Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Shepastor: “Be Counted…”

Now the Lord spoke to Moses in the Wilderness of Sinai, in the tabernacle of meeting, on the first day of the second month, in the second year after they had come out of the land of Egypt, saying: 2 “Take a census of all the congregation of the children of Israel, by their families, by their fathers’ houses, according to the number of names… Numbers 1: 1-2, NIV

The concept of a Census is not new. It helps governments to know how many people are living in the country and how resources should be allotted based upon states, districts and communities. The Census is only taken once a decade. The 2020 Census has now been underway for a couple of months. Have you completed your 2020 Census?

Funding for our schools, community centers, safety net programs etc., as well as congressional seats and the drawing of district lines are at stake! In 2010 Ohio lost OVER $139 MILLION for our communities due to low numbers received during the Census. What about your state? Let’s not repeat that in 2020!

It is easy, safe and imperative that we respond! Here’s how:

Online: go to
By phone: Dial 844-330-2020
By US mail: Complete the forms and mail in

If you don’t have your personal code, it’s ok. You can still complete the forms!!!

Please help us in this critical endeavor. Complete your 2020 Census, turn it in and share this information with others! BE COUNTED!!!

In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Shepastor: “Lessons We Must Learn from this COVID-19 Season…”

1 Chronicles 12:32 New English Translation (NET Bible)
32 From Issachar there were 200 leaders and all their relatives at their command—they understood the times and knew what Israel should do.

“Stay at home…social distancing…wear masks and gloves…” These all are admonitions given by world health authorities and government leaders to try and flatten the pandemic curve and to save lives. These important physiological health instructions are critical for the well-being of all. However, these guidelines do not address the “sickness” that for too long has infected the moral compass of society.

The scripture reference for today highlights an obscure commentary on members from the tribe of Issachar. It suggests that the leaders and their families “understood the times and knew what Israel should do.” One has to wonder, are we as discerning? If we would be like the wise “Issacharian” leaders, we too must learn some lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic and by doing so, gain an understanding of what we must do. Let’s consider the following…

We must learn to work together to get through this… A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. As much as possible we must honor the guidelines given for us to stay safe and alive. People of faith should lead the way as examples. Defying common sense health measures will not bring glory to God. On the contrary, it will bring shame upon the people of God if pride and ignorance govern our response to this pandemic.

We must learn to share more than ever… We must do more to help one another... It is becoming blatantly evident that “trickle down economics” will not work. While we wait for reasonable, strategic and “fact-driven” plans to “re-open our country,” we must re-think how our economy works. Our nation must do everything it can to provide assistance to those who, by no fault of their own are without work. We must all do that we can to share what we have with one another.

Cooking extra meals, making monetary donations, paying for someone’s groceries, making masks and gowns, offering free services when able for example. Utility companies should agree to continue to provide water, heat and lights while customers are without an income. Mortgage companies and banks should hold off on evictions for nonpayment of rent/mortgages. America is a wealthy country. It is time to share that wealth to care for the hard-working people who keep this country running and are devastated by current circumstances.

We must learn from our mistakes and re-consider our ways… Hateful rhetoric, divisive attitudes and behaviors, greed, slander, overlooking the needs of the poor, taking advantage of the ill-informed, voter suppression, oppressing and disenfranchising minorities, perpetuating systems designed to keep generational cycles of poverty…all of these sins must be addressed. Idolatry, sexual immorality, irreverent behaviors, pride and arrogance, racism, bigotry, sexism, “otherism”…ALL OF THESE THINGS have positioned us for unnecessary pain, devastation, loss and ultimately, destruction.

2 Chronicles 7:14 (NIV)
14 if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

May we SOON learn and live these lessons. May we be wise, discern the signs of the times and by so doing, “know what to do.”

In faith, hope and perseverance,
Pastor Chris

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Shepastor: “The Deadliest Week…”

And it came to pass, when Jesus had finished all these sayings, he said unto his disciples,
2 Ye know that after two days is the feast of the Passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified.
3 Then assembled together the chief priests, and the scribes, and the elders of the people, unto the palace of the high priest, who was called Caiaphas,
4 And consulted that they might take Jesus by subtilty, and kill him
. Matthew 26: 1-14, KJV

We have been cautioned by health professionals that the week of April 6th – 11th 2020 may be the “deadliest week” so far in the United States. This ominous designation is directly related to the number of anticipated deaths our nation will endure because of the Coronavirus pandemic. Governors and health professionals are urging people to stay home as much as possible, particularly this week when the pandemic is thought to be at its height.

To date, over 10,000 lives in America have been snuffed out due to COVID-19. The “Death Angel” is sweeping across the land. For the Christian community, we remember this week as Holy Week…another “deadly week” that will “forever live in infamy.” For it is during this week that our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ conquered Death, Hell and the Grave! At the beginning of the week Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey, palms waving and adoring crowds shouting “Hosanna, blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!” By the end of the week he was struggling to carry a heavy, splintered cross, on his whipped, bloody, flesh torn back down the Via Dolorosa… crowds jeering and chanting, “Crucify him!”

Betrayal, denial, abandonment and separation…cruel mocking, inhumane beatings, excruciating, unimaginable suffering, condemnation as a criminal, death on a cross. These are the markers that were placed down during this deadly week for our Lord. Jesus endured all of this for us…for our salvation…for our redemption…for our restoration…for our healing…for our deliverance…for our peace…for our victory!

Friday, we mourn, but Sunday is coming! Do this week, in remembrance of Him!

In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Shepastor: "Don't Be a Fool!"

The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” (Psalm 14:1a, ESV)

Today is April 1st, a day known as “April Fools Day.” It’s a day when people play silly pranks, tell jokes and overall, seek to have fun at another person’s expense. In a sense, both the joker and the one on whom the joke has been played may be considered, “fools” in the spirit of fun. But in a very serious sense, being a fool is no laughing matter.

A fool may be described as someone who is “a silly or stupid person; a person who lacks judgment or sense,” ( The Bible, however, states that a fool is anyone who says “There is no God.” The Scriptures teach us many important lessons about fools…

The way of a fool is right in his own eyes,
but a wise man listens to advice
. Proverbs 12:15 (ESV)

Like a dog that returns to his vomit
is a fool who repeats his folly.
Proverbs 26:11 (ESV)

Folly is a joy to him who lacks sense,
but a man of understanding walks straight ahead.
Proverbs 15:21 (ESV)

Fools are always right in their own eyes… We can avoid being foolish by seeking godly wisdom, accepting godly counsel and admitting when we are wrong.

Fools continue to repeat behaviors that bring about their own destruction… When we continue to repeat behaviors that we know are destructive and against God’s ways, we are acting like a fool. We must ask the Lord to help us and give us the mind and the will to break cycles of dysfunction.

Fools would rather enjoy “sin for a season” than to walk “straight ahead…” When we take “spiritual detours” and side step the “right path,” we will reap the painful consequences of momentary gratification. It is important to remember that each action yields a consequence.

The fool says, “There is no God…” It is foolish to believe that things in this life, in the world and in our lives “just happen.” It is foolish to believe that there is no accountability for our actions. God is sovereign. Whether humans acknowledge God or not, God’s omnipotence (all powerful) is not contingent upon humanity’s beliefs. The wise will humble themselves before the Lord, seek God’s wisdom and knowledge, turn from wicked and foolish ways and follow the path of righteousness. The wise will learn lessons from mistakes. The wise will keep walking “straight ahead.”

In this season and every season, may we honor the GREAT and awesome God. May we walk in wisdom, not leaning to our own understanding. May we seek the Lord’s mercy and favor. May we humble ourselves, pray, seek God’s face and turn from wicked ways so that we may be healed.

Don’t be a fool!

In faith, hope and perseverance,
Pastor Chris