bits from bob....
Dedicated to the Fort Gibson Family of God
by Robert J. Young
©, 2003, Robert J. Young
[permission is given to reprint with credit noted]
I awakened this morning long before the alarm clock sounded-- 4:10 a.m. No pains, no anxiety, no worry. Just awake, thinking of you, thinking of God, ruminating on spiritual things. I covet my early morning prayer time--although it's not usually quite so early.
This month my family and I are beginning a seventh year among you. Numerous thoughts overflow my soul.
- Gratitude. You have encouraged and allowed me to grow. I am grateful for the opportunity to preach for this church. I enjoy my involvement in your lives and the life of this community. I most of all enjoy being loved by you, loving you, and knowing we are all loved by God. I am grateful for you, I am most grateful for God's gracious presence among us to save, to strengthen, and to bind us together. You are indeed my great joy. I appreciate your encouragement in my academic pursuits and your deep love for our study of God's word.
- Leadership. This church is blessed with one of the strongest leadership teams anywhere. Our shepherds love this flock, are committed to Christ as the Head of this Body, and are determined to help every member grow up in Christ Jesus to the praise and the glory of God. My role among you allows me to share their private concerns and their intense love and concern for this church in a way most of you will never witness.
Our deacons are men growing in the Spirit and committed to service. Their concerns are as much spiritual as physical; your spiritual welfare is in their hearts as they facilitate God's work in and from this place. Praise God, for he has raised these men among us for these works, and he continues to work among us.
- Allegiance. That this church is of Christ is apparent in your unconditional loyalty and devotion to Jesus as Lord, submission to the authority of the biblical text, and desire to follow the divine will. This church is committed to right thinking and right living. Neither by itself can adequately reflect loyalty to our Lord. As we share the gospel, we recognize the necessity of sharing Christ's love and grace.
- Anticipation. The future of this church thrills and chills me. God has opened doors in missions and evangelism. Our life together, ministry in this community, and opportunities to reach out and touch lives are astounding. How thrilling! I chill however to recognize that Satan's power in this world, allowed to diminish our self-perceptions and undermining our firm trust in the Lord, could reverse God's great work among us.
Critics must not be allowed to deter us from binding together in Christ Jesus all the saved. Nor can we compromise God's grace and the saving power of Jesus. Regardless of the outcries of others (to whom we give no place even for a moment), we shall move ahead in spiritual worship, a growing unity within this spiritual body, nurturing the spiritual development of every Christian, and ministering and communicating Good News to the lost and hurting in our world by recognizing and addressing the everyday concerns of contemporary culture.
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Last updated November 5, 2003.