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March 20, 2019, 12:00 AM

North American Missions Offering


Easter is just around the corner, it is now time to turn our attention to the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for North American Missions. Since 1895 Southern Baptists have supported a national offering for home missions. Every dollar given to this offering goes to support missionaries on the field.

Annie was born in 1850 in Baltimore, Maryland, and grew up with strong convictions about missions. Living in the city, she developed interest in African-Americans, immigrants, the sick and the poor. In 1888, Armstrong was elected corresponding secretary of the Woman's Missionary Union, an organization she helped found. She held this position until 1906 as she worked very hard to support the work of the WMU. Along the way she led it to be a major force for missions in the Southern Baptist Convention.              .

The national offering for home missions was initiated by the WMU as the "Week of Self-Denial for Home Missions." This week was intended to help women become more familiar with the needs of Southern Baptist missionaries in the United States. In 1934 the offering was named the "Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for Home Missions" in honor of Miss Annie.

In 1998 the offering was renamed to its current title and today it supports 5,200 missionaries in the United States, U. S. Territories and Canada. More than ONE BILLION dollars have been given to this offering during its 114-year history. It has supported thousands of missionaries who have evangelized the lost, ministered to the needs of millions of people and started thousands of Southern Baptist churches.

North American Mission Board has a goal for 2019 of $70 million. Our goal here at the Southern Baptist Church of Sullivan is $700.00.

Throughout the Scriptures God has personally called men and women to Himself in order to spread the good news of His salvation to people everywhere. The Annie Armstrong Easter Offering is a tremendous way for us to help carry that great message to a land and a people who desperately need to hear about a Savior who loves sinners so much He was willing to die for them. If we had the cure for cancer or any terrible diseases, we would certainly share it with everyone. With Christ, we truly have the cure for man's biggest problem-SIN.  Are we willing to do our part?




February 1, 2019, 1:08 PM

First Called CHRISTIANS


the disciples were first called CHRISTIANS in Antioch. -  Acts 11:26c

If you have ever organized a club, the first order of business is choosing a name for the group--a name that somehow reflects the purpose or history of the group.

For some time the believers in the New Testament church were nameless, but eventually they were given a title. This title was meant to humiliate them, but it was filled with significance: CHRISTIANS, "little Christs."

We have often heard the question: What's in a name? Let me share with you what Matthew Henry, that great preacher from years ago, said about what it means to represent the Lord:

"Those who first claimed the name' Christian' laid upon themselves, and all that should ever profess that name, a lasting obligation to submit to the laws of Christ, to follow the example of Christ, and to devote themselves to the honor of Christ. We ought to do nothing to reproach (disgrace) that name by which we are called. May it not be said of us what Alexander the Great said to a soldier named Alexander who was noted for being a coward: 'Either change your name or mend your manners.' As we must look upon ourselves as Christians and conduct ourselves accordingly, so we must look upon others as Christians and treat them accordingly. A Christian brother, though not in agree­ment with us in everything, should be loved and re­spected for whose name he bears, because he belongs to Christ."

The disciples made an impact in Antioch-and were quickly labeled with the name of their Lord. But in the rest of the New Testament, no follower of Christ never called himself a "Christian." Possibly no one thought they deserved that title. 

 

What would it take for someone to compare you to Christ? A turn around in your business ethics? A change in your personal, family or church relationships? A new outlook on unforeseen circumstances?

When you carry the name of Jesus Christ, don't be sur­prised if others seemingly fail to share your enthusiasm. And don't be satisfied until the name of your Lord is exalted and magnified for all to see.

 




November 28, 2018, 10:44 AM

EVERY CHURCH - EVERY NATION


As Christmas gets closer and closer, we hear more and more about giving and receiving gifts. The media constantly clamors for our attention as to the latest trends in buying gifts, proclaim­ing a particular object as "this season's hottest gift." It has even reached out to our children repeatedly telling them which toy is the one they absolutely must have or else their holiday will be ruined. I wonder if people ever think about how God looks at all of this so-called "celebration of Christmas." At least in our land, it seems that the marketing and advertising forces have domi­nated the perspectives of so many that little if any thought is given at all to the real reason we celebrate Christmas-the birth of the Christ-child, the Messiah, Jesus.

I really don't expect a lost and sinful world to share our understanding of the real meaning of Christmas. However, I certainly do expect those in the family of God to not only understand, but to also rejoice in why Christmas is such a special time of year. Since we have been so richly blessed with the gift of “a Savior, which is Christ the Lord" (Luke 2:11), it is only natural that we would want to share that blessing with as many other people as possible.

One of the best ways to do this is to give generously to the Lottie Moon Offering for foreign missions. The national goal for this offering is $160 million. Our church's goal is $1,000. This offering goes to support the work of IMB foreign missionaries serving in over 130 countries around the world. Even if we are not personally called by the Lord to serve on the mission field, this opportunity to give to support those who have been called is a wonderful way for us to show that we really care about people all over the world. It is a way for us to show that we care about them so much we want to share the "good news" (really the best news) of Jesus Christ with them.

In addition to giving financially, we also have the opportu­nity to support our missionaries prayerfully during the Week of Prayer for Foreign Missions, December 2-9. The theme for this year's emphasis is "EVERY CHURCH, EVERY NATION." How can we, who have been loved and blessed so much, not give, support and pray for those who have sacrificed so much to tell others about Jesus?




May 19, 2018, 11:32 AM

HUNGRY or HARDENED ?


GOSPEL - HUNGRY or GOSPEL HARDENED?                                                                                       

I am convinced that the Lord will continue to bless this church if we remain HUNGRY to hear and obey His Word, the Bible. "Are we as Southern Baptists gospel ­hungry or gospel - harden­ed?" Missionaries have describe how in other countries of the world there are standing ­room only crowds in their churches (even on weeknight services!) while here in the United States, so many churches are closing their doors. Many others fail to see as much as one new convert a year. I wondered if America (or even the church, or the individual Christian) has lost their desire for the truth of the gospel and if the people of our land have had so much exposure to Christianity through our media and other sources that most Americans take the Bible for granted.

Although the signs of disinterest and disobed­ience are everywhere (even among Christians), in our culture today, it is good to know that where people truly seek and hunger after the word of God, the power and grace of God are in abundant supply to satisfy that hunger and meet their deepest need – the need for a Savior, Jesus Christ. No matter if the world turns their back on Him and refuses to look His way, if we, the church -- His bride -- continue to seek Him, love Him and serve Him, He will take care of us and protect us just like He said He would. Then we will see souls saved and lives changed like only God can do.  AMEN




March 1, 2018, 11:00 AM

WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DAY MAKES!


Maybe you have heard the expression, "What a difference a day makes!" It is often used to describe a radical change in events or circumstances. Truly, what a difference a day (or two) makes in our lives as a Christian!

As we enter the Easter season, it is easy for Christians to remember two particular days that made an enormous difference. Those days are the day Jesus was crucified and the day Jesus rose from the grave.

On the day Jesus was crucified, He actually experienced God forsaking Him on the cross. Thankfully, those who know Christ as Lord and Savior never have to worry about being forsaken by God.

On the day Jesus rose from the grave, however, we see God's glory coming out of deep darkness and gloom. John 20:1 tells us "when it was still dark" Mary made her way to Jesus' tomb. Matthew 28:1 tells us "it began to dawn" as she and "the other Mary" made their way to the tomb. These phrases describe the physical and natural facts of that particular morning, but they also give us a happy summary of what happened to the emotions of the disciples on that day-it was dark, but it began to dawn.

We often hear about people being "blue", but what the disciples felt was much more than a case of the "blues." They were in a deep, dark, black gloom. Theirs was a gloom of frustration because all their hopes for Jesus being their Messiah had been smashed and shattered. Instead of kicking the Romans out of Israel, He died in weakness and shame on a Roman cross, like a common criminal.

These disciples also knew the gloom of fear. In that same chapter of John's gospel, he tells us they were gathered together with "the doors shut" because of "fear of the Jews"    (v. 19). These men figured their own necks were next on the chopping block. Those who had so cruelly arranged the death of Jesus wouldn't hesitate at all to wipe out His disciples. Frustrated and fearful! Their own lives seeming to pass before their eyes! The disciples didn't stay in such a terrible state, though. Thank God, those precious words from Matthew's gospel came true for those poor men.

The gloom of frustration melted away and was replaced by a strong and vigorous faith. When the disciples discovered that Jesus was alive, their doubts began to die. There was no doubt He was alive. Indisputable evidence removed every shadow of doubt. From the women who saw the massive stone rolled away from the tomb to the grave clothes that laid in the now empty tomb, truly "it began to dawn "!

The gloom of fear exploded and was replaced by excitement and gladness (John 20:20). All of this is a simple sketch of the main events of that day. Yes, it happened a long time ago, but the Jesus who arose over two thousand years ago still lives today.

Because He lives, we don't have to live in the gloom of frustration and fear. We can know the glory of faith and joy even as those early disciples did. In a day when so many are stumbling along in the dark gloom of sin, there is no better time than today to receive the new life only Christ can give. When Christ comes into a person's life, a new day begins to dawn. He is forgiven of his sins and given a new home in heaven.

EASTER is really THE DAY that makes such a difference!


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