Cookson United Methodist

Last Sunday, the congregation was blessed in two services – 8:30 and 10 a.m. – with guest Minister Kim Hutson bringing the message. Cookson United Methodist Church is on the corner of STate Highway 82 south and Cookson Bend Road. The address is 21685 W. Cookson Bend Road.

Kim's Scripture readings were Psalm 123, Exodus 3:1-12 and Matthew 25:14-30. He began his message with baptized Methodists promising to uphold the church with their prayers, their presence, gifts, service and witness. These are easy-to-make excuses because of what that person does not have.

Moses used excuses to God in Exodus. In essence, God was telling Moses he was not interested in what Moses did not have, but what he did have. Reach out your hand and certainly he will be with you.

As a Christian, the challenge is: "Be all that God meant you to be!" The call of Moses and the parable of the talents in Matthew tells us that God calls you to be a co-worker for the unfolding of history. God will provide. He will be with you. Trust in God.

The word "talent" has come to mean abilities and special gifts as you serve God. Every person must ask, "What did Jesus mean by the talent?" Everything a person has and what you are comprise the talents that God has entrusted to you. This includes your abilities, your material and financial resources, your relationships with loved ones and friends, the gift of God's salvation and redemption in Jesus Christ, your very life.

The kingdom of God is so great because people's souls are at stake. How often are people like the one-talent man? Don't cling to the status quo or the usual routine. No Christian is one-talented; everyone is multitalented. You can pray, be present at church, invite others to come, share your faith, gifts and serve. Realize the potential of your life. It is important to do in relation to what you have been give. What image of God do you have that guides your behavior?

The master in this parable is Christ, and as a Christian, you are those to whom he has entrusted his substance. Jesus invested his love in those whose lives were out of control. He scattered the seed of the Gospel. And the cross, the joy of wagering their lives for the redemption of the world. God says to them, "Well done, good and faithful servant."

Find out how you can use your resources and time for God. What is the special thing you can do that nobody else in the world can do in quite the same way?

Cindy Ballew

Carter Baptist

Happy birthday and God bless, Robert Davis and Ron Vann.

Pastor Matt Lawrence titled the morning message, “What Way Are You Looking?” from Psalm 73.

The eyes are a wonderful gift from God; by them, we behold his creation. David wrote about seeing a sinful world or a sovereign Lord. Are we looking in the right way?

David first wrote about God, then himself, the world, and then God.

Verse 3: “For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked." Prosperity is not necessarily evil unless it becomes consuming.

Verse 4: “For there are no bands in their death: but their strength is firm.” There is nothing to drag them down, so they remain strong.

Verse 5: "They are not in trouble as other men; neither are they plagued like other men.” The world is plagued as Christians arise to turn against the tide of evil.

Verse 6: “Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covereth them as a garment.” The world is infatuated by itself; it is decorated by its own pride and violence.

Verse 11: “And they say, How doth God know? and is there knowledge in the most High?” This richly describes how Goliath was puffed up with pride.

1 Samuel 17:44: “And the Philistine said to David, come to me, and I will give thy flesh unto the fouls of the air, and the beasts of the field.”

Verse 10: “Therefore his people return hither: and waters of a full cup are wrung out to them.” It's an invitation to join at times sin entices. Anyone can be captivated.

Which way are you looking?

Verse 13: “Verily I have cleansed my heart in vain, and washed my hands in innocency.” David is overwhelmed; he feels small and useless so cleansing seems totally vain.

Verse 14: “For all the day long have I been plagued, and chastened every morning.” When we choose to sink into ourselves we can become depressed and full of despair as confusion sets in. Look instead to a sovereign Lord.

Verse 17: “Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then understood I their end.” He understood and found peace once he went into the Lord's house.

Verse 22: “So foolish was I, and ignorant: I was as a beast before thee.” Self-effort, or solo flying is not advised.

Verse 24: “Thou shalt guide me with Thy counsel, and afterward receive me in glory.” How wonderful to have that guidance in our life.

Verses 25-28, the conclusion, reminds us it is good to draw near to God. Help us worship reverently, read his word, gather with other Christians, pray, and remain sensitive to the precious Holy Spirit.

Marta Vann

CCF

Hello and welcome to Community Christian Fellowship, a nondemoninational, Bible-preaching, teaching Church of God. The church is on State Highway 82 South at Keys.

Prayer Services is tonight at 6 p.m., and as always, “Come as your are!” The Lord will be glad to see you, and we will, too!

Regular services are: Sunday school, 10 a.m.; worship service, 11 a.m.; youth church, 11 a.m.; Sunday night youth services, 5 p.m.; Wednesday prayer service, 6 p.m. Check to see who's home. If you need information or would like to contact the church, please send your emails to Msjennyhsb@yahoo.com. All letters will be answered.

The blood of the Lamb is described in Revelation 12:11, Do our churches need to be more seeker-friendly? Absolutely! Should we develop our gifts to a higher level, then offer them to God? Yes! But there are some things church attendance won't fix and talent can't do.

Only the blood of Jesus can lift you out of a family under the sentence of death, and place you in one that offers pardon, peace and purpose, not to mention a heavenly home.

Ever hear of "the wages of sin"? Every rebellious act goes on your account and those payments add up. You can roll them over, but eventually they have to be paid, right? Well, God recognizes only one currency: the blood of Jesus, or "the blood that maketh an atonement" (Leviticus 17:11). Atonement wipes out the debt, bridges the gap and makes you one with God. Furthermore, the blood of Jesus draws a line in the sand over which Satan dare not step.

"And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony" (Revelation 12:11).

Each time you testify to what the blood has done for you, Satan is silenced. Each time you say, "I plead the blood," he retreats; he must, as he has no other option. In Exodus, even the death angel had to back off once the blood was applied to the doorposts, and it's the same with you. Study the message of the blood. Learn to use its power and walk in victory every day.

Jenny Dameron

Tahlequah First Baptist

At the beginning of every New Year, we always pray the upcoming year will be a better one in every way: health, prosperity, growing as a person and becoming a better person, contributing to the world's being a better place and helping those less fortunate than ourselves.

None of us thought at the beginning of 2020 that we would be hit with a worldwide pandemic and with such proportion that it caused such illness and death around the world. 2020 has at some level wrecked all of our plans – not just yours, not just mine, but everybody’s, and will be a year that will be remembered for a very long time.

The virus is very real and has touched millions of lives. We’ve seen lockdowns, toilet paper shortages, takeout or curbside food (only) from restaurants, wearing masks in public and distancing from one another. People have been hit with financial and physical hardships. People have had to live with terrible tragedies. Most of us have only had to live with mild inconveniences, but we’ve all been affected.

We must keep a positive attitude as we come to the close of this very different year. It wasn’t all bad, and we need to reflect on the good things about 2020, even though it wrecked our plans and expectations for the year. It has forced us to become more creative and to find other ways to communicate, work, attend church and stay in touch with one another. It has opened up new ways to live and play that we never thought possible.

We became a more intentional society. We found new ways to connect and have made sure we intentionally keep up with each other. We have called our family members more often, participated in online chats with co-workers, and keep in close contact with our friends to check on their well-being – something we should all continue to do past 2020. We have become a lot more flexible.

With major changes in work, school, church, regular routines and finances, we have turned more to Jesus to get us through this time and to help us understand this season in our lives. When the certainties in our life our pulled out from under us, we are forced to lean on God in ways we may never have. We know he holds all of us and all things in the safety of his healing hands.

COVID-19 surprised all of us, but it didn’t surprise him. He knew this would happen and has a plan to use this time for ultimate good in our lives. We can grow from unpredictable times in our lives. The pressures we face from this pandemic won’t last forever, but the positive things that have come from it will, I pray.

Let’s take the good things we found during this time and carry it forward in our lives as a new normal. I pray we learn from it and grow from it and become more like Jesus. God has been with us through this whole time and he will carry us through it. Praise to the Lord God Almighty!

Sunday school is at 9:30 a.m., with worship at 10:45 a.m. Wednesday night Bible studies are at 6 p.m. On Sunday, Dec. 6, we celebrate Hanging of the Green at 10:45 a.m. Christmas Eve services, both candlelight, are at 4 and 6 p.m.

Terri Fite

First Apostolic

The sweet presence of the Lord was felt in our midst as services opened with prayer and songs of praise for Sunday morning, Nov. 8. “Humanism and Christianity" was taken from Romans 1:16, 20-28 and Acts 2:38.

The gospel of Christ is to everyone who believeth. The creation speaks of a Creator, so men everywhere are without excuse. Those who have rejected the Lord’s plan of salvation for mankind fail to glorify God as God. They instead become vain in their imaginations and their foolish hearts are darkened. They become fools, even as they profess themselves to be wise. They change the holy things of God into the unholy; knowing that they are lost, they take pleasure in causing others to be lost with them.

The saints of the most high God are in this world, but not of it; however, those worldly ungodly spirits wait for the opportunity to cause the saints to stumble. In the form of a religion, humanism exalts man as a god, teaching him that whatever he desires is permissible to do, with no consequences of sin. Though the world at one time knew God; it glorified him not as God and has become reprobate toward God. The evil in today’s world is the result of the selfish, pleasure-seeking mindset of humanism.

Let us never fail to give honor and praise to the Lord, nor allow ourselves to become unthankful, for the Lord gave his life for us on Calvary to provide salvation to whosoever will. If we fail to honor the Lord, we are in danger of our foolish hearts becoming darkened.

This world is full of unclean spirits, but we are to try the spirits to see whether they be of God. If they fail to agree with God and his Word, they are not of God, but are the enemy of our souls. They seek lodging in any susceptible soul. Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ is God manifest in flesh is of God. If not, it is of the spirit of antichrist, which has always been here.

To guard ourselves from this destructive force, we must stay where we need to be with the Lord, resisting the urge to do those things that are contrary to God. There is a Spirit of truth and a spirit of error. We must beware, lest any man spoil us through philosophy and vain deceit, or man’s reasoning, which is humanism. We cannot serve God and man. The preaching of the cross is to those who perish foolishness, but to us who are saved, it is the power of God. Like the Apostle Paul, we have nothing to glory in save the cross of Jesus Christ.

Please feel welcome to visit any time: Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. We are two miles south of Speedy’s on Welling Road. For information, please call 918-457-9498. Also, visit our website at facwellingok.org and listen to the services on livestream.

Nancy Walker

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