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Sunday, January 31, 2016

As the psalmist David wrote in Psalm 122:1 “I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD.” What a privilege it is to be able to go to the house of the Lord each Sunday.

This morning for Sunday school we looked at the life of Jonah. We looked at how Jonah was told to go to the wicked city of Nineveh yet he chose to disobey God and flee from His presence by getting in a ship and headed to Tarshish. He knew of the reputation of the city of Nineveh and how they tortured people and killed people. But instead of obeying God and going to the city of Nineveh he fled. In the process of fleeing God sent a storm on the sea and Jonah ended up being thrown overboard into the sea to be swallowed by a giant fish. He was in the belly of the fish for three days and three nights when he finally came to himself and realized he needed to do God’s will for his life and go to the city of Nineveh. He repented of his sins and God heard his prayer and the fish vomited Jonah out on the shore of Nineveh. Jonah went into the city and preached the message God laid on his heart that in forty days Nineveh would be overthrown. The city of Nineveh repented and God repented of the evil He was going to send on the city of Nineveh. Many souls were saved that day, but you wonder how many more would have been saved from Hell had Jonah obeyed on the first call. Jonah was given a second chance to do God’s will for his life. When he repented God gave him another chance. As Christians God gave us a second chance by saving our souls because we didn’t deserve to be saved. But even after salvation God gives us chances after chances. He is just a longsuffering Savior with His children. If we fail (which we will), we just need to tell God we are sorry and get back up and try it again. Don’t become a failure and quit on God. But we ought to obey God the first time when God tells us to do something. We need to be obedient to God.

This morning Pastor preached out of John 12:32 and Isaiah 6:1 on “Lifting Him Up.” As Christians we should be lifting up the Lord Jesus Christ with our lives. If we are going to lift Him up we have to have a singular view of who God is. There is only One true God. American has gotten today where she has a bunch of different gods. When we realize that God is the true and only God, we are lifting Him up. There is one God and we need to take a stand for our God and all that He stands for. If we don’t take a stand no one else will. Our goal as a Christian should be to life Him up. When we see Him as God we will see Him as Holy, Who He really is. The world is trying to get us to turn aside to the other gods of this world. We must stay focused on the One true God so that we don’t get distracted by the gods of this world. The only way we’re going to make it is by keeping our eyes on Him, the One true God. There must also be a separation if we are going to lift Him up. We are going to have to live a separated life unto the Lord. We should be different than this world, and the world should know that we are different. When we are separated we are lifting Him up with our lives. Lastly, if we are lifting Him up, there will be a drawing by Him. When God changes someone it is permanent, not temporary. If we do the lifting, God will do the drawing. God can do more than we could ever think or ask for. Nothing takes god by surprise. He can take care of anything. God can draw anybody unto Him; we just need to lift Him up so He can do the drawing. There will be a definite drawing and true peace comes from God. Are you lifting Him up with your life? As a Christian our goal and purpose in life is to lift Him up in everything.

Tonight Pastor preached on “Some Things We Can Learn From A Cedar Tree” out of Psalm 104:16-17; 92:12. God did not just write the Bible to fill up space on the pages, but He wrote things in His Word for us to learn. Study a cedar tree in the Bible, as it’s mentioned more than once, and we can learn things if we are willing to study and learn. Cedar trees grow very tall. They are deeply rooted and they can grow where nothing else can grow. As a Christian we should dig down in the Word of God and get deeply rooted in the things of God. If we get rooted we can grow even if we don’t live in the best of the homes or circumstances. We can grow and bloom where we are planted but we have to take responsibility and grow deep roots. A cedar tree can withstand any storm because of its deep roots. If we get can get rooted in the Word of God we will be able to withstand any storm that comes our way. Trees grow in the direction of the sun. As Christians if we want to grow tall and straight we have to grow towards the Son (Jesus Christ). A cedar trees growth is not stunted or stopped by the ground it is in. We have no excuse why we can’t grow for the Lord. If we don’t grow it’s because we don’t want to grow. God has given us everything we need to grow, we just have to use the resources that we have already been given. Our desire should be to be a better Christian this week than we were last week. Also the cedar tree is full of sap. What that is talking about is that the cedar tree is satisfied. As Christians we should be satisfied with God and what He wants us to do. Every part of the cedar tree is important. We ought to be totally satisfied with God. If Moms and Dads would get satisfied with God their kids will get satisfied with God. There is no limit to the sap and there is no limit to being satisfied with God. Cedar trees can live 1,000 years. No, we cannot live for 1,000 years but we can leave a legacy for generations to come, and if we grow and stay satisfied with God we can leave a great legacy behind. Thirdly, cedar trees were used to build the temple. A cedar tree will not decay and it has a different smell than any other tree. As Christians we should not decay on God and we should give out a different smell than the smell of this world. Cedar trees grow good together and we as Christians will grow better when we are around other Christians who desire to grow for the Lord. God cares about the smallest detain of the cedar tree and He cares about the smallest part of our lives. He cares about our smallest struggles and He gives us little things along the way to show us that He still cares about us and remembers us. God knows where we’re at and He’ll meet all our needs. Lastly, the wood and oils that comes from the cedar tree are used as a repellent. Our lives ought to be that is repels that which is out to destroy and to disease us. We ought to repel the world and the things of this world. The world should want to be around us. We ought to be marked as being a repellent to the things of this world and the devil. Our lives ought to repel that which would hurt. Are you like a cedar tree spiritually?

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