Kenneth and Sheri White were celebrating their anniversary as we gathered to worship Sunday morning at Mill Creek Baptist Church in Noel. Doug Cory greeted the congregation, including several visitors. Special prayers were requested for Bob Bryan, Wayne Johnson, Ron Buchite, Gene Buchite, J.R. Chaney, Shelley's son and family and Avery.
Janet Chaney gave the devotional, "Small Island," about survival on an island and answered prayers and unanswered prayers. Scripture was from Isaiah 53:3 and 1 John 5:15. We are not promised an easy life, but we can take our problems to the Lord in prayer. Janet also read a humorous story about church gossip.
Tyrel Lett and Mitchell Lett served as ushers and collected the offering. Congregational hymns were led by Becky Johnson at the piano, with Karen Gardner, who sang, "To God Be the Glory." We were blessed to have Diane Pueppke with us to sing a wonderful testimonial about Jesus building a bridge with a rugged cross of three nails and two pieces of wood.
Our pastor, Brother Mark Hall, brought us God's message and the title of the sermon by asking "Are you a follower or a fan?" Scripture for the message was from John 6:22-71, which talks about the bread from heaven, and Jesus tells us that He is the Bread of Life. The story tells of Jesus' miracles of feeding the multitudes and walking on water and people who began following and looking for Him.
Brother Mark talked about being a follower of a sports team or a fan, a follower of Jesus or a fan of Christ. "A follower of Jesus still follows even in crisis and even when he may not understand. A fan comes on Sunday, but followers follow Him the rest of the week. We stay a fan as long as it benefits us. Fans get offended when things don't meet their expectations. We think about how things should happen for us. Sometimes we have unrealistic expectations. When things don't go in accordance with our image, we get disappointed. We need to get rid of the picture perfect so we are not disappointed and keep the person. We are not here for the church or the people; we are here for Him. When we don't meet others' expectations, we won't be disappointed. When there is a crisis of belief, we just turn out to be fans not followers and expect Jesus to be there just for us. Jesus tells us to believe in Him. Don't just follow Him for the meal like the multitudes did. In John 6:26, Jesus says, "Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled."
Brother Mark told us that the multitudes wanted a meal ticket and a miracle worker, not a Messiah. "We need to first seek the Kingdom of God and His righteousness. We claim to be followers when things are good and our prayers are being answered. When things get tough or we get to feeling worldly, are we still a follower or just a fan?"
Brother Mark read John 6:60-66 about some of the disciples going back and walking with Him no more. "People are still doing that today when things get hard and the preaching gets tough and personal." When Jesus asks if the others will leave also, verse 68 gives Peter's answer, "But Simon Peter answered Him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life."
Brother Mark said, "Peter did two things. He said he believed and confessed. That belief makes you a follower. Would you stand up and say you are a follower? Following is not a bad thing if you are following the right person. The wrong path is wide enough to turn around. You can always repent, turn around and go back down the straight and narrow path. Jesus will wait on you."
Our hymn of invitation was "Wherever He Leads I'll Go," and Rick Lett gave the benediction.
Everyone is invited to attend Mill Creek Baptist Church on Sunday mornings to worship. Sunday school begins at 10 a.m. and worship service at 11 a.m. Mill Creek Baptist Church is located three and one-half miles east of Noel, just off Highway 90. For information, call 417-475-7633 and leave a message.Religion on 09/06/2018
Print Headline: Are You A Follower Or A Fan?