Oct. 15, 2017 Jane’s Heart to Heart Pastor’s Help-Mate

This is Jon Swanson’s “300 Words” from Oct. 12, 2017  (our Tom Kies’ SiL)

 

WE NEED EACH OTHER

“I help people figure out the next step and how to take it. That’s a way to describe what I do as a chaplain. It’s a way to describe how I approach a couple kinds of consulting I do.

On Wednesday afternoon, I presented the final report in a project completed by the Arbor Research Group. It’s a project that reminded me how much we need each other to accomplish the work that we have in front of you.

Terry Linhart (PhD, Purdue University) is an author, speaker, consultant, and professor of Christian ministries at Bethel College in South Bend, Indiana. He is founder and leader of the Arbor Research Group and hosts the leadership podcast.

On this project Arbor had people with expertise in statistics, Human Resources, focus groups, editing, leadership, and writing. We had people who could fill in after catastrophe, people working around the world, people with strong minds and deep hearts. Our team offered challenge and encouragement and affirmation to each other.

And none of us could have done this project alone. I discovered that in the middle when I needed clarity and courage and the skills of the rest of the team. They were ready and expecting to do the parts they were equipped to do.”

“When Paul talks about the body of Christ having different gifts and different capacities and different needs, he’s not trying to create a metaphor. He’s talking about survival. We are invited by Jesus to love each other. We are invited by Jesus to feed people who are hungry and to clothe people who are naked and to give shelter to the homeless.

When we try to figure it all out on our own, we inevitably complicate because we are each massively incompetent about everything we aren’t massively competent in. But when I ask you for help and you ask me for help, we can help. Just like it took four friends to lower a fifth friend in front of Jesus. Compassion plus eye-hand coordination times four got a man healed.

We don’t need each other to feel better.  We need each other.”

This article was a helpful reminder to me this week.  How about you.

I Cor. 12:

5.  If the foot shall say,

Because I am not the hand,

I am not of the body;

is it therefore not of the body? …

26. And whether one member suffer,

all the members suffer with it; 

or one member be honoured,

all the members rejoice with it. 

27.  Now ye are the body of Christ,

and members in particular.

August 7,  2016  Jane’s Heart to Heart   Pastor’s Help Mate

This past Sunday we were with our son Kevin’s, family at Mt. Pleasant, MI.

The S.S. teacher presented a lesson from James Merritt’s video presentation and I would like to share what I gleaned from the lesson.  The lesson was based on Matthew 25: 14 – 26 on the parable of the Talents.

Faithful

How would you define  faithful?

Prov. 20: 6 “Most men will proclaim every one his own goodness: but a faithful man who can find?”  God is faithful.  Would you describe yourself as faithful”

The lesson from Matthew 25, demonstrates  living up to  these 5 words – “You Can Count on Me”.

Today, I encourage each of you to take stock of the God-given talents He has given you.  Every one of us has God-given gifts and abilities.  It is not important what we have, but what we do with what we have.   I would like to ask you to think seriously this week about this subject.

  1. What God-given abilities do I have? What am I doing with them to bring honor and glory to Him? sewing, baking, serving, teaching, musical talent, money, time, prayer….

2.  What material things do I have and how am I using those things that I have to       

     bring glory and honor to God?

God does not compare you with how others do, but he does compare you with what you do, with what He has blessed you.  There is no reason to compare yourself with others. I wish I could sing like that, or had more money to give, etc.  Just do your best and be faithful to Him to the best of your ability.  Verses 23 says he will say, “Well done thou good and Faithful servant.”

When we only use that with which He has gifted us, for  a corruptible crown, He will say as in verse 26,  “thou wicked and slothful servant“.

When I worked with music students, I prayed that the Lord would help me to teach those who were trying to polish their God-given talent, that they would use that talent  for Christ Alone.

Pray that the Lord will show you what you should do for the purpose of carrying out the Great commission: by winning  the lost to Christ and  teaching them to observe that Great commission too. This is called discipleship.  If what you are doing with your talent is not for that great purpose, it is not an investment , but as in  verse 26, he called that servant, wicked and slothful.   

Will the Lord say, “Well done thou good and faithful servant.”? Are there some things that you should change?                  

CAN HE COUNT ON YOU?

JULY 3, 2016 Jane’s Heart to Heart …Pastor’s Help Mate

A PRAYER FOR INDEPENDENCE DAY

God bless America

And keep us safe and free,

Safe from “all our enemies”

Wherever they may be.

For enemies are forces

That often dwell within,

Things that seem so harmless

Become a major sin.

Little acts of selfishness

Grow into lust and greed,

And make the love of power

Our idol and our creed.

For all our wealth and progress

Are as worthless as can be,

Without the faith that made us great

And kept our nation free.

And while it’s hard to understand

The complexities of war,

Each one of us must realize

That we are fighting for

The principles of freedom

And the decency of man,

But all of this much be achieved

According to God’s plan.

And teach us So help us as Americans

To search deep down inside,

And discover if the things we do

Are always justified. to walk humbly

And closer in Thy ways,

And give us faith and courage

And put purpose in our days.

And make each one of us aware

That each must do his part,

For in the individual is where peace

Must have its start.

For a better world to live in

Where all are safe and free,

Must start with faith and hope

And love deep in the heart of “Me.”

~ Helen Steiner Rice ~

If my people, which are called by my name,

shall humble themselves,

and pray, and seek my face,

and turn from their wicked ways;

then will I hear from heaven,

and will forgive their sin,

and will heal their land.

II Chor. 7:14

June 5, 2016  Jane’s Heart to Heart     … Pastor’s Help Mate

MY STORY: ROSALIE (Jovan) Quiambao of the Philippines.

We were born Catholic. My sister became a Christian first. It was in April 1990 when my sister invited me to come to church, and  I accepted Christ as my personal Lord and Savior. Since then I wanted to know Christ more and eventually my parents became Christians too. We love our first church. It came from a church planting. Even up to now I still miss them.

God has always been faithful to us all of our lives.   Even when I was a kid I really didn’t have any plans to leave my country. When I grew up and started my own family, I still didn’t want to go anywhere else. My father, my grandma and I argued about it, because  it was their plan for me, especially my father, it was his dream for me to come to the USA.  Our family went through a great trial of our faith when a church leader betrayed our trust. The church and our family were greatly hurt and affected, but my husband and I continued to serve the Lord. I couldn’t forget what my father told me… He said…”Why do you still go to church? You don’t get anything  from it,” and I told him that I would prove to him that it was not worthless to serve my God. That time I prayed to God and asked Him to help me prove God to my father.

It wasn’t an easy journey, but I started applying to go to the USA, which I knew would never be easy for me, I had so much fear. I didn’t have enough money for all the exams that I had to take.  I didn’t feel I was intelligent enough to take it, but I kept holding on  to God’s promises to me in Isaiah 41:10  “ Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.” and Joshua 1:9  “Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.”  And God showed me and helped me in every step I took. 

It was a long process, it took me three years until August 5, 2005 when we finally came to the USA. But, I knew it shouldn’t end there, I started processing my parents’ papers to come here also. In Sept. 2007  my parents finally arrived here in the states.  Then I reminded my father… “Now I can tell you that it is not worthless to serve our God because he’s always been faithful to us”,  and he said, “Yes I agree.”   And now, they are staying here with me and going to church with me which I always enjoy doing. My father could not remember what he told me before, but it affected me so much. I always wanted them to have a stronger faith in God and to continue serving Him whatever happened, whatever the price it may be and to whatever this life would lead us, because I know that God is always in control and He will be with us wherever we go. We do serve a great God, who is greater than our problems, greater than our hurt and stronger to carry all the loads we are carrying. We just have to trust Him.

All praises and glory to God alone. May my story be a blessing to everyone.

God bless.

February 14, 2016  Jane’s Heart to Heart…  Pastor’s Help Mate

Valeene Hayes was a missionary with OMS the missionary society of  our Marilyn Wykes.    From an article from Jan-April 2016 OMS Outreach.

A lady who gives her heart and life daily to the Lord.

After surviving rheumatic fever as a child, doctors placed strict limitations upon Valeene telling her she would never be able to serve overseas as a missionary. But

God miraculously intervened, and in 1962, Miss Valeene began her missionary career in Haiti with One Mission Society.

One night when she and a coworker were talking about devotions and prayer, her coworker mentioned how hard it was to stay awake while praying before bedtime. She simply smiled and shared how she told her mother that same thing when she was a teenager. Her mother said, “He understands. What better way to fall asleep  than talking to Jesus?”  Often she would relate to coworkers what she was learning in her daily quiet times.  It seemed that she had a direct line to God because she often spoke of His leading her.

One story she shared was of her early years of fund raising with OMS. While driving through  the Iowa countryside, her car ran out of gas. This was before cell phones and there was not a pay phone in sight.  She walked to a nearby farm, looked around for help, but no one was home. While standing at her car, praying about what to do next, God prompted her to check  to see if the farm house door was unlocked. Finding the door unlocked she called out. No response. God again prompted her to go inside to search for a phone. 

While she was looking for the phone she saw several missionary prayer cards displayed on the hutch.  “Here I am in a home that prays for missionaries!” she thought. She found the phone and contacted a friend who lived nearby. Then, she left a handmade wooden heart box on the table, along with her prayer card and a note thanking the family for the use of their phone. 

As a woman of prayer, Valeene often shared stories of God’s leading which were also written into prayer tracts so that the world of OMS could read them too.

Valeene dedicated her life to God as a single woman and purposefully used her time to mentor and encourage young people during every stage of her life and ministry. Whether she was serving as dorm mother for the OMS Haiti MKs in Port-au-Prince, Dean of women at Vennard College, music in Mahogany (traveling Haitian choir), program director for Radio 4VEH’s FM Stereo 95, and prayer coordinator for OMS’ World Intercessors, she truly loved serving the Lord.

Since retiring from Haiti in the late 1990’s, Valeene has volunteered with the prayer ministry at  OMS World Headquarters, also planning worship monthly for OMS’ half day of prayer. With her experience in radio programing and music training, she understands the important role that music can play in preparing  hearts for prayers.

From her simple challenge of “Give a Good Day” to sharing the wisdom God has given her over the years, Valeene’s life of genuine faith daily continues to overflow with music, prayer, and God’s Word.      

DECEMBER 6, 2015    Jane’s Heart to Heart  … Pastor’s Help Mate

DECEMBER 6, 2015    Jane’s Heart to Heart  … Pastor’s Help Mate

IT IS YOUR CHOICE….

I Choose Love…

No occasion justifies hatred; no injustice warrants bitterness. I choose love. Today I will love God and what God loves.

I Choose Joy…

I will invite my God to be the God of circumstance. I will refuse the temptation to be cynical. I will refuse to see people as anything less than human beings, created by God. I will refuse to see any problem as anything less than an opportunity to see God.

I Choose Peace…

I will live forgiven. I will forgive so I may live.

I Choose Patience…

I will overlook the inconveniences of the world. Instead of cursing the one who takes my place, I’ll invite him to do so, Rather complain that the wait is too long, I will thank God for a moment to pray. Instead of clenching my fist at new assignments, I will face them with joy and courage.

I Choose Kindness…

I will be kind to the poor, for they are alone. Kind to the rich, for they are afraid. And kind to the unkind, for that is how God has treated me.

I Choose Goodness…

I will go without a dollar before I take a dishonest one. I will be overlooked before I will boast. I will confess before I accuse. I choose goodness.

I Choose Faithfulness…

Today I will keep my promises. My debtors will not regret their trust. My friends will not question my word. And my family will not question my love.

I Choose Gentleness…

Nothing is won by force. I choose to be gentle. If I raise my voice may it only be in praise. If I clench my fist, may it only be in prayer. If I make a demand, may it be only of myself.

I Choose Self-Control…

I refuse to let what will rot, rule the eternal. I choose self-control. I will be drunk only by joy. I will be impassioned only by my faith. I will be influenced only by God. I will be taught only by Christ. I choose self-control.

Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-Control. To these, I commit my day (Gal. 5:22-23).  If I succeed, I will give thanks. If I fail, I will seek His grace. And then when this day is done I will place my head on my pillow and rest

-Max Lucado

—jane.wpatch.com

2015 – MY ANNUAL CHALLENGE –

MY 2015 CHALLENGE

“WHEN WE PUT OUR LIVES IN GOD’S HANDS

HE PUTS HIS PEACE IN OUR HEARTS”  (ODB) 

Isaiah 26:3-4 “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee.   Trust ye in the Lord forever: for the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength.”   

Romans 15: 13 “ May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” NIV

If we continue without praise in our trials we give up peace and contentment and JOY.  We make things even worse when we remove ourselves from His grace and fellowship during these hard times by whining and complaining.        

We can counsel and train your hearts by being obedient and offering a sacrifice of Thanks letting God’s truth lift and sustain our spirits.

Christian contentment is that sweet, quiet, gracious frame of spirit, which freely submits to and delights in God’s wise and fatherly disposal in every condition.”  — Jeremiah Burroughs

Being joyful is not what makes you grateful

Being grateful is what makes you Joyful

October 5, 2014         JANE’S HEART TO HEART    ….PASTOR’S HELPMATE

October 5, 2014 JANE’S HEART TO HEART ….PASTOR’S HELPMATE

A REAL CHALLENGE – BE AN ENCOURAGER

Reviveourhearts.com has published several 30-Day Challenges.   Here is the plan… Pray for your Pastor or Pastor’s Wife, Prayer for you Husband or your Wife, 30 Days of Gratitude ( just be thankful intentionally for 30 days). You can choose your own challenge.   Here we go…. Wow, I thought to myself, I think I will do this, because I considered myself a good and loving wife and I can do this.. Write it down or give that person notes.

Day One:

You can’t say anything negative about that person… To that person… or to anyone else, about that person.

You must say something that you admire or appreciate about that person every day!      OK let’s get started.

This is just the beginning of these very insightful challenges….

Well to tell you the truth I had good intentions when I did this and I proceeded with the idea that I was going to be able to change my husband into the ideal man by doing this and I will say that it definitely made a big difference in his response to me over time, but some years later I thought I would go through it again because I wanted to do better, but this time I realized that it was me who really had changed  my attitude and my thinking about him and yes, I needed to do even better.

You have heard of the expression “Stink’n Think’n “?  Well this was what I began to realize. I became convicted about my own need to change completely how I thought about him. I was doing a lot of negative thinking even though I had prayed that God would help me to be loving and kind. I realized that I had a critical spirit. This challenge helped me to see the positive things about my husband which were hidden behind my critical spirit making it hard for me to find things I really appreciated.

That person you choose could be your husband, your child, your parents, a neighbor,  a fellow Christian, your employer, a customer, fellow student, roommate, sister or brother. Greet that person in a positive way and think of positive things to say to encourage them during the day. Sometimes it will be hard. It might be wise to write out a few things before hand. Be honest and don’t flatter. If you blow it, Don’t give up.

The real issue is to change completely how we respond to the people with whom we interact. “Through love serve one another” Gal.5:13b. Of course we know that this is a pure Christian love with the motive of becoming more like Christ and more able to encourage someone else to grow in the Lord or come to faith in Christ.   Often we have  such a negative response to people and life in general, that it is no wonder that our outreach for Christ falls on deaf ears. Let’s set out today to encourage someone  with our life.    There are many practical things you can praise.

Eph. 4:29 “Let no corrupt  communication proceed out of your mouth,but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.”

I would encourage you to go to reviveourhearts.com and look up those challenges and begin one and see what a difference it makes in your life, personally.