Praying for our purpose and vision today. That we will love the Lord, others, and serve even more.
A great post from my friend and Pastor James Allen.
Saint Paul says: Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. Ephesians 4:32 (ESV)
May I offer some simple suggestions as we end 2020 and move on to 2021?
- Please tip the housekeepers at hotels. Most of the housekeepers are female, that I have encountered. Leave a tip each morning. I have talked to many over the years, and they are single moms, people who are new to the country and trying to make a new life, and wives with inadequate income from their spouse. Imagine what $5 to $10 a day per room would mean to them.
- Please turn off your car engine when grocery servers come out to load the groceries in the trunk. You will not freeze, you will not burn up, but you will limit the exhaust the servers have to inhale.
- Write a letter to someone who has…
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I am sitting here in an empty church. The sun is shining and it is a beautiful morning. It’s so weird not having our Compelled family gather.
Here is a link to the message. The title is “Misse Dei”. Go to our webpage, then sermons, then, watch Previous messages. Blessings Pastor Nate
Our website is compelled.church
Message from Pastor Nate, Board, and Staff,
All public services and gatherings for Compelled Church, Bedford and Holland are canceled for the next 2 weeks until March 28th. We may extend the cancellation depending how things progress. Our leadership is in full agreement.
We will not be having any small groups at the church, youth ministries or children’s ministries for the next full 2 weeks. All Monday and Wednesday night ministries are canceled for 2 weeks.
We will be going live tonight at 6 pm and the services will be available to stream through out the week.
Love you all Wendy I’ll be doing some live daily devotions, as will some of our other staff.
I will be using my website: www.nateelarton.com, Facebook, as well as my Youtube channel Nateelarton
Pastor Nate and the Official Board
Many of us (preachers) declare that we need Jesus to go to Heaven. There is something that I want to stress that God has been reminding me. God intends to be with us now. We don’t have to wait until Heaven.
Jesus proclaimed that the Kingdom of God is now. That His presence and coming to earth, was Heaven and Earth coming together. Too many of us think God is in Heaven, and someday If we are good and love Jesus, we get to go there to be with God. That is incorrect. God is with us now. He has come to be with in this life. Our eternal life started the moment we put our faith in HIm. He is here! He is with us and His presence, the Holy Spirit, lives within the believer.
“And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14, NASB95)
He came and “tabernacled” with us. He set up his tent here on earth. The whole Bible narrative is about God coming to be with us. How can God live and be with us, as selfish and ungodly mankind can be? The truth of forgiveness and reconciliation with God through the blood of Jesus that He shed on the cross is more than just getting us ready for Heaven, this is so the God of Heaven can live and dwell in our midst now.
Paul, the apostle says it like this, “But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” (Ephesians 2:13, NASB95) As many traditions celebrate Lent, the 40 days before Easter, to reflect on the death, sufferings, and path of Christ to the Cross and of course the resurrection, we must not forget why.
Jesus came to cleanse us from sin, so God can live in us. We become His “tabernacle” or “tent”. We are made so clean by his forgiveness and cleansing, that He lives in us. God is with us now. He is here. We don’t have to wait until Heaven.
May we all live with this revelation. Enjoy the presence of God now. He ways are with us. He lives within all those who love, believe, and serve him. We don’t have to wait to be with God. God in His love, as came to us. Pastor Nate
Compelled Church is going to jump into the Book of Revelation.
I have immersed myself inthis book. I have never paid much attention to the “prophecy” preachers. “People don’t even know how to serve Jesus today.” I would say a little snarky when the topic came up. But I really felt strong during our week of fasting and prayer that I should embark us down that road as Jesus has a lot to say to us in this last book of the Bible. He specifically gave the messages to the Seven Churches and we will spend most time there. I don’t believe the churches are different “ages” of the churches through history. I believe they communicate the heart of Christ and give some amazing messages. The book of Revelation also give 33 descriptions of Jesus and many eternal rewards to the faithful. I think some of the book has already been fulfilled, and some is yet to be.
The messages to the churches then are quite germane to us now. They Apply. The problems which God’s people then, are really quite the same.
The church is America is in trouble. We are shrinking and being nudged out of society, the marketplace, the schools, and businesses. We are hiding our faith too much. Many believe the church, is antiquated, and irrelevant. The messages and methods of the church are boring, and not interesting.
I am not going to believe that, quit, or become one of the spiritual leaders who cry about the state of the church in America, as a reason we can’t get our act together.
I am just not giving in to throwing in the towel. If Jesus is building His church, and He is according to Matthew 16, and if Revelation is true, and it is, then there is a lot of hope, and a lot of help from the Holy Spirit. We all just need to grow and really be followers of Jesus, not just nominal believers who belief stuff, but live differently. Sin needs to bugt us, convict us, and Christ’s love and his blood (Revlation 1.5) needs to free us!
Bring your Bibles and your journals to services. Grab the notes, and be ready to learn for transformation of our lives, not more information. Jesus wants to change us, and grow us. We can be spiritual babies forever. He is calling us to Spiritual Maturity!
Ready to Rock
Lost your way.? Life is meaningless? Do dark clouds surround your heart? Hope seems lost, mistakes are magnified, discouragement is heavy?
As the group “Selah” came on my playlist this morning this song stopped me immediately during my writing and reading. As I looked up, listening intently, these words were sung.
“You are for hope when our hearts have hopelessly lost our way.” Selah
I don’t know who may be reading this, but I felt very led to write this. Jesus is your way. He loves you, just the way you are. Broken, lost, discouraged, maybe so lonely. He is with you. A prayer, a cry from your spirit may usher in a change internally within you. The return of hope.
I did this, yes, many years ago. A kid with very little happy things going on in life, no motivation, broken home and broken heart. I lost my way, and was living everyone else’s way. I needed to be loved so badly, their love, anyone’s really. Then I met him, I resisted love and hope for a bit. I rejected God, based on all my wrong assumptions, but He doesn’t give up on us easily. One wonderful summer day, I gave up, gave in, surrendered and asked Jesus to help me.
His immediate presence in my life was so real to me even though it was invisible to everyone else. He brought me hope, and meaning. I was on a new course in life, a new journey, with new goals, and a new best friend, Jesus.
Yes it’s mysterious. It’s terribly wonderful to believe in the Lord and serve him so strongly when He eludes our physical senses at times.
If you have lost your way. Return to your faith in your Lord.
If you have lost your way. Jesus gives healing and grace.
If you have lost your way. He will heal your broken heart from everything that broke it.
If you have lost your way. Nothing you drink, swallow,smoke, watch, or sweet talk will give you true hope.
Jesus is the hope, when we have none, when we have lost our way. Remember, “Everyone who calls on the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10.9
Here is a link to that song. Wonderful, Merciful Savior by Selah
At Compelled church I have been teaching on the spiritual disciplines in our series called “Making Room”. This weekend I will teach on the discipline of submission. As I study and read and realize this is definitely a concept we don’t like to talk about and surely struggle to live out. But it is a discipline of the heart nonetheless.
Submission comes easy to me when I want to submit, serve, and obey. Maybe I will be noticed for it, or I will be thought of highly for submitting or serving in some “public” way that others can see. Submission is really deeper than that. It is of the heart. To give up perceived or even real “rights” is hard for our flesh and not thought of as honorable in our culture. We truly believe we have a right to do whatever we want and if anyone disagrees or questions us they become enemy #1.
Submission has been abused by religion, leaders, churches, and organizations, but that does not mean it is not a virtue still. Jesus had to submit, “not my will but thine” (Luke 22.42). Paul’s teaching to the Philippians show the submission of Christ, “And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death— even death on a cross! (Phil. 2.8)”. He submitted to the plan of the Father, to us for our freedom from sin, to death which God should never experience, and He submitted to how that will happen, on a disgusting cross. Do we think we do not have to submit, serve, obey, and give up our rights, when our example did, and He did for us.
Submission of the heart to the ways of God is the deepest and most secret act and posture of our heart. Our jealousy, offense, hate, bitterness, all the things we believe we have a right to have, and to feed, must be forsaken for the sake of the love of Christ and His desire for our soul to be spiritually healthy. It is also an act of love for others.
Submission of our souls, and lives to the truths of the Bible, the moral compass, God gives us, and the love he wants to shower us with. When we do not truly give him all areas of our life, we forfeit an awareness of His love and presence. Our relationship turns into religion and our hearts can turn to stone.
The true mark of a child is they must have their own way. Submission is a virtue for the mature. We love others more than ourselves. Just like Jesus did.
Read the teachings of our Savior,
Mark 8:34-36 “And He summoned the crowd with His disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. 35 For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his [b]life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it.36 For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul?”
May the Lord helps us submit, which is the deep virtue of love, and our world needs this so desperately, as does our families, spouses, children and community.
Pastor Nate Elarton
Matthew 28:17 “When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted.”
Jesus in his resurrected body, was worshiped but some doubted he was truly alive. Even some of the worshipers might have doubted. This brings up a good topic. Can we really love God and wrestle with doubts? Yes, Of course. We are all on a journey of faith. Our faith grows through our life. We are learning, we are worshiping, and sometimes, even doubting.
We must be like Thomas who said, “Lord I believe, help my unbelief (Mark 9.24).” We do walk in what we are not sure of for a lot of our faith; that is why it is faith. As I grow older in age and in Christ, my doubts are disappearing and there are less of them, but I have also found contentment in the mysteries of the Kingdom.
I am good with the Lord’s mysteries. I am OK if I can’t “know” and fully “understand” everything in my spiritual life with Christ. I mean it is heavenly and I am earthly. I won’t get it all and understand it all. I don’t mind that anymore. “I don’t know,” is a statement I was ashamed to say, but now embrace it. I don’t know a lot, but I do know the Lord and he is good.
If you have some doubts about the things of God, that’s OK. We work through the things we don’t understand, and at times must settle on being good with not knowing. If we can’t comprehend all mysteries of the Lord, His Scriptures, and spiritual concepts, as long as we know Christ, trust our lives with him. Through the mysteries I can still grow in my love, my faith, and my devotion to the Lord. These do not prevent faith, but actually spur us ahead.
I think of that older hymn “Many things about tomorrow, I don’t seem to understand, but I know Who holds tomorrow, and I know Who holds my hand.” That is so very true. Have a great tomorrow.
I really took time to think upon this verse this morning.”My heart is steadfast, O God;I will sing, I will sing praises, even with my soul (Psalm 108.1).”
The word “steadfast” caught my attention. It is a Hebrew word, “nakon”. This word means “established, fixed, stable, and secure.” That is a heart in the Lord. Our hearts can get flaky, uncommitted, weird, and insecure. The Lord wants to establish our heart. Fix our hearts solidly upon Him.
With a steadfast heart we can withstand the storms (read Ps. 107.23-32). We can get through times of change and the seasons of life. With a steadfast heart on God we won’t turn back to the world for attention, and we won’t embrace the carnal values of a system without God. With a steadfast heart we will survive through tragedy, heartache, and sadness.
With a steadfast heart we can sing with not only our voice, but our soul. Our life and our soul will sing of God’s goodness to us. We won’t go through life waffling with our faith, sinking into serving the Lord and then out again, over and over (I see this so much.).
Ask the Lord to establish your heart so our hearts will always be “nakon”. May nothing shake our heart.
P. Nate Elarton
New American Standard Bible: 1995 update. (1995). (Ps 108:1). La Habra, CA: The Lockman Foundation.