Tuesday, December 30, 2014

2 DAYS... WHY WE GIVE

Dear Friends of FCC,

Vickie and I were planning to go out for dinner when an urgent call came from Christy. Her father was being rushed by ambulance on life support to DePaul Hospital.

Christy was the first rider who stepped onto our Sunday School bus in September 1996. She and Dustin had a church wedding a year ago in January. For all these years we have encouraged Butch, her father, to c...ome to church and seek the Lord. He rarely came. Then a week ago, without telling anyone in his family he was coming, he and his wife came to the Christmas Candlelight service. He was obviously touched, and came again this last Sunday morning. I preached a sermon on Sincere Christianity and then asked for a show of hands for all who wanted to be sincere Christians. Butch raised his hand. He didn't come forward to the altar, but in the benediction I prayed the sinner's prayer. As we talked in the foyer, Butch said he would be back next week. But Butch suffered a fatal heart attack the next day. Oh I am so glad he came.

If Butch made it to heaven, and I pray and hope he did, he made it because some people came together to establish a gospel preaching church in a major city. And he's not the only one by far. There have been many many souls who have heard received the Gospel here. Because people gave of their time, their energy, and their money, FAITH COMMUNITY CHURCH has influenced many, and won some for the Savior. Praise God.

We began this month praying for a $12,000 miracle month. We literally have that amount of bills to pay. Yesterday, Monday, December 29 we had not yet made it. We are over 90% of the way, and getting close but we urgently need your year-end gift. Would you consider praying and then giving what the Lord suggests?

Someone wondered if FCC had an emergency fund somewhere. They figured we must since we seem to make our bills in spite of the fact that so many of our offerings are small. I had to confess. Yes we do have an emergency fund. But it's not in our name, nor in some hidden bank account. Our emergency fund is the good people of God who love Him, love His work, and love souls. They give as the Lord directs and miraculously the bills are met.

If your gift is post-marked December 31, it will appear on your contribution record for tax purposes.

If you can contribute you may send an envelope to FCC, 2969 N Lindbergh, St. Ann, MO 63043, or you my log onto our web page at www.FCCStLouis and look for the PayPal link. If you're within driving distance I would be glad to meet you personally.

In the mean time, may I thank you so very much for your prayerful support. WITH YOUR PRAYERFUL SUPPORT WE'RE GOING TO MAKE IT.

May the LORD richly bless you.

Onward! Rick

FAITH COMMUNITY CHURCH - A Crusaders Church of America
2969 N Lindbergh Blvd, St Ann, MO 63074
Pastor Rick Jones Cell (314) 607-1424
Preaching Services: Sundays 11am, 6:30pm; Wednesdays 7p

WEB PAGE: www.fccstlouis.org
PASTOR'S BLOG: www.pastorrickjones.blogspot.com

Friday, December 26, 2014

5 DAYS TO 2015 - FCC UPDATE

Dear Friends of FCC,
 
We began 2014 determined to be FAITHFUL TO THE CROSS. 
 
As we come to this final week of 2014 we thank the LORD that as we have "kept the faith" we have seen amazing answers to prayer. 
 
Our cumulative attendances at Sunday and special weekly services totaled over 10,000, our callers knocked on 12,000 doors, and we have witnessed the work of the Holy Spirit convicting, convincing, converting and sanctifying souls.  To God be the Glory for the things He has done.
 
As we labor for the Cause of Christ in North-Western St. Louis County we are reaching people in more than 20 communities--Ferguson and Berkeley among them.  We are sure that it is the message of the Cross that will bring reconciliation to these troubled communities. 
 
To finish 2014 with our bills caught up and paid in full, we must raise $12,000 this month.  Three days ago we were $6000 short.  Today we need $4000 to meet the goal.  PRAISE THE LORD!  We're getting closer.
 
Many of you who read this letter cannot give, but you could join with us in praying for a financial miracle in the next 5 days. Would you just take a moment now to ask the LORD to supply our need. It is very urgent that we meet these obligations. We're not raising money to place into a savings account, we're raising money to pay our bills.  Thank you for praying.
 
If the Lord has blessed you with the ability to help, we hope you'll prayerfully consider giving. What a day it will be when we can clear our $495,000 mortgage.  Someone asked me recently how to include FCC in their estate plans.  I am sure that those who give to the Lord's Work will earn eternal dividends. 
 
I heard recently of a couple that have lived very simply for many years in order that they might give to the work of the Lord.  They do not have the latest and greatest, they do not sport the finest and shiniest, but they have given and given and given to those who are on the front lines seeking to win this generation to Christ.  Can you imagine the sheer joy they will experience in heaven when they meet souls who were saved because they sacrificially gave to keep the work of Lord advancing! 
 
If you can contribute you may send an envelope to FCC, 2969 N Lindbergh, St. Ann, MO 63043, or you my log onto our web page at www.FCCStLouis and look for the PayPal link. If you're within driving distance I would be glad to meet you personally. 
 
In the mean time, may I thank you so very much for your prayerful support.  WITH YOUR PRAYERFUL SUPPORT WE'RE GOING TO MAKE IT.
 
May the LORD richly bless you. 
 
Onward!  Rick

HIS BLESSINGS FLOW FAR AS THE CURSE IS FOUND

"He comes to make His blessings flow,
Far as the curse is found!"
 
 
Christmas Greetings,
 
My distant cousin Ruth Estes always insisted that we sing the third verse of JOY TO THE WORLD.
 
No more let sins and sorrows grow
Nor thorns infest the ground
He comes to make
His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found
Far as the curse is found!
 
She has been in glory for many years, but the longer I live the more I see why my dear cousin so loved this verse.
 
With the coming of Jesus Christ the Messiah we are witnesses of...
A promise kept!  (Scores of Old Testament Prophecies were fulfilled in Him.)
A promise that will be kept!  (His blessings continue to flow.)
And ...a promise that keeps! (What joy it is for the Redeemed to serve Him without fear, in holiness and righteousness all the days of their lives!)
 
We pray that however you celebrate the coming of Messiah, you will be aware that "God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself."  "God so loved [you] the world..."
 
Here at FCC we have had such wonderful services.  We have been thrilled to preach Christmas Tidings to well over 250 souls.  I wish you could have all been there for last Sunday evening's CANDLE LIGHT SERVICE.  As the service began every light in the house was out, and no candles were lit.  Then as Nicole sang "O Come O Come Emmanuel" the Christ Candle was lit.  From that one light all the candles on the platform were lit, and finally candles throughout the congregation were lit.  The choir music, the readings from God's Word, the congregation singing and praying--it was all such a blessing.
 
As you know we are praying for a financial miracle this month.  We urgently need to raise $12,000 by December 31.  With only 8 days remaining in the month, we still need $6000.00.  If you could help we would be so very grateful.  Most of our congregation are very poor and live paycheck to paycheck.  If the Lord has blessed you with means, we hope you'll prayerfully consider helping us.  It is very urgent that we clear some long overdue accounts.  What a day it will be when we can clear our $495,000 mortgage!
 
If you can contribute you may send an envelope to FCC, 2969 N Lindbergh, St. Ann, MO 63043, or you my log onto our web page at www.FCCStLouis and look for the PayPal link. If you're within driving distance I would be glad to meet you personally. 
 
In the mean time, may I thank you so very much for your prayerful support. 
 
We pray that you will have a blessed Christmas!
 
Onward!  Rick
 
 
FAITH COMMUNITY CHURCH - A Crusaders Church of America
2969 N Lindbergh Blvd, St Ann, MO 63074
Pastor Rick Jones Cell (314) 607-1424
Preaching Services: Sundays 11am, 6:30pm; Wednesdays 7p

Saturday, December 20, 2014

AN URGENT APPEAL


IT'S SATURDAY NIGHT - HE STILL REIGNS!
http://youtu.be/HVLOyhvh-I4


 

Dear Friend of FCC,

 

            The message of Christmas—GOD AND SINNERS RECONCILED—has never been more needed.  When men and women are reconciled to God they will be reconciled with one another.  Sitting only 15 minutes from Ferguson, FCC has accepted the call, as ambassadors for Christ we are pleading—Be ye reconciled to God!  (2 Corinthians 5).

 

            This past week your Pastor has been on the streets knocking door to door pleading with men to be reconciled with God.  One man told me “Jesus is a fake.”  I looked him straight in the eye and said, “Jesus is the best friend you and I ever had!”  We had a good visit.  I will return.

 

            Because of the generosity of God’s people we are able to devote full time to this ministry.   Over the past several weeks we have been thankful that we could be there for parents who are deeply concerned for their children, husbands and wives who need counsel, teens who are distraught to the point of self destruction, families who need help relating to one another, people with perplexing financial concerns, elderly people who have been mistreated, grieving people who have lost loved ones, people who are deceived by heresy, and many many souls who long to know the love of God.  (These are all situations I have encountered this week.)

 

            Truthfully the load is sometimes very heavy.  I have a new appreciation for the load my father, and all those who are faithful ministers of the Gospel.

 

            Added to the work of ministry is the burden of the financial load.  Costs keep rising and our giving has barely kept pace.  As we write, our offerings for the month have not totaled $3,000 and we urgently need $12,000 to pay our mortgage and all the bills, some that are significantly behind.

 

            We look forward to the day when the Lord provides the way for us to clear the $498,000 we owe on our mortgage.  But until then our payment of $2900 each month is our largest expense. 

 

            If you’re like me, you’re getting many requests for year-end giving.  Many are worthwhile to be sure.  But if the LORD would impress upon you to make a year-end gift to keep FCC pressing forward, we would be most grateful.  Most of the people we help have very limited means.  If the LORD has blessed you with the ability to give, we would thank you very much.

 

            Our need is for $9,000 in the next 11 days.  It’s impossible from man’s perspective.  But with God, all things are possible. 

 

            We are learning to keep in touch with our friends here in St. Louis and elsewhere by means of technology.  We record a Saturday Night You Tube .  We send a daily Scripture to the phones of those who request it.  We are on Facebook and Twitter, and we have a web page.

 

            We continue to knock on doors from house to house, work our bus ministry families, and reach out through community events.  This year we’ve had over 300 services and preached the Gospel to hundreds of souls.  None of this would be possible without the help of friends like you.

 

            If you could contribute online you may access our paypal account through our web page, www.fccstlouis.org.  You may also like for the Pastor to come visit you. I would be glad to do that.  Others may prefer mailing their reply.

 

            Thank you for prayerfully considering what you might be able to give.  This is a very large need but if God’s people will all mind God the need will be met.  Thanks in advance for your prayers and generous support. 

 

            We will keep you updated on our Facebook Page, our Web Page, and the Pastor’s blog, www.pastorrickjones.blogspot.com.         

 

                                                            Onward!

 

 


                                                                                Pastor Richard M. Jones

                                                                                FAITH COMMUNITY CHURCH –  A Crusaders Church

                                                                                Telephone (314) 298-5840; Cell Call or Text (314) 607-1424
E-mail: PastorRick@FCCStLouis.org                                                                                                                                    

 

 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

ESSENTIAL WORSHIP - JOHN WESLEY

 
Too often we hit on one or another note, but God desires a full chord of worship.  We congratulate ourselves that we have "Love" or maybe "Trust," then ignore the necessity of "Relying" or "Imitating" Him.  John Wesley, the father of Methodism, urged his congregations to holistic holiness that encompasses heart, soul, mind, and strength.

ESSENTIAL CHRISTIANITY

BELIEVE IN HIM.  We cannot serve God unless we believe in him. This is the only true foundation of serving him. Therefore, believing in God, as "reconciling the world to himself through Christ Jesus," the believing in him, as a loving, pardoning God, is the first great branch of his service.
 
TRUST IN HIM.  And thus to believe in God implies, to trust in him as our strength, without whom we can do nothing, who every moment endues us with power from on high, without which it is impossible to please him; as our help, our only help in time of trouble, who compasseth us about with songs of deliverance; as our shield, our defender, and the lifter up of our head above all our enemies that are round about us.
 
RELY ON HIM.  It implies, to trust in God as our happiness; as the centre of spirits; the only rest of our souls; the only good who is adequate to all our capacities, and sufficient to satisfy all the desires he hath given us.
It implies, (what is nearly allied to the other,) to trust in God as our end; to have an eye to him in all things; to use all things only as means of enjoying him; wheresoever we are, or whatsoever we do, to see him that is invisible, looking on us well-pleased, and to refer all things to him in Christ Jesus.
 
LOVE HIM.   ...Now to love God in the manner the Scripture describes, in the manner God himself requires of us, and by requiring engages to work in us, -- is to love him as the ONE GOD; that is, "with all our heart, and with all our soul, and with all our mind, and with all our strength;" -- it is to desire God alone for his own sake; and nothing else, but with reference to him; -- to rejoice in God; -- to delight in the Lord; not only to seek, but find, happiness in him; to enjoy God as the chiefest among ten thousand; to rest in him, as our God and our all; -- in a word, to have such a possession of God as makes us always happy.
 
IMITATE HIM.  ...we are to understand by serving God is to resemble or imitate him.
So the ancient Father: Optimus Dei cultus, imitari quem colis: "It is the best worship or service of God, to imitate him you worship."
 
We here speak of imitating or resembling him in the spirit of our minds: For here the true Christian imitation of God begins. "God is a Spirit;" and they that imitate or resemble him must do it "in spirit and in truth."
   
LOVE AS HE LOVED.  Now God is love: Therefore, they who resemble him in the spirit of their minds are transformed into the same image. They are merciful even as he is merciful. Their soul is all love. They are kind, benevolent, compassionate, tender-hearted; and that not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward. Yea, they are, like Him, loving unto every man, and their mercy extends to all his works.
 
OBEY HIM ZEALOUSLY.  One thing more we are to understand by serving God, and that is, the obeying him; the glorifying him with our bodies, as well as with our spirits; the keeping his outward commandments; the zealously doing whatever he hath enjoined; the carefully avoiding whatever he hath forbidden; the performing all the ordinary actions of life with a single eye and a pure heart, offering them all in holy, fervent love, as sacrifices to God through Jesus Christ.   FROM JOHN WESLEY, SERMON 9 ON THE SERMON ON THE MOUNT, NUMBER 29

Sunday, December 14, 2014

THE WILL TO BE RECONCILED


IT'S SATURDAY NIGHT - HE CAME TO ME!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UZJzO6E29gw&list=UUpUmxduWvxlTv1C-2JA4xtw



God and Sinners Reconciled! How absolutely wonderful.

 Surely God is not pleased with us. 

 Oh we stumble around and sometimes make some half hearted effort to apologize.  “I’m sorry I sinned,” we whisper, hoping that God understands our situation.  In fact, we’d be glad to explain the circumstances.  “They just lied to me.”  “They just took my things.” “They acted like I was a floor-mat—treated me like dirt.” So yeah God, “I’m sorry I took after them…I’m sorry I took from them…I’m sorry I took over.”  But you understand, right?

And actually, God does understand.  

I know my father is not pleased with me.  I know my mother is upset. I know my husband (or wife) doesn’t care for me. I know my brothers and sisters are at odds with me.  I know things aren’t right between me and my friend.  We rationalize.  “They were just mean.”  “They were so stupid!”  “They were just plain thoughtless.”  “They hurt my feelings.”

I would like to be at peace but that’s really not possible.  God understands. 

Yes, God does understand.

What God understands is that no matter how many injustices we have endured from others, He has suffered more—from our hand!  (Is that really so?)

What God understands is that no matter how many unkindnesses we have experienced, He has endured more—from us. (Is that possible?)

What God understands is that no matter how many times we have maliciously excluded others, He has been ignored and excluded more—by us.  (Is that true?)

I don’t like to face that.  I would much rather point out the faults, the failings, the sins of others, than to admit that I’m at blame.

Then God, “so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son,” demonstrating His love for us, so that—“while were were God’s enemies we were reconciled to Him through the death of His Son.” Romans 5:10. 

Oh what a Savior! 

The wronged pleads with the wrong—Let’s be reconciled. 

The selfless extends a hand to the selfish—Let’s be reconciled. 

The humble begs the proud—Let’s be reconciled.

The good comes to the bad—Let’s be reconciled.

The holy reaches to the sinful—Let’s be reconciled. 

And we who were at odds with God, humbly say, “God be merciful to me, a sinner.”  The sacrifice of Christ is sufficient. We are indeed reconciled.  "The Spirit answers to the blood and tells me I've been born of God! "(Charles Wesley)

But there is more.   Reconciliation with God brings transformation in me!  “If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold all things are become new.” 2 Corinthians 5:17.

In Christ I am no longer self-righteous, I am Christ righteous.

In Christ I am no longer self-sufficient, I am Christ sufficient.

In Christ I am no longer self-justifying, I am Christ justified.

In Christ I am no longer self-reliant, I am Christ reliant.

In Christ I am no longer self-centered, I am Christ centered.

In Christ I am no longer self-controlled, I am Christ controlled.

In Christ I am no longer self-made, I am Christ made.

This is not Christian theory.  This is Christian reality.

 The Dutch Christian Corrie Ten Boom, imprisoned by the Nazis for hiding Jews during the Second World War testified:

 “It was in a church in Munich that I saw him—a balding, heavyset man in a gray overcoat, a brown felt hat clutched between his hands. People were filing out of the basement room where I had just spoken, moving along the rows of wooden chairs to the door at the rear. It was 1947 and I had come from Holland to defeated Germany with the message that God forgives.

“It was the truth they needed most to hear in that bitter, bombed-out land, and I gave them my favorite mental picture. Maybe because the sea is never far from a Hollander’s mind, I liked to think that that’s where forgiven sins were thrown. ‘When we confess our sins,’ I said, ‘God casts them into the deepest ocean, gone forever. …

“The solemn faces stared back at me, not quite daring to believe. There were never questions after a talk in Germany in 1947. People stood up in silence, in silence collected their wraps, in silence left the room.

“And that’s when I saw him, working his way forward against the others. One moment I saw the overcoat and the brown hat; the next, a blue uniform and a visored cap with its skull and crossbones. It came back with a rush: the huge room with its harsh overhead lights; the pathetic pile of dresses and shoes in the center of the floor; the shame of walking naked past this man.

I could see my sister’s frail form ahead of me, ribs sharp beneath the parchment skin. Betsie, how thin you were! [Betsie and I had been arrested for concealing Jews in our home during the Nazi occupation of Holland; this man had been a guard at Ravensbruck concentration camp where we were sent.]

“Now he was in front of me, hand thrust out: ‘A fine message, Fräulein! How good it is to know that, as you say, all our sins are at the bottom of the sea!’

“And I, who had spoken so glibly of forgiveness, fumbled in my pocketbook rather than take that hand. He would not remember me, of course—how could he remember one prisoner among those thousands of women?

“But I remembered him and the leather crop swinging from his belt. I was face-to-face with one of my captors and my blood seemed to freeze.

“ ‘You mentioned Ravensbruck in your talk,’ he was saying, ‘I was a guard there.’ No, he did not remember me.

“ ‘But since that time,’ he went on, ‘I have become a Christian. I know that God has forgiven me for the cruel things I did there, but I would like to hear it from your lips as well. Fräulein,’ again the hand came out—’will you forgive me?’

“And I stood there—I whose sins had again and again to be forgiven—and could not forgive. Betsie had died in that place—could he erase her slow terrible death simply for the asking?

“It could not have been many seconds that he stood there—hand held out—but to me it seemed hours as I wrestled with the most difficult thing I had ever had to do.

“For I had to do it—I knew that. The message that God forgives has a prior condition: that we forgive those who have injured us. ‘If you do not forgive men their trespasses,’ Jesus says, ‘neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.’

“I knew it not only as a commandment of God, but as a daily experience. Since the end of the war I had had a home in Holland for victims of Nazi brutality. Those who were able to forgive their former enemies were able also to return to the outside world and rebuild their lives, no matter what the physical scars. Those who nursed their bitterness remained invalids. It was as simple and as horrible as that.

“And still I stood there with the coldness clutching my heart. But forgiveness is not an emotion—I knew that too. Forgiveness is an act of the will, and the will can function regardless of the temperature of the heart. ‘… Help!’ I prayed silently. ‘I can lift my hand. I can do that much. You supply the feeling.’

“And so woodenly, mechanically, I thrust my hand into the one stretched out to me. And as I did, an incredible thing took place. The current started in my shoulder, raced down my arm, sprang into our joined hands. And then this healing warmth seemed to flood my whole being, bringing tears to my eyes.

“ ‘I forgive you, brother!’ I cried. ‘With all my heart!’
 
“For a long moment we grasped each other’s hands, the former guard and the former prisoner. I had never known God’s love so intensely, as I did then”

(excerpted from “I’m Still Learning to Forgive” by Corrie ten Boom. Reprinted by permission from Guideposts Magazine. Copyright © 1972 by Guideposts Associates, Inc., Carmel, New York 10512).

God and Sinners reconciled!  How wonderful!

 

Saturday, December 6, 2014

O LITTLE TOWN OF FERGUSON - DECEMBER 2014 FCC CONNECTION


18 And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ,

and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; 19 To wit, that

God was in Christ, reconciling the world

unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them;

and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.

2   C O R I N T H I A N S   5 : 1 8 , 1 9

__________________________

 

GOOD MORNING FRIENDS OF FAITH,  

On a normal weekend our Sunday School Bus passes the Ferguson City Hall and Police Department.  (Yes, the same place you’ve seen in the news so many times in recent months).   

 The tragic death of Michael Brown at the hand of a threatened Ferguson Policeman and the Grand Jury’s decision to not charge the policeman have inflamed passions, sparked violence and unleashed a wave a protest that is still sizzling in Ferguson and throughout greater St. Louis. 

 When a young person dies it is always heartbreaking.  When a young person dies from a bullet it is tragic.  And when the death of that young person could have been prevented it is anguishing. (A simple “Yes Sir” could have saved his life.)

In the belief that Michael was innocent of robbery, clean of drugs, and loving by nature, protesters were outraged when the Grand Jury voted “No Bill.”  They poured into the streets, tears in the eyes of many and anger in the hearts of most. Windows were shattered, stores were looted, and fires were set. In a remarkable display of self-restraint the police did not fire their weapons though they faced intense verbal abuse and vicious assaults

In the belief that Michael was guilty of robbery, high on Marijuana, and intent on injuring or even killing the Police Officer, others are shocked that anyone would defend Michael.  They look at the eye-witness testimonies given to the Grand Jury and marvel that anyone would support him.  They wholeheartedly support the officer and worry that the rush to condemn the police will erode the rule of law and threaten the civility and comity. 

With every news cycle, each side gathers evidence to support their narrative.  People see what they want to see.  People believe what they want to believe.  And more often than not, people ask “What’s in this evidence that supports my side—my group?” It turns out that by nature we are not usually after the actual truth, rather we are after the arguments that support our truth—or our narrative of the “truth.” 

WHY CAN’T WE ALL JUST GET ALONG?
My Dad would say, “A man convinced against his will, is of the same opinion still.” And here is the crux of the matter.  Wills that are not right with God resist not only the truth about God, they are loathe to admit the truth about the world and about themselves. 

 Jesus quoted Isaiah, “He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them.” (John 12:40).

The Apostle Paul understood the problem.  “The god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not.”  (2 Corinthians 4:4).   He warned the Ephesians to not live like those “know it all” Gentiles, who “being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.”   Their “understanding was darkened,” they were “alienated from the life of God,” and the “blindness of their heart” only compounded the “ignorance in them.” (Ephesians 4:17-19)

 The Scriptures are clear.  Right perception begins with regeneration. 

That means that when our hearts are born of the Spirit our eyes our opened to reality.  Haters stumble through life because “darkness hath blinded [their] …eyes.” (1 John 2:11)  But those who have experienced the love of God shed abroad in their hearts by the Holy Ghost (Romans 5:5) see things differently.  They act by faith not fear, they move with hope not despair, their love endures all things—they trust in God not in themselves.

 How then will our divided community be reconciled?

The worldly-wise answer: a new government program, an economic aid package, a new educational curriculum, a housing project, a blue-ribbon panel to study the problem, a new diet, or mental health plans complete with some psychotropic latest drugs.  And while these ideas may have some short-term benefit, they all carry long-term costs. 

The Word of God answers: a new heart.  The Scriptural plan does require immediate sacrifices, but has long term benefits.  Paul testified, “If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new…all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself…” (2 Corinthians 5:17-19).

 Our first priority must be reconciliation with God.  It is when we are reconciled to HIM that all things become new.  It is when we are reconciled to HIM that old things are passed away.  It is when we are reconciled to HIM that we become ministers of reconciliation.

 Reconciliation with GOD happens only when we step off the throne of our lives and crown JESUS CHRIST, LORD of ALL.  Reconciliation with GOD happens only through living faith, a total and complete confidence in JESUS CHRIST—who is the way, the truth, and life. Reconciliation with GOD happens only as we supremely love KING JESUS—the KING OF LOVE.

 Just as happiness is the by-product of helping others, reconciliation with our neighbors is the by-product of reconciliation with God.  When we are reconciled with God through Christ we can even get along with people who do not want to get along with us.   Secure in HIS love we sacrificially love. 

IF WE ARE AT ODDS WITH GOD, WE WILL BE AT ODDS WITH OTHERS.
Looking at it from the other side, if we are at odds with others, it’s because we are at odds with God.  The same things that divide us from God—pride, prejudice, self-righteousness, stubbornness, thoughtlessness, ignorance,  an unwillingness to reciprocate and go the extra mile, a legalistic spirit, and a desire to be approved by others—divide us from each other!

 THAT’S WHY I’M SO THRILLED WITH THIS YEAR’S CHRISTMAS THEME—GOD AND SINNERS RECONCILED!  What a great truth for our times.  Sinners who are reconciled to God will inevitably be reconciled to one another.  Let’s go soul-winning.

 OUR DECEMBER CALENDAR IS FILLED WITH GREAT TIMES!  I hope you’ll come to these great December Services.   You’ll hear the greatest news the world has ever heard, “Peace on earth, and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled!”

Sunday, December 7, 11:00 AM
WORSHIP & COMMUNION SERVICE
Fellowship after Sunday Evening Service

Sunday, December 14, 6:30 PM
CHILDREN’S CHRISTMAS PROGRAM &  CHRISTMAS COOKIES!

Wednesday, December 17, 6:00 PM
CHRISTMAS CAROLING AND PARTY

Sunday, December 21, 6:30 PM
TEEN CHRISTMAS SKIT & CANDLELIGHT SERVICE

Wednesday, December 31, 7:00 PM & 11:00 PM
NEW YEAR’S EVE WATCHNIGHT SERVICE & FELLOWSHIP

 

YOUR PASTOR'S FAMILY APPRECIATES YOU!
Throughout the year it has been our great joy to rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who are weeping, and pray with you our church family.  Thank you for your many kindnesses and your generosity to us.  May the LORD richly bless you.

Onward!

Pastor Richard M. Jones
FAITH COMMUNITY CHURCH –  A Crusaders Church of America
Telephone (314) 298-5840; Cell Call or Text (314) 607-1424

WE ARE PRAYING TO END 2014 WITH ALL OUR BILLS PAID.

With the increase in utility and operational costs we have come to the last month of the year with $222.00 in the bank and a need of $12,500 to close the year with our bills all paid.  It is a large sum of money to be sure, particularly in a month when household expenses are typically high.   Your prayers and generous offerings will help us pay all our overdue accounts and end the year with the bills paid. 

It is through your generosity the Gospel of Reconciliation— “GOD & SINNERS RECONCILED”—advances throughout our community.  This past year we have literally presented the Gospel to thousands of souls.  The doors of our church have been opened for over 300 services this year— some drawing over 200 worshippers, others ministering to smaller groups.  We can turn the lights on and preach the Gospel because you cared and gave. 

If the Lord has blessed you financially and you could make a substantial year-end gift to FCC we would be truly grateful.  Truly every gift is deeply appreciated.  You may give by bringing an offering, by mailing your gifts (FCC, 2969 N. Lindbergh, St. Louis, MO 63074) or by logging onto our web page www.FCCStLouis.org and contributing through PayPal.  Thank you for making this a subject of prayer. 



Sunday, November 30, 2014

WHY ARE WE AT ODDS WITH GOD, WITH OTHERS, AND WITH OURSELVES?

 
 
What keeps us at odds with God?
1. Pride
2. Prejudice
3. Self Righteousness
4. Selfishness
5. Stubbornness...

6. Ignorance - Immaturity
7. Lack of Reciprocity
8. Legalistic spirit "keeping the letter of the law, not the spirit"
9. Fear of rejection by others

What keeps us from being reconciled with others?
1. Pride
2. Prejudice
3. Self Righteousness
4. Selfishness
5. Stubbornness
6. Ignorance - Immaturity
7. Lack of Reciprocity
8. Legalistic spirit "keeping the letter of the law, not the spirit"
9. Fear of rejection by others

What keeps us from being reconciled within our own hearts?
1. Pride
2. Prejudice
3. Self Righteousness
4. Selfishness
5. Stubbornness
6. Ignorance - Immaturity
7. Lack of Reciprocity
8. Legalistic spirit "keeping the letter of the law, not the spirit"
9. Fear of rejection by others

So if we were to be reconciled to God we would indeed be reconciled with others and at peace within.

GOD AND SINNERS RECONCILED - INTRODUCING CHRISTMAS 2014

 
IT'S SATURDAY NIGHT - REDEEMING LOVE
 
 
 
Our theme for this year’s celebration is taken from that great Christmas hymn of Charles Wesley, "Hark, The Herald Angels Sing!" In light of all the tragic events surrounding the sad death of Michael Brown this phrase arrested our attention--"GOD AND SINNERS RECONCILED."

In the good old days we used to get a bank statement in the mail. To be sure that our checkbook agreed with the bank’s accounting we would "reconcile" our bank book. When our checkbook agreed with the bank’s statement we said we say our account was "reconciled." The two reports now agreed.

As we have been praying for Ferguson, for our St. Louis community, and for those who have experienced such trauma and pain we have been more convinced than ever--we must to be reconciled to God if there is ever to be peace.

Law and the enforcement of law brings order. But only the love of the Lord Jesus Christ can bring peace.

Reconcilation must begin with a plain and truthful recognition of what, or I should say who we are. The tragedy of modern man is that we are so unwilling to admit who we are, and even more reticent to accept who we are. We are not so wonderful. Our problem is NOT that we are greater than we think we are. We are not so great.

Apart from God’s redeeming love we are rebels to God and disodient ingrates. Whatever our self assessment, "I’m better than the next fellow," "I’m a cut above the rest," "I am right," we must come to the profound realization that we are not better, we are not a cut above, and we are not right.

We are sinners, "All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God," in need of a Savior. Actually we are rebels, "All we like sheep have gone astray, we have turned everyone to his own way." Actually we are deceived--"the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?" Jeremiah 17:9

(Continued on Back Cover)

When we see ourselves as we are in the sight of God, we then look at who He is. God is holy. God is love. God is pure. God is righteous. God is compassionate. Oh my.

Is there any hope? Is there anyway that our soul so at odds with God, our heart so opposed to Him, could be "reconciled" with Him?

If we have any hope, it will not be in man’s philosophy, our ideas, or our deeds. Having examined all the options it is clear that only God Himself can reconcile us to Himself.

So God so loved He gave His only begotten Son. "God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself." 2 Corinthians 5:19. Reconciled to God through the blood of His only begotten, we are made righteous--not self righteous, but Christ righteous.

Hallelujah!

Onward!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

A CALL TO PRAYER FOR A COMMUNITY IN CRISIS

 
 
 
____________________________

As our city experiences the tragedy of the Michael Brown shooting and the aftermath of the Grand Jury Decision we must fervently seek the face of God.  Oh how we need HIM!

We're praying that the truth will be known and appreciated.
We're praying that God's will will be done.
We're praying that faith will conquer fear.
We're praying that love will triumph over hatred.

We're praying that the peace of God that passes understanding will keep our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
We're praying that we will be instruments of God's peace.
We're praying that we will be channels of blessing.
We're praying that those who are bent on doing evil will see the error of their ways.

We're praying that those whom God has ordained to preserve civil order will be strong, effective, and safe.
We're praying for godly homes that can bring children up in the nurture and admonition of the LORD.
We're praying that God's people will lift high the banner of holiness unto the LORD.
We're praying that righteousness will prevail over prejudice.

We're praying that the respect and respectability will be valued.
We're praying that virtue will triumph over vice.
We're praying that heaven will prevail over hell.
We're praying for salvation through sanctification of the Spirit.

We're praying for a Holy Ghost, Sin Killing, Devil defeating, revival!