6 Lies During Dark Times (Plus One)

Naomi means "My Delight". In Ruth, Naomi is faced with great testings throughout chapter 1. God is giving us insight into the effects of such testings on people. God brings people like this into our lives whom He wants to help through us.

Elimelech, Naomi's husband, dies after their family moves to a foreign land (Moab), as a result of a severe famine. Elimelech's name means, " My God is King". 10 years later her two sons die. Ruth is left with 2 daughters in law and no men in her life for security and provision. So the Question in Naomi's life at this point is, "What happens when My God is King dies?" Or what happens in the human heart when our God and King of our life allows us to be hurt when He could have stopped it? 

She hears the famine is over and decides to move back home. Naomi begins her journey home by asking her two daughters in law to go back to their homes and their gods. At this place in Naomi's life, God opens a door into Naomi's heart to allow us understanding into the thinking of people who are facing great testings.

In verse 5 of chapter 1 Naomi is left alone after her sons die. She had Orpah and Ruth with her but she felt alone. People can be surrounded with friends and loved one's and feel alone in times like these. Here are 6 thoughts that Naomi was tempted with as a result of her testings:

1. Feelings that God is against her. Chapter 1:13

2. She is beginning to lose the Value of her Relationship with God. 1:15

3. Starting to entertain the thought of turning back! 1:16

4. Attempts to Isolate herself. 1:15

5. Everything is seen through bitter eyes. 1:19-21

6. Naomi felt cursed while walking with a Friend. 1:22

None of these mind frames are true to the believer. None the less many believers and non-believers carry these thought patterns as a result of pain and hurts. Jesus answers each of these with the cross. Scripture sheds God's light on these lies satan uses. 

My challenge to each of us is to be more understanding (less judgmental) to those who are experiencing these feelings and fighting with these lies. Let's pray and share God's Word with them in love and with compassion. God will birth an Obed from these broken hearts! Obed means serving or servant!

I encourage you to remember these truths if you are in a dark time in your life, and most importantly, remember you are not alone.

 Blessings!

Frank
Isaiah 41:10

The Beginning… And Wisdom

In my previous writing I encouraged us to ask bold questions about our faith. And, that is exactly what I intend to do with this segment. Before we bite into the meaty portion of this discussion, however; I would like to smother this literary hamburger with some common sense sauce. 
When I was a kid (to the detriment of my poor parents), asking questions was my business... and let me tell you, business was good. Like many of us as children, I was sooo curious about the world around me that I would spit out questions faster than an ornery llama will spit on his keeper. It’s not that I think curiosity to be a bad trait, but my kind of questioning resembled a little baby bird who continuously crys out for mama or daddy bird to fill my mouth with half digested information. When I ask you to ask questions, I do not mean these kinds of thoughtless lazy questions. This technique may work for birds and babies, but for those who are old enough to think for themselves this is not an attractive trait. I am asking us to ask informed and intelligent questions. And I'm asking that we digest the answers we find for ourselves. That means careful research and even more careful thought. We should not be happy to live off of the mental regurgitation of someones else's questioning . Excuse my rant, but the world is full of lazy birds who never mentally flew out of the nest. As Christians (if you claim to be one) we should be the best and the brightest. We should be the mama birds who works hard to find the mental food that others fly over.The intention of this blog is not to spoon feed you answers, that are... good enough, I want to teach you how to find the proverbial worm. Yes I will try my best to do quality research and give you quality answers to these questions, but I fully expect you to do your own probing and questioning. If you think my postulation is weak... call me out on it. If you think you have a better question... ask it, and do not be afraid to do your own research. I want you to think for yourselves, because, as Christians we are obligated to use one of the greatest gift that God gave us... our minds. 
With all that ranting behind us let's get to the questions. I can think of no better starting place then at the start, so that is where we will begin. Think back with me to the beginning... No no, I'm not talking about your first day of highschool, or the day you blessed the earth with your screaming presence, I'm talking about THE beginning... Yes, the beginning of everything that has ever existed in our universe. Picture the moment before the galaxies existed, before matter went spinning into wild motion and the mighty stars were set on their courses among the cosmos... When you peer into the nothingness of a time before time began what do you see? 
If this question were posed to any person in any period of history before the twentieth century, the answer would have most likely involved a creative being (or God) of some sort. But this assumption is no longer the paradigm of thought for our generation. The Big Bang Theory has exploded into the scope of popular belief with the velocity of a rumor in a knitting club, and it has rose on the shoulders of a simple idea. An idea that was made most famous by a man named Charles Darwin. 
I believe that many of you reading this are, at least, familiar with the ideas of Darwin and the consequent naturalistic idealism that arose from the theories of him and many of his predecessors. This theory has swept the academic world since its conception in the late 1800’s. The philosophy behind it has become so embedded in academic culture that if you were to visit the original universities of this country (which were almost all founded as seminaries) and announce that the world was created in 6 days by a creator, you could expect to be laughingly ignored as an ignorant kook. Despite this distain by many who call themselves contemporary thinkers, there are still millions of Christians who hold firmly to the biblical account of creation. So, we must ask ourselves: where is the disconnect? We all know the biblical account of the universe's origin. So then, why do Bible believing Christians have such a drastically different story than the academically accepted view of the world's origins. As much as some have tried to fit them together, naturalistic idealism and the biblical account of origins are not compatible. Do we have to ignore scientific discovery and throw away reason to believe the biblical account of creation? Is Christianity simply “an opiate for the masses” as Marx would say? The simple answer to all of these questions is a loud and clear No! If your thinking to yourself right now, “well Josh, prove it then,” I'm way ahead of you. I hope to show you that not only do you not have to deny reason to believe the biblical account of creation you do not have to defy good science either. In fact, I believe it is reason and good science that has been compromised to allow naturalistic idealism to flourish, But before we can deal with the science of the matter (which I will pick up in other writings) we must first deal with some foundational issues. In order to understand more about this idealism we must briefly look into the story that led to it’s rise. 
One thing that can be agreed upon by just about every historian and layman alike is that a story can be a powerful thing. In one of America's darkest hours, it was the story of a woman named Harriet that rallied a nation against the evils of slavery. Marx’s story of civilization inspired a manifesto that would rock the political landscape of Europe, and the world, for centuries to come. There are countless examples that prove that a well placed and perfectly timed story has the power to do everything from sparking a world war to capturing the attention of a group of highly distractible teens. The two stories that we will be comparing today could be titled something like this “Genesis and the Caused Universe” vs. “Naturalistic Evolution, the Ironically Chaotic Meaningless Truth?” (maybe my titles are a bit biased, but, as the author, I reserve the right to be such). 
Some at this very moment have written me off and possibly began shouting at their poor undeserving computers in a loud confidently educated voice that: “I, In point of fact, had no idea of what I spoke because every well educated man in the field of science knows that evolution is in fact a scientific fact and should not be compared to such mythology as the biblical creation account.” 
Well... I hate to burst anybody’s bubble (not really I love it), but the truth is that neither of these theories of the Earth’s origins have been proven false or true. In fact there is really no scientific way to prove either one. Science is all about observation and study of the facts, but because no one was there at the beginning to study the first events, then we can only speculate as to what happened, how it happened and when it happened. We can study the earth today and reflect on past events with varying accuracy, but one can never postulate with 100% accuracy about the past unless he or she has a time machine handy (and that would raise all kinds of other issues). Now, I’m not saying that everything we deduce from the present about the past must be wrong. The point that I am trying to make is that while scientists have authoritatively postulated and re-postulated for years about historical facts about our world, their theories are based more in a idealism then a scientific theory. The best way to illustrate this point will be to give you a little taste of nonfiction that led to the ultimate fiction of a world view like naturalistic evolution. 
Like most happenings in history, there is usually a somewhat interesting and complicated story that accompanies every major shift in belief within a society. For this reason, it is important to understand the broad historical weather pattern that led to a climate where naturalism would be wholeheartedly accepted by a culture. In order to understand the full story, we could probably go all the way back to the 4th century AD (don't worry I'll be really brief) and the reign of Constantine the 57th Roman emperor. Constantine was the first Roman emperor to convert to Christianity and thus, with his reign, the church began its inevitable entanglement with political power. Power is a great corrupter and over time even the church would succumb to corruption as its theology had a tendency to change with political tides and theologies shifted from the Bible to what would best benefit the church coffers. The great reformation of the 16th century helped to curb some of the blatant and grouse corruption within the church, but the resulting wars and bloodshed that ensued over the generations left a dark scar in the history of the Christian church. The different dogmas within each sect of the fractured church became a springboard for power hungry world leaders to gain political power. While, on the other hand, cultural movements such as the renaissance, drew people's attention to the significance of humanity and its ability to discover beauty and truth. Men like Descartes (who is known as one of the fathers of modern philosophy) began to question the very foundations of truth and even his own senses, relying instead on on what could be known simply through human reasoning. Men began to believe that all problems could be solved through human reason and the teaching of the church began to take second tier to the discoveries of the most educated. Although the tides of reason began to pull away from trust in the teachings of the church and towards human reason most of the founders of modern science were God fearing men. Such Giants of academia like Galileo and Aristotle saw their discoveries as complimentary and not contradictory to a theistic world view. In their mind the very existence of a scientific method pointed to the obvious conclusion of a rational creator. Their studies and observation of the physical processes within our world led them to glorify God even more. Sadly, however, this attitude towards scientific discovery did not hold for long. 
By the nineteenth century an interesting new philosophy began to grow out of the fertile soil laid down by the leadership of the fractured Christian church. There began to be a slow shift of authority and foundation amongst leaders in scientific fields. This shift culminated in Darwin's theory of evolution and then the idealism of naturalism. Science had reached past the realm of simple discovery and into the murky waters of a philosophy. Men had discovered seemingly so much about the world around him and the laws that governed that world that in his arrogance he thought that he had outgrown the one who created it in the first place. Unproven theories that seemed to make sense, at the time, began to take precedence over the foundational beliefs that had sparked scientific thought. A new ideology had taken its place among popular thought, one that no longer needed a creator. This ideology became so prominent that it quickly became accepted as scientific fact. Proof was no longer necessary. All it took was several pieces of the immensely complex puzzle of life to come together for scientist to justify filling in all the many wide gaps in scientific knowledge. And so science created a beautifully intricate story of life based on an unobserved theory, a few clues and an assumed beginning with no real explanation. Darwin's theory of evolution had lit a spark that today scientists like Richard Dawkins, Peter Atkins and Stephen Hawkings have even gone so far as to speak out against religious institutions because they consider them hindrances to scientific progress. In fact, naturalistic philosophy has permeated its way into just about every facet of contemporary culture. Despite this fact, it fails to answer some of the most basic questions about existence. So, why is this belief in no belief so very enticing to many intelligent people around the world? Is the scientific evidence really so conclusive on this topic, as many would you to believe, or is there something else at play entirely? 
After my rant, I began this article with a question; where is the disconnect? I gave that fairly long yet very brief look into Christianity's connection with science because I think it’s important for us to see where we have come from, as a society, in order to understand where we are today. But, the reality is that there is a much simpler reason for naturalistic philosophies’ rise to prominence among those considered wise in this world. 
At the beginning of the wisest book that has ever been written, a bold claim is made. Proverbs 1:7 artfully proclaims, “The fear of the LORD is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline,” and again in chapter two it states, “Cry out for insight, and ask for understanding. Search for them as you would for silver; seek them like hidden treasures. Then you will understand what it means to fear the LORD, and you will gain knowledge of God. For the LORD grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding.” So, basically put, according to scripture, you will not begin to respect God for who he is until you start seeking wisdom, which God gives from his mouth (or words) to those who seek, and you can not have a basis for true knowledge and wisdom until you do respect God for who he is. Knowledge then, according to scripture, must be based on the fear of God which is found through Gods imparted word. This is not to say that people who are not God fearing cannot obtain valid information about the world around them, but it is to say that those who do not fear God will never use that information to come to any meaningful conclusion. Because they are building on a foundation that is ultimately false, it does not matter how much valid information they compile, it will always end up as a beautifully constructed tower of false knowledge. Like a puzzle in which all the legitimate pieces have been shoved together in the wrong way. At the end you may have a complete puzzle, but the picture will be chaotic and distorted instead of beautiful and ordered. 
Based on this principle of scripture, one can easily see how such educated and brilliant men have come up with conclusions about the world that are so unhelpful. Naturalistic idealism taken to its root leaves man without purpose, without hope, with no objective morality to speak of and with no real reason to pursue truth in the first place. Survival is the only purpose for that kind of ideology
This passage in Proverbs is not the only scripture passage that deals with the issue of men's short sightedness. Perhaps the most pointed passage that speaks to the issue can be found in Paul’s letter to the Corinthians. In the opening chapter of 1 Corinthians Paul is inspired to say:
The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God.19 As the Scriptures say,
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise and discard the intelligence of the intelligent.”
20 So where does this leave the philosophers, the scholars, and the world’s brilliant debaters? God has made the wisdom of this world look foolish.21 Since God in his wisdom saw to it that the world would never know him through human wisdom, he has used our foolish preaching to save those who believe. 22 It is foolish to the Jews, who ask for signs from heaven. And it is foolish to the Greeks, who seek human wisdom. 23 So when we preach that Christ was crucified, the Jews are offended and the Gentiles say it’s all nonsense.

An army of brilliant scientists can come up with a pretty fascinating story, just like the philosophers of Paul’s day came up with some pretty good philosophies, but that does not change the truth of the matter. Godless philosophies have been trying to compete with truth since the fall of man, but the truth is, they will all be blown away like a kite surfer in a hurricane by the atomic bomb of God’s wisdom. In future writings we will delve deeper together into our beautifully created universe and take a look at some of the more scientific and philosophical evidences for the truth behind God and his word, but first, I want to make sure that we start building on the right foundation. Thank God truth does not rely on our wisdom to hold it up. We will never reach truth through human wisdom we must rely on God’s wisdom. A wisdom that comes through seeking a relationship with our creator. A wisdom that is founded on a fearful respect of that creator and a wisdom that is made powerful through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

 

-Joshua Penley

I Just Can't.

We live in funny days when it comes to people's way of doing church (ministry). So many things are just plain crazy. We have gotten to the place where we have Christian heroes, or mega churches, big preachers compared to little ones. We spend big money on training our people on the best ways to "do church".  It's so different than Biblical church (again I mean ministry).

I'm reading in Exodus in my devotions and I'm looking at one of the Old Testament's mega ministries. Its biggest preacher (arguably), and huge hero in the faith, Moses. 

Think about these facts about God's man Moses. 

1. He was sheltered ( hidden ) as a baby.

2. He was put in the river and abandoned by his mother.

3. Adopted and raised in a worldly liberal home.

4. Went to most worldly schools of his day.

5. Killed a man as a young adult and lived on the run.

6. Did not meet God until he was 80.

These are just the highlights of Moses life. Not a good resume for applying to lead 1.6 million Jews into a long walk with God.

Here is "THE THING" that really speaks to me, and God is using this to revive my willingness to stay in the battle for Him.

Moses met God at the burning bush and was drawn to see Him more closely. Moses took his sandals off and talked with God. God was developing a relationship with Moses that was going pretty well until God dropped the big one on him. In chapter 3, God tells Moses what He (God) was going to do, then He said to Moses, "Now go" (vs 10). God called Moses to do something- to serve him! God did not say to Moses, "I need you with all your talent and abilities to help Me do My will". He simply told Moses what He (God) was going to do and then God told Moses to go!

Moses did not surrender to God's will and run towards God's will for his life. In fact, Moses argued with God to the point of making God mad (exodus 4:14). Moses gave 6 arguments why God should not try to use him. All of these are found in Exodus and are not even dealing with the complaining and griping he does after he obeys God. That's a different thought. Look at the reason Moses gave for God not being able to use him.

1. Ex. 3:11 Who am I to lead anybody?

2. 3:13 I do not know you (God) well enough!

3. 4:1 What if .... ?

4: 4:10 I am not very Good!

5. 5:22 Why me???

6. 6:12 I am so clumsy!

Moses tried to convince God that he (Moses) could not be used by God with 6 good reasons so he thought!

Look at four things God said to Moses.

1. 3:8 I (Yahweh) have come down to rescue my people! Not, "I am sending Moses to do it." 

2. 3:10 You (Moses) must go! Moses was God's chosen person for that job.

3. 3:12 I (Yahweh) will be with you! (Boom baby! That's the KEY!)

4. 4:11 I (Yahweh) will be with you! (Boom again)

Say this as many times as needed so we don't forget Who is doing the work. Him through us not Us for Him!

Simply stated, too much of ministry these days is done through our strength or good marketing strategies and on people's personalities. It's successful in man's eyes, but here is my point. If you are doing something God has called you to do, then don't let all this fan-fair and big lights and movie star stuff steal the significance of your work. We are not any different than Moses. God is the one who does the work we are called to! He has chose you (us) to let Him do it through you! It's not your talent, your  charisma, your abilities, or even your choice! If God called you to do something my friend, He called you to serve Him with all your heart and to walk with Him. He is the one who does the job. When our job is over, we want people to see what God did, not what we did. If God has given you His call, you must go (3:10)! But don't let this world's way of doing things get you trying to serve God in your own strength. That is disobeying God. Ask God to do it though you and trust Him not yourself. And if God has given you a job, figure out a way to make it fun!     

Frank Penley
Isaiah 41:10

Beliefs, Truths, and Everything In-between (A Blog Mostly to the Teens)

Hey group, due to the impending Christmas program (that we all have the pleasure of being a part of), we won’t be able to continue our walk through Luke together for the next few weeks. In light of that, I have taken this opportunity to write about a subject that I feel responsible as your pastor to address. I know, I know... your probably thinking to yourself, we finally get a break from listening to him speak and now we have to read his lessons? First of all, it’s very mean of you to think that way about my speaking, and second, take heart! Like medicine goes down easier with a heaping helping of sugar, my intention is to write this blog in a way that is both relevant to your situation and enjoyable to read (if it is not, at least you know my heart was in the right place). 

The title of this blog is Beliefs, Truths, and Everything In-between, and those three ideas are exactly what I hope to address in this first article of the series.  We live in a world that, in many ways, believes the ability to possess truth to be a myth. This form of idealism has created a culture that sees those who claim to have a firm and uncompromising truth system to be: either sad myth chasers or just mean bigots (unless of course that belief system happens to be naturalism, then they are simply academic).

The question that must be addressed by Christians is, "are they right?" Has our knowledge of the earth and our ability to identify with almost every culture on the planet, and to observe each different and unique belief system, shown us that we are crazy to hold firmly to what we believe as the only truth?  Is Jesus really the only way to a higher spiritual knowledge? In the eyes of many of the educated world today, the answers to these two questions are a resounding, NO and NO.

So, to us, I pose my first bold question again... "Are they right?"  (Right about now you may be thinking: has our youth pastor gone nuts? He wants us to question our beliefs? I wonder what our next youth pastor will be like after Josh gets fired?) Let me assure you that this is exactly what I want you to do; question your beliefs. You see, I truly believe that the problem with Christians, heathens, young progressives, and old conservatives, is that they do not question enough.

Now, before you throw down your computers and burn me at the stake for heresy, I ask you to consider what it is I'm asking you to do... All that I require is that you entertain a simple question. I do not want you to turn to your nearest lifeline for spiritual guidance and ask them how you should answer this question, and I don't want you to give yourselves the answer that you think is the right answer. I want you to digest the question and then consider what you actually believe about the answer. Can we truly say with confidence that what we say we believe equates to actual real life action invoking truth? If you are feeling afraid or indignant because of my questioning at this point, then this blog is for you (if you are not, I would still encourage you to read the rest anyways). 

I believe that many Christians (and especially young Christians who have been raised in church) live in fear of their own doubt. They do not want to admit that they have it (as if God could be fooled) and so they go on about their lives in denial of their lack of belief. As a result of this they are terrified to ask the questions that, in their minds, may expose their faith as a fraud. They want to have a strong faith, but the factious tone of their science teacher nonchalantly debasing the very foundation of their belief system keeps on ringing in their ears, or, maybe it’s the jeering of their intelligent friend that thinks it’s all, "a bunch of croc," as he or she would put it. These Christians may even love what they have been taught as a child (or are being taught as an adult) and they respect those who taught it to them, but they do not necessarily want to pin their hopes and dreams on something that (according to the writers of their school text books and their favorite movies and TV shows) is untrue, inaccurate, and just down right crazy. They fear there are no good answers to their questions, and so, because of their fear they refuse to ask them. They live in a blurry grey zone called the in-between. This means being mentally stuck between what they would like to be true and what they fear is actually true, which results in a faith that is about as stable as a dingy in a hurricane (Jam. 6:1).

If you have ever felt this way in your Christian walk you would not be alone. I'm sure there are millions of professing Christians that are in the same dingy with you. Some even use their faith as an excuse not to ask questions and think they are better for it... But, the fact is that true faith, bold daring faith, is not afraid of questions. It doesn't shrink back from doubt but faces it head on.

This is the kind of attitude that I want to encourage in our group: an attitude that's not afraid to be honest about doubt or to ask tough questions. Let me first say that the best and only way to have a strong vibrant faith is in the context of a close, intimate walk with the One in whom your faith should be placed. If any of you are wondering, that would be Jesus Christ. And this relationship can only be cultivated by walking in the Word with the Spirit (that is, reading the Bible and relying on the Spirit’s guidance for Spiritual growth and wisdom). But you should all know this fact already if you have been listening to my lessons.

 So this blog will hopefully serve a different purpose for us than to simply reinforce what you already have been taught. The main purpose of this series of blogs will be to encourage you to ask…..and to admit... and to simply be honest with yourselves. I'm offering this blog as an open forum. If we hold the truth in our midst, then we must not cower from even the most formidable of questions or hide from answers that they produce. And the awesome truth is we do not have to.

The more we dig, the more favorable the answers get for us. God made us to be rational, curious and intelligent beings (I use that term loosely for some of you teens) and he did not leave us without ample evidence to prove his words and proclamations to be almost undeniable true. We just have to be bold enough to ask the question and look for the answers. So let’s do it together. In the next few weeks I plan to address some issues that are at the forefront of popular thinking (e.g. Origins of earth, Universalism and the dependability of the Bible). I fully expect you to read these and to offer your own input and questions for the group to see. I hope you guys are as excited about this as I am, and as always: don't forget to do your reading (Luke 13). 

Joshua Penley

Wake Up!

Have you ever been woken up from sleep by someone coming to you for a need they have? Do you remember your first feelings? With us, how we handle being woken up from a deep sleep depends on who is committing the act and how much we care for them.

  In Psalm 59 David is being attacked by a friend he has been loyal to, who is trying to kill him. In verse 4 he cries out, "Wake up! See what is happening and help me!" David is demanding that God , "Wake Up" for him, now! In Matthew 8:25 the disciples do the same thing to Jesus. "Lord save us! We are going to drown!" The storm was greater than "the Jesus" they had in their boat at the moment! Can a boat sink with Jesus in it? If you were to ask the disciples that question at that moment they would say yes!!!

  In both of these situations , David's and the Disciples, it is easy for us to see that God is in control! "The boat is not going to sink, David is not going to die! But what about the storm in your life, the boat you are in that's taking on water, or the life threatening situation you are in? It seems a little less obvious how it's going to turn out. Let me ask you to think about something from God's word that you can be sure is true in your life today. God is in control, and he has allowed this storm in your life! My advice to you is to find a quiet place alone and "Wake Jesus Up". He seems to be ok with us doing that! He loves you enough, wake Him up, and tell Him all about it, until He sends peace! Your faith will grow and your prayer life will be more beneficial!

Blessings!

Frank Penley
Isaiah 41:10

Trusting in the Desert

There is no better thing than when you find yourself in a tight spot and really need God to "move a mountain" for you, and He does! It is in these moments our faith is at it's strongest. But what about when you are in a desert place, dry and lonely, and God has not split the rock and given you fresh water?

  In Psalm 78 The Lord takes us back to school in a history of Israel's wilderness wanderings. In verses 16-22 God shows that He gave abundant water for 1 1/2 million + people by splitting a rock in half and water flowing from it! Take a minute to think about that one. But then, He says (17-20) the people keep sinning against Him, they stubbornly tested God, they even spoke against God Himself... all just after such a miracle. Their sin was, that in all God was providing for them, they wanted their desires that God was not providing ( meat instead of Manna). They said, "God can give us water but he can't furnish us with a table filled with our desired meat".  The verses 21 - 22 says God was furious, because of two things: 1. They did not believe God, and 2. They did not trust Him to care for them.

  I believe God is the God of unanswered prayer as much as He is of answered prayer. Let me restate, God is in control of how much I do not have as He is in control of providing what I have or need. He is in control of when the rock splits and abundant waters flow, and He is in control when it does not. I believe that Ps. 78 is God's request for His kids to not just believe that God can do miracles but that with each miracle we receive, we grow stronger in our trust for Him (Faith). We should also surrender to God as our authority, and trust that He miraculously provides our needs as we surrender to His choices for our lives. God is the God who meets my needs, but who wants me to need His will and way over my own in my life!

Frank Penley
Isaiah 41:10

Thought From The Word

This week God has provided for 2 needs that our church has prayed for for some time now. We were able to send Hemanth in India the full amount of $3,000 for transporting the tabernacle for one year. This means that thousands of Hindu people will be given a clear Gospel message over this next year! Secondly we paid our trailers off in full! Praise the LORD!!!

Gen. 1:1 "In the beginning God", I am beginning my Bible over today for my private devotions. These first 4 words struck me in a new way as I began. You see, I am in a mental battle and have been for a while and am in need of hearing from God. I opened my word and began brand new start through God's word and hoping for a touch or thought or something for today. I read, "In the beginning God" and it dawned on me that God worded His beginning to us as a PROMISE. He also gives a testimony of Himself to each of us with every verse in chapter 1. My thought for us in this is that no matter where or what we are going through, "in the beginning GOD"! No matter how we feel, or how Weak our faith, as we start our day, "GOD"! God is with me, over me, God of my circumstances, and author of my faith. In my life today "GOD" ... And I can trust Him!!! I am so thankful for God's Hand in our lives! Let's trust Him and share Him with those who need Him!

Frank Penley
Isaiah 41:10