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“A Word for this Week” - Pastor Bill Mugnolo
Week of January 4-10, 2021: “Essential, Non-Essential” … 1 Kings 3:9,
Luke 2:49, Ephesians 1:3.
During this past year of the Covid-19 pandemic, two of the words that we have become familiar with have been “essential” and “non-essential”. As we have now entered into 2021, we are meant, as Christian people, to consider what is truly essential to our fulfilling our God-given purpose in life. In the three appointed lessons from this past Sunday, we learn of some of the essential things that we need for living out our lives in Christ in the year ahead.
In 1 Kings, Chapter Three, a young King Solomon, in a dream, is given the opportunity to ask God for anything that he chose. The king could have asked for power, possessions, long life, or the defeat of his enemies. Instead, he prayed for wisdom and discernment to properly govern his people, Israel. So too, are webeyond any desire for health, wealth, or worldly prestigemeant to pray that we have such essential wisdom and discernment to carry out our role in life. Psalm 119:169 tells us, “Let my cry come before you, O Lord; give me understanding according to your word!”
It is through such essential and regular connection to this Word of God that we learn of the wisdom and discernment that we need to fulfill our calling in life. Through it, we also learn about what is non-essentialwhat things can get in the way of who we are meant to be in the Lord. Sadly, Solomon discovered, near the end of his life, how many worldly things that he indulged in proved to be non-essential and even meaningless as he looked back upon his life, as we read in the Book of Ecclesiastes. In that book, he also reaffirmed how God’s essential Word has been given to us by “one Shepherd” (Ecclesiastes 12:11).
That one Shepherd, Our Lord Jesus Christ, knew how essential being in that word was even at a very young age (Luke 2:49). Through it, we receive power for our daily living and are reaffirmed in its most essential truthssuch as what Paul writes of in Ephesians 1:3, “Blessed be the God and Father of Our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.” In Him, may you have a truly blessed Year of Our Lord, 2021.
Replace today's negative thoughts with God's eternal truths, guided by the following list passed down to us from an unknown source. This is especially important in dealing with the Coronavirus and all the bad news we are hearing. Keep God's Word close at hand to combat the negative thoughts.
The world says: "Its impossible." God says: "All things are possible." (Luke 18:27)
The world says "I'm too tired." God says: "I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28-30)
The world says: "Nobody really loves me." God says: "I love you." (John 3:16, 34)
The world says: "I can't go on." God says: "My grace is sufficient." (2 Corinthians 12:9; Psalm 91:15)
The world says: "I can't figure things out." God says: "I will direct your steps." (Proverbs 3:5- 6)
The world says: "I can't do it." God says: "You can do all things." (Philippians 4:13)
The world says: "I'm not able." God says: "I am able." (2 Corinthians 9:8)
The world says: "It's not worth it." God says: "It will be worth it." (Roman 8:28)
The world says: "I can't forgive myself." God says: "I forgive you." (1 John 1:9; Romans 8:1)
The world says: "I can't manage." God says: "I will supply all your needs." (Philippians 4:19)
The world says: "I'm afraid." God says: "I have not given you a spirit of fear." (2 Timothy 1:7)
The world says: "I'm always worried and frustrated." God says: "Cast all your cares on Me." (1 Peter 5:7)
The world says: "I'm not smart enough." God says: "I give you wisdom." (1 Corinthians 1:30)
The world says: "I feel all alone." God says: "I will never leave you or forsake you." (Hebrews 13:5)