“ARE YOU BLESSED?”
Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly,
nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
But his delight is in the law of the LORD;
and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
Psalm 1:1-2 (KJV)
Without being judgmental, many of us probably question how sincere some are when they say that they are “blessed” after we inquire about their well-being. Actually, for people to say that they are “blessed” is a good answer, but it could be just a casual substitute for saying that they are “fine.”
We gain a version of what it means to be blessed in Psalm 1:1-2, for the writer begins by addressing our hangouts and those we hang out with. We must be careful regarding how we hang out and who we hang out with. Sometimes, we make the mistake of hanging out in the wrong places and hanging out with the wrong people because of our need for delight. As believers, our delight must be in God’s word, (in particular His law) which we should meditate upon day and night. In summation, we are blessed when our hangouts and the people we hang out with are according to God’s will, and we are blessed when our delight is in God’s word (“the law of the Lord”) which is what we muse upon daily. Consequently, I encourage each of us to be blessed by being mindful of our surroundings and to live each day pensively in regards to God’s word.
St. John is constantly exploring ways to “Reach Others For Christ,” and this week we successfully launched “W.O.W.” which means Words Of Wisdom. W.O.W. is another way for people to be blessed in God’s word and for our congregation to expand our online presence. Currently, more people view our Worship Celebrations on Facebook than on YouTube, but W.O.W. enhanced our presence this week on YouTube which we believe will help increase our viewers overall on YouTube. Moreover, W.O.W. is an opportunity for St. John ministers and teachers to share their God-given gifts in approximately 5 minutes as a Biblical Thought which will be available for viewing every Tuesday morning and thereafter.
A lot of people prefer and enjoy a brief message rather than a sermon in a Worship Celebration as we discovered during the 15 months when our church facilities were closed due to the pandemic. We were reaching thousands (3,000-7,500 people) every week via Podcast messages which was much more than what we are currently reaching via live streaming. I often feel bad when people tell me how much they wish the Podcast messages could resume, but I realize that I cannot effectively prepare weekly Podcast messages and weekly sermons for our in-person audience and live streaming; therefore, I plan to utilize certain ministers and teachers of our church to share each week a 5-minute Biblical Thought which we now know as W.O.W. Anticipate another blessing next Tuesday morning (approximately 7 a.m.) as another one of God’s servants shall minister to us with W.O.W.
Our Church Safety Protocol: We currently have two Worship Celebrations (each is approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes) every Sunday: 9 a.m. at the North Campus and 11 a.m. at the South Campus. We encourage everyone to arrive at least 10 minutes beforehand to be seated safely and comfortably. Temperatures are checked, hand sanitizing is urged, social distancing is applied regarding where people shall sit and walk, wearing a mask is still mandatory (even though exceptions are now made in our county which began November 1st, utilization of restrooms is restricted to 2-4 people at a time (depending on the size of the restroom), and congregating before and after Services is prohibited.
Because of social distancing, we now can only utilize 30-40% of our total seating capacity. Consequently, we are promoting the growth of our virtual audience. I ask everyone to share with others how they can view our Worship Celebrations and much more via live streaming (Facebook or YouTube) or hear them via podcasts. For more information, you may visit our website at sjmbc.org.
Next Week’s Activities: I strongly encourage everyone to maintain a connection with God and one another, and I strongly encourage everyone to participate in St. John activities that benefit you. Regarding each of the following activities, visit our website at sjmbc.org if you need more information. What’s forthcoming?
- Worship Celebrations at 9:00 a.m. (North Campus) and 11:00 a.m. (South Campus)
- Online Church School at 2 p.m.
- Online Lord’s Supper (1st Sundays) at 7:00 p.m.
- Online J.A.M. Sessions For Children (2nd and 4th Sundays) at 4:00 p.m.
- Preparation For Grocery Giveaway at 10:00 a.m. (South Campus)
- Online Women Missionary Ministry – General Mission (4th Mondays) at 6:00 p.m.
- Grocery Giveaway at 12:00 p.m. (North Campus and South Campus)
- Online Prayer at 12:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
- Online Church School at 7:00 p.m.
If you desire to be blessed, apply Psalm 1:1-2 to your life daily by being mindful of your surroundings and living each day meditating on God’s word.
May God bless and sustain each of us.
Your Servant In Christ,
Dr. Kevin B. Hall, Pastor