Recently I read some disturbing statistics about human population growth trends (or the lack thereof). Fortunately for you, I can’t find the article that contained those statistics, so you won’t have to wade through those. But here is what struck me about those statistics: In North America we are moving towards zero net population growth, and then to negative growth as a population.
Two hundred and forty-two. As of this July 4, 2018, that’s how long the United States of
America has been a nation. Although we can take this long life of our nation for granted, we
should remember that very few nations or kingdoms have lasted that long during the course of
history. We have many reasons to be thankful for God’s merciful providence to our nation, both
in its beginning and in its life through these nearly two and a half centuries.
Our congregation, First Presbyterian Church of Crystal Springs, Mississippi, does not exist independently.
We are a part of the Presbyterian Church in America, and with this relationship we are interconnected
with our sister congregations that make up the PCA.
Here is an important subject that is rarely considered even by church-going folks, especially
younger adults: How should people decide what church they should join (not just attend)? On occasion,
most of us have to make those kinds of decisions…
Many of you know that FPC is undertaking steps to improve our security. I wrote about this subject in last month’s newsletter. As I write now, a crew is installing a security system for all three buildings on the church property and is almost finished.
When Christians think of security they often consider the security of their relationship with God through faith in Jesus Christ. And our eternal security in Christ is indeed a glorious truth. To be confident that nothing shall separate us from the love of God (Rom. 8:39); that the God who has begun a good work in us will complete it in the day of Christ Jesus (Philippians 1:6); and that God will never allow anyone to take His sheep out of His hand (John 10) are some of the highest joys we can have in this life.
One of the responsibilities that the elders of the church have is to maintain an accurate roll of those who are members of the church. Every year members come and go. Those who “go” may move away or have died. Some virtually disappear. In each case, efforts should be made to determine the reasons why some members are no longer active in our congregation, and to handle those situations lovingly, patiently, and appropriately.
Here are a few notes to close out 2017. Like many of you, I find myself pausing to look back on this year to recall what has taken place. Of course there are national and worldwide matters we can recall. How did our favorite sports team(s) do this year? And what about our families and our church? Let me confine myself to our congregation. What kind of year has it been for FPC?
We are well into the Christmas season now. In spite of all the outward displays of beautiful decorations, shopping for gifts and celebrations, however, we must be careful that we not fail to listen afresh to the beautiful music of the biblical message concerning the incarnation of the Son of God in order to obtain salvation from sin for whoever trusts in Him.
The more you let the gospel sink into your heart, the more thunderstruck you will be with the magnitude of God’s love for you in spite of how undeserving you are. And, in turn, the more thankful you will be for such amazing love.