Peggs Community Church

Morning services for Aug. 11 opened in prayer led by Brother Doug Maag, with 75 in attendance. The devotional was Psalm 25, and the first song was "Jesus Loves Even Me."

Happy birthday this week to Melody Setters and Charlene Lyons. Get well prayers are sent up for Bud Moss. Our love, sympathy, and prayers for God's peace to Colleen Milliron on the recent loss of a brother.

This Wednesday, Aug. 14, is our monthly food pantry distribution. Aug. 15 is the senior lunch, and Friday, Aug. 16, is the back-to-school movie and lock-in. We're planning a work day outdoors on Sept. 7, in order to straighten up the back yard from the storm damage earlier, as well as the repairs. All this is to "dress up" for our annual outdoor singing and dinner on the ground, which will be Friday, Sept. 13. I believe mention was made of Cornerstone joining us again for the first time in several years.

Brother Rex took his reading this morning from Isaiah 53:1-12, as well as related Scriptures with the expressed reminder of the importance of salvation vs. an eternity in hell. Where we spend eternity is at our discretion and no light decision should be made thereto. Christ taught about hell as much, if not more, than salvation. You can find nine separate accounts in just the book of Matthew. One thing we all need to know and remember is that there is no "little sin" or "big sin"; it's just sin. To get rid of that sin is to put it under the blood of repentance in order for it to be forgiven. If you don't, come judgment day, that "itsy little sin" will be a huge blot in your book of life and will send you to hell. It will be way too late then to receive forgiveness.

Just in case you care to look up Jesus' teachings on hell or salvation, you might start with Matthew and the other Gospels. The apostle Paul teaches no salvation without repentance, no heaven without forgiveness.

The prophet Ezekiel spoke eloquently in chapter 18 on the matter, as does Psalm 22. Second Peter 3:1-13 talks of how the earth will be destroyed in the end days, and Revelation 20:10-15 speaks of the "great white throne judgment" wherein you learn of your eternal destination from God the Father.

It bears repeating: the choice of where you spend eternity is no light matter or decision. You should weigh the consequences in your mind and heart closely. The Christian walk is not an easy path, but it is the only way to heaven.

Since this is August, and hot, hot, hot, please take care of yourselves, your pets, kids, and check in on elderly kin or neighbors from time to time. You might be the one that needs checking on some day.

Kay Cordray

God's Mountain Church

Rev. Carl Clark opened service with prayer. Kristi Ward and Nicolas Clark sang "The Lion and the Lamb " and "Come as You Are."

Classes adjourned with Sandra Clark teaching the juniors, and Dustin and Kristi Ward the teens. Jamie Horney was in charge of the nursery today.

Nicolas Clark taught the adult class on "a Christian atheist." There are many out there who claim to know God, but by their actions, they deny him. Many have a head knowledge but don't have a heart relationship with God. A true knowledge and relationship will transform the way you live.

Not everyone that says "Lord, Lord" will enter the kingdom of God. David was a man after God's own heart. He was like a deer that panteth after the water. God's children has a hunger and thirst after righteousness.

Classes returned to the sanctuary. Special prayer requests were taken followed with prayer. The booster band sang "Confidence," "Put on the Whole Armor of God" and "Who Did Swallow Jonah?"

Nicolas Clark and Kristi Ward opened worship service with "Great Are You, Lord." Pastor Carl Clark was led by the Holy Ghost to share a message from the late Rev. David Wilkerson. It was on the apostasy of the church age.

We are living in the a lukewarm church age. The spirit of Antichrist is upon the world - the time of pleasure seekers. Men are lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God. We are to come out from among the world and be a separated people if we want God to receive us.

Service closed with an altar call and we praise God for another soul added to the fold. Sister Donna Miller dismissed the service in prayer. Attendance was 73.

Wednesday evening Bible study is at 7 p.m., and everyone is welcome.

Lula Thompson

Barber Baptist

"When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also" (2 Timothy 1:5).

Guest preacher John Rozell brought the morning message about a very fundamental prayer. After Jesus was baptized, tempted in the wilderness, and began his ministry, he taught his disciples how to pray.

"And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are; for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, 'They have their reward.' But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do; for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Be not ye therefore like unto them; for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of before ye ask him. After this manner therefore pray ye" (Matthew 6:5-9a). We pray to the Father's person, in his place, and acknowledge his preeminence.

"Our Father which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name" (Mathew 6:9b).

If we are Christians, we have a relationship with him. Read Romans 8:12-17.

We pray for his will.

Verse 10: "Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven."

His will is for us. His will is perfect. See Romans 12:1-2.

We pray for his provision, both physical and spiritual. We pray and are thankful for his pardon.

Verses 11-12: "Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debters."

Let us always be thankful for his forgiveness. Remember to always be ready to forgive, for you have been and are continually forgiven.

We pray for his pathway, his protection and for the position we have in him forever.

Verse13: "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."

Pray always for opportunities to share the gospel with those around you. Keep praying for the children that were saved at church camp; that they may have a desire to grow in the knowledge of God's will in their lives. Remember to pray for our Pastor Search Committee as we continue to seek God's will in the man that he chooses for Barber Baptist Church. Pray often for our country, our schools, our communities, our churches and our children. Pray fervently for each other.

Marta Vann

First Apostolic

The glorious presence of the Lord was felt in our midst as services opened with prayer and songs of praise for Sunday morning, Aug. 11. "Antioch - The Missionary Church" was taken from Mark 16:15, Acts 11:19-21, 26; 13:1-4, and Acts 14:25-27. Following the stoning of Stephen, the church at Jerusalem scattered, with some going as far as 300 miles to Antioch. Upon their arrival, the saints began to teach and preach Jesus. They brought their experience of salvation: the infilling of the Holy Ghost following baptism in Jesus' name and their love of God with them.

However, at this time, they were not aware that salvation was to the Gentiles, as well as the Jews. The saints at Antioch sent for Silas who told them of God's plan for every person, Jew or Gentile, to be saved. Silas left, returning with Paul, and together, they stayed for one year, teaching the church.

It is imperative that the church be established in doctrine, taught the Word of God by capable men who are in sincere service to the Lord. The Lord organized the church, appointing some apostles, some prophets, some teachers, pastors, and evangelists, as he saw fit.

Without organization, there is no strength nor consistency of what is taught. At Antioch, the church was so blessed of God that every saint had a desire to do something in the work of the Lord.

No one person can claim responsibility for a soul won to the Lord. It is by a unified effort as one sows, one waters, but God gives the increase.

The saints were first called Christians, meaning Christlike, at Antioch. The people of Antioch saw the action of love one to another, the zeal of the saints in their service to God, and their concern for everyone that they met. The people of Antioch knew that the saints possessed something greater within that caused them outwardly to display mercy, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering, and, above all these things, they had charity, or love, which is the bond of perfectness.

They had died out to the old man within when they were born again of the water and of the Spirit. More than modest dress did the actions and lives of the saints speak to the world of a Savior.

Feel welcome to visit any time: Wednesday at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. The church is two miles south of Speedy's on Welling Road. For information, call 918-457-9498 or 918-401-0368. Also, visit our website at facwelling.org.

Nancy Walker

CCF

Welcome to Community Christian Fellowship, a nondenominational, Bible-preaching and teaching church of God.

The church is on State Highway 82 South at Keys. Prayer service is tonight at 6 p.m. and, as always, come as you are. Regular services are: Sunday school, 10 a.m.; worship service, 11 a.m.; and Wednesday and Sunday night services, 6 p.m.

If you would like information or to contact the church, send your emails to Msjennyhsb@yahoo.com. All letters will be answered.

"And he said to them all, 'If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me'" (Luke 9:23).

Food for thought: When Jesus said to "follow me," he also said that there would be a cross to bear involved. In modern day Christianity, we have a "one-sided" view of what it means to "follow" Jesus.

We want to follow him for the blessings and what he can do for us, like the multitudes that followed him did while he was here on earth. "And whithersoever he entered, into villages, or cities, or country, they laid the sick in the streets, and besought him that they might touch if it were but the border of his garment; and as many as touched him were made whole" (Mark 6:56).

We want to follow him in the works and we want to do the same works he did, the miracles, heal the sick, teach, preach, and minister. We also want to follow his power and we want to follow in the glory. We want to be used in the gifts of the Spirit, and this seems to be our whole focus and desire when it comes to following him. But there is more to following Jesus than what we consider the "glamorous" side of ministry. This is only one side of following him.

There was a reason why Jesus said those who would follow him would also bear a cross; there is no gospel without the cross and there can be no discipleship without the cross. Jesus bore a cross and we will too.

So, what does it mean to "follow him?" It means to follow him down the same path he walked. We are to follow him on the path of obedience, suffering, and the path of sacrifice and self-denial. It is a path that surrenders to the will of God, no matter what it cost us.

"My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will" (Matthew 26:39).

Following him means that we will suffer pain, rejection and sorrow, and eventually it will mean death; death to self, such as self-will, self-desire, self-ambition, and self-love.

When you say you are a follower of Jesus, what do you mean? Do you mean that you are following his blessings, his power, his glory, and his works, or are you following him to the cross, as well?

Jenny Dameron

Tahlequah First Baptist

In a lady's workplace, there was a co-worker who would sometimes bring food or games for the rest of her office workers to try in exchange for spreading the word about the product and posting pictures of everyone trying them.

One day, she brought veggie burgers. The lady had never tried a veggie burger but thought to herself, I'm not going to pass up a free lunch. Several people showed up in the break room to sample the burgers. They were a little nervous to actually eat a veggie burger, so she decided to go first. She had low expectations about how it would taste, but kept an open mind about it.

She took a taste. It wasn't bad. In fact, it tasted pretty good and she said she would eat it again. She thought about her husband trying a veggie burger and laughed to herself. She thought, "there's no way he would like this." He is definitely a fan of a good burger and, although the veggie burger was very tasty, it didn't taste like a beef burger. It had its own unique flavor. It would have been hard to serve him a burger that looked like a beef burger then tell him that it won't taste like a burger. Disappointment would inevitably happen.

She started thinking about people and asked herself, "Isn't that the way we are most of the time?" We have specific expectations about things from movie reviews and what we have heard about them, restaurants, and products.

When there is a lot of hype about something, we set our expectations very high and sometimes when we try those things, we are disappointed. It is a let-down because we have our expectations set so high.

It is like that in our spiritual life and our relationship with Christ. Like when we don't feel anything when we worship or feel like God doesn't answer our prayers. He did that in the Bible, didn't he?

We are all created unique and in the image of God, and we all have different parts to play in the body of Christ. We should never let our expectations get us down or rob of us of our joy while we are here on this earth. Live in the present and be thankful. All of your experiences and your role in the church are unique and shouldn't be compared to anyone else's.

Come join us for Praise, Prayer & Worship Wednesday nights at 6 p.m.

Terri Fite

Unitarian Universalist

The garden needed to be harvested. The weeds were so overgrown, and it was so hot and muggy outside, and there were so many critters and itchy things, but the garden needed to be harvested.

Someone had worked so hard to plant the seeds, water the plants, tie up stakes and strings so the plants could flourish. There were so many vitamin-filled, nourishing fruits and vegetables to be enjoyed.

If she didn't go out and pick them soon, or now, it would be such a waste. If she didn't go out to pick them, it would also become an insult, an "ingratitude" for all the love and time it took to bring that harvest to fruition, not just to the loving hands and heart that put in the work, but also to the sun, rain, and pollinators that are always working towards such bounty. So, she harvested, she processed, she continued through the stages of creating and making, and she saved, and she shared.

Someone has reached out to you, for help, for acknowledgement, for a need that needs fulfilled, for comfort, to check on you, to make or continue a connection, or even just to say hello. You have been contacted.

The seeds of connection are flourishing, and you really need to go out and harvest that bounty. It is a lot of work, harvesting, or responding, or keeping in touch. But it was also a lot of work to begin the process in the first place.

Don't let those efforts fall to the ground and wither. If the seeds have been planted and you have walked away, for whatever reasons, go back and look at what has grown. It is time to come out and harvest those feelings or that relationship, even if you just pick the fruits and preserve them, at least you have made the connection and have begun reciprocity. In time, you will be able to reap the benefits for yourself, and be able give back and share.

You may be taxed, busy, or overwhelmed. When someone reaches out to you, even though you may be exhausted, just tap back and let them know that you haven't given up on your garden.

UUCT is excited to welcome back our very own Rev. Monisha Alleck, as she guides us further into the harvest of Buddhist teachings and how they can further strengthen our paths. See you this Sunday, 11 a.m. for her enlightening service. Come early for our 10 a.m. adult forum discussion. Keep up and in touch with all the activities we host on Facebook at "Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Tahlequah, 104 N. College Ave."

May you be blessed, as you are truly a blessing

Traci Clark

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