This Week at Bristol - "A Brother with a Genuine Concern"

This Sunday we begin a new and exciting series titled, “WON by ONE.” This will be a five week study addressing the important subject of personal evangelism.
Jesus made it clear (Matthew 28:19) that we are the conduits through which He will flow to accomplish His work of redeeming the world. Now, if it were me, I would send a few angels to go throughout the world and within minutes everyone would have heard the Gospel once. But, that is not God’s method. He chooses you and me as His missionaries.
Gypsy Smith was a man used of God to bring many others to Jesus. His ministry was all about inviting others to meet the Lord.
The story is told that one time after Smith preached a young boy gave his life to Christ. The next night the lad was in the prayer room again and the evangelist saw him and said, “I thought you gave your life to Christ last evening?” The young boy responded, “O I did, but tonight I brought my mother to meet Jesus.” The next night the same scene repeated itself only this time he brought his grandfather to the Lord. Two generations had come to Christ because this lad became a personal worker for Jesus.
That reminds me of our story for this Sunday. We will examine John 1:35-42 and see a brother bringing his brother to the Lord. This is the first individual of the five characters we will study over the next several weeks who were busy introducing others to the Lord. There are great lessons we can learn from Andrew this Sunday and others in subsequent weeks about this important work of sharing the Gospel.
I hope you will join me and others as we begin this fantastic journey of learning the art of bridge-building.
You are greatly loved.
Pastor Terry



This Week at Bristol - "Why Worship Matters"

Psalm 96, our text for this Sunday morning, is another version of 1 Chronicles 16. In this Psalm we are reminded why it matters that we worship. This lesson is the final installment in the series, “Living in the Sunshine.”
In both Hebrew and Greek, there are two significant words for worship. The first word means to bow down, to kneel, or to put one’s face down as an act of respect and submission. Our body language is saying, “I will do whatever you want. I am ready to listen to your instructions and I am willing to obey.” The other biblical word means to serve.
Roughly half the time these words are translated as worship, and the other half as serve, but they go together. If we are truly worshipping the Lord, we will have a desire for others to know Him as well. To serve carries the idea of doing something for God - making a sacrifice or carrying out his instructions.
Of course, word meanings don’t prove what worship is, but they do illustrate three kinds of worship:
  • Worship that involves speaking.
  • Worship that involves listening.
  • Worship that involves doing.
Worship has an end result. Worship should not just satisfy us as we exalt the Lord, but should include introducing others also to this magnificent Lord. Psalm 96 concludes with worship that is focused on the future.
When we truly worship, we understand what it means to be “Living in the Sunshine” and the end result is that we experience the kind of full and satisfying life Jesus mentioned in John 10:10.
I hope to see you this Sunday as we worship the Lord “in the beauty of His holiness.”
You are loved!
Pastor Terry

This Week at Bristol - "The Law of Giving"

This Sunday we continue with the fourth lesson in this five week teaching series titled, “Living in the Sunshine.” The objective of these messages: “We need to learn how to live the Christian life in the most fulfilling and satisfying way so that the end result is John 10:10.” That is what Jesus said! Check it out.
Just as there are irrefutable laws of nature, such as: The Law of Polarity, or the Law of Relativity, or the Law of Vibration, so there are irrefutable spiritual laws. Jesus gives us four in Luke 6:37-38. He quickly mentions the laws of judging, condemning, forgiving, and then the law of giving (these four laws are connected).
This Sunday morning we will concentrate on the fourth law. Jesus does not expand on the first three, but He does on the fourth.
Within these four laws, there is what is called “reciprocity.” It is expressed with the phrase, “You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours.” Or, someone sends you a Christmas card, you feel you must oblige by sending them one.
Reciprocity means, you do something for me, and I will do something for you. Reciprocity works this way: When we do something good, we receive good or we do something bad, something bad will follow.
Within the confines of these verses reciprocity means that if we judge, we will be judged. If we extend condemnation, it will come back to us. If we forgive, we will be forgiven, and if we learn to give, we will blessed.
What is the result of following the Law of Giving? Simply this, We discover what it means to have an abundant life! That is real reciprocity!
I hope to see you Sunday. The weather and sickness have been very uncooperative and many of you have had to miss multiple services this year. This Sunday the weather is supposed to be more “friendly” and hopefully that means you will be able to join us again.
You are loved,
Pastor Terry



This Week at Bristol - "God Will Make a Way"

Is anything too hard for the Lord? That is not a rhetorical question because too many people, even within the church, do not believe or are not sure that God is capable of anything. 

We have a Bible full of examples and stories about the might and power of God. If there is any question, then one should read some of those stories.

Ask that question - “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” - to Noah and he will tell you that God is capable of bringing together animals from everywhere in preparation for the flood, and then He caused the earth to open and sent rain from heaven. GOD IS ABLE!

Ask that question to Moses - “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” - and he will tell you how the Lord brought the Children of Israel out of Egypt, opened the Red Sea from them to cross over, and fed them every day until they reached the Promised Land. GOD IS ABLE!

Ask that question to Joshua - “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” - and he will tell you how the Lord opened the Jordan River for the people to cross over into the Promised Land and then showed His power with the defeat of Jericho. GOD IS ABLE!

Ask that question to the disciples of Jesus - “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” - and they will tell you how the Lord fed thousands with a very few fish and loaves of bread. They will also tell you how He raised Lazarus from the dead. GOD IS ABLE!

Ask that question to Zaccheus - “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” - and he will tell you how he, a tax collector and cheat became a man of integrity and honesty, because Jesus stopped by. GOD IS ABLE!

There is not room to remind you of Daniel, David, Peter, Samuel, Paul and many others. Each found the Lord to be more than able to keep His promises and do the impossible. GOD IS ABLE!

This Sunday we will look at a few verses from Romans as we examine the life of Abraham. Oh, by the way, he found the Lord to also be faithful in the giving of a promised son even though he and his wife were many years beyond the ability to have children. Yes indeed, GOD IS ABLE!

In fact, there is nothing too hard for God - GOD IS MORE THAN ABLE!

I hope to see you this Sunday (barring another snow storm) and we will have the privilege of learning and growing together.

You are loved!

Pastor Terry


This Week at Bristol - "Yes I Can Live to Win"

Almost eighty years ago a new philosophy or way of life became popular and still carries some of its popularity today. It is called Positive Mental Attitude, or PMA. PMA was first developed and introduced in 1937 by Napoleon Hill in the book, Think and Grow Rich. The book never actually uses the term, but developed the importance of positive thinking as a principle to success.
The shortened version of PMA teaches that you CAN if you really want to. In other words, within most people there is the capacity to accomplish more and live successfully because you think you can. There is a certain amount of truth to PMA. There have been many people who have succeeded in life because they believed they could. And because they believed they could, they tried harder, and hard work has its advantages.
BUT there is more to successful living than just trying harder. The apostle Paul taught the Church at Philippi that life is made up of hard work AND trust in the Lord. Read Philippians 4:13 where he writes, "I can do everything through Him who gives me strength." (NIV)
PMA says that if you try harder, whatever you want can happen. "If I can dream it, I can do it." PMA has you look yourself in the mirror everyday and say, "Every day and in every way I'm getting better."
But PMA has its limits and is a long way from Philippians 4:13. Please tell me how far you think PMA will take you when you receive the "pink" slip from your employer. Tell me how you go on when your spouse leaves you, or your son gets a young girl pregnant. Where do you find real hope when life crumbles about you? PMA will be no help to you because PMA has its limitations. It takes more than positive thinking to get you through the rough times in your life - it takes having Jesus inside you. That is what Paul is saying to the Church at Philippi.
This Sunday we will explore this important subject, "Yes I Can Live to Win,” as we continue with the current teaching series, "Living in the Sunshine." This brief series is about offering hope to everyone so that each person can live the dream of John 10:10. We can live life “abundantly" as Jesus says.
I hope you will join me this Sunday. It is going to be a great time as we gather together to learn from the Lord. Bring a friend because I am sure they too need to be encouraged from God's Word so that they can live a life of joy.
You are loved.
Pastor Terry