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From the Powerful to the Personal

11.27.16 | by Ray Jones

    The Wall Street Journal website recently published it’s list of the “Least Powerful People in the World.” The list tracks what they call the top 50 "well-known individuals around the world who have recently experienced a precipitous loss in stature." According to Wall Street 24/7 these influential political figures, powerful executives, or successful athletes "have each fallen a great distance from their peak—some by their own doing and some as a result of circumstance."

    The hedge fund manager Bill Ackman topped the list for 2016. Ackman had the best returns of any hedge fund manager in 2014, but then he lost billions of dollars on his bet on Valeant Pharmaceuticals, whose stock plummeted after federal investigators probed the company's drug pricing practices.

    Then there was Sepp Blatter, former president of FIFA, the governing body of world soccer, the most popular sport in the world. After Blatter was accused of racketeering and other ethics violations, FIFA forced Blatter to resign and banned him from attending FIFA soccer games for eight years.

    David Petraeus, former director of the Central Intelligence Agency, abruptly resigned from his post, acknowledging shortly afterward an extra-marital affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell. Worse than the affair perhaps was the general admitting to sharing classified government information with Broadwell in a plea deal with the Department of Justice. All 50 people on the list became less powerful through some kind of moral collapse or unfortunate circumstances.

    In contrast to those mentioned above, who did not intent to lose their stature and powerful positions--- we have Christ, who purposely did give up His royal stature. We call it the incarnation, and it is a picture of the all Powerful Christ descending into our world in human flesh so that He might personally reconnect with us with God the Father. Paul described it this way in Philippians 2:6–8 “[Jesus] who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”

    He did for us what we could never do for ourselves. And because that is true, He is worthy of our highest praise and worship. So today, I’ll talk about more about the matter of our Worship. It is one of the 5 Core Values that we’ve been talking about for the past month. These values help shape us and make us into the Christ-followers and the Congregation that God has created us to be. Let me take a moment and remind you of our 5 Core Values:

    1.  Discipleship… building believers into fully devoted followers of Christ.

    2.  Stewardship… serving God with all our gifts, resources and natural abilities.

    3.  Relationship… reaching our world and helping connect them in a personal relationship to God.

    4.  Fellowship… cultivating faith friendships that encourage us in the faith and support us as comrades in spiritual warfare.

    5.  Worship… humbly gathering to honor God, praise Him and elevate His majesty in our lives and before our world.

     

    Thanks again for your extra mission efforts… over the past week we have done the following over and above our regular mission gifts, efforts and commitments. We distributed 238 complete Thanksgiving meals (each feeding up to a family of 7) to families in need; we also gave away 523 copies of God’s Word. Further, we distributed over $110,000 to several of our mission partners… $40,000 to Northeastern Baptist College (a true faith movement); $10,000 to our Monday Night Ministries; $5,000 to Fellowship of Christian Athletes in our area (our own Mike Phares is the local director, working with hundreds of student athletes); $5,000 to BMDMI medical missions (for use in the work of our own Ken & Kirsten Nelson); And by years end we will give more than $60,000 to IMB Lottie Moon world missions.

     

    And we did all this and more in one week!!!! Way to go RBC. I love being your pastor and remember, God is always trying to take us someplace new.

     

    For God’s Glory Alone,

    Bro. Ray Jones