Reflection from Ps. Bill

Dear Logos Family,

“Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8 (ESV)

Have you done a “H.E.A.R.T.” check recently? I have my annual “Wellness” visit next week with the doctor and it reminded me to do a “wellness” check with my soul. Are any of these “H.E.A.R.T.” gauges high for you today?

                                                       H – Hurting

                                                       E – Exhausted

                                                       A – Angry

                                                       R – Resentful

                                                       T – Tense

There is good reason for any or all of these gauges to be higher than usual over this past year. Hopefully not all at the same time! 

One way to respond to high “heart” gauges is to increase your prayers of adoration. Richard Foster in his book entitled “Prayer” talks about the Prayer of Adoration. He defines adoration as “the spontaneous yearning of the heart to worship, honor, magnify, and bless God.” (p. 81). He says that the “two sides” of adoration are thanksgiving and praise: “in thanksgiving we give glory to God for what he has done for us; in praise we give glory to God for who he is in himself.” (83)

CS Lewis identifies common behaviors that keep us from adoration. The first is inattention – getting caught up in life’s “whirlwind” and missing the overtures of Divine Love.  Some of this inattention is understandable as we respond to the legitimate demands of home and family and school and work that conspire to make life a blur. (Foster, p. 85f) But it can also become an excuse if we fail to redirect our attention on the Lord. Greed is another obstacle to adoration. Our addiction for more and more pleasurable experiences decreases our ability to enjoy the blessings God gives. A third obstruction is conceit. This happens when we “think more of ourselves than we ought to think.” (Rom 12:3) When conceit takes over the focus is once again on how wonderful we are – which is why it so effectively severs the cords of adoration.” (p. 87)

Are you ready to take a “H.E.A.R.T.” check? Don’t be discouraged if some of the gauges are higher than usual. Redirect your attention on the Lord and things that are “worthy of praise”, and watch those gauges drop! 

Grace and peace,

Pastor Bill

Reflection for Ps. Bill

Dear Logos Family,

“Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”

Ephesians 5:1-2

Today I typed into Google “Christians response to this last week.” My heart was aching for our country and I didn’t know what to say. What came up on my Google search was a video from Open Doors ministry that seeks to help the persecuted church around the world.

One in eight Christians are discriminated against in the world. Most live in countries like China, India, Nigeria and Iran. Through persecution the church is growing. One church member said, “We do not pray that the persecution will go away but that God should give us the grace to be able to stand.” 

Taking a stand against a world hostile to the gospel was central in Paul’s ministry. His words in Ephesians 4,5 and 6 are counter-cultural, counter-intuitive, counter to everything we feel when our beliefs and values are assaulted. Paul writes, “Therefore, “be imitators of God, as beloved children, and walk in love as Christ loved us…” 

How do you do this when everything in you wants to lash out?

That’s why Paul wrote Ephesians chapter six. We can’t fight this battle in our own strength. We must “put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.”

What are the devil’s schemes? 

One is to get Christians sucked into the fray and fight in the flesh. Tit for tat; an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. Old Testament justice.

But we live in the age of grace.  We are called to walk in the Spirit and to put off the deeds of darkness.  The weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ…” 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

Oh God, at this time give your people the grace and strength to be imitators of Christ. Help us to stand strong in your Spirit, putting on the whole armor of God that we be able to stand against the devil’s schemes!

Jesus, may You be glorified in the Church!

Pastor Bill

Reflection from Ps. Bill

Dear Logos Family,

“Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.” James 1:27 (ESV)

Agape Fellowship recently completed a video study on the “heroes of the faith” put out by Revelation Media. One of the historical figures we examined was George Mueller. 

George Mueller was well-acquainted with the effects of a pandemic. In the 1830s, cholera devastated the world in which George Mueller lived. As George ministered to the sick, trusting in the Lord for his safety, he saw a heartbreaking truth unfold. The death of so many was leaving children to fend for themselves. With no home to turn to, and no one at all to provide them with safety, food, and love, many were left begging on the streets.

Driven by a call to care for the least of these, Muller opened his first Orphan House in April of 1836. The first of many, and the beginning of a legacy that lives on today. Muller is a compass that points us to a truth we can draw strength from today, not only because he housed orphans, but because he trusted in God for his every need. Muller put his trust in God for every meal, every pair of shoes, and every bedsheet provided to his Orphan House. 

He said when facing anxiety,

“The beginning of anxiety is the end of faith, and the beginning of true faith is the end of anxiety.”

As we continue in our battle against the pandemic some have lost jobs, friends or family. We may be sick ourselves, or know people who have empty chairs around their tables. In these days we have a new opportunity to trust in God for our every need. And we may be closer than we realize to those who are hurting and hungry. And their hunger may be more emotional and spiritual than physical.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13 (NIV) 

Grace to you, 

Pastor Bill

Reflection from Ps. Bill

Dear Logos Family,

“Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, ‘Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.’ When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him….Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, ‘Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.’” Matthew 2:1-3, 7-8

In the last two weekly devotionals we have talked about God’s timing. We said that

·       God has a timetable for everything that happens.

·       God does not tell us the details in advance.

·       God is never in a hurry, and he’s never late.

If we apply these principles to the birth of Jesus, we realize how remarkable God’s Sovereignty, power and goodness are!

Matthew chapter 2 makes us keenly aware that Jesus’ birth was an international event filled with intrigue! Wise men from the east (probably Persia) traveled hundreds of miles to worship this new born king and give him gifts. King Herod was also aware of this new “king” being born. He told the wise men to inform him where this child was so he “may come and worship him too.” (1:8) We know that Herod’s true intentions were to destroy the baby Jesus. (2:13

Through a series of dreams, Jesus’ parents flee to Egypt to thwart Herod’s plans in order to protect their child. Only after Herod dies are Joseph and Mary told to return to Judah to raise their son in the quiet town of Nazareth. (2:20)  

There was nothing comfortable or convenient surrounding Jesus’ earliest days. But God’s plan for His Son was perfect; all the details were worked out in advance and God informed Mary and Joseph what needed to be done at the proper time. 

2020 has been completely “out of the box.” No one could have predicted its twists and turns. 2021 will most likely be more of the same. Be there are some things we can count on: Life happens according to God’s timetable; He doesn’t tell us what is going to happen in advance and He’s never in a hurry, or ever late. He is totally trustworthy!

Rest in the assurance that God is in charge and He loves you! 

Merry Christmas!

Pastor Bill

Reflection from Ps. Bill

Dear Logos Family,

Last week I shared a Christmas meditation from Rick Warren on God’s timing. I want to share the rest of it this week!

God is never in a hurry, and he’s never late.

God isn’t bound by time. He can be in the past, present, and future at the same time. Our view of time is bound by life on earth, which rotates every 24 hours and travels around the sun every 365 days. God doesn’t live on a planet, so he is timeless. He is never in a hurry, and he’s never late. 

When the people of Israel were awaiting the coming of Jesus, it probably seemed like God was taking forever. Many thought he was late! 

But the Bible says Jesus came at just the right time – not a second too soon or a second too late.

To see that, you would need to have God’s perspective on time. 2 Peter 3:8 says, “Do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.” (NIV)

That’s not how you and I look at it. When we’re waiting on God to change a heart, meet a need, or grow the church, it feels like a thousand years! We don’t like to wait. But God is timeless. 

That has major implications for our lives and ministries. God has given you a vision for your life. I know people who give up on God’s vision because it’s taking too long.

Maybe that’s you. You’re ready to throw in the towel. The dream for your life or ministry is bruised and broken.

God doesn’t want you to give up. He says this in Habakkuk 2:3: “The vision will still happen at the appointed time. It hurries toward its goal. It won’t be a lie. If it’s delayed, wait for it. It will certainly happen. I won’t be late.” (GW)

If God gave you a dream, he will make it happen. It just has to happen on his timetable not yours. His timing is always perfect!

May He give you grace to trust His timing in your life!

Pastor Bill

Reflection from Ps. Bill

Dear Logos Family,

Here are some good thoughts at Christmas from Pastor Rick Warren regarding God’s timetable.

God has a timetable for everything that happens. God had been telling the world for centuries that he was going to send a Savior. But God waited thousands of years for just the right time to send his Son.

Why didn’t God send him sooner? God had his own timetable for Christmas.

The Bible says, “But when the right time came, God sent His Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children.” Galatians 3:4-5 (NLT)

We don’ t know why God sent Jesus when he did, but we know it was the right time to do what he wanted to do. 

The same is true in your life. God has a timetable. You may not know what it is right now, but you can trust that his timing is perfect.

God does not tell us the details in advance. Although God has a timetable for your life, he doesn’t lay it all out to you in advance. 

Ecclesiastes 3:11 says: “God has given them a desire to know the future. He does everything just right and on time, but people can never completely understand what he is doing.” (NCV)

God didn’t tell Israel exactly when Jesus would come, but the Bible says Jesus came at the right time. You and I like to know exactly what’s next in our lives, but that’s not how God works. God rarely lays everything out before us. Why?

First, it would overwhelm you if God told you everything he wanted to do through your life right now. You’d likely run away from it!

Second, you’d probably abuse it. You would try to change the bad parts. 

But the most important reason he doesn’t announce his timetable for your life in advance is that he wants you to trust him. Everything God does in your life is because of his love for you. He wants you to trust him more today than you did yesterday.

Grace and peace,

Pastor Bill

Reflection from Ps. Bill

Dear Logos Family,

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.” Isaiah 9:6-7 (ESV)

In the front of my Bible is a colorful timeline depicting biblical history. It starts in Genesis 12, at the beginning of recorded history and ends with the Yom Kippur War in 1973. Many kingdoms are outlined including the kingdoms of Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Persia, Greece and Rome. 

Jesus and Paul lived during the waning days of the Roman Empire when Rome ruled with a heavy hand, the so-called “Pax Romana,” or Roman peace. This meant Rome would protect you if you did everything it commanded. Unless of course you were a Jew or a Christian. 

But God’s promise through Isaiah is that the Messiah would govern differently – with wise counsel and peace. It would come through the line of David (2 Samuel 7) and it would continue to increase throughout history with justice and righteousness as its cornerstone. 

King David described God’s kingdom this way:

“All your works shall give thanks to you, O Lord, and all your saints shall bless you! They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom and tell of your power to make known to the children of man your mighty deeds, and the glorious splendor of your kingdom. Your kingdom is an everylasting kingdom, and your dominion endures throughout all generations.” Ps 145:10-13

How would you “make known” to a friend the “mighty deeds” of God and the “glorious splendor of His kingdom?” Sounds like a daunting assignment! Jesus simplified it for us. He said, “Come to me you who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me for I am gentle and lowly in heart and you will find rest for your soul.” Matthew 11:28-30 (ESV) 

Mother Teresa mused, “We can do no great things, only small things with great love.”  

Shalom, 

Pastor Bill

Reflection from Ps. Bill

Dear Logos Family,

                           “Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord, who walks in his ways!

                           You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands; you shall be blessed, 

and it shall be well with you. Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your children will be like olive shoots around your table. Behold, thus shall the man be blessed who fears the Lord.” Ps 128:1-4 (ESV)

In Book 5 of the Psalter (Psalms 107-150) the spotlight is on how God is among us. Psalm 128 paints a beautiful picture of a man who fears God. He is happy and blessed. His wife is like a fruitful vine within the home and his children are like olive plants around the table. 

Think about this during this Season of Thanksgiving. Our minds easily wonder to the challenges we are facing. But the truth is we are a blessed people who fear the Lord, walk in His ways, and experience a relationship with God through Christ. His goodness is profound!  

The psalmist describes our children as “olive shoots around the table.” Olive trees grow in dry arid climates, places like Israel, Italy, Spain, Greece, Portugal and Morocco. Here we find the finest olive oil in the world. 

Do you cook with olive oil? If you don’t use it much you should! Did you know it’s one of the healthiest foods you can eat? I do most of the cooking in my household and I have discovered the amazing medicinal qualities of olive oil. Beside it’s delicious taste, It’s wonderful for the skin and digestion. 

The best olive oil, extra virgin olive oil, has only been pressed once, capturing the purest and highest quality oil. It is superb for cooking vegetables over a low heat or adding to balsamic vinegar for a lovely salad dressing.

I’m ruminating on this for a moment not because I’m hungry but because the greatest blessings in life are simple pleasures that we must never take for granted. They all start with “the fear of the Lord.” That is the theme of Proverbs. Listen to the Message translation of Proverbs 1:7

              “Start with God – the first step in learning is bowing down to God; 

only fools thumb their noses at such wisdom and learning.”

During this Thanksgiving think about the blessings of the Lord around you – your wife, a fruitful vine and your children, olive plants around the table! 

Bon Appetit! 

Pastor Bill

Reflection from Ps. Bill

Dear Logos Family       

We’re fast approaching my favorite holiday of the year…..Thanksgiving! Other than Christmas it’s the purest most spiritual holiday we celebrate. And there’s no better scripture than 1 Thess 5:18 to express the significance of Thanksgiving:

              “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (NKJV)

Rick Warren has some good thoughts about thanksgiving:  

The Bible doesn’t tell us to thank God for everything. We’re told to thank God in everything.

There’s a difference.

You don’t need to thank God for everything. You don’t have to thank God for cancer or someone’s death.

But you can be thankful for something at all times. You can always find a blessing in your life to be grateful for.

In fact, God includes gratitude in the Bible’s classic text on overcoming stress in Philippians 4.

When we’re stressed and worried about something in life, the Bible says to “ask God for what you need, always asking him with a thankful heart.” (Philippians 4:6 GNT)

Grateful people are less stressed.

It’s hard to be stressed and grateful at the same time.

Gratitude gets your eyes off of yourself and puts them onto others.

Instead of looking at what you don’t have, look at what you do have.

That choice always leads to less stress and great joy.

With gratitude for all of you!

Pastor Bill

Nominating Recommendations are now Live!

Dear Members of Logos Presbyterian Church,

Nomination Committee 2020 of Logos Presbyterian Church is soliciting your recommendation for the candidates for officer positions for the period of 2021-2023. As the NC-2020 has shared during the worship service today, the open positions for the coming 3 years are for

  • 1 Ruling Elder
  • 2 Deacons:
    • Berea Fellowship
    • Christos Fellowship.

Please use the Nomination Form to fill in the information, and you can send your candidate recommendation to the NC-2020 members: Tjoen Kusardi, Fenny West, Romero Hutapea, or Andrew Tjandra. The last date for submitting your recommendation is 13 Dec 2020. Please find in the attachment the Nomination Form for the NC 2020. NC-2020 will also try to provide a paper copy to the members that prefer a paper copy for the recommendation, please let NC knows if you need the paper form of the Nomination Form.

Let us pray that God raise leaders for the Logos Presbyterian Church to lead the congregation to serve Him.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the NC members, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

God Bless!
NC-2020