Word of Encouragement – 4/15/2020

THE FIRST SOUND I HEARD EASTER MORNING AT 5:30am was the grand old anthem, “Christ the Lord is Risen Today.” Played by Stephen Burnaman, son of our Jerry and Nancy Burnaman, at Hyde Park Baptist Church of Austin where he has been church organist for years. He downloaded it onto Facebook. The 32,000 pipes of their fabulous organ, (which has a chamber the size of our sanctuary) filled the empty gigantic church — but the notes reached out far beyond her walls. It was a glorious beginning of what was to become a most blessed Resurrection Sunday! Thanks Stephen!

Teel reminded us of Mrs. Wilma playing “Christ Arose” each Easter morning here at FBC. I’m blessed to have been around when she did that years ago. She began the verse slowly, and when the chorus came, she ramped up the volume and the speed, and illustrated to the congregation, through that great anthem, the meaning of Christ’s triumphant resurrection from the grave.

Isn’t it great that we serve a risen Savior?

Another message, which rang loud and clear to me on this Resurrection morning, was the truth that good can come from bad — beauty can emerge from ashes. Eternal life springs forth from the death of the Savior, hanging and dying on a cross.

The pandemic is bad, but God has used it to bless and enhance His Body on this earth. I have never heard of so many people rendering aid to the helpless, and ministering to people in need. It is happening in our church. Some beautiful angels, left Carolyn and me, an 8 pack of toilet paper and a bag of Gala Apples.

Also, last Easter, we had 106 people in worship. Yesterday, this preacher’s message, according to the view meter, was logged onto by 348 people. Of course preaching to a computer monitor in the privacy of my study isn’t like looking eyeball to eyeball at God’s people, but at least the gospel was presented, and who knows to what corners of the earth it was extended?

There were so many worship opportunities online, it almost became overwhelming! I sat in on the couples class with Paul Burns teaching — then I caught a few minutes of Jordan Tew’s Sunday school lesson from the Baptist Publishing House. There were dozens of my preacher brethren streaming their messages online. Franklin Graham was preaching from Central Park in New York City while Michael W. Smith sang. It has possibly been the most unusual Easter of the Church Age, but eternity alone, will reveal the miracle of Christ, in spreading the Good News to a lost and dying world, suffering from a pandemic.

We have witnessed people high up in government bowing before the throne of God in prayer for this nation. Yes, God truly knows how to deliver beauty out of the ash heap.

CHURCH EXPENSES CONTINUE: While the earth’s population is on a strategic pause, expenses of the church are not! Therefore, I ask each of you to remember tithes and offerings. This can be done in a couple of ways — 1. Online giving through the church website. www.fbcpalmer.org. Then click “online giving” at the top, and the rest will be self explanatory.
2. Give through snail mail. Send offerings to FBC, P.O. 70, Palmer, TX 75152.

I love each of you, and am honored and overjoyed to be called your pastor.

Bro. Paul