Carter Baptist

Happy birthday and God bless Linda Cowan, May God continue to bless Ken and Jerry Hall as they celebrate another year of marriage.

Pastor Matt Lawrence titled the morning message, “It’s Illegal to be Idle.”

Mathew 20:6: “And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle?”

There are known laws, yet we don’t always obey them, like the speed limit. Here is a householder or vineyard owner who needed additional help at harvest time. We are told by Jesus that we are to all be busy in his vineyard as the urgency increases and time is short.

The enemy, Satan, is subversive to God’s cause: Our defense is prayer and staying busy serving the Lord with other believers (Matthew 13:25-29). Satan works diligently to hinder the work of God.

2 Corinthians 4:4: “In whom the god of this world (Satan) hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.”

Satan wants to bring confusion to God’s purposes. When we are idle, we are more likely to snap at each other. We are told in the Bible, “Evil seducers will wax worse and worse. …” Since society is spiritually wicked we need to be diligently doing the Lord’s work.

Laboring for Jesus in VBS, Trunk or Treat, mission trips, church camps, prayer, and so much more is satisfying, joyful, and worth it as Christ is sufficient in us and for us. There is angelic supernatural rejoicing as the light of Jesus first shines in the heart of the hearer.

Acts 1:8: “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

God gives us courage to go and testify of him, like Paul, who boldly preached in the midst of a treacherous storm (Acts 27).

Matthew 28:19-20: “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”

Christ is our all in all; let’s get busy. Where is your life today? are you active? Are you idle or available to God?

There will be a Team Kids meeting for all who want to be involved this year.

Pray for our nation, our leaders and always for each other.

Marta Vann

First Apostolic

Services for Sunday morning, July 5, opened with prayer and songs of worship as the presence of the Lord was felt in our midst.

“Ananias – Sensitivity to the Spirit," was taken from Acts 9:10-18 and Romans 8:14. We must all be in tune with God – sensitive to his Spirit – as we walk with him. When God speaks to us, directing us to a specific situation or person, he is also dealing with that person or situation. In the many decisions we must make in this walk of life, we must be sensitive to the Spirit of God and his leading; for as many as are led by the Spirit of God will be called the sons of God.

Prayerfulness goes hand in hand with sensitivity to God as we keep our minds stayed on him. We have been given exceeding great and precious promises that we might be partakers of his divine nature. When we have repented, been baptized in Jesus’ name for the remission of sins, and received the Holy Ghost, we have received a new nature: the nature of God. We are new creatures in Christ Jesus; old things are passed away and all things are become new.

The Lord is not slack concerning his promises; one day is as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day to the Lord. He works on his own time schedule; he knows when to move in on a situation. We receive the mind of Christ when we receive a brand-new nature, causing us to be concerned about lost souls. Because Ananias had the mind of Christ, he knew what Saul, the persecutor of the church, needed when he went to him by the command of the Lord. Ananias knew Saul needed to repent, be baptized in Jesus’ name for the remission of sins and be filled with the Holy Ghost.

The Lord sometimes speaks to us in a dream or a vision, regarding a task he wants to take care of, but being human, we ponder it a bit. When the Lord spoke to Elijah, he was not in the strong wind, nor the earthquake, nor the fire – even though all three were might events – but he spoke in a still, small voice.

We need to know the voice of God, to try the spirits whether they be of God. We will hear many voices, for many spirits are gone out in the world; our own desires can deceive us if we fail to be sensitive to the will of God. The voice of our human nature is loud and can cause us much grief.

If Ananias had listened to his human nature, he would have faltered in his obedience to God and his plan. The weakness of our flesh can cause us to hesitate to obey God, but he will go through any task or trial with us; we are never alone. The voice that speaks to us will never be contrary to what is in the word of God and what we hear in the preaching of his word. God is not the author of confusion – everything harmonizes if it is of God.

Please feel welcome to visit any time: Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday 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

Cookson United Methodist

Rev. Rachel Parrott and the congregation invite you and your family to safely worship, social distance and pray with them each Sunday morning. The drive-in service begins at 8:30 and inside worship begins at 10, with required masks for everyone. Small groups socially distance and meet at 9:15.

The church is on the corner of State Highway 82 south and Cookson Bend Road, or 21685 W. Cookson Bend Road.

Scripture readings were Psalm 145: 8:-14,21, John 8:31-36 and Galatians 5:1, 13-26. A Special Independence Day prayer of gratitude was read by Pastor Rachel. Communion was served for the first time since COVID-19 outbreak began. Communion was shared by family groups coming forward, going left or right with Pastor handing the wafers to individuals. Disposable individual juice cups were used for each person.

For freedom, Christ has set you free. What is the freedom for which Christ has set you free? Christianity is about acknowledging that you need help. You need a Savior and a community of faith to walk with you in your journey of life. The Bible has a lot to say about freedom in Christ. In Galatians, Paul says freedom is a gift from God and a responsibility placed in your hands. What are you going to do with your freedom?

Freedom is a gift given to build up the community of faith. Gifts are meant to be used for others. Freedom is for the love of God, of the Christian community and love of neighbor. Freedom is to love and serve as Jesus shows you is God's intention for humankind. Freedom can be used for the wrong reasons such as dominating others. Paul explains the difference between self-centered living in the realm of the flesh and God-centered living in the dominion of the Spirit.

The ongoing battle that people fight is not a war of independence, but the battle against self. The Spirit invites you to first think of who and how you can serve. This is the battle between flesh and spirit. It is the self-centered life that leads to drudgery, isolation and brokenness. The fruits of the spirit in Galatians 5:22-23 is about building one another up, coming together and about relationships. This way of living is full of joy experienced in community and shared pleasures.

First love God, do what will please God. This is the freedom Paul celebrates. This is the freedom to celebrate Independence Day weekend. It is the freedom to care for others, to see all people as equals in the sight of the law and in the eyes of God. It is the freedom to serve not because you have to but because you get to. You have a love to put into action. You are free to acknowledge your interdependence and how your own personal good comes to you from many others, even as you contribute to the good of others. For freedom, Christ has set you free.

Cindy Ballew

Peggs Community Church

Hope everybody had a safe and enjoyable Fourth.

Our service for this Fifth of July opened in prayer led by Brother Loyd Eaton. The devotional was the 28th Psalm.

Happy birthday to Vesta Robbins. Our sympathy, love, and prayers to Solly Littledave and his family on the loss of a sister, and get-well prayers and wishes are sent out to Jess Cobb.

Food pantry was Wednesday, July 8 from 10:30 to noon; Bake sale Friday, July 10, beginning at 8 a.m.; youth's garage sale, July 10-11 On Friday, it will be open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and on Saturday, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Kayley Helton's baby shower will be held July 21 at 6:30 p.m. She and her husband, Jason, are expecting a baby girl. And it's official!

Our evening service on Sunday begins again at 6 p.m. July 12; Bible study Wednesday, July 15, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday school July 19 at 10 a.m. We'll still be making a few modifications for physical distancing and such, but we are finally going to get back to as much a normal schedule as we can.

Brother Mike took the pulpit this morning and began his reading with the 23rd Psalm, focusing on the first verse: "The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want." Going on into scripture in 1 John 4:15-21, Ezekiel 37:14-17, Genesis 49:8-10, Revelation 10:8-11, and Isaiah 31:1, Brother Mike led us on a journey through the Bible, expounding on why we should always allow the Lord to lead us and, and the "why nots" of not following. The worst "why not" of all is our eventual eternity in hell, forever regretting not accepting Christ as our savior when we had the chance.

There are plenty of other regrets of not following – for instance, internal turmoil and confusion on how to conduct our lives and the way we treat others; sadness at our failures in relationships, business, and the like. God doesn't promise us an easy road, just a straight one that leads to our eternity in heaven with him. He offers a way of safety, personal peace, and the surety that he will always protect us as long as we believe, follow, accept, and stand fast in our faith. Brother Mike calls it our "Ph.D.," Past Having Doubts, about Christ and salvation.

One other small piece of "think about it": If you aren't hearing the voice of God in your spirit, sit down and be quiet for a while. He speaks in a still, small voice to those who will listen for it.

Kay Cordray

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