but don’t work so hard on it that it takes away your joy. Let’s think about the meaning of thanksgiving. The best way to think about it is to pause and consider something for which you are genuinely grateful. For me this year is an easy choice. I will be thankful that I will be able to sit with my family at a Thanksgiving table. As some of you may very well remember, back in July it was quite possible that I wouldn’t be here to do that. Even now, I do not take tomorrow for granted. I am feeling much better, and I have more energy than I’ve had in years. My cardiac rehab is progressing very well. I’m up to twelve minutes on the treadmill, which for me is a tremendous improvement. When I first started I was only able to walk it for about one minute, and sometime less. I see all of this as a gift from Almighty God and I’m very thankful. I try to live every moment of each day in a spirit of gratitude. For what are you grateful? I’m sure if you’ll allow yourself to think about it, you can come up with several thoughts.

Yesterday was another delightful day at Friendship Harmony. The music, as always, was uplifting, and the Spirit made His presence known. I preached a message about a thankful woman from Luke 7:36-48. I’m sorry, but there were no notes. It was an expository message, but if you will take time and read the entire seventh chapter of Luke, you will see why this lady would be thankful. In fact, she never intended to wash Jesus’ feet with her tears, or anything else for that matter. How do we know? Two reasons. Number one, it was the custom of the day to provide a guest of the house with water so they could wash their feet. Simon the Pharisee, was the Lord’s host, and although he grossly slighted Jesus, the woman could not have known that in advance. Number two, she did not bring a towel. She was prepared to anoint Him with a costly perfume, but not wash His feet. However, when she arrived in His presence, she was so overcome with joy that a flood of tears ensued. All she had was her hair, which she used to wipe her Lord’s feet. We also see she repeatedly kissed the Savior’s feet and anointed them with the perfume. Normally, the head is anointed, not the feet. Perhaps she did not feel worthy to anoint anything BUT His feet. In verses 41, and 42, just 41 words in your King James Bible, Jesus slams the door on Simon’s arrogance. Actually, He lead Simon into slamming the door himself. He told Simon about a man who was owed by two individuals. One man owed 500 pence, while the other owed only 50. Both men had their debt forgiven. Jesus asked Simon which man would be the most grateful. Simon correctly answered the man who was forgiven most. Jesus, not to subtlety, lets all in that room know that the woman’s expression of love toward Him was brought about by her thanksgiving over her forgiven sin. Her love of Christ did not bring about her forgiveness. Her forgiveness, however, brought about her love of Jesus. She loved much because she had much forgiven.

My question to you is this: is your outward expressions of love for Jesus a good indicator of how much you have been forgiven? At this Thanksgiving season, you think about that.

For those of you who are here with us, don’t forget the announcements for the week. On Wednesday at 2:00, our small group, “The Jewish Roots of Christianity” meets at the home of Ken and Margaret Birdsong. On Thursday our ladies meet for their monthly luncheon at 1:00 at Captain Con’s in Bokeelia. Saturday morning at 8:00 a.m. our men meet for their monthly breakfast. It’s a busy week at Friendship Harmony, but we are so blessed to have these groups meeting. Have yourself a good, safe and healthy week and I’ll see you next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic.


Sunday, November 6, 2011


Good Monday Morning to you. I Hope your had a good week. Last week for me was extremely busy. I had several people each in different hospitals. One man, Ken Long, sure needs your prayers. He has had a tough recovery since his accident. Please pray for both him and Lois.

Some of you have asked about my wife, Miss Bessie. She is doing much better. As you know, she had been experiencing terrible pain in her stomach. The doctors ran many tests and finally her gastro doctor found her problem. He did a procedure called an ERCP. It was cut – cut, snip – snip, and he felt confident that her pain should go away. Indeed it has! She spent two nights in the hospital, and says it feels good not to wake up every morning with that pain. If you're in our area and ever need a gastro doctor, I highly recommend Dr. James Penuel. He is an awesome doctor and a fine human being. Bess and I really like him both professionally and personally. Miss Bessie is mending now and is a bit sore, but she sure appreciates the prayers.

Yesterday was an awesome day at Friendship Harmony. I thought we had a fine service. The music was tremendous, but it always is. Ken and Margaret Birdsong, our music leaders have been doing a private Bible study at home on the fruit of the Spirit. He picks songs to reflect that. Last week was love, while this week was joy. Next week will be peace. Maybe you could join in too. The fruit of the Spirit can be found in Galatians 5:22,23 and Ephesians 5:9.

Yesterday's sermon was called “Un.” I know that is an unusual title, but we looked at words that begin with the prefix “un.” These words concern our salvation. Our salvation is undeserved, unearned, and unaffordable. The notes, which you are welcome to use for your private Bible study, are below.

By Victor Cooper

Intro: When it comes to salvation, there are some “un” words we kneed to know; words with the prefix “u-n.” Our final word, which I shall introduce in my conclusion is unnecessary.

I. Your salvation is unmerited i.e. undeserved.
Ephes. 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
A. If you deserved it, it would be a right, not a gift.
B. You were not born saved. John 8:44a Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do.
C. Believers are adopted.
Romans 8:14-15 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. [15] For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
D. If it was your right, God would not have had to choose you. 2 Thes. 2:13-14 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: [14] Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.

II. Your salvation is unearned. 2 Tim. 1:9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,
A. If it was according to works, it would be salary i.e. earned.
B. It was according to His pleasure. Ephes. 1:9 Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself:
C. You cannot be good enough or work hard enough to earn it. Titus 3:5a Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

III. Your salvation is unaffordable.
1 Cor. 6:20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.
A. Price yes, but at what cost?
1 Peter 1:18-19 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; [19] But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:
1. Quote: Matthew Henry Commentary
Our bodies have been redeemed from deserved condemnation and hopeless slavery by the atoning sacrifice of Christ. We are to be clean, as vessels fitted for our Master’s use. Being united to Christ as one spirit, and bought with a price of unspeakable value, the believer should consider himself as wholly the Lord’s, by the strongest ties. May we make it our business, to the latest day and hour of our lives, to glorify God with our bodies, and with our spirits which are His.

Conclusion: Our final word, as I mentioned in the introduction is unforgiven, and as we have discovered is unnecessary.
Encyclopedia of 15,000 Illustrations2352. Gravestone: “Forgiven” (Only)
Not far from New York, there is a cemetery with a grave, which has inscribed upon its headstone just one word—“Forgiven.”
There is no name, no date of birth or death. The stone is unembellished by the sculptor’s art. There is no epitaph, no fulsome eulogy—just that one word, “Forgiven.”
But that is the greatest thing that can be said of any man, or written upon his grave, “Forgiven.”
Have you been forgiven, or are you yet Unforgiven?

Our winter visitors are starting to return. It is so good to see them. If you are getting ready to head south, be careful as you travel. For those of you who live up north full time, stay safe, healthy and warm No matter who you are, I'll see you next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic!!