Shallowford Free Will Baptist
Friday, November 24, 2017
For the Glory of Christ Alone
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What Is the Most Important Part of Our Church Vision?
 
 





Pastor's Page

 
 
                                                                                                                                                                                     November 14, 2017

 

For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

~2 Corinthians 4:6

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"Then the sicknes begane to fall sore amongst them, and the weather so bad .... the Gov/r and cheefe of them, seeing so many dye, and fall downe sick dayly, thought it no wisdom to send away the ship...."

Capt. Miles Standish had been much at his wife Rose's bedside. As much time, that is, as he could spare from stalking game, guarding against savages, and felling trees to construct crude homes on shore.

A bitter wind whistled through chinks and cracks in the Mayflower, anchored in Plymouth harbor that winter of 1620-21. Rose's chills would turn to uncontrollable shaking. Then just as suddenly, her body would be ablaze with fever. Herbs from the surgeon's chest did little to relieve her. By spring only five wives remained out of the eighteen who had sailed to Plymouth. Rose was not among them.

Thanksgiving? What was that? The golden dreams of a New World that Miles and Rose had cherished together had evaporated into hollow hopes. And yet that fall Capt. Standish joined other bereaved Pilgrims in the first Thanksgiving celebration.

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                Can you imagine the overwhelming loss of those who sought refuge and freedom in the New Word? Only five out of the eighteen wives who set sail to Plymouth survived to help settle this new land. That means that 13 husbands were left widowers; 13 sets of children would spend their youth without the warm embrace of a mother. And yet the human spirit, when in connection with the Spirit of God, is not so easily crushed by the circumstances of life. For the Christian, there is something more enduring and more eternal than those physical realities that assault our souls. Death has been defeated by the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. There is hope and promise in spite of what is seen as we seek after the unseen things which are eternal. Yes, our pains are difficult, but they are also temporary. Soon…sooner every day…the Lord Jesus Christ will overcome this wickedness of darkness and evil in this world, and we will rule as joint-heirs with Christ Jesus forever.
                And THAT ought to be at least a significant part of our reason to celebrate during this Thanksgiving season. Folks, gratitude is not as much about what we possess as how we perceive our lives. If you and I are constantly seeking after fleeting material things, we will always be left wanting disappointed and unsatisfied. Instead we are to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added to you (Matt. 6:33). And a strange thing happens when we do. We will learn to focus less on what we don’t have and more upon what we do. We will begin to identify unseen blessings all around us as we begin to take pleasure in the simple joys that God has given to us. That is the context of Thanksgiving: to look to what we do have in spite of what we do not.
                We are abundantly blessed, more abundantly blessed than we are sometimes even aware of. We live in one of the richest nations in the history of the world. Our freedoms allow us to worship without fear of a government organization coming in and arresting the whole lot of us. Though we might not have fancy houses, most of us have adequate living arrangements. Most of us drive a vehicle to a job and back to a home filled with family. We have clothes upon our backs and food in our bellies. I’ve wanted us to fill up the wall of our Fellowship Hall with the blessings the Lord has given to us, to do as the song writer says and “name them one by one.” There is absolutely no reason that we can’t do just that, if we’re honest enough to see those blessings and identify them as such.
                But even more valuable than physical, temporal blessings are the eternal blessings that God has given to us in Christ Jesus. Our verse above speaks of the overwhelming victory that God accomplished over the spiritual darkness thrust upon this world since Genesis 3. “For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness…” In an act of His divine, unalterable will the Lord spoke spiritual light into a world in the same way that He spoke physical light into it in the very beginning. He commanded it. The forces of evil did everything they could to stop the advancement of God’s kingdom, but His will would not be thwarted. God desired His light, the true light, to illuminate this world. The world hated it. It exposed their deeds. But they could not stop it! And that very same God has shined that very same light into our hearts in the knowledge of Jesus Christ. In Him, we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins, and life everlasting. He is the Source of all of our joy and blessing. Every good and perfect gift comes down from above (James 1:17a). And if that were all we’d ever received from God, that would be sufficient to call each one of us absolutely blessed!
                And so on this last entry before we enter into this Thanksgiving season, I want to remind you of where your true blessings are. You’re not going to find true happiness on the shelves of Walmart at 5 AM on Black Friday. You’re not going to find blessing in the fleeting things you own. These might be good things, but without Christ they are empty and meaningless. But with Christ, even the worst situations can be tinged with the richest blessings of the Lord. If Capt. Miles Standish can stand up and praise the Lord during the first Thanksgiving Day observance, surely we ought to be able to as well. Remember, true gratitude has nothing to do with what you own; it’s in choosing to recognize your blessings as individual gifts from the God of Lights who loves you and has given the best He had to save your soul.
                Let us remember to praise Him this Thanksgiving and throughout the rest of the holidays! Have a great week!

 

~Bro. Benjamin

 

SCRIPTURE CHALLENGE

Name one significant biblical figure who also shares a name with a woman in the Bible.

 

 

 

Previous Postings                                                                           This Week's Sermons
November 14
November 7
October 31                                                                                              November 12 (AM)
October 24                                                                                             "He Must Increase"
October 10                                                                                                  John 3:25-31
October 3                                                                                  
September 19                                                                                          November 12 (PM)
September 5
                                                                                   "What Paul Prays For, Part 1"
August 29                                                                                               Ephesians 1:15-21
August 22                                                                                             
August 15                                                                                              November 15 (WED)
August 8                                                                                                   
Acts 4:23-35
July 25                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
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If you need a copy of any sermon from the past, email Bro. Benjamin with the date and title of the message listed below.
We will be happy to send you a CD of the sermon. Additionally sermons are available through the "Multimedia" Page
 

November 19 (AM) "Great Reasons to Celebrate"--Psalm 100:1-5
November 12 (AM) "He Must Increase"--John 3:25-31
November 12 (PM) "What Paul Prays For, Part 1"--Ephesians 1:15-21
November 5 (AM) "Help Us to See More Clearly"--Mark 8:22-26
November 5 (PM) "The Best Thing"--Ephesians 1:13-14

October 29 (AM) "Help Us to See More Clearly, Introduction"--Mark 8:22-26
October 22 (AM) "Deal with the Planks"--Matthew 7:1-5
October 22 (PM) "More Good Stuff"--Ephesians 1:9-12
October 15 (AM) "The Most Important Victory"--Luke 10:17-20
October 15 (PM) "Who Did It?"--Matthew 21:28-32
October 8 (AM) "The Whole Armor of God, Part 2"--Ephesians 6:14-18
October 1 (AM) "The Whole Armor of God, Part 1"--Ephesians 6:14-18
October 1 (PM) "In Him"--Ephesians 1:7-8

September 24 (AM) "Uphold God's Man"--Exodus 17:8-13 [Rev. David Amburgey]
September 24 (PM) "The Call"--Mark 1:16-19 [Bro. Johnny Amburgey]
September 17 (AM) "Know Your Enemy"--Ephesians 6:10-13
September 17 (PM) "First Things First"--Ephesians 1:1-6
September 10 (AM) "An Army of One"--2 Samuel 23:11-12
September 10 (PM) "Refresh My Heart"--Philemon 20-25
September 3 (AM) "When Satan Touches You"--Job 1:6-12, Job 2:1-8, Luke 22:31-32, 2 Corinthians 12:7-10

August 27 (AM) "He Really, Really Does Love Us"--1 John 4:9-11
August 27 (PM) "Put It on My Tab"--Philemon 17-19
August 13 (AM) "Godliness with Contentment"--1 Timothy 6:6-10
August 13 (PM) "A Brand New Man"--Philemon 12-16
August 6 (AM) "Calling All Sinners"--Matthew 9:9-13
August 6 (PM) "For Love's Sake"--Philemon 8-11

July 30 (AM) "Good Things Are Coming!"--Acts 3:17-21
July 30 (PM) "Accolades to Pursue"--Philemon 1-7
July 23 (AM) "Our 'Lot' in Life"--Genesis 19:1-29
July 16 (AM) "A Gospel You Can Trust"--2 Peter 1:16-21
July 16 (PM) "Take Heed"--Colossians 4:16-18
July 9 (AM) "Look Ahead"--Isaiah 43:18-19
July 2 (AM) "As Close As His Hands"--Isaiah 49:14-18

June 25 (AM) "Who is the REAL Lord of the Sabbath?"--Luke 6:1-5
June 25 (PM) "Paul's Supporting Cast"--Colossians 4:7-15
June 18 (AM) "Will the REAL Family of God Please Stand Up?"--Matthew 12:46-50
June 11 (AM) "When Opportunity Knocks"--Romans 12:17-21
June 11 (PM) "Watch Your Mouth!"--Colossians 4:2-6
June 4 (AM) "Walking in the Midst of Storms"--Matthew 14:22-33
June 4 (PM) "New Relationships for the New Man, Part #2"--Colossians 3:22-4:1

May 28 (AM) "Remember"--Luke 24:13-35
May 21 (AM) "The Effect Calvary Had"--John 19:16-20 [Bro. Larry Morelock]*
May 14 (AM) "Hope for the Future"--Genesis 3:20
May 7 (AM) "What We've Got, We Give"--Acts 3:1-10
May 7 (PM) "New Relationships for the New Man, Part #1"--Colossians 3:18-4:1

April 30 (AM) "God First"--Haggai 1:1-15
April 23 (AM) "Sheep Among Wolves"--Matthew 10:16-26
April 16 (AM) "Look Unto Jesus"--Hebrews 12:1-3
April 9 (AM) "But the Gift of God Is Eternal Life"--Romans 6:23
April 9 (PM) "Six Absolutes for the Christian's Life, Part 3"--Colossians 3:12-17
*April 2 (AM) "Forsaken"--Mark 15:33-34 [Bro. David Amburgey]
April 2 (PM) "Elements of Revival"--Ezekiel 37:1-10 [Bro. Louis Durbin]

March 26 (AM) "One Way or the Other"--Matthew 7:13-14
March 26 (PM) "Six Absolutes for the Christian's Life, Part 2"--Colossians 3:12-17
March 19 (AM) "The Only Cure for the Human Condition"--Luke 5:27-32
March 19 (PM) "Six Absolutes for the Christian's Life, Part 1"--Colossians 3:12-17
March 12 (AM) "He Really Does Care for You"--Matthew 10:29-31
March 12 (PM) "Put On the New Man"--Colossians 3:10-11
March 5 (AM) "The Keys to Salvation: Repentance & Faith, Part 2"--Mark 1:14-15; Galatians 3:5-9
March 5 (PM) "Put Off the Old You"--Colossians 3:8-9

February 26 (AM) "The Keys to Salvation: Repentance & Faith, Part 1"--Mark 1:14-15; Psalm 51:1-9
February 26 (PM) "Put Them Out of YOUR Misery"--Colossians 3:5-7
February 19 (AM) "Sufficient Grace"--2 Corinthians 12:1-10
February 19 (PM) "Look Up!"--Colossians 3:1-4
February 12 (AM) "We're ALL Part of Something Bigger"--1 Corinthians 12:12-27
February 5 (PM) "Free Really Does Mean Free"--Colossians 2:20-23

January 22 (AM) "Are You All In OR Not At All?"--John 6:60-71
January 22 (PM) "Christ: the True Substance of Our Life & Worship"--Colossians 2:16-19
January 15 (AM) "Practical Implications of Our Justification by Faith"--Romans 5:1-5
January 8 (AM) "Know Who You Are"--Philippians 2:12-18
January 1 (AM) "Just One"--John 1:40-51

*Recording Unavailable

 
Click here for a list of available sermons from 2016!
Click here for a list of available sermons from 2015!
Click here for a list of available sermons from 2014!

Click here for a list of available sermons from 2013!
Click here for a list of available sermons from 2012!
Click here for a list of available sermons from 2011! 

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About Our Pastor
 
 
Bro. Benjamin Miller began his ministry at Shallowford Free Will Baptist Church in August, 2011. Prior to pastoring our church, Bro. Benjamin pastored at New Home FWB in Colquitt, GA. He received his B.A. in History from Welch College (formerly Free Will Baptist Bible College) in Nashville, TN. He then received his M.A. in Biblical Studies from Lipscomb University, a Church of Christ graduate school in Nashville. Bro. Benjamin enjoys spending time with his family, reading, and fellowshipping with the people of the church. He is a HUGE Braves fan! Our pastor has dedicated himself to becoming a student of the Word and to preaching the Word with passion, integrity, and real-life applications.
 
Bro. Benjamin married Jara in June 2002. She is a special educator at Mount Bethel Elementary School here in Marietta. She is a tremendous part of his life and quite active in our church. 
 
They had their first son, Thomas, in June 2008. Thomas was born prematurely, and is a testimony to God's amazing grace and provision. He is now a 3rd grader, and does well in school. His greatest ability is to reach out to those in his class in concern and in love.
 
Bro. Benjamin and Sis. Jara welcomed Nathanael in March, 2014. His name means "given by God" and he is absolute reminder of God's ability to bless individuals beyond measure.
 
We hope you'll take the opportunity to get to know our pastoral family!