2 days after Christmas quick reflections

When the angel appeared to the Shepherds in Luke 2:10-11, we often pick up on the bright lights and fear. I find it noteworthy that, beyond he/r calming their fear, s/he lays out much of the gospel.









This baby is

  • Good News
  • Joy
  • For all people
  • A Savior
  • Messiah (promised one)
  • the Lord (God)
  • For You (each one of you)

I like this video and that it has lettering.

The Christmas letter from Stefan, Beth, Jeremiah, and Titus Helm had good words and the question, “How does your heart respond to the amazing truth that God came as a man and lived among us?”



God’s Hesed Love for Us – Joe Stowell’s messages calling us to take God’s Heart in Our Hands

Much can be learned from the story of Ruth. Joe Stowell has an excellent 3-Part message.

(These notes are not organized. Sorry.)

Boaz was the kinsman redeemer. Jesus is our kinsman redeemer.

God has Hesed love. This Hebrew word is powerful and often used in the Bible (OT, I believe; in NT, Agape is commonly used). Commonly translated as “loving-kindness.”  A common term in the Bible for describing God’s love for mankind. RC Sproul (in https://www.ligonier.org/blog/what-hesed/) says:

There may be no more significant Old Testament description of how God relates to His people than this Hebrew word hesed. I argue that the best translation of this term would be “loyal love.” God loves His people genuinely, immutably, loyally. Both the love and the loyalty are, of course, tightly bound together. That is, just as one cannot love capriciously so one cannot be loyal without love. God is for His people, and will never cease to be for them.

The two great commandments are strongly tied to each other.

God’s care for people is throughout the Bible.

Boaz is a hero. We need to be willing to be a hero.

Interesting Trivia: Sodom – In Ezekiel 16:49 we read that Sodom sinned (among other sins) by not aiding the poor and needy.

Disciples of John the Baptist ask Jesus if he is the Messiah. Jesus’ reply (Matt 11:4-5) is report what you see, I make the blind see, the lame walk, poor are told the good news. Jesus came to show us many things. One of the primary things is God’s hesed love for the people, the poor and needy.

Understanding the Will of God – Taking God’s Heart into our Hands – 6 steps of a pattern of life:

  1. Embraced the will and the ways of God.
  2.  Have a willing attitude.
  3. Take appropriate action (with integrity).
  4. Take the risk.
  5. Dispersed his resources.
  6. Enjoy the reward.

For God’s sake be a superman for someone.

13 And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come. Luke 19:13

We live between the 1st and 2nd Comings of Christ. Our calling is to follow Jesus’ commandments. That is, to love.

J.C.Ryle wrote a nice piece on this.











Spoudazo means with energy.
We saw the Spoudazo group at Okoboji on 7-23-17.
Group of HS students from Fremont, NE.

The second to the last song was “My Story” (which, in it’s own way, lays out the Gospel).

See https://youtu.be/1TKAN-nAsu8   Lyrics: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/bigdaddyweave/mystory.html

It ended with Francesca Battistelli’s “Write Your Story.”
See http://www.bibletools.org/index.cfm/fuseaction/Lexicon.show/ID/G4704/spoudazo.htm for the 11 times it appears in the Bible (NT). I especially like 2 Peter 1:10 Therefore, my brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election. For if you do these things, you will never stumble,



Permissible yes, helpful, maybe not

Christian Liberty
23 “Everything is permissible,” but not everything is helpful. “Everything is permissible,” but not everything builds up. 24 No one should seek his own good, but the good of the other person.

1 Corinthians 23-24 Holman Bible

We need to look to be helpful and build up.  As more and more is being allowed in our society, more and more people need to make good decisions and good choices.

Go Where You Are Needed

From Crawford Loritts https://www.moodyradio.org/programs/living-a-legacy/2017/04-2017/2017.04.09-go-where-you-are-needed-part-2/

April 2017 – Go Where You Are Needed, (2 Parts)


After a while Christians have a tendency to hang around Christians.


7 barriers that make it hard for Christians to go to/reach out to/be with unbelievers


  1. (over time) We Get out of touch with our own neediness.
  2. Fear
  3. Be aware of self-righteousness (becoming a Pharisee – back door Pharisee)
  4. View Christianity as our mission. (Christendom does not equal the Gospel)
  5. We overemphasize the differences that we have.
  6. We are not intentional. (we drift toward a Christian culture)
  7. Diminished relational skills


A Pharisee is one who forgets that he needs to grace of God



  1. Look for prepared hearts.
  2. Frequent the dark places.
  3. Make loving and engaging the lost a priority.
  4. Don’t forget how to enjoy yourself when hanging out with non-Christians.


(expect criticism)


4 aspects of Mercy




Extension of healing and help

Surviving and Succeeding in Life and Ministry

Surviving and Succeeding in Life and Ministry

Sermon by (Navy Chaplain) Ron Pettigrew, 2/26/17, Wesley UMC

When Ron went off to serve in the Navy, his father told him

Son, take care of your people, because your people will take care of you.

His scripture text for the sermon is Mark 1:29-39

Ron made 3 points in the sermon.

  1. Take care of people. Jesus went (personally) to the mother-in-law.
  2. Take care of yourself.
    1. Note what happens when you are good. (People will give you more and more responsibilities.) We may need to put on the brakes. Pause button.
      You may need to take the NAVY approach: Never Again Volunteer Yourself
  3. Re-calibrate – Prioritize and her His voice. Jesus went off and prayed. Jesus didn’t keep just curing illnesses, but went elsewhere to preach which was his purpose.

“Come, let us discuss this,” says the Lord.

Isiah, long before Christ appeared, unfolds the Gospel plan

Isiah 1:18

18 “Come, let us discuss this,”
says the Lord.
“Though your sins are like scarlet,
they will be as white as snow;
though they are as red as crimson,
they will be like wool.
19 If you are willing and obedient,
you will eat the good things of the land.


See pg 12 in They Walked with God. Full Assurance by Henry A Ironside.