December 2014 Dear Friends; An unknown author said, “It’s easy to think Christmas, and it’s easy to believe Christmas, but it is hard to act Christmas.” In the hymn “O Come, All Ye Faithful” the refrain states; “O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.” Webster’s New World […]
January 1, 2015
“When ye see the ark…then ye shall remove from your place, and go after it…that ye may know the way by which ye must go; for ye have not passed this way before“. (Joshua 3:3-4)
Unknown territory always brings a mixture of emotions. Excitement but fearfulness too. So it must have been for the Israelites. But as they faced this daunting venture, they were told to keep their eyes on the ark and when it moved, to follow. We too, are entering unfamiliar territory as we start a New Year. It is exciting but intimidating. By keeping our eyes on the Lord and following His Word, we can navigate the unknown circumstances that lie ahead. God promises, “I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way thou shalt go” (Ps. 32:8). —E. V.
A new, strange path stretched out before me lies,
A way untrodden, hidden from mine eyes;
I know not what awaits me as I go,
Of joy or pain, of happiness or woe.
But I can trust—the way is all marked out
By Him who knows the path without a doubt. —R. A. Johnston
The above are thoughts from a devotional calendar – Choice Gleanings – that I use each year. May the remarks encourage each of you.
I have chosen a theme for 2015 for our church: “Walking the Walk, So That Others Will See Christ Though Us” –Eph. 5:2, 15, 16.
Consider these verses as we enter a new year of walking with our Lord Jesus Christ. It is interesting to note that in Ephesians 5:1, the word “followers” is the Greek word for “imitator.” So we are to be “imitators of Christ” and to “walk in love.” The word “walk” in verse two means: to live, to act, to behave. In other words, each believer should be an imitator of God because he is God’s child. As children imitate their parents, so ought we, as believers, to imitate God. (cf. Matt. 5:48; Luke 6:36) To walk in love is to give ourselves to others. That is what Christ, our perfect example, did in dying for us on the cross.
According to Ephesians 5:15, believers are to walk (live) carefully, so as to be “wise” or skillful and thus please the Lord. “Circumspect” comes from two Latin words which mean “look around.” The Greek word carries the idea of precision and accuracy. “Not as fools”–Let us not lower ourselves to walk as worldly men do.
You see, we are to “walk the walk” of a true Christian believer so that others may see Christ living in us and be drawn to our wonderful Saviour for salvation.
Notice verse 16—According to Warren Wiersbe: “Life is short (v.16a), ‘buying up the opportunity—taking advantage of it….’ Our English word ‘opportunity’ comes from the Latin and means ‘toward the port.’ It suggests a ship taking advantage of the wind and tide to arrive safely in the harbor. The brevity of life is a strong argument for making the best use of the opportunities God gives us.”
“Because the days are evil.” “If the days were evil when Paul wrote this letter, what must be the condition today?” (Wiersbe)
What are these verses telling us? That every day brings us open doors and opportunities. “Redeeming the time” means living our lives in holiness, doing deeds of mercy and giving words of help to others. Brothers and sisters, the day of grace will soon close and the opportunities for worship, witness and service on earth will be gone forever. So this year, 2015, make it a year of walking closely with your Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, showing His love though your daily walk.
May God bless each of you and give you a fruitful year for the Lord.
Your fellow servant;
Dr. Frederick W. Carroll
Col. 4:5,6 “Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time. Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.“