First Baptist Church St. Marys
Tuesday, July 16, 2019

From the Music Director

Half Notes and Whole Rests 

“Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see .”  Hebrews 11:1 (NLT)

As we look down the road to see what 2019 has in store for us, it’s difficult to see further than the end of your nose. And therein lies the truth in Hebrews 11:1. It is in the not seeing that our faith is revealed. The second century Church Father, St. Augustine, said it this way: “Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe.”

Abraham went up the mountain with Isaac to offer the sacrifice God had asked of him: the son he had waited a hundred years for. But as he began to climb the mountain with Isaac, by faith Abraham told the servants in Genesis 22:5, “The boy and I will travel a little farther. We will worship there, and then WE will come right back” (emphasis added). He knew that God was up to something good.

Joseph’s brothers sold him into slavery and Potiphar’s wife accused him of rape, yet he continued to hold to his faith, despite the circumstances. His faith and trust were rewarded with a high, powerful position in Egypt, enabling him to help the same brothers who had given him over to slavery. After revealing himself to his brothers, he eventually explained to them, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people” (Genesis 50:20,  emphasis added). He knew that God was up to something good.

After Jesus ascended to Heaven, leaving His disciples with the words that they would be His ambassadors to the entire world, the Church saw phenomenal growth. Thousands came to know Christ in those early days. Then a young follower of Christ named Stephen was captured by an angry mob. They were upset that he and others were so successful in leading others to Christ, and so they stoned him to death. On that same day, a great persecution broke out against the Church at Jerusalem (Acts 8:2-3), and all except the apostles were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria. Saul of Tarsus began to destroy the Church. Going from house to house, he dragged off men and women and put them in prison. God didn’t make sense, but He was up to something.

In Acts 8:4 we see God’s purpose revealed: “But the believers who were scattered preached the Good News about Jesus wherever they went” (NLT).  God allowed the hostility to motivate these people to spread their faith beyond the borders of Jerusalem because He was up to something good!

We know that 2019 will be a year filled with change, and I’m sure there will be some trials. But I’m also sure that God will carry us through every trial, because He has shown that He is always up to something good. I’m not sure what God has planned for First Baptist in 2019, but I know it is going to be something good!

               - Bro. Mike Z.