Sunday, August 28, 2016

TWO KINDS OF WISDOM: SCS 93


Sunday, August 28, 2016, Stoney Creek Sermonette: Number 93


PRAYER for Today:
Matthew 6:9-13 King James Version (KJV)
9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
10 Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

MORNING WORSHIP MUSIC:
James 3: 1-18 New International Version (NIV)

Taming the Tongue

3 Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. 2 We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check.
3 When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. 4 Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. 5 Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. 6 The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.
7 All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, 8 but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.
9 With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. 10 Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. 11 Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? 12 My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.

Two Kinds of Wisdom

13 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. 14 But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. 15 Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16 For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.
17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. 18 Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.


SERMON for Today:




God Bless and May God Walk Beside You Each Step You Take This Week. Amen


© Ed Cooper, August 28, 2016, Stoney Creek, Tennessee, Appalachia  
  All rights reserved
(Ed Cooper is an ordained minister and mental health advocate. He lives with his wife Patty in the mountains of East Tennessee.)

Sunday, August 21, 2016

ADVICE YOU DID NOT ASK FOR: SCS 92

Sunday, August 21, 2016, Stoney Creek Sermonette: Number 92

PRAYER for Today:
Heavenly Father,
We know we are all broken and only You are able to heal the hearts and souls of all of us who are full of sin and bring light to the darkness in our lives. Help us Father to accept your freely given gift of grace that we might be reconciled to You. It is in Your Resurrected Living Son’s name we pray.
Amen.

SCRIPTURE LESSON for Today:  
Psalm 42 New International Version (NIV)

1 As the deer pants for streams of water,
   so my soul pants for you, my God.
2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
   When can I go and meet with God?
3 My tears have been my food
   day and night,
while people say to me all day long,
   “Where is your God?”
4 These things I remember
   as I pour out my soul:
how I used to go to the house of God
   under the protection of the Mighty One
with shouts of joy and praise
   among the festive throng.
5 Why, my soul, are you downcast?
   Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
   for I will yet praise him,
   my Savior and my God.
6 My soul is downcast within me;
   therefore I will remember you
from the land of the Jordan,
   the heights of Hermon—from Mount Mizar.
7 Deep calls to deep
   in the roar of your waterfalls;
all your waves and breakers
   have swept over me.
8 By day the Lord directs his love,
   at night his song is with me—
   a prayer to the God of my life.
9 I say to God my Rock,
   “Why have you forgotten me?
Why must I go about mourning,
   oppressed by the enemy?”
10 My bones suffer mortal agony
   as my foes taunt me,
saying to me all day long,
   “Where is your God?”
11 Why, my soul, are you downcast?
   Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
   for I will yet praise him,
   my Savior and my God.

SERMON for Today:

Let me share a piece of advice you may not have asked for.  When tragedy strikes don’t turn your face away from God in anger.  Don’t go to your friends for sympathy.  Don’t try to find a way to entertain yourself or distract yourself from your pain by dulling it with drink or pills.  It is the very time you need to seek after your Father with the most earnest effort you have ever made.

First, go looking for the place that seems to be closest to Him for you and start praying.  Praying.  Pouring out your heart and soul.  Asking to understand His will for your life.  Pray often and long and earnestly.

Secondly, get into the Word like you never have before.  Stop reading everything else other than the Bible.  Every free minute spend praying and reading the Word.  Get to know the Being you are seeking through what has already been revealed to us.  If you think you already know the Bible let me assure you there is always more to learn no matter how long you have been reading it.

Thirdly, spend as much time as you can with a few people you believe honestly believe in the power of the Resurrected Christ and The Holy Spirit.  I do not mean people who just call themselves Christians or go around saying the words.  I mean put yourself in the company of folks you believe are living a life led by the Holy Spirit.

Fourthly, every chance you get do some kind and loving act for another human that comes across your path in your daily life.  It does not have to be a big grand gesture.  Every little pebble thrown into the biggest lake makes a ripple.

The Psalmist keeps telling us to put our hope in our Father, but to make that work we have to work at it.  

God Bless and May God Walk Beside You Each Step You Take This Week. Amen

© Ed Cooper, August 21, Stoney Creek, Tennessee, Appalachia  
  All rights reserved
(Ed Cooper is an ordained minister and mental health advocate. He lives with his wife Patty in the mountains of East Tennessee.)

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU CAN'T FEEL THE AGONY ANYMORE?


What happens when you can’t feel the pain in your heart and soul anymore?  When your insides are numb and you feel dead.  Depression can progress to the point there is nothing left.  The agony can turn you into a stone statue.  You find yourself too dried up to cry anymore.  Too tired to worry anymore.  To broken to try and fix yourself another time.  Too sad to attempt another suicide. You are frozen in a state of nothingness.

If you believe I am describing something that does not or cannot happen, then that is because it has not happen to you.  It is where I am heading.  I am at the headwaters of this river.  I have been down it before and it is a journey I do not wish to make again.  Don’t pity me.  Don’t give me advice.  I am not interested in your thoughts on what I should do.  Your love or hatred or indifference does not touch me because I can not reach my own feelings.  I am shutting all systems down.

Walk your path with care my friends.  Love those around you with all the caring heart you can find within you.  Be kind to yourself.  Hope you never stop feeling the pain because by feeling the pain you know you are still among the living with all systems turned on.

© Ed Cooper, August 10, 2016, Stoney Creek, TN, Appalachia

    All rights reserved