I thank my God every time I remember you. In every prayer for all of you, I always pray with joy, because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart. For in my chains, and in my defense and confirmation of the gospel, you are all partners in grace with me. God is my witness how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus. And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to test and prove what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God. Philippians 1:3-11
These verses here illustrate what compassion the apostle Paul for the church, the people of God, brothers and sisters in Christ. The language is incredibly endearing, and as Paul himself says “filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ.” If you did not see/hear our Wednesday evening service, Pastor Doug reads aloud the entire book of Philippians. He does not preach the word. He does not add additional commentary to the word. He simply reads the word aloud and invites us to read along with him. This exercise alone is an incredibly powerful opportunity to hear God speak in a fresh way. The word of God is active!
Here are a few announcements for the coming week, including what I have already mentioned above. If you were not able to see/hear our Wednesday evening service (5/13), Pastor Doug reads aloud the entire book of Philippians. And again, an incredibly powerful and practical exercise for us to engage. You can view Wednesday evening’s service up on our Evergreen Foursquare Church YouTube Channel as well as check out other content posted there, including a wonderful testimony and admonition from Jacqueline Bursch about learning to be content in these difficult times.
Speaking of our online services, in advance of this weekend’s Sunday morning service, Dr Christine Bozich has given us an assignment to help stir our hearts and minds for what the Lord might be saying in us and through us as a church. The assignment includes: 1.) get yourself some kind of a notebook or journal or tablet, something you can write on; and 2.) write down one thing that God has shown you about love. Again, get yourself some kind of notebook or journal and then write down one thing God has shown you about love.
In the way of love for one another, I’d like each of us to continue to be mindful and prayerful of our entire church family. Continue to pray for protection from this prolonged pandemic, protection over our own families, our church family, those who are working long hours in difficult and complicated settings. Continue to pray for provision for any number of needs during difficult, confusing days—practical provisions, financial means, physical stamina, emotional and spiritual strength, as well as unspoken needs.
Again, you know our Sunday morning service streams on YouTube and Facebook at 10 A.M. Our Wednesday evening service streams on YouTube and Facebook at 7 P.M. Be sure to check out Evergreen Foursquare Church YouTube channel to find a previous service you might’ve missed or some of the other devotional content posted there.
Lastly, I leave you with some more of Paul’s letter to the Philippians: “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think on these things. Whatever you have learned or received, or heard from me or seen in me, put into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
Pastor Dan Behrens, Tuesday May 12th, 2020