With just a few changes in dates and our yearly focus for 2021, this ES article will sound very familiar to what you read 3 years ago. I want all the new attendees to have a great perspective for our F.E.E.D. emphasis which starts on Mother’s Day!
F.E.E.D, is an acronym for “Family Emphasis Enrichment and Development." From Mother’s Day through Independence Day Weekend, we will be focusing our sermons on how we can be better parents, a better spouse, a better son or daughter, how we can be more connected to our local fellowship, and many other virtues which should improve as we grow in our faith. A secondary purpose is to remind the congregation that we need to focus inward for a portion of our yearly messages and activities. You often hear the term personal development, F.E.E.D. will speak to this growth dynamic, so each of us should be prepared to evaluate where we are in our growth process.
Whether it be; Body, Soul, or Spirit we need to be honest with ourselves and the Lord as to our direction and level of progress. “Moving Forward” can be a very objective assessment, so we need to allow ourselves to be accountable to something beyond our own evaluation. King David said in Psalm 139:23-24, "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life." WOW! Let me ask you, when is the last time you allowed God to search your heart? I realize when we share at the Lord’s table, I ask all of us to allow the Holy Spirit to search our hearts. Yet I have to pause right now and think of the last time I said, “not only search me but test me and point out in me, and adjust my direction!" This sounds like someone who has driven down the wrong road, and a course correction will be needed. Throughout our life's journey, each of us will need multiple course corrections. As we look at our children, we can remember multiple times they needed discipline and correction. We can even think about how God gave us the privilege to raise these souls to become a blessing to their circles of friends and family. So, if we who are finite can see how important this process is with our children how much more important must it be for us to embrace this relationship with God as our Heavenly Father. Never forget He looks at us through the lens of eternity and infinite wisdom, all-knowing, having the absolute best intentions for His creation. God uses multiple resources for this course correction. In my own life, He even used a recorded program, by Max Lucado, which I was listening to while driving down the road talking to the Lord about my needs. Each of us should be prepared to hear something from heaven which may catch us off guard. The response I heard was based on my need for course correction. How ironic that it happened as I was traveling from one destination to another. During the 8 weeks of this series, as in Psalm 139, I am challenging all of us to allow God permission to make the changes necessary as He sees fit. The theme for 2021 is “Family Reunion”. Not only do we need to have picnics with the in-laws but we need to reconnect through family hugs and hearts with little fear of social distancing. Together is Better and now more than ever we need our families. Not only blood relatives but blood-bought relatives.