Dear Church Family,
How often do you stop to list all the things you have to be thankful for? Regardless if it has been recent, seldom, or never, I have an enjoyable assignment for you. Sit down, get a piece of paper, pull out your computer, IPad, Tablet, Smartphone or whatever you might use to write a list. Then get your thinkingcap on and start writing everything you can be thankful for. This may be easier for some than others. I admit I used to start out pretty slowly when I attempted to think of what I could list, but seldom thought about being, thankful for. If you struggle at first, let me assure you, it gets easier. Okay, do you have your list making tool(s)? No? Okay, I’ll wait a second more… don’t finish reading this letter first. Alright, now, ready, set, write!!
If you have followed the above assignment, you are going to be feeling pretty amazed by now. The next step, if you are able, is to get on your knees with your list and pour out your thanksgiving to the One who has given you all that is good. James 1:17. You may have done this spontaneously already as you wrote your list. Happy Thanksgiving! If you didn’t do your assignment, well, I still love you and God does too, but you are missing out and I hope you will take the time to do it.
Ok, I have one more challenge/assignment I believe can help us receive the greatest joy and blessing this Thanksgiving! It is actually Paul and Jesus that give us the challenge “In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ ” Acts 20:35 NIV. Christ also said it this way in Luke 14:12- 14 NIV, “12 Then Jesus said to His host, “When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or relatives, or your rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. 13 But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, 14 and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.” In the simplest terms, instead of simply celebrating and feasting, look for some way to give to those who are in need. What better time to do this than Thanksgiving? In so doing you reflect Thanksgiving praises back to God.
“It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to your name, O Most High; to declare your steadfast love in the morning, and your faithfulness by night,”(Psalms 92:1-2 ESV)
Thanksgiving Baskets, if you are looking for a way to give something to those in need this is just one way to get involved. Pick up a list of the groceries required for one, two or maybe more baskets from the church foyer this Sabbath, and bring the groceries back by Sabbath, November 16. The Community Service and Earliteen Sabbath School class will add some fresh fruit and vegetables and then deliver the baskets. If you, or if you know someone in need of a basket, let us know by calling the church office.
These Sabbath Blessings are being planned just for you this coming month of November:
Sabbath, November 2, the message will be “Faith Blessings.” Hebrews 11:20 says, “By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning things to come.” Is the concept of blessing our children relevant today? Or, is it an old custom that no longer has current significance? Join me in this study at 11:00am.
On November 9, the Sabbath morning message will be the birth of Moses and his early years. I can’t imagine giving birth to a child that has been condemned to die before his birth. In that context, there is a similarity between Jochebed, the mother of Moses, and Mary the mother of Jesus. I’m looking forward to what we can learn together from this chapter in the story of Moses, “Redemption in a Basket.”
Pastor Phil Robertson, our new Vice-President of Finance for the Texico Conference, will be here Sabbath, November 16 as a guest speaker. I know he will have a special message planned for us. Do not miss this.
During Thanksgiving we celebrate the great riches God has showered upon us, but I believe the greatest blessings are often missed in our cultural method of celebration. I hope to have the pleasure of taking a closer look at “The Pursuit of Greater Riches” together on Sabbath morning, November 23.
Thanksgiving Sabbath, November 30, we will have a special Thanksgiving Communion service. If we have one thing to be thankful for above all others, it is the New Covenant gift we commemorate in the communion service. I am eagerly anticipating the joy of celebrating this with each of you.
Please pray for us as we pray for you.
Pastor Jeremy McCombs
Lubbock Seventh-day Adventist Church
PS: Chef Mark Anthony will be here Wednesday, November 13, at 6:00pm, with a FREE DINNER and a Message! Mark your calendar to attend and invite your friends. Call the church at 806-793-8614 to make your reservations as we want to be sure to have adequate seating – no one will be turned away.
PSS: The ABC (Adventist Book Center) Bookmobile will also be here in the church parking lot on Wednesday, November 13, from 4:30 to 6:00pm. Lubbock Junior Academy will have a list of books needed for their classroom ready for you to choose which you would like to purchase for them. To preorder call the ABC at 1-800-522-2665 any time before Friday, November 9, then just alert the driver that you have a pre-order and it will be retrieved for you. This is a great way to get your 2014 Devotionals.