A Word From Steve Jones
December 10th, 2018
Steve Jones here…summer officially started this past week! I trust you have some plans to get away and get some rest and relaxation! It’s so important to recharge our batteries. You can’t keep charging without recharging.
The Psalmist reminds us of God’s desire for each of us to find adequate rest, saying in Psalm 127:2 (Message): “It is useless to rise up early and go to bed late and work your worried fingers to the bone. Don’t you know that God enjoys giving rest to those He loves?”
Did you catch that? God enjoys it when we have a good rest. So do something spiritual today…have a nap this afternoon. Tell your board chair Dr. Steve told you it’s okay. Yes…my tongue is firmly in my cheek as I write these words, but the principle is sound. The principle is Biblical. God is very clear about our need for rest. To ignore his fourth commandment is foolish. When we function outside the way God designed us, we are headed for trouble. Spiritual, emotional and physical burn-out. A Sabbath rest each week is commanded to rest our body, recharge our emotions and refocus our spirit…sounds like a three point sermon, eh?!
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I encourage you to come to “Vital Signs”, our National Convention in Niagara Falls, Ontario, from Nov 5 to 7, 2012. Our guest speakers are a husband and wife team, Peter and Geri Scazzero. They will be sharing in two seminars and two workshops how we can get healthier both spiritually and emotionally. I challenge all leaders to bring their spouses to Niagara Falls to be ministered to. This is NOT a marriage enrichment conference. Let me repeat that. Our Fellowship 48 is not a marriage enrichment conference—although Niagara Falls is a great place to visit as a couple.
Our time with the Scazzeros will be an opportunity to look honestly at our ministry lives and find practical solutions. Your National Fellowship is also hiring some professional Christian Counselors to be available (free to you) for the 48 hours of the convention.
Make plans today to get a babysitter for the kids and come to our 2012 Fellowship 48, our “couple’s convention”.
Have a blessed week,
(copy of Poster below to download and copy of July 2012 Newsletter with prayer requests)
Dear Pastors, Missionaries, Chaplains and Friends,
Steve here…this Sunday is Father’s Day. So I looked up the definition of “fatherhood” in the dictionary and I found the word “father” between “fathead” and “fatigue”. I thought the dictionary was saying more than I really wanted to know. There are a lot of models out in society claiming the true example of fatherhood. The macho model, mask model or milk-toast model. But these men are often “fatheads”.
Our culture is suffering from a manhood identity crisis. Are there any alternatives to help men? We have to go no further than our Bible. In God’s Word, we find God’s model for manhood. In fact, if men choose to follow God’s values for Biblical manhood, men are promised success and satisfaction in life. A man’s greatness should be determined less by the value of their wealth than by the wealth of their values.
The Apostle Paul gave special commendation to two men whose values modeled what God expects of men. The two men were Timothy and Epaphroditus. In Philippians 2:20, Paul writes of Timothy, saying: “I have no one else like Timothy…” (NLT) He was a rare catch and treasured by Paul. Whereas, in Philippians 2:29, Paul writes of Epaphroditus: “... be sure to honour people like him” (NLT). What made these two men so valuable in the Apostle Paul’s eyes? Pastor Rick Warren gives some helpful hints from Philippians 2 on the values God values when it comes to Biblical manhood.
A man should be categorized by COMPASSION (Phil 2:20-21). God is looking for men who will put relationships before results…people before profit. Getting the job done is less important than coming alongside others (i.e. fathers and their kids) and getting the job done together.
The second value that God is looking for in men is CONSISTENCY (Phil 2:22). Men who will put character before conformity. Men who are not afraid of standing alone and being counter cultural. In Philippians 2:22 we read, “… Timothy has proved himself.” The word “proved” (dokima) means you have been accepted after being tested. The character of a man is tested daily. Will you bend under pressure? We all reap what we sow when it comes to consistent character.
A third value is COMMITMENT (Phil 2:25-27). The Apostle Paul calls Epaphroditus a “true brother”, “faithful worker”, “courageous soldier” and “your messenger” (vs. 25). A man committed as a son to his family, a worker to his mission, a soldier to his army and a disciple to his cause. God is looking for men who are more interested in putting the cause of Christ before their comfort, even if that means sickness and possible death (vs. 27).
Lastly, God is looking for men to exercise COURAGE (Phil 2:29-30). Men who will put service before security. Epaphroditus “risked his life for the work of Christ” (vs. 30). Paul says to “honour” men like that. God wants men to be “risk” takers. To step out in faith in our service for the Lord. If men are not “offering themselves as living sacrifices” (Rom 12:1) then we have missed the whole point to life.
Timothy and Epaphroditus were two ordinary joes who were man enough to live sold out for Christ. They modeled these godly values and the Apostle Paul’s testimony of each of them was: “I have no one else like Timothy…” and “… be sure to honour people like him”.
Brothers, can anyone say that of you? In a very recent North American survey of evangelical clergy it was discovered that 70% of pastors do not have a close friend. Not friends or acquaintances, but a close friend. My heart aches if this statistic is in fact true. It’s a problem that needs a solution.
Brothers, please take care of yourselves. Our service to the Lord is a marathon, not a 100 metre dash. It is for this reason I invited Peter and Geri Scazzero to our Fellowship 48 on Nov 5 – 7, 2012 in Niagara Falls. The Lord has used their ministry to encourage men and women to seek emotionally healthy spirituality. The theme of our National Convention is “Vital Signs” as we look at the health of our leaders and discover solutions to greater vitality. This is your invitation to come to beautiful Niagara Falls and be ministered to. Please come. My hope is Fellowship 48 will feel like an oasis to help fill our reservoirs.
Have a blessed week,
From the Fellowship Office
Some of you may have been aware of the declining health of Marilyn Jones’ mom (Steve’s mother-in-law). On Saturday evening she went home to be with her Lord. Please be in prayer for Marilyn, Steve and family especially in these difficult days as plans are made.
Group Hug ! ! !
Thanks to Eugene and Kathy for opening up their home to the 12 Jamaican ladies on Friday night for the start of a regular Bible Study! It was a real blessing as the ladies shared their favorite Bible verse and what it meant to them personally. Our future plans are to have a regular Bible Study at the church with leaders such as Bev, Kathy and others.Our desire is for the ladies to have a loving church that will care for them while they are away from their native country and have a closer relationship with the Lord who will meet their every need.Oh, yes, we had lots of hotdogs, hamburgers, cake and ice cream as well introducing them to Canadian food.