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Thursday
Aug172017

This Sunday at Bristol . . . "Living the Life of a Model"

Our study series titled, “A Snapshot of a Ready Church” from 1 and 2 Thessalonians continues this Sunday as we focus on 1 Thessalonians 1:6-10.

The first chapter of the first letter is an “atta boy” to these young converts. The Apostle Paul commends them for putting their new-found faith into action. He writes, verse 7, “And so you became a model . . .”

When we hear that word we may think of those who are on the cover of a fashion magazine. Or maybe you remember as a child putting together detailed model cars, or airplanes. It is not uncommon for an architect to construct a model of the building they have designed to help others visualize the finished product.

But what does it mean when Paul says that these new believers were a “model”? It means exactly what it says. A model is defined as representation, a duplication, a likeness, a facsimile of the real thing. These believers, as young as they were, took their faith seriously and modeled before others what Paul, Silas, and Timothy had modeled before them. Wow!

This Sunday the message is titled, “Living the Life of a Model” and we will examine the attributes of these early believers using 1 Thessalonians 1:6-10 as our text

I look forward to seeing you Sunday as we explore this concept of being a model Christian in today’s world. 

You are loved in the Lord,

Pastor Terry

Thursday
Jul272017

This Sunday at Bristol . . . "When God shuts one door, He opens another"

This Sunday we continue with the current study series, “Is That in the Bible?” with the concluding lesson in this summer teaching series. The focus of these lessons has been to look at common phrases, usually attributed to the Bible, but are not in the Bible, and yet still discover what truth there is for us to learn from the phrase.

Our idiom for this Sunday is, “When God shuts one door, He opens another.” Even though these words may sound like they come from the Bible, they do not. But there is Biblical truth found in these words. 

As the first century church was growing and expanding, the Apostle Paul was eager to discover where the Lord was leading in the growth of the Kingdom. Acts 16 tells us that he was planning to travel east and then north, but the Lord closed those doors. Paul and his ministry partners experienced several closed doors in their zeal to spread the Good News until the Lord opened the door He wanted them to walk through. And that door led to the continent of Europe where people were eager to hear truth.

Out text for this Sunday is Acts 16:6-12 (take a few moments and read these verses) and in our study we will discover ways to find God’s will.

I look forward to sharing with you as together we continue growing in our faith.

You are sincerely loved in the Lord. 

Pastor Terry

Thursday
Jul202017

This Sunday at Bristol . . . "To Thine Own Self Be True"

This Sunday we continue with lesson #9 in the current study series, “Is That in the Bible?” These lessons focus on common phrases we and others use in every day language that are sometimes attributed to the Bible.

Our phrase for this Sunday is, “To thine own self be true.” As with the previous eight phrases, these words cannot found in the Bible either. In fact these words, as you Shakespeare devotees will know, come from his play, “Hamlet.”

Two concepts that appear to be prevalent in these words - self and truth. Americans, and that includes many who attend church, are involved in a love affair with self. This is evidenced by the reality of the phrase, “Take care of #1.” And this way of life is far from the teaching of Jesus as found in Mark 8:34.

It is indeed a new world and, “To thine own self be true,” seems to be the attitude of many and that is a frightening thought. So, how do we combat this prevailing and growing attitude? This Sunday we will focus on two questions that will lead us to three necessary responses.

I look forward to sharing with you as together we continue growing up in Jesus.

You are sincerely loved in the Lord.

Pastor Terry

Thursday
Jul062017

This Sunday at Bristol . . . "God moves in mysterious ways"

This Sunday we continue with lesson #7 of the current study series, “Is That in the Bible?” These ten lessons focus on common phrases we and others use in every day conversation, that are sometimes attributed to the Bible, but cannot be found there.
 
Our phrase for this Sunday is, “God moves in mysterious ways.” Have you heard this one? Maybe you have even said it a few times. As with the previous six phrases, these words are not found in the Bible, but can be found in a hymn written by William Cowper (Hymn #603 in our hymnal).
 
God’s Word has much to say about the subject of us knowing Him. In fact, the Bible makes it clear that the Lord wants us to know Him. This sentiment is especially found in Isaiah 55:6-9 which will be the verses for today's lesson. I would encourage you to take a few moments to read what the Lord says through Isaiah prior to worship this Sunday.
 
The Apostle Paul also has something significant to say about knowing the Lord in a deeper way when he wrote to the believers in the Church at Colossae, “God has given me the responsibility of serving his church by proclaiming his entire message to you. This message was kept secret for centuries and generations past, but now it has been revealed to God’s people.” (Colossians 1:25-26)
 
The Lord does not want us to look at Him or think of Him as Someone who cannot be known - who is mysterious. He invites us, Isaiah 55:6, to know Him as He wants to be known.
 
I look forward to seeing you Sunday as we explore the phrase, “God moves in mysterious ways,” and as we seek to understand and know the Lord better.
 
You are truly loved in the Lord,
 
Pastor Terry

 

Saturday
Jun102017

This Sunday at Bristol . . . "Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide"

“Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide” is the special phrase we will consider as we continue with the current teaching series, “Is That in the Bible?”

Your conscience is to your soul what your nerves are to your body. Your conscience is like a light telling you what you are contemplating doing is either right or wrong (based on past experience). Just as a compass points to magnetic north, we are born with a moral conscience that points to right and wrong.

So as followers of Jesus, to stay on the right path, we must be constantly and continually recalibrating our conscience to the Bible.

The conscience is a fascinating subject and one we will more fully develop in the lesson tomorrow.

I look forward to seeing you tomorrow as we worship, learn, and grow together.

Never forget that you are truly loved in the Lord.

Pastor Terry