RECAP–…WITH REPENTANCE based on Psalm 51:1-17
No one likes to be confronted when we sin. Sometimes, my girls say “NOT ME!” when clearly one of them has done something they should not have done! We go to lengths to cover up our sins, like my one employee who tried to hide the evidence of her apple juice theft by discarding the evidence in the freezer behind the cases of chicken! Why? Sin brings shame and guilt. And when we feel shame and guilt, we want to get rid of it from our lives.
When it becomes dangerous is when we get to the place we minimize sin. Once we do, it becomes easier to compromise and dismiss sin. We become desensitized, and eventually our hearts become hard. This was unfortunately the pattern displayed multiple times in the Bible, and honestly, throughout history. It was especially visible when it involved people in positions of power–either they try to sweep their sins under the rug, pay it off, or remove the ones who are confronting. In the Bible, several of the prophets were executed by the king of leader simply for bring the word of truth–Stephen was stoned, John the Baptist beheaded, and Zechariah was literally stoned in the middle of the temple while preaching the word! Why? We don’t want to be confronted in midst of our sin, because we don’t want to feel the guilt and shame.
However, in the Bible there is a clear example of a person in power who responded with a different approach–the approach of repentance. David was described as a man after God’s heart. He toppled Goliath and was a great king. Yet he too had his sins: he refused to fulfill his duty as king, lusted over a woman not his wife, had an affair and got her pregnant, tried to cover it up, and eventually had her husband murdered. These are certainly not the actions of a godly king–yet, we know him as a godly king and man after God’s heart! That is because when he was confronted by the prophet Nathan, instead of the normal human responses of deflection, denial, disgust, and defiance, he came to a place of repentance. And he models for us today how we can live a life of repentace.
1) Recognize who you are and who God is. David was the king, but he recognized God as the King of Kings. Instead of allowing his position of authority to get to his head, he recognized that he was dependent upon the mercy and grace of God. None of us have the right of heaven, and none of us deserve heaven. We only have the gift of eternal life from God’s mercy and grace. David understood this, and threw himself before the mercy of the Lord.
2) Take responsibility for sin. Instead of deflecting or blaming someone else, he owned his sin. He confessed that he was indeed guilty of the sin. And in doing so, he put himself in a position where God can work in his life. When we deflect, we cut off the voice of the Holy Spirit and stop any avenue of healing. But when we are transparent and open before God, healing can begin and the way of restoration can appear.
3) Embrace God’s cleansing. David recognized that only God could clean his heart. We as humans are like cats–we don’t like baths! When God tries to clean us up, we claw and scratch, because we don’t want to be cleansed. Likewise, when we are done, we often go right back to the filth. Some stains in our hearts, just like bad stains in laundry, need help to come out. God is the one that can clean our hearts!
4) Restore a right relationship with God. David’s prayer was to have a clean heart, a right spirit, and to remain in the presence of God. Sin separates us from God. When we try to hide in sin, we hide from God just like Adam and Eve did in the garden. But when we truly repent, we are seeking to make things right with God.
5) Change our ways. David then promised he would change his ways. And when we come clean about our sin, we need to change our ways; otherwise, over time, we will go right back into the path of sin. But if we are serious about a new path, we need to change our disposition.
We all will sin. But we don’t have to hide. Let us follow David’s example, live a life of repentance, and find life!
NOTE: I have had several who have inquired about the music video that was played. The song is titled, “God’s Not Done With You,” by Tauren Wells.
Questions for reflection
1) How do you view God? How do you view yourself? How do they relate?
2) Why is it difficult to take responsibility when we sin?
3) Why do we need God’s help in cleaning us up?
4) Why is it important to change our ways once our relationship with God is restored?
We continue the season of Lent with the sermon titled, “Count the Cost”, based upon Luke 14:25-33. Why is it important to count the cost? And how can counting the cost help our faith grow even stronger? Come or tune in Sunday to find out!
Daily Bible Readings for March 9 – 15
March 9: Hosea 6:1-6 What is true repentance? What is false repentance?
March 10: Joel 2:12-17 What does sincere repentance look like?
March 11: Amos 5:4-15 What does true repentance look like? Of what might we as people need to repent?
March 12: Zechariah 7 Of what did Israel need to repent?
March 13: Malachi 1:6-14 Why does repentance need to be sincere?
March 14: Genesis 22:1-14 What was Abraham’s cost to be obedient to God?
March 15: 1 Samuel 1:21-28 What was Hannah’s cost to be faithful to God?
This Week’s Events:
Wednesday, March 10–Worship Team @ 7 pm
Sunday, March 28–Bread & Cup Communion
Sunday, April 4–Sunrise Service & Easter
Saturday, April 10 – Sunday, April 11–Remote Area Medical Clinic @ Fairgrounds
Saturday, April 24–Virtual Spring Festival for Brethren Woods
Call for Worship Leaders and Children’s Story
As we look at the ability to reopen in the coming weeks, we are in need of both worship leaders and children’s story. We are looking for one person each week, rather than a month at a time. If you would like to serve, contact Alice Over (worship leading) or Tammy Stine (children’s story).
Call to Prayer
Let us continue to pray for our nation in the following ways:
1) National return to God
2) Repentance of personal sin
3) Repentance of corporate sin
4) Healing for the brokenness of relationships
5) Our leaders
6) Restoration of the national church
This Sunday is daylight savings! Please remember to move your clocks FORWARD one hour!
After Easter, we will embark on a new series of our favorite hymns. We will spend 10 Sundays looking at our top ten favorite hymns. But we want your input! Please either put your hymns on a piece of paper and place it in the brown box in the narthex, call it into the office, or send Pastor Ryan an email/text with your favorite hymns. SO FAR, I have received 22 submissions. I really would love for everyone to make their submission by Sunday at the latest!
Misti Wheelbarger is looking for volunteers for the nursery during the Sunday School hour for next year. If you are willing to help, even if it is just for a Sunday, please reach out to her and let her know.
Outreach for the Remote Area Medical Clinic
There will be at the Fairgrounds on April 10th and 11th a clinic offering both medical and dental services for those in our area without medical insurance or cannot afford to pay for the services. It is a great way to bless our greater community. We can help by donating hot chocolate (either a box of packets or canister), full size wrapped candy bars (not the minis), or individually wrapped snacks (potato chips, crackers, fruit snacks). There will be a box in the narhex where you can place the items. The deadline to drop off items is Easter Sunday (April 4).
Special Offering for the Shank Family
This Sunday, March 14th, we will collect a special offering for the Shank family to help cover the loss of one of their chicken houses. We will treat it like a First Sunday offering. If submitting a check, please make it out to the church; we will do one lump sum from the church to the family. Also, if giving online, simply email Kristen LaPrade and let how much should be marked for the family.
Four Ways to Give! With the extended closure, this is greatly necessary.
1) Mail your tithe into the church office **PLEASE NOTE: We have had several days of no mail, and also some reports of mail being stolen on our street.
2) Drop it by the church office on Tuesday, Thursday or Friday, 9 am – 1 pm
3) Our online giving platform: https://beavercreekchurchva.churchcenter.com/giving
4) Drop off in the offering plate at the main entrance as you enter for church
Continue to Keep in Prayer:
Those in our community being negatively impacted by COVID and economic impacts. Several have seen layoffs in recent weeks.
Mary Batterman (health)
John Bennington (health)
Sam Carr (health)
Elijah Dean (health)
Janet Good (health)
Cindy Heatwole (health)
Shannon Hollen (health)
Shirley Holland (health)
Heath Kimmell (health)
Reba & Garry Kline (COVID)
Lent family (work)
Ella Makely (health)
Alda Miller (health)
Mary Miller (health)
Shirley Miller (health)
Mark Milstead (health)
Tami Plaugher (health)
Evy Kaye Sandin (health)
Shank family (fire)
Chris Shirk (health)
Ann Simmons (health)
Crystal Smith (health)
Stanley Suter (health)
Carolyn Wine (health)
Charles Wright (health)
Owen Wright (health)
Pastor Ryan Cooper
Beaver Creek COB