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Update – August 30

Adventist Community Services (ACS) has been asked by a number of emergency managers to deliver some of the products we have been preparing and stocking in semi-trailers from the ACS Depot in Keene, Texas. On the morning of August 28, a truck left for San Antonio to deliver clothes, hygiene kits and other needed items. Many of the residents housed in the San Antonio shelter were evacuated from Houston, where dirty flood waters forced them out of their homes. Shelter management requires those residing there to shower and have a clean change of clothing before they can enter the shelter. The ACS trailer arrived later in the afternoon to begin distribution of clothes in all sizes for the thousands that had need.

The work also continues in the city of Houston. ACS has been asked to manage a warehouse for the city.

Emotional and spiritual care providers will be ready in the next couple days to deploy to the flood-ravaged area for two weeks. These individuals will be assigned to work out of shelters that have been set up around the state.

ACS is forming a resource and needs listing that will be used over the next few days to determine how to support the local efforts. ACS recognizes that the efforts to support individuals, families and children will be long term, and we’re preparing for the long run.

Relevant: What does it mean to be a Christian today?

Join us every Saturday this month as we discover what it means to be a Relevant Christian in today’s Society.

September 1 – Dr. Ruth Chung, one of our church Elders will be our speaker.

September 8-10, we will be on our camping trip to Carpenteria State beach with Pastor Darrin Thurber as our special guest speaker.

September 16 – Youth Sabbath. Pastor Mikey Minimo will be our special guest speaker.

Includes Love for God and Man

    The whole work of grace is one continual service of love, of self-denying, self-sacrificing effort. During every hour of Christ’s sojourn upon the earth, the love of God was flowing from Him in irrepressible streams. All who are imbued with His Spirit will love as He loved. The very principle that actuated Christ will actuate them in all their dealing one with another.
    This love is the evidence of their discipleship…. When men are bound together, not by force or self-interest, but by love, they show the working of an influence that is above every human influence. Where this oneness exists, it is evidence that the image of God is being restored in humanity, that a new principle of life has been implanted. It shows that there is power in the divine nature to withstand the supernatural agencies of evil, and that the grace of God subdues the selfishness inherent in the natural heart.
    When self is merged in Christ, love springs forth spontaneously. The completeness of Christian character is attained when the impulse to help and bless others springs constantly from within—when the sunshine of heaven fills the heart and is revealed in the countenance.
    It is not possible for the heart in which Christ abides to be destitute of love. If we love God because He first loved us, we shall love all for whom Christ died. We cannot come in touch with divinity without coming in touch with humanity; for in Him who sits upon the throne of the universe, divinity and humanity are combined. Connected with Christ, we are connected with our fellow men by the golden links of the chain of love. Then the pity and compassion of Christ will be manifest in our life…. It will be as natural for us to minister to the needy and suffering as it was for Christ to go about doing good.

The law of God requires that man shall love God supremely, and his neighbor as himself. When through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, this is perfectly done, we shall be complete in Christ.


The Mightiest First Step

It’s hard to turn on the T.V. or your cellphone and not notice all the pain, struggle, and despair our world is going through. The news is constantly breaking with the latest updates on the fires, the shootings, or the terrorist attacks abroad. Your Facebook and Twitter feeds get 30-40 notifications of social injustice, political antics, and the occasional Christian MEME telling you to “have a good day”. And finally, CNN, The Washington Post, and TIMES magazine, show you images of Syrian children disheveled and bloody in the back of an ambulance, homes burned from the ravaging fires, and animals and people displaced by the Louisiana floods.

It’s hard to stand by and watch these tragedies and disasters happen and you almost feel hopeless to do anything. I want to give my time, money, and resources to the effort and do as much as I can. But let’s never forget the powerful action of Prayer!

You see, in times like these, bowing our hearts in earnest and fervent prayer to the God of the universe needs to be the first step our hearts and minds move towards. By praying we are surrendering our wills to God and allow more of His will to be enacted here on earth. Ellen White says in Selected Messages 1:121, “More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of.” It is also true of the church. “A revival of true Godliness among us is the greatest and most urgent of all our needs. To seek this should be our first work”.

    In addition to prayer, we are commanded to be people of action in time of injustice as it says in Isaiah 1:17, “Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.” The Bible also says, in Deuteronomy 27:19, “Cursed is anyone who withholds justice from the foreigner, the fatherless or the widow.” Nevertheless, the power of prayer, brings us into the very presence of God who will always listen. He is a loving Father who is interested when things are going well and when the deviations of life deal us devastating blows. When we feel like crying out, “God, where are You?” It is good to know that He is just a prayer away.

Let us remember the power of prayer! Let us be men and women of action! Let us take the mighty first step in daily falling to our knees in fervent prayer to God our Father for guidance in how to help this sin-stained world experience the hope and salvation we have in Christ Jesus.