As we gathered to worship Sunday morning at Mill Creek Baptist Church, Rick Lett was celebrating a birthday, and a happy anniversary to Mitchell and Abby Lett. Special prayers of comfort were requested for the George Boyle family, Wesley Robbins' family and Donna's family, and prayers of healing for Jimmy and Skip. Sheri White shared a praise and Doug Cory opened our service with prayer. The business meeting will be held at 7 p.m.
"Hope Defined" was the title of the adult Sunday school lesson, a continuation of the study of Job taught by Rick Lett. It reminded us that "believers find hope for life only in God as suffering in the world leads the believer to consider the greater questions of life. Believers can find hope in God's promise of life in heaven."
"Power" was the title of the devotional that Linda Abercrombie shared with us as she read Acts 1:8. "Low voltage electricity doesn't reach us. Transformers deliver energy to our homes. In relation to spiritual power, conveying God's power to others is like a transformer. God is the source of power that we use to transform others."
Susan Cory and Karen Gardner led the congregational hymns as Jerry sang "The Anchor Holds," a song of praise and testimony. Karen and Becky joined voices in singing "There is A River." Tyrel Lett asked God's blessing upon the offering and he and Rick served as ushers.
"Who Are You?" was the title of Sunday's message as our pastor, Brother Mark Hall, read Acts 9:1-5 about Saul of Tarsus being converted.
Brother Mark told us that there are two main goals in every life. "First, for Jesus to know you, and right behind that is for you to know Jesus." In John 10:27, Jesus says, "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me." Brother Mark told us that as we get to know Jesus, we get to know Him better and better. "As long as we live, we need to know Him better. You will only know Jesus as well as you want to know Him. Do you know Him better today than you did yesterday or the day that you were saved? If not, the only excuse is because you didn't spend enough time doing it and want to know Him better. How many have known about Jesus for a long time but wouldn't know Him if He walked in the room? Everyone here today wants to know Jesus better. In the book of John in the Bible, Jesus tells us who He is."
Brother Mark read John 6:35 where Jesus says, "I am the bread of life" and told us that bread is a symbol of the substance of life. "Without Jesus, we would starve spiritually." In John 8:12, Jesus said, "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life." Brother Mark told us that darkness symbolizes the fallen world around us. "How did it come to this? Can't people see what they are doing? No, because they don't have the light of Jesus shining for them to see. We can't see clearly in this life if we don't let the light of Jesus shine on it. When things go wrong, shine a little Jesus on it. He is our protection and our security."
Brother Mark continued reading John 10:7-10 as Jesus tells us, "I am the door of the sheep." He told us that without Jesus at the door, we are fair game for the "thief to come steal and kill and destroy." "Just like thieves break into the door of our homes or shop and steal, Jesus is our door, our security to stop the devil."
In John 10:11-14, Jesus tells us: "I am the good shepherd." Brother Mark told us that if Jesus is our shepherd, He knows us and we know Him. "A shepherd leads the sheep like He leads us. As Christians, if He knows us, we have a benefit package."
Brother Mark then talked about the benefit package of the true believer as he read Psalm 23 and listed the benefits. "The Lord is my shepherd (relationship); I shall not want, (He provides), He makes me to lie down in green pastures (gives us rest); He leads me beside the still waters (refreshment), He restores my soul (healing); He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake (give us guidance). Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death (testing), I will fear no evil (gives us protection); for You are with me (faithfulness); Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me (gives us discipline); You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies (gives us hope); You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over (gives us abundance); surely goodness and mercy shall follow me (gives us blessings); all the days of my life (gives us security); and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever (gives us eternity)."
In closing, Brother Mark told us that he will talk about four more I Am's next week and said, "Don't put off giving your life to Christ until it is too late."
Our hymn of invitation was "Kneel at the Cross." Wayne Holly gave the benediction.
Mill Creek Baptist Church will sponsor the gospel group "Legacy Five," Sunday, Sept. 12, at 6 p.m., at Blankenship Park in Southwest City. It is a free concert and everyone is invited.
We will also hold vacation Bible school from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, July 31. "Destination Dig" is the theme as we dig for our treasure which is Jesus. All kids, K-sixth grade, are invited to attend.
We invite you to worship with us at Mill Creek Baptist Church on Sunday mornings at 11 a.m. Sunday school begins at 10 a.m. We are located 3 1/2 miles east of Noel just off Highway 90.
Opinions expressed are those of the author.