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Struggles - 1 Thess. - Week 4

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We want to welcome each one of you to Union Avenue this morning! If you are a first time guest, would you take just a moment and fill out the information section of your "Order of Worship" and turn it in when the offering plates are passed before my message? 

Just as I welcome each of you we should also “welcome” The Word of God.  Paul said that we should welcome the message we have heard not simply as a human message but rather the message of God (2:13).  Paul encouraged the church to recognize The Word of God and to obey it’s instruction.

Then in the remaining verses of chapter 2 and into chapter 3 Paul focused in on the actions of the church and the love that the church should have for each other.  God never intended the church to be…well an obligation. He did not send His Son to die so that we could attend church once a week. The church was never meant to be a weekly family tradition or just another social affiliation. Jesus did not establish His church so that its congregation could keep the lights on, the piano tuned, the preacher paid and the grass mowed. Deep down many of us know that something is missing in our church. We know that God desires so much more for His people than to sing a few songs, listen to a sermon, and give an offering. God longs for us to be His church that is on mission to fulfill His great command. The church is called to walk, sacrifice, struggle, and pray together.  - Pastor Jeff

Struggles - 1 Thess. - Week 3

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We want to welcome each one of you to Union Avenue this morning! If you are a first time guest, would you take just a moment and fill out the information section of your "Order of Worship" and turn it in when the offering plates are passed before my message? 

This week as we continue to focus on 1 Thessalonians and our time will be spent on Ch 2:1-12.  My focus will be on  authenticity and the church. The church needs to be willing to go the distance, honor God, have a love for others and long to see the Kingdom be the focus of all that attend.  If the desire is to be authentic then we must be willing to be inspected and held accountable as individuals as well as the church.  Many times in this section Paul reminds the church of his conduct and his actions towards the community and the church.  Notice how many times Paul challenges the Thessalonians to recall their first-hand experience of how he conducted himself among them: “For you yourselves know” (2: 1), “as you know” (2: 2), “as you know” (2: 5), “God is our witness” (2: 5), “for you remember” (2: 9), “you are witnesses and so is God” (2: 10), “as you know” (2: 11).  

Clearly a key reason the Thessalonian church was willing to follow Christ despite severe hardship was that they had a pastor who led by example.

Serving Him, Pastor Jeff

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