from the pastor’s pen

WOMEN

Rev. A. E. Garner

Five British women had reached the South Pole after previously conquering the North Pole in 1997. They told how they feared for their lives when an ice-quake seemed to pull the ground from under them, threatening to plunge them  I into the chasm. found from under them into the chasm. The women have now completed their 695 mile trek. It was hard work. They suffered from blisters, and weight loss. They battled freezing winds, while they hauled their food and equipment on sledges twice their weight. hey said that at times they were actually aware of their mortality, yet despite the hazards and temperatures of minus 29 degrees, they never thought of turning back.

One of them was the mother of 5 year old triplets. Prince Charles said he was very proud of them and hoped to meet them when they returned home.

Many women of Bible fame are commended for their love, faith and courage. It was women no, while it was yet dark, walks to the tomb here Jesus was buried. It is to a woman that Jesus revealed Himself alive from the dead. Paul said, ”Help those women who laboured with me in the Gospel”. Of one woman he said, ”She was a mother to me!” It was a woman God inspired to begin this church. It is dedicated women that support his church’s ministry by their sacrifice and labour. Despite tiredness and hindrances they never think of turning back. I salute them. Prince Charles doesn’t know them, but the Prince of Life does, and when they have finished their task, He will say well done and welcome them home.

 

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from the pastor’s pen

Rev. A. E. Garner

WHAT IS STORED IN YOUR CELLAR?

Remember, remember, the 5th of November…  As a boy I was taught to recite this as we burned an effigy of Guy Fawkes on a huge bonfire inLiver­pool.

Guy Fawkes and his associates stored barrels of gunpowder in a cellar beneath the Houses of Parliament.  Their intention was to blow up the English Parliament, but their plot was discovered and a great explosion and tragedy was averted.

We all have a cellar where we store things – it is called The Heart.  Jesus said, “The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart – the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart.”  Ask your­self the question, “What am I storing up in my heart?  Is it the gunpowder of jealousy, bitter­ness or resentment?”  It is possible to have a smiling face and singing lips while harbouring a sour spirit.  Unless such things are discovered and cast out, it is inevitable that there will be an explosion that will hurt others and perhaps destroy a good relationship.

We must continually search the cellar of our hearts with God’s lamp of truth, and clear out all that we discover that would destroy fellow­ship.  Don’t be a Guy Fawkes, but store up good things.  Proverbs 2:1 says, “Store up my commands within you” – do this and you will be a ‘good guy’

from the pastor’s pen

Rev. A .E. Garner

ROOTS

Jesus walked up to a fig tree sprouting many leaves, but finding no fruit he cursed it and its roots withered and died. Recently, a man spoke of how he discovered that he had cancer of the bowels.   After an operation he was informed that some roots of the cancer remained and he only had six months to live.   He was ready to die but he believed that God could curse the cancer roots so he could live and serve the Lord – so he prayed.   The miracle happened and he is joyfully serving the Lord.

There are other kinds of roots that destroy people’s character and usefulness.   Isaiah calls them ” The serpent’s roots”.

There is the roof of bitterness (Hebrews 12 verse 5).   This springs from brooding continually on hurts that society has inflicted upon us, instead of letting the grace of God give us the victory.

There is the root of all kinds of evil (1 Timothy 6 verse 10).   In my youth a popular song was “money is the root of all evil”. But the Scripture teaches that it’s the LOVE of money that makes some wander from the faith and pierce themselves with many griefs.

Are you entering another year with roots that will drain you of spiritual vitality and rob you of the blessing of God?    They can wither and die but you must earnestly desire to be free of their corrupt influence.   Ask God, He is able and willing; and there will grow within you a nature that will produce good fruits that will bring God pleasure.

 

from the pastor’s pen

Rev. A. E. Garner

JUST A TOUCH

Ron was a bright English school boy and a cricket enthusiast. His hero was Roy Kilner, theYorkshirebatsman. One day Ron came home with his school report it proved to be very good. His father said, “Ron tomorrow I’ll take you to Leeds to watchYorkshireplay.” To Ron this was better than a trip around the world. “Wow,” said Ron, “I’ll see Roy Kilner batting.”

Once inside the enclosure Ron slipped from his seat and sat on the grass close to the Pavilion Gate. He waited and watched. Presently twoYorkshirebatmen came out,oneof them was Roy Kilner himself. He strode towards the pitch swinging a glove. A moment later Ron slipped back to the seat by his father who declared afterwards that he would never forget the look on his son’s face.

“Dad,” whispered the boy, “did you see it Dad? One of his gloves touched me.” Just a touch and Ron was left in awe.

We have a master whose touch has blessed more people than we can count. One momentous time in history Jesus walked among men and His touch filled them with awe. He touched lepers – the blind – the deaf and dumb – they brought children to Him that he might touch them, all were healed and blessed. What a touch. He is still touching people today. We sing ‘He touched me, He touched me, and oh what joy that tilted my soul, something happened and now I know, He touched me and made me whole.’ Have you asked Him to touch you recently? Like Ron you may be left awe struck. As cricket loving Ron excitedly waited and watched for his hero to come, so let us who believe wait and watch for our Master and Hero to come.

We’ll receive more than a touch of his glove – He will take these dying bodies of ours and change them into glorious bodies like His own, using the same mighty power that He will use to conquer all else everywhere. What a master – what a hero – what a touch. 

from the pastor’s pen

Rev. A. E. Garner

JUMPING FOR JOY

Jumping for joy, at 29,000 feet on Mount Everest, Rebecca Stephens, aged 31, shouted, “I’m on top of the world.” She had fulfilled a childhood dream to become the first British woman to conquer the world’s highest mountain and had secured a place in history.   She was determined to reach her goal even though temperatures plunged to -36°C.  Lord Hunt, leader of the first expedition to climb Everest said, “It is a tremendous achievement, particularly as she had so little experience.    She has shown great courage.”    The Prime Minister, in his tribute, said, “It is a remarkable achievement. It’s staggering, she’ll get a very warm welcome when she comes home.” Rebecca’s mother declared, “I know she did this for her father, she loved him very much.”    What can we learn from this?

Firstly, she had a dream. We need the same spirit of adventure and enthusiasm to achieve things for our God. Caleb, the Bible character, although ageing, cried, “Give me this mountain.” Don’t be satisfied with drifting with the crowd, God is looking for people with the desire to accomplish something.   You must rise to the challenge of the hour.

Secondly, she had determination. She refused to give up, although faced with difficulties.   There are too many drop-outs among Christians.   Don’t be put off by the hardness of the way. In these days the need is for people with spiritual backbones. Will you be one?

Thirdly, she had a sense of destiny.   We all have a destiny to fulfil. God has a purpose for your life. You are no longer aimless. Even though you may only have a little experience you can achieve something.

Rebecca Stephens did it out of love for her father.   Love for our Heavenly Father is the motive that will spur us to conquer. We too can receive a very warm welcome when we arrive home.

 

 

 

 

from the pastor’s pen

Rev. A. E. Garner

SINGING SAINTS

Martin Luther said; “The Devil dreads a singing Christian.”

 

Singing should be part of us. A campaign called ‘GetAmerica Singing again’ published 42 songs they believe Americans must continue singing. The Group President said, “We have a whole generation that has grown up without singing songs that are part of what we are.” 

Singing should bless people. The words should be easily understood and the sound pleasant to the ear. My daughter Carol recently went to a concert inFrance – it was so loud her head buzzed and she was visibly sick. The music may have pleased the players but it didn’t bless, so it was unprofitable.

 

Singing should be anointed. You don’t play or sing to impress but to express. Music has power. I’ve seen people weep – clap -dance when neither musicians or singers followed Jesus. If musicians and singers re-kindle the flame of Godly devotion in us and remind us of God’s faithfulness, it’s anointed by God. 

Singing should complement God’s word. In the beginning was the Word, so starts the Gospel of John. Some say the Welsh revival petered out because the Word of God was neglected, while singing had the pre-eminence – we need both.

Thank God for musicians and singers – let’s pray for them continually. If the Devil dreads a singing Christian, you must be one – never let anything rob you of your song.

 

From the Pastor’s Pen

Rev. A. E. Garner

A DAY TO REMEMBER

April the 14th 1950 was the most traumatic day of my life – this year it falls on Easter Saturday. God willing I shall  in that great city ofBelfast, preaching the Word of God. I shall take great delight in telling them that £0 years ago in the city ofLiverpool, Jesus Christ changed my life.

From the age of four when I ran away, I recognised a rebellious streak in me. At the age of five I was stealing and swearing, full of mischief. I would watch the Orange Lodge parades wondering who was King Billy!

Good Friday found me up at 6 a.m. shouting Judas and helping to light the bonfire that burnt the effigy of that character – but who was he? Aged eighteen I was in the army – my life consisted of stealing – swearing – clubs -dancing – cinemas and excitement of any kind.

I often felt guilty and tried to change – but always failed. On Good Friday 1950, a voice that seemed to come from within said “Get out of bed and go to CalvaryChurch”. I did, much to my families astonishment.

Easter Sunday constrained by the same voice I went to hear the same Australian Evangelist, John Ridley. He preached on the words of Jesus “Follow thou me”. I was greatly stirred. On April 14th I was sitting in a large hall listening to Scottish Evangelist Fred Elliot. I realised that the only person who could change my life was Jesus Christ. I called out to Him and it happened – I was born again. What a night – what a change – what a future awaited me. I sincerely thank God for the 14th of April and for forty glorious years of walking and working with the King of the Universe.

 

From the Pastor’s Pen

Rev. A. E. Garner

EASTER EGG

One spring afternoon near Easter, the teacher gave each of her class a large empty plastic egg then sent them outside to find signs of life and put them inside the egg. Soon they returned. In one egg was a butterfly; in another an ant; others contained flowers and creepy crawlies. One egg had nothing in it. Everyone knew whose it was. It belonged to a boy was a little mentally retarded. Some of the children laughed at him. The teacher asked him why wh haven’t put any signs of life in his egg. He said quietly. “Because the tomb was empty”.

Death was in the tomb, not life. The boy was right. Jesus rose from the dead, a miracle far more wonderful than the return of life in the spring. The good news is not that Jesus lived and then died, but that He died and lived. Listen to his triumphant works, “I am He that lives – I once was dead, but now I am alive forever more.”

The resurrection makes Christianity unique. To say that all religions are equal, is nonsense. Jesus is the only religious leader who has conquered death and proved by appearing alive after 40 days.

The resurrection proves Jesus is the Son of God. It didn’t make him the Son of God, but marked Him the out as the Son of God..

The resurrection makes your faith in Scripture justifiable. Hundreds of years before Jesus came, the Scriptures, said he would die and rise again. All the promises of Scripture are reliable and can be believe..

The Scripture promise forgiveness to all will come to God through Jesus Christ..

The Scripture promise resurrection to all, who will believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. Believing God’s record in the Bible delivers you from the fear of death; fills you with confidence to face the future:; fans the flame that may have become a flicker and will revive you, making your life blossom like the returning life in spring. Believe it.

From the Pastor’s Pen

Rev. A. E. Garner

God Creation

David Watson, a Religious Education teacher, was sacked because he refused to teach evolution.   He wrote the following words. “Children’s souls may perish,

Vandals rise and wane,

But our RE status constant will remain.

No such place as heaven,

No such place as hell,

We have Darwin’s Theory

And that must prevail.”

Well done, David, we need more like you!

Did man rise from the slime or was he created by God?   Did the universe emerge from a big bang?   The earth rotates on its axis at 1,000 mph at the equator; if it turned at only 100 mph our days and nights would be 10 times as long – the sun would scorch up our vegetation, while through the long night anything surviving would freeze.   The sun has a surface temperature of 10,000° F and we are just far enough away to enjoy the correct warmth.   If it only gave off half its radiation we would freeze, and if it gave off half as much again we would roast.

The slant of our planet is 23° and gives us our seasons. Without this tilt vapours from the oceans would move north and south, piling up continents of ice; and if the moon was only 50,000 miles from earth instead of 240,000, our tides would be so enormous that twice a day all the land would be submerged.

If the earth’s crust had been 10 feet thicker there would be no oxygen, and if the ocean had been deeper carbon dioxide and oxygen would have been absorbed and no vegetable life could have existed.   There is not one chance in billions that life on this planet is an accident.   Genesis Chapter 1 is the logical answer, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”. A little girl said to a proud, unbelieving man, “When I get to heaven I’ll ask Jonah what it was like to be in the belly of the large fish.”   The man replied, “But what if Jonah isn’t in heaven?”   “Oh”, she said, “then you can ask him.”  

Well done, we need more like you.

Only believe.   Without faith it’s impossible to please God.

From a Pastor’s Pen

Rev. A. E. Garner

ALARMED OR AT PEACE?

In the book of Revelation there is an angel who has the seal of the living God in his hand. He calls out in a loud voice to those who had been given power to harm the land and sea, “Do not harm anything until we put a seal on the foreheads of the servants of God.” Later when the sun and moon were darkened by smoke and demonic creatures – headed by Apollyon (the destroyer) were given power to sting and torment people until they longed for death, but it eluded them. It is important to note that they were only given permission to torment those who didn’t have the seal of God on the foreheads. Those with the seal were protected – this calls for a Hallelujah.

There Is a fearful future waiting for this world’s inhabitants who know not God and obey not the gospel of the Lord Jesus.

As I write fear grips America and multitude everywhere. Jesus spoke of these days saying, “On the earth nations will be in anguish and perplexity – men will faint from fear, and apprehensive of what is coming.” He told His followers not to be alarmed for such things as famines – earthquakes -fearful sights – wars – increased wickedness – great distress unequalled from the beginning of the world must come.

We who believe have the seal of God upon us. Ephesians 1 says that having believed you were marked with a seal – the promised Holy Spirit. This calls for another Hallelujah. Jesus said, “If you keep my word and don’t deny my Name but endure patiently I will keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come upon the whole world to test those who live on the earth.” You are kept by the power of God through faith, so don’t be alarmed – anxious -fearful but rejoice that your redemption is nearer than you think – now that calls for another HALLELUJAH – shout it now.

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