Devotional Thought

Totally Fit – Spiritually

“Take your pulse for 15 seconds,” the treadmill screen spelled out. The five-minute fitness test was finally over.

Jim felt great about what he had accomplished. He was doing better each week and was scoring higher than his coworkers.

Physical fitness is something we work at or accomplish by our efforts — like being able to finish the 5K run.

What about our spiritual fitness? What kind of shape will we be in when we stand before God and he sees our hearts and lives? Can we exercise ourselves into good spiritual shape by what we think or say or do?

Being better than our neighbor won’t get us into heaven. With God we can’t be merely pretty healthy. We need to be perfectly healthy.

The Bible demands, “Be perfect . . . as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Matthew 5:48). But how?

Jesus once told a story of two men who went to the temple to pray. One boasted that he was a good “spiritual” person. He listed many deeds which he thought put him in good shape with God.

The second man humbly admitted that his life was a mess according to God’s standards. He relied on God’s mercy and asked him to cancel his record of sins. This man was the one who passed the test of spiritual fitness. (Confer Luke 18:9-14).

Spiritual fitness isn’t something we accomplish by our efforts, no matter how hard we try. It’s a gift from God.

When we trust in Jesus, God counts none of our sins against us. “The blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin” (1 John 1:7).

God’s guide to spiritual fitness is spelled out clearly in the Bible, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5).

Join us each Sunday to learn more about God’s spiritual fitness plan!

Pastor R.

Devotional Thought

Totally Fit – Emotionally

He just finished his twelve-mile bike ride. His enthusiasm was high now that the inclement weather had finally passed. For two weeks his bike had remained in the shed.

But something wasn’t right. He discovered his problem when he took his pulse. His heart rate had gone from 120 to 140 beats/minute! Who would have guessed that the condition of the heart muscle could slip so quickly?

The condition of one’s heart makes a big difference. It is the seat of our emotions.

One day you come home and see your son’s bike laying in front of the garage. You pick it up and put it away. You kiss your wife. You hug your son. Everything is fine.

The next day, after you lose a client at work, you come home, and there is your son’s bike again. This time you yell at your wife for not making the kids pick up their things. You push your son towards the garage to pick up his “stupid” bike.

Have your wife and son changed since the day before? No. You have.

If only we could keep it together emotionally day after day. Keeping our hearts emotionally fit is even harder than keeping them physically fit. It’s more important, too.

How do we control our emotions? Aren’t they what control us?

In Psalm 73:26 we read: “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”

God is the one who enables us to keep it together emotionally. If that seems too easy an answer, we need to learn that it cost God the life of his Son Jesus.

Heart muscles deteriorate without exercise. Time away from our God and his Word has the same effect. It can leave us emotional wrecks.

Take time to grow through worship. Hear God speak his Word.  It can make everyone emotionally fit.

Pastor R.

Sermon

He is Risen – With Power

Sermon text: John 21:1-14

Summary: Only John’s gospel tells of the appearance of the risen Jesus to have breakfast with his apostles on the lakeshore. First Jesus directed the fishermen to a large catch of fish – which must have taken Peter and Andrew and James and John back to the day Jesus called them to be fishers of men.

Read full sermon text here.

Sermon

What Is Jesus Up To Now?

Sermon text: Revelation 1:4-18

Summary: The book of Revelation is a letter from John to the Christians of Asia Minor, but really it is a letter from Jesus himself, whose Spirit gave John the vision it describes. This introductory section portrays, not “Jesus meek and mild,” but King Jesus, resplendent in glory.

Read full sermon text here.