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Abraham's promise

Last Sunday we had six people at Faith in God Church. It may not seem like much until you realized the ages of the people who attended. We had a man in his seventies. He was a former pastor of the church there. He was the one who started the church a number of years back. Then there was a woman in her fifties, another which I think was in her forties, and another woman in her twenties. There was a teenage boy and a boy who was two. I forgot all about taking up an offering. I have spent so many services by myself so far that I simply forgot. I’ll have to remember next week I guess.
All those months alone during church services has reminded me about God’s promise to Abraham. God gave Abraham the word that he and Sarah were going to have a son. It didn’t happen right away, and it didn’t happen because of anything that Abraham did. Matter of fact, Abraham tried to make things happen and look at the mess he made! The son promised to Abraham is still wrestling with the son of Hagar!

God gave Isaac to Abraham in a way that Abraham had not thought possible.

 

Putting Aside My Own Preconceived Ideas

God brought me to this church in a way that I never thought possible too. I grew up thinking that women should not be preachers. I thought that perhaps I would one day marry one. My husband Jeff and I started a ministry in Doniphan, Missouri several years ago and it was a total failure. I came here because Jan and Johnny Thomlison advertised that they needed someone who felt called to pastor a church. I thought that at least there would be someone here right? That was not the case. I had visitors for the first few months but they weren’t usually during regular church services. Most services I was on my own, by myself.
It really didn’t bother me too much though. Okay, so it bothered me a lot, but whenever I would think about it and pray about it, it was as if the Lord was telling me, “Well, when people do show up, you’ll know it wasn’t you who brought them. Under no circumstances will you be sharing my limelight. Never forget this time alone in this church. When people do come, it won’t be because of one of your brilliant programs. It will be because my spirit drew them.”
That’s not as harsh as it may sound. It’s a lesson in humility really. Having humility is not about being humiliated like some people might define humility. Humility isn’t about being walked on at all, it is about submission. Humility is when we give authority over to someone else. The situation becomes their responsibility rather than our own. It means whatever happens the one in authority gets not only the glory, but gets the blame as well.

Jesus and the little child

Christ’s Perfect Submission

When I think about perfect submission, I think about Jesus in the events immediately leading up to his crucifixion. He was not tricked into going to the cross. HE CHOSE to go to the cross. He went to the cross because he knew that was what his father wanted him to do. He did it because he loved us and knew that was the only way that we would not face separation forever from the one who created us, the source of all love (including self-love).
If you’ve ever seen the movie The Passion of the Christ, the movie shows you how he submitted to physical pain, but what it was unable to demonstrate was the emotional and spiritual torture that Jesus faced at the same time. This emotional and spiritual torture that he submitted to belonged to us. Each of us owned a piece of that torture that he submitted to because he loved us.
Humility and submission is never about being less than anything. It is about allowing the Lord’s authority over us. At this church, I am happy to say that right now, God is in charge and he’s telling me that he wants this to be a youth church. He’s also telling me that it is to be a missional church. I will take more about that later. How am I going to make this happen? The truth is, It can’t make it happen. God will make it happen as I submit to him.

What God Is Asking of Me and You

Right now, it is all about keeping my personal agenda out of it. I am leaving the execution to God. Oh, I’ll do whatever God tells me to do and only what he’s telling me to do and here’s what he’s telling me to do.
1) Pray for God to reveal his direction in our lives today.
2) Meditate on his written word
3) Listen to his voice. What is he telling us?
4) Take action where he says to take action.
5) Praise him every day for leading me as he directs.

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback.

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .


Abraham, Sarah and Hagar

Do you ever have those days, weeks, months, years, and even decades when you have prayed for a specific thing and nothing ever seems to happen in that area of your life.

My Own Personal Challenges

I know that I have faced some challenges to my faith and lately when I have been in prayer, there are times when I ask God if praying is really even worth the effort. All throughout my life, God has told me that he was planning to use me for great things. Within the past two years I lost 3 family members, (father, brother, and sister), my marriage has dissolved, I got an easy boring job that anyone could do, but I still lost it through no fault of my own. I live in a tiny travel trailer with no heat (hope to get it this week). I am financially living on fumes and God’s grace at the moment. I am not twenty, thirty, forty, or even fifty years old any more and I was thinking that if my prayers are going to be answered, God had better hurry up and start answering a few of them.

Remember Abraham?

As I was complaining to God about all of the things that were going wrong in my life and how I never seemed to catch a break, God reminded me of Abraham. At one point, Abraham had about given up on the answers to his prayers. He prayed to God for a son. He was eighty years old and he was about ready to give up. His wife was past her child bearing years and had not been able to produce a son for him. Abraham had finally resigned to the idea that his servant would inherit all of his wealth. However, one day God came to him and told him that he would father a son. For years it didn’t happen.

Helping God is A No-No

Then Abraham decided that he would help God make it happen and he made the mistake of fathering a child with his wife’s servant Hagar. It was the biggest mistake of Abraham’s life. The so called descendants of Hagar, the servant woman have been a problem ever since.
However, God eventually did exactly as he promised. He gave Abraham and his wife Sarah a son whom they named Isaac or laughter.

A Lesson Learned

The important lesson that we can learn from Abraham’s experience is to first and always trust God. Second, God doesn’t need our help to make things happen. Three, God wants us to wait for his perfect plan and it always brings joy and yes, even laughter.

A New Undertaking

Last Sunday I gave my first sermon at my new church. The church didn’t have a huge attendance (three of us were there), but it was an anointed service. Come visit any time. This appointment was a real miracle for me. Even after all of the plotting and scheming that I have done over the years of “making something happen”, one day I saw that my friend was getting ready to go out as an evangelist and that they wanted someone to come and take over their pastor-ship at their church. I called and here I am the pastor of a small church. Scare me? Yes, you bet it does. I realize the responsibility that I  now possess. What are God’s plans in all this? I will continue to go through all of this one day at a time.

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is the Pastor of Faith in God Church in Brandsville, Missouri. . As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .

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