Lift Up Your Eyes
WE ALL KNOW WHO SAID THIS... When Jesus spoke these words. He likely had two meanings in His mind. The Samaritan woman had left Jesus at the well, and returned to Sychar, which was on a hill. Her report caused the town folks to investigate. While Jesus and the Disciples discussed lunch, the Samaritans " were coming to Him " (John 4:30) from their position at the well, Jesus directed the Disciples’ gaze up in the hill --- look quite literally--- look up at the crowd coming! But Jesus said it metaphorically. " Look. I say unto you, lift up your eyes and look on the fields that they are white-- ready to be harvested ! ( check the original and various versions of John 4:35). The disciples suffered from spiritual myopia. They wondered about Jesus talking to a women and struggled with unmasked questions. Then they failed to grasp Jesus ’ meaning about spiritual food.
Jesus directed their minds away from earthy grain (bread and harvest) to the grain of evangelistic opportunity : stop looking down at earthy things. Look up! See the heavenly realities -- a harvest for "ETERNAL LIFE" .. They needed to see the Samaritans the way God saw them, as a long-prepared crop of infinite value.
We, too need better eyesight . We pass individuals (like the woman at the well) and groups (like the crowds) at Sychar) without recognizing their value in Gods eyes . We favor our own circle, and fail to see those outside our circle. Who are our Samaritans? People who make us feel uncomfortable? People with different languages, and values? People like refugees and immigrants? People who lack families and run with gangs? People with a prison record? Yet, Samaritans often prove receptive because they feel most keenly their alienation and needed.
What about ripe population? The Samaritan harvest had ripened after others had labored (John 4:38). A ripe crop must be reaped, otherwise it ( ROTS ) .. Do we recognize which fields are fruitful, and the urgency they demand?
What about people with (disabilities)?.. Do we under value and avoid them? . The disciples perceived sin behind a blind man’s condition, but they were the blind ones. Jesus saw the divine opportunity: this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in His life "John9:3". Jesus came " so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind. " (John 9:39) .. May he open our eyes, and lift them to see spiritual realities! May we join Him in the harvesting “THE CROP" OF ETERNAL LIFE". JOHN 4:36 ....
World Bible School Director
Brady E. Smith
God’s youth led us in song, prayer, scripture, communion and sermon the morning of May 20th. There is a lot of talent and we thank God that the youth are willing and ready to share that gift with us. The youth did an excellent job and conducted an inspirational service. May God Bless you and may your walk with God always be strong. Keep your faith in God, Trust God in everything you do. Let your Christian light shine to the world and never forget your Christian family who loves you so much. Congratulations Seniors, you made it. Now go out into the world and let God be glorified.
The shepards were honored to present each graduating senior with a beautiful quilt from the quilting team. The seniors also received a Bible and a Christian music CD. These quilts are to remind each senior that they are special and always have the church to comfort them and keep them warm with love throught their Christian journey. The Bible is to feed them with Gods great and powerful Words and the music is to fill their hearts with the joy and excitement of living a Christian life. These gifts are from their church family at Woodsfield.
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Sunday Evening Bible Class
Starting May 6th, the family will conduct Sunday evening Bible class and devotion service in the same manner as Wednesday evening, with communion being served in the front of the building. The Sunday evening service will still be at 6pm.
"Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come and the years draw near when you will say "I have no delight in them." (Ecclesiastes 12:1)
lt is not just a camp in nature, even though that is an attractive and wonderful part of camp. It is a camp directed by Christians where all personnel are faithfully involved in their congregations.
The purpose of our camp is to help young people develop physically, mentally, socially and spiritually (Luke 2:52)
All the Bible teachers, counselors, and staff are faithful members of the church.
The Bible will be taught by devoted Christians each day. The campers will learn as much Bible during this week of camp, if not more, than they will in two or three months of Sunday School.
Wholesome recreation and entertainment are provided and encouraged. We have fun.
Friendships will be made that will last a lifetime. Leadership discovered and developed at camp. This is the first place many of our young people find themselves helping other young people develop.
Many of those who are not Christians will obey the gospel while at camp or soon after they return home.
Sending children of non-members to camp is a wonderful way to teach them the Bible. It can be an effective evangelistic tool.
When young people are active involved in youth activities 93% of them will be faithful adult Christians. Only 19% of kids NOT involved in the church youth group grow up to be faithful.
Many of the young people who are Christians will return home much more interested in the work and ministry of the church. This inspires others and makes our congregation a better place.
An Editorial From Brady E. Smith
*Therefore...Be Imitators of God*
My last editorial quoted a soul-winning shepherd in Nashville who’s life focused on loving God and others. That sounds biblical, doesn’t it? Jesus himself affirmed that these loves are the pinnacle of human purpose. ( Matt. 22:36-40 ) . (Eph. 5:1-2), quoted above, also summarizes the Christian life. This passage lends itself to the title “live a life of love the maturing course that completes W>B>S> Masters series. See the model the Father leaves for us to imitate:.. He loved us enough to bring us into His own family as ‘beloved children'! He's done that by the "offering and sacrifice" of His own Son! That love is the motivation and the model we follow, even at great cost to ourselves.
Yes, our love too involves sacrifice. As with Jesus, living love means dedicated pursuit of God ’s mission, not personal agendas. We use our time and resourses purposefully, not selfishly. We stretch ourselves beyond familiar limits. We step outside our comfortable zones, ironically this is especially true when sharing the Good News. People often appreciate the meeting of physical needs .. But the good News is Spiritual. To the Greek it makes no intellectual sense. To the Jews the bloody cross is a scandal... Proud self-made men hate the implications of repentence and grace.
Far more people reject Jesus than accepted Him. But, along with demonstrating grace, he also insisted on speaking truth- and that ..they could not stand. Stephen dared to speak out, and he too was killed for it. Paul was harassed because his declared theme was the cross. Why persist in delivering such a dispised message ? (love), They believed Jesus' words carried etemal life (John 6:63,38) . They believed people had to hear and obey this Gospel, otherwise they were lost ( 2 Thessalonians 1:8.) The only merciful course was to share God’s saving Message. This mercy overflowed in multiplied oppertunities for many to hear and respond, and so grew the church.
How are we growing ? ls there a correlation between our growth and our love? In other words, do we care enough to tell the message? Does our love overcome our fear of rejection- for rejection there will be if we imitate Jesus (John 15:20:, Mark 4:17: 8:38 ). I worry that we find other routes easier, perhaps even adopting a form of works salvation: “ By our works they shall be saved (if they even need saving). “ This is so satisfying, so much friendlier, so much more accepted in polite society.
As you read your Bible, was “ acceptance “ ever a goal of godly leaders ? True, Christ- like living enjoys a side product of favor with all the people "( Acts 2:47 ) “ But that favor is not the goal, as proved by the apostles “ determination to keep on speaking the message with boldness , with or without favor , in season or out of season, even to the extent of igniting persecution that scattered God’s family . Why persist in something so opposed ?(love): Love for God, love for His truth, love for His mission, love for his method, love for the lost. For" salvation is found in no one else “ since then, we know what it is to fear the LORD, We try to persuade men for Ghrist’s love compels us...World Bible School needs more teachers to send this message to the lost of this world “ can you, and will you...!
Guest Speaker: Kim Matthews
We welcomed Kim Matthews on 04/22. Kim has always been an inspiration to all of us. His love for God and compassion for people is admired by many. We thank God for Kim and his wife Brenda. May God continue to use him to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Let’s always pray for Kim’s health and remember "God is Good all the time, and all the time God is Good".
Special Guest: Ron McDole
Our church welcomed a special guest, Ron McDole for Sunday evening Bible Study, April 15th. Mr. McDole is the Development Director of Potter Children's Home & Family Ministries in Bowling Green, KY.
Potter Children's Home & Family Ministries is a comprehensive child and family service organization that has been providing services to the most vulnerable children and families in Bowling Green for nearly 100 years. They focus on ending the generational cycle of child abuse and neglect through their residential and community programs. They are building strong families, and giving children hope for a better tomorrow.
Our church supports this ministry and Mr. McDole spent a few minutes speaking about the Children's Home. We would like to thank him for stopping by.
All I Need
His Grace to hold securely,
His Light to show the way:
His Love to bind me always,
His Strength for every day;
His Power to give me courage,
His Wisdom for my guide;
His Mercy for my sinfulness,
He has every need supplied.
One Phone Call Can
Show your concern
Learn of a need
Encourage the downhearted
Lift the depressed
Strength the weak
Cheer the sad
Comfort the lonely
Reassure the suffering
Promote a good work
Render a service