Tuesday, November 6, 2018, 12:52 | No Comments »

For many people, happiness is like the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Even though they are constantly chasing it, happiness always seems just out of reach. They may try entertainment, money, pleasure, or power. But none of these can truly make them happy. Where can we find happiness? 
 

Read on to learn 3 Biblical secrets to being happy.
 

1) Know who you are.

What would you answer if someone asked you, “Do you think you’re a good person?” Many people would say yes. After all, they pick up empty Tim’s cups off the street, give to the Red Cross once in a while, and pay their bills on time. They haven’t ever murdered someone or done anything really bad. And a few little white lies don’t count, right?
 
But let’s take a look at what the Bible says. Take this quiz to find out if you’re a good person.
 
a. Have you ever stolen something, even if it was small?
b. Have you ever said God’s name as a swear word or to express your frustration?
b. Have you ever talked back to your parents or complained about them?
 
How many of these did you have to answer yes to? And that’s only 3 of the 10 Commandments! Romans 3:23 puts it plainly, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” Each of us have broken some or all of God’s 10 Commandments. This means that we are sinners, and we deserve punishment. God’s punishment is being separated from Him right now and being separated from Him after death in a place the Bible calls hell. 
 
However, the amazing truth is that God loves us. In spite of what we’ve done, He still cares about us. Read on to learn how He demonstrated His love for us.
 

2) Receive what God offers you.

“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8) Because He loves us, God sent His only Son to take the punishment we deserved for sin. Jesus Christ died a horrible death on a Roman cross so that we could be forgiven. 
 
Because of what Jesus did, God offers you the free gift of forgiveness, a relationship with Him, and a home in Heaven someday. How can you receive this gift? 
 
“Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved…” (Acts 16:31)
 
-Admit that you are a sinner, and turn from your sin to God.
-Believe on Jesus to save you from sin.
-Choose to receive His gift of forgiveness and eternal life.
 
You can do this right now! If you have questions, please contact us at the local church’s prison ministry (contact info at the end of this post). We’d love to help you understand more about believing on Jesus.
 

3) Walk with God every day.

After you have believed on Jesus as your Saviour, you will become part of God’s family. You can learn more about God by reading His Word, the Bible, and talking to Him in prayer.
 
If you will seek to obey God each day, you will experience true happiness. God will help you with your problems, give you peace even in the midst of the storm, and provide for all your needs. Micah 6:8 explains how God wants us to live, 
 
“He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?”
 
Walking with God means talking to Him throughout your day, seeking to obey His Word, and drawing near to Him. When you live this way, you will discover the incredible joy of knowing God and experiencing His blessings firsthand.
 
Psalm 16:11 is the testimony of a man who lived this kind of life. He wrote, “Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” 
 
What about you? Have you experienced true happiness through knowing God? If not, you can start today! Contact us at the local church’s prison ministry to find out more.
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Are you searching? Jesus has the answers for addictions and stubborn habits. For more information, send the Crossmans a private message here on Facebook or come to a church service at Prince Albert Baptist Church. Take the first step in a walk of freedom!

For more information, call (306) 940-9554 or email anchorofhopeheb@gmail.com 


Tuesday, October 30, 2018, 15:02 | No Comments »

 

They have shaped the course of human history—sparking wars, ending lives, and making either best friends or bitter enemies. It is no understatement to say that words are incredibly powerful. But words are also difficult to control. Each of us knows the bitter regret of saying the wrong thing. What does the Bible teach about our words? How can we learn to use them for good instead of evil?
 

Here are 4 ways to encourage others with your words.
 

1) Speak thoughtfully.

Often, our mistakes stem from a careless attitude toward words. We think that our words are ordinary, unimportant, and unlikely to hurt anyone’s feelings. But the Bible reminds us how important our words are.
 
“Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” (Proverbs 18:21)
 
If we want to encourage others, we need to think before we speak. Let’s ask three questions…
 
-Is it true?
-Is it kind?
-Is it unnecessary (for example, unkind words or gossip)?
 
Running our words through this filter will help us improve our words’ batting average. At our local church’s prison ministries, we want to speak wisely and thoughtfully.
 

2) Emphasize the positive.

If you scan the headlines of any major newspaper, you’ll notice that many of the articles focus on negative news. Whether it’s a scandal or a strike, bad news often attracts more attention than good news. In our conversations, we are often tempted to focus on the negative as well.
 
Instead of complaining, let’s focus on positive things. For example, we can share things we are thankful for. We can give sincere compliments and tell others how much we appreciate them. By focusing on the positive instead of the negative, we can encourage those who are feeling down.
 

3) Season your words with salt.

“Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” (Colossians 4:6) What does Paul mean by describing our words as “seasoned with salt”? Just as salt makes people thirsty, salty words can make our listeners thirsty for truth. Sometimes, in our concern to speak the truth, we forget that presentation matters. 
 
Consider the difference between these sentences:
 
“I read Psalm 105 this morning and wrote down two verses.”
or
 “Can you guess where the greatest revival in human history happened?” (Spoiler: in Nineveh - everyone repented!)
 
Which sentence is more likely to pique your listener’s interest? I think we’d all agree that the second sentence is much more effective. Asking questions, using pauses for effect, and not giving away the punch line immediately will help you speak salty words.  
 

4) Talk about God.

“Then they that feared the Lord spake often one to another: and the Lord hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon his name.” (Malachi 3:16)
 
When we talk about the Lord, He pricks up His ears and listens. When we praise His beloved Son, He pays a little extra attention. God wants our mouths to be filled with His praise all day long (Psalm 71:8). At our local church’s prison ministries, we want to praise God because He is worthy. Even when life is very difficult, we can find hope and strength in God. He is our Refuge in life’s storms and our Comforter in life’s sorrow. Of all the topics we could discuss, our favourite topic should be talking about our God. 
 
Our tongues have power to discourage others or to give them fresh hope. How will we use them today?
________________________________________________________________
Are you searching? Jesus has the answers for addictions and stubborn habits. For more information, send the Crossmans a private message here on Facebook or come to a church service at Prince Albert Baptist Church. Take the first step in a walk of freedom!

For more information, call (306) 940-9554 or email anchorofhopeheb@gmail.com


Tuesday, October 23, 2018, 04:39 | No Comments »

Imagine this…a one-room schoolhouse at recess, when children rushed out the door to play in the warm sunshine. Yet one boy stayed behind. He loved to stand in front of the maps in the schoolroom. Studying each continent in each turn, he was fascinated with lands he had never seen. Was something stirring him, drawing him, to go “unto the uttermost parts of the earth” with the gospel of Christ? Time would tell. 
 

This boy’s name was Jonathan Goforth, and he would become one of the most influential Christian missionaries in twentieth-century China.

 

Early Life

Although Jonathan grew up with a devout Christian mother, he did not accept Christ as his Saviour until the age of eighteen. Jonathan later wrote, “That Sunday, Mr. Cameron seemed to look right at me as he pled, during his sermon, for all who had not, to accept the Lord Jesus Christ…As I sat there, without any outward sign except to simply bow my head, I yielded myself up to Christ.” 
 
Full of newfound zeal, Jonathan was eager to start serving in his local church. He was assigned a Sunday School class and started handing out tracts at the door of the church every Sunday. Jonathan even started holding a Sunday evening service in a nearby schoolhouse! 
 

Call to Ministry

As a young man, Goforth dreamed of becoming a lawyer and politician. But he would soon learn that God had other plans. After reading The Memoirs of Robert Murray M’Cheyne, Jonathan felt God’s call to ministry. Gone were his ambitions of pride and selfish dreams. In their place burned a holy desire to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ.
 
At first, Jonathan refused to consider foreign missions, preferring to serve in Canada. But, one day, a classmate invited him to a meeting to hear Dr. MacKay of Formosa (modern-day Taiwan) speak about the need for more missionaries. 
 
George MacKay earnestly pleaded, “For two years I have been going up and down Canada trying to persuade some young man to come over to Formosa and help me, but in vain...I am therefore going back alone. It will not be long before my bones will be lying on some Formosan hillside. To me the heartbreak is that no young man has heard the call to come and carry on the work that I have begun.”
 
Ashamed, Jonathan realized that he had been planning his own life as he pleased, without seeking God’s direction. He heard God’s voice calling and answered, “Here am I; send me.” From then on, he devoted his life to preparing for the mission field.
 
At the local church’s prison ministry, we want our people to have a heart for missions, too.
 

Service in China

In 1885, Jonathan was given a copy of Hudson Taylor’s book China's Spiritual Need and Claims. He began praying for an opportunity to serve in China, and God answered! After graduating from Knox College and marrying Rosalind Bell-Smith, the couple sailed for China in February of 1888. They were sent by the Presbyterian Board of Canada. 
 
His ministry focused on evangelistic meetings, starting churches, and training local believers for leadership. The Goforths also held “open house” and welcomed the local people to visit them. When the Boxer Rebellion broke out in 1900, Jonathan’s family narrowly escaped to Canada. 
 
By 1902, both Jonathan and his family were safely back in China. He began to travel from village to village with his family. In each place, they would stay a month while Jonathan taught the men and Rosalind taught the women about the Bible. 
 

A Desire for Revival

In the year 1904, someone gave Jonathan a copy of Charles Finney's Lectures on Revivals. He grew deeply interested in revival and spent much time in prayer and Bible study about it. Three years later, he visited Korea at the time of a great revival.  
 
On his way back home through Manchuria, Jonathan visited congregations and told them what God was doing in Korea. Many churches invited him back to speak in early 1908, and the great Manchurian revival broke out. 
 
At these meetings, the Holy Spirit moved in a powerful way. From elders and deacons to small children, many people made public confession of sin and asked for prayer. Christians boldly shared the gospel with the people of their communities. Meetings were filled with the presence of God, as people’s hearts were broken in humility and repentance. At the local church’s prison ministry, we want to see God revive our hearts, too.
 
After these revivals, Jonathan Goforth began to travel full-time as an evangelist. Until his return to Canada in 1934, he divided his time between planting churches, evangelism, furloughs, and training missionaries. 
 
Because of their declining health, Jonathan and his wife Rosalind returned to their native land in December of 1934. He preached evangelistic meetings throughout Canada for the next two years. On October 8, 1936, God called him Home.
 

His Example to Us

Had Jonathan refused God’s call and instead pursued his own dreams, thousands of Chinese believers might never have heard the gospel. Churches might have languished in coldness. Many missionaries might never have gone to China. Yet he courageously said yes, and God used him in great and mighty ways. 
 
What about you and me? When God calls us, will we say yes? Let us not waver in fear or indecision. Like the prophet Isaiah, let us boldly say, “Here am I; send me.” (Isaiah 6:8) 
________________________________________________________________
Are you searching? Jesus has the answers for addictions and stubborn habits. For more information, send the Crossmans a private message here on Facebook or come to a church service at Prince Albert Baptist Church. Take the first step in a walk of freedom!

For more information, call (306) 940-9554 or email anchorofhopeheb@gmail.com
 

1. Excerpted from Chapter 1 of Goforth of China by Rosalind Goforth. Accessed from http://www.revival-library.org/index.php/catalogues-menu/20th-century/goforth-of-china


PC: By Greg Gordon - http://www.sermonindex.net/modules/myalbum/photo.php?lid=371, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=21306567


Thursday, October 18, 2018, 10:59 | No Comments »

What would your church be like if every member was just like you? This challenging question reminds us that we can make a difference in our local churches. 
 

Here are 5 key ways that you can build up your church.
 

1) Stand behind your leaders. 

Being in the ministry is a tough job. Pastors and elders face a barrage of spiritual attack, discouragement, and conflicts within the church. They need our prayers, our support, and our love. Don’t forget to tell your leaders that you love them and you’re praying for them. Give them gifts for Christmas, birthdays, or just because. Stop by their office with a Tim’s card to show your appreciation. Discourage people from gossiping about them. If you stand behind your pastor, you can be a huge encouragement to him and a motivation to keep going. 
 
At our church in Prince Albert, we are so grateful for our pastor, David Webster, and we want to support him in every way we can. 
 

2) Be a doer of the Word.

In James 1:22, the Bible warns us, “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” Imagine yourself finishing lunch, looking in the mirror, and noticing that you have a huge splotch of ketchup on your cheek. Would you ignore it or wipe it off? A logical person would wipe it off, of course. Yet how often do we listen to a powerful sermon and walk out the door unchanged? How often do we walk around with “ketchup” on our face? Let’s apply the truths we learn to our daily lives. At our local church’s prison ministry, we want to be doers of the Word.
 

3) Be faithful to church.

“Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching..”(Hebrews 10:25)
 
At our local church’s prison ministry, we believe that going to church is essential for our spiritual growth. If we are honest with ourselves, we don’t always feel like going to church. However, we needchurch. We need the encouragement and accountability of other believers and the preaching of God’s Word. We’re not meant to live the Christian life alone. Instead of skipping church when we don’t feel like it, we need to be faithful in attending our local church. God will bless us for it! 
 

4) Give to God’s work.

According to the Bible, God wants His people to be generous. The Bible teaches the concept of a tithe, or giving 10% of your income to God’s work. Each church needs the financial support of its people to keep running. Churches have expenses such as heating, electricity, salaries, etc. We ought to be cheerful givers (2 Corinthians 9:7) and faithfully contribute to our local church.
 

5) Put others first.

“As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith..” (Galatians 6:10) At our church in Prince Albert, we want to look for ways to serve each other. Perhaps there is a young mom who could use a listening ear + a batch of freshly baked cookies. Or maybe there is a college student who needs a godly mentor. As we grow in our faith, we learn both how to serve others and how to graciously receive from others as well. 
 
But what if you don’t have a local church? If you’re near Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, why not join us at our church? We’d love to meet you! Or just search online for “church in [your hometown].” Getting plugged into a strong local church is so important for spiritual growth.
________________________________________________________________
Are you searching? Jesus has the answers for addictions and stubborn habits. For more information, send the Crossmans a private message here on Facebook or come to a church service at Prince Albert Baptist Church. Take the first step in a walk of freedom!

For more information, call (306) 940-9554 or email anchorofhopeheb@gmail.com


Wednesday, October 10, 2018, 10:54 | No Comments »

As God’s sons and daughters, He wants us to be transformed into the image of His Son. Although we cannot have His infinite wisdom or power, we can develop His humility, His kindness, His joy, and, most of all, His love. What does Jesus’ love look like? Here are several key descriptions that we’ve taken from the classic love chapter, 1 Corinthians 13. 
 

Read on to learn 7 characteristics of Christlike love.

 

Love is patient (verse 4).

Instead of becoming annoyed when a friend disagrees with your opinion, love says, “I value your friendship more than this issue. It’s okay to disagree.” Love enables us to be patient with the barista who messes up our order, gracious when people show up 30 minutes late to a meeting, and long-suffering with our imperfect families. Love smoothes over the bumpy places in life’s pathway.
 

Love is kind (verse 4).

According to the Cambridge Dictionary, kindness is “the quality of being generous, helpful, and caring about other people.” Kindness seeks to pour into the lives of others the same grace and goodness that God has shown to us. A kind person might help someone pick up their spilled groceries, say an encouraging word to a weary mom, or simply give a cup of cold water in Jesus’ name. At the local church’s prison ministry, we seek to show kindness to others.
 

Love does not envy (verse 4).

We’ve all been tempted to envy others for their success or possessions. But, after we have found true contentment in Jesus Christ, we no longer need to envy others. If they do not know Jesus personally, they will find that nothing truly satisfies. And everything they’ve worked so hard for is hollow and empty. But, if they do know Jesus, then we ought to be happy that He has blessed them. 
 

Love does not boast or become puffed up (verse 4).

In Proverbs 27:2, God’s Word teaches us, “Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own lips.” Love does not boast about its own abilities or achievements. Instead, love encourages others and praises them sincerely. Remembering its own weakness, it does not become puffed up and prideful. 
 

Love does not look out for self (verse 5).

Since Eden’s blissful days, man has been haunted by the lie, “I need to look out for myself, or I will be treated unfairly.” Starting with Adam and Eve, we all tend to put ourselves first and give others second place. When Jesus walked on earth, did He look out for His own needs first? Were His days filled with giving speeches and accepting awards? Or were they spent in washing grimy feet and healing outcast lepers? Like Jesus, we ought to focus on serving others, not being served (Mark 10:45). 
 

Love rejoices in the truth, not in sin (verse 6).

While the world rejoices in doing evil and embraces deceit, we need to be people of truth. Love is honest with others, and it rebukes their faults in a loving, humble way. Just as a father gives medicine to a feverish child, love speaks the truth even when it hurts.
 

Love never fails (verse 8).

No matter what, Jesus loves us with an unconditional love. Are we capable of loving others like that? Can we pray for them even when they’ve hurt us deeply? Can we wish them well even if they’ve cut our souls to the quick? By God’s grace, we can. Let’s ask God to help us see people as He sees them and love them unconditionally. At the local church’s prison ministry, we want to love people as He does.
________________________________________________________________
Are you searching? Jesus has the answers for addictions and stubborn habits. For more information, send the Crossmans a private message here on Facebook or come to a church service at Prince Albert Baptist Church. Take the first step in a walk of freedom!

For more information, call (306) 940-9554 or email anchorofhopeheb@gmail.com


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