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Linda Abercrombie and Tina Smith were celebrating birthdays as we began the new year in worship Sunday morning at Mill Creek Baptist Church. We were greeted by Doug Cory and it was good to have Tom Sharp back with us. Special prayers were requested for Mertie Harmon, Wayne Johnson, Skip, Judy, Alesia, Mary Jean, Kevin Vancuren, the Boyd family, and the R.J. McCool family. Becky expressed thanks for the cards and prayers. The business meeting will be held at 6 p.m.

Linda Abercrombie read John 14:27 and shared the devotional, "Begin with the End in Mind." When we begin a project, we need to have a goal in mind. It is like a blueprint for a house. We know what kind of house we want, so we begin with the end in mind. We need to envision our life with God's blueprint and ask Him for that rich and enduring peace that only He can give. Make sure your life is aligned with that goal in mind and commit the months ahead to the Lord.

Becky Johnson and Karen Stroud led the congregation in singing hymns of praise "Sunlight" and "He Keeps Me Singing." Mitchell Lett asked God's blessing, and he and Tyrel Lett collected the offering.

As we begin the new year, Brother Mark Hall brought us God's message, "The One," with Scripture from Luke 15:1-7. Brother Mark began the message in prayer, asking God to give us a heart for the one -- the lost one. The one who is lost in our country which is full of lost people who don't know the Lord.

Brother Mark told us that around holidays like Christmas, it is always good to have all of the family gather. But we always miss the one who couldn't be there. As much as we love the ones there, we also love and miss the one who wasn't. Just like Jesus misses that one lost sheep. Jesus has a heart for the lost. Jesus misses that one.

Brother Mark shared a story about once looking for his herd bull that was gone.

"The bull was valuable to me. The neighbors knew he was and so they helped me look for him. We finally found him."

Just like lost sinners are valuable to Jesus. God has a huge investment in them. He gave His son for them. If they are valuable to God, they should be valuable to us also.

Brother Mark referred to Matthew 18:10-14, the parable of the lost sheep, where Jesus tells us, "Take heed that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven. For the Son of Man has come to save that which was lost. What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them goes astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine and go to the mountains to seek the one that is straying? And if he should find it, assuredly, I say to you, he rejoices more over that sheep than over the ninety-nine that did not go astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish."

Brother Mark asked, "How can we condemn people when they don't know how to act? We should tell them who the Lord is and then how to behave. The sinful nature of man will not change until they experience the saving nature of God. People won't do right until they get right. You can't expect Godly behavior out of ungodly people until they know God. Our job is to look for lost sheep and help sinners find their Savior. The person you look at may be the one. We are all sheep, but special because we are God's sheep." Isaiah 53:6 says, "All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all."

In closing, Brother Mark said, "There is a penalty for straying. Jesus paid it. We are still in the business of finding lost sheep and bringing them back to the fold. There are still sheep to be found. They are still lost and we pass them every day. We need to find a way to bring them back in."

Our hymn of invitation was "Pass It On," and Doug Cory gave the benediction.

Everyone is always welcome at Mill Creek Baptist Church. Sunday school begins at 10 a.m. and worship service at 11 a.m. Mill Creek is located 3½ miles east of Noel just off Highway 90.

Religion on 01/10/2019

Print Headline: Jesus Has A Heart For The Lost

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