Saturday, May 2, 2009

Shabbat Shalom

Dear Family,

Thank the Lord that He has provided for us a refuge in Him! It seems like the whole world (according to the media) is in a panic over the outbreak and pending pandemic of swine flu that we are witnessing. Every news website I go to as at least two headlining stories about it and how quickly it could become much worse. I am sure your experience has been much the same as mine. The way of modern media seems to be an unending amount of coverage for whatever is the next big story. The networks all try to one up the other and the effect is that it can cause more panic than is necessary. Being aware of something and knowing how serious it is, is one things. Being induced to panic and worry by the sensational media is something completely different. Thank the Lord that this is not where we live. We live in Him and we have a rock of shelter that will never be moved no matter what happens.

We have been blessed immensely to know that many of you have been taking the time to pray for us. It is always difficult to adjust to a new situation, but when you have a supportive family around you, it makes things so much easier. Your prayers have surrounded us and we feel their effects daily. We were both (coincidentally and not connected to the swine flu) dealing with colds over the past week, but we are feeling much better now. Please pray that the Lord would continue to lead us into how we are to minister to the people here. Doors are every where, but we need to know what doors wants us to walk through as witnesses for Yeshua.

One common theme that continues to come up everywhere we go is the need for the Body to go through further purification. The meetings we have had, the Bible studies we have been to, and the casual conversations we have had, in some way, have included this concept. The Body has been way to comfortable living with sin in it's midst. In an attempted to make the Gospel "user friendly" we have allowed things to continue in our gatherings that are contrary to the Word of God. The problem is not that we are ignorant of these things...the problem is that we know things are wrong and we knowingly allow them to continue. The Body has adopted an idea of "radical love" that has come to mean we need to be tolerant and love no matter what. I agree that we should love no matter what, but "radical love" must include tough love at times. For the sake of a child's future, we must discipline that child. For the sake of a brother or sister's future in the Lord, we must call sin what it is. We must declare a false doctrine to be false if it is false. If we are truly coming into contact with and worshipping a holy God, then we must understand what that means. It means that all of us, not matter how old in the Lord, should be going through change. We should always be going through the process of sanctification or purification BECAUSE we have a relationship with a truly Holy God. While we are in this fallen world, we should all be going through this. It is by no means love to allow a brother to remain in his sin. It is not love if we are not bringing this brother with us to stand together before a Holy God. The purification of the Body is necessary because we carry with us the Name of God and we are His representatives on this Earth. It is a great weight of responsibility and we need to make sure that we understand how great it is. If we are not being purified, then how will the world see a difference between us and them? If there is seemingly no difference between us and the world, then what does this mean we are doing to the Holy Name of God? I pray we would all stop seeking the approval of men and continue to glorify God through our lives. Blessings!

In Yeshua,

Devin and Callie