Good things are always happening but once again it’s evident at CHCC. As we begin to look at closing out the year coming into the holiday season, I am excited to give you a glimpse of where the Lord has taken us and is taking us. We honestly try not to get out in front of God in this ministry but by evaluating what He is doing, we simply get on board with his plans which are already in motion. The Lord has been preparing us for several things in the past couple of years that seem to be coming to fruition. Let me show you: 1. This past Sunday we culminated a summer of teaching the great truths and history of the Protestant Reformation. It is reassuring as a Pastor to see kids (and adults) excited about an old Latin term, Soli Deo Gloria. They are not only versed in sound theology but are living it out in the excellence of their actions. To God alone be the glory! 2. We have been praying and teaching toward ‘ownership’ of ministries at our church by our members for 6 months. After personal prayer and consideration by many individuals it is exciting to say that we have established 13 ministry areas with confirmed directors in each. Praise God that people have been obedient to the leading of God in these areas. 3. This month we begin an exciting chapter in our children and youth ministry. We will soon be chartered as the newest troop of Trail Life USA, a christian outdoor adventure, character, and leadership program for boys and young men. It is Christ centered and good news driven. It will be an amazing part of this church’s ministry to young men. Information to follow about Troop PA1003 in a couple of weeks. 4. This Sunday we are welcoming LifeSpan Family Services to our morning service to continue our exploration of partnering with them in bringing Christian foster parents, adoption and counseling to families of our tri-county area. To that end our discipleship ministry is beginning a training of several of our people to counsel abortion minded and abortion vulnerable women and men. God is at work in numerous other areas but in an effort to keep this update brief, I only mention a few……but I have to also praise the Lord for allowing us to bless a widowed Kenyan woman. The need was brought to our attention by a Pastor friend who was in Kenya on a short term mission trip. The woman and her 5 children needed housing and our church gave out of their love and maturity and was able to raise 10% of the cost of her housing this past week with a last minute offering during our service. With the giving of several other churches and individuals, this woman will soon have a home. Once again Center Hill, I love being your Senior Pastor. Soli Deo Gloria
“In my apprehension it was never better with the Christian people, than when sincerely attentive to believe the gospel, to live in a holy manner, and to banish far the quirks of curious questions, they delighted themselves in the pure love of God and Christ, and in the certain expectation of eternal life.” – Herman Witsius Let us be a people who dig deep but are satisfied with this blessed truth – ‘He is enough’. Soli Deo Gloria!
What is the benefit of wrestling with and uncovering experiences of shame and guilt? When we become more aware of these experiences, we will better grasp the depth of Christ’s love for us, because Jesus is as concerned about the shame we experience as he is about our guilt. We will know better how to pray, how to ask for help, and how to find help and healing in God’s Word. And as we grow in wisdom, we are better equipped to walk with others. We began this study this past Wednesday at Refresh and it is promising to be one of our best studies from CCEF. It’s not too late to join, each lesson can stand alone and the study guide is designed to be used for personal study as well as group. Join us for this 8 week study at 6:30 pm. Soli Deo Gloria!
Enjoy this wonderful new song that we learned at the recent Ocean City Bible Conference. What exciting truths we proclaim in this song, “Come behold the wondrous mystery Slain by death the God of life But no grave could e’er restrain Him Praise the Lord; He is alive! What a foretaste of deliverance How unwavering our hope Christ in power resurrected As we will be when he comes” CHCC, it will soon be a new song of the month! Soli Deo Gloria
Allow for some self expression in this post. What a week it as been. 28 CHCC ‘family’ members experienced God in a very special way this week at the Ocean City Bible Conference in O.C., New Jersey. As each session of praise and teaching ended, I listened to our folks speak, with enthusiasm, of seeking deeper ‘worship’ as a church or desiring a deeper commitment to finishing well in their marriage and sexual purity. Others were awed at the commitment of the faithful Reformers upon who’s shoulders we stand and still others grew in their love of the theology of the Protestant Reformation as taught by the ‘solas’. To hear the voices of several hundred people singing loudly and in worshipful harmony ‘It Is Well With My Soul’, people who find complete satisfaction and delight in Christ alone, if but for that brief moment, gave each of us a taste of what eternity will be like. Everyone came back changed and longing for more. Fast forward to today. What a day of worship it was for us at Center Hill. I have to believe God was pleased. We combined the Jesus ordained ordinances of the church into one service, the Lord’s supper and 5 baptisms. Wow, what a thrill for this lead Pastor. To preach about our feasting and nourishing ourselves spiritually at the table and to see a near full worship center celebrate the obedience of 5 of our brothers and sisters was an amazing experience. Then to continue in fellowship with a luncheon and welcoming several visitors, brought together what the church is meant to be. A place of worship, edification, encouragement, discipleship and communion. All I can say Center Hill is that I love being your Pastor. Soli Deo Gloria!
We have to ask the right questions to get the right answers. What is happening in our country, whether it be found in the north or south, rural or urban, or right or left, can be explained by this; the heart of the issue is the ‘heart’ of the issue. It’s not which lives matter, history revisionism or ANY ‘social’ issue. Man is in open rebellion to a holy God at his very core and the only answer is not to be found in our government or social agencies but in the clear call of the gospel. Come on church, be who we are, heralds of the good news that Christ and only Christ transforms hearts and therefore our outward lives. Listen to this short Q&A response from John MacArthur for a great explanation. Soli Deo Gloria!
Excited about our first “On Campus” baptisms this Sunday. We thank God for the off campus locations of our previous baptisms but what a wonderful and intimate element the new baptistry will add to our service. We already anticipate 4 more baptism this next month. Praise God, He’s working! Join us for this privilege our church has to celebrate and encourage our brothers and sisters in this step of obedience. It’s exciting to see God at work among the faithful. PG
Wow! Read this Center Hill. So, so very appropriate. Be careful as we continually lead each other to the Gospel of Christ. Be wise and gentle. Gracious and sound. https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/beware-of-broken-wolves soli deo gloria!
One final word about the movie “The Shack”. The author of the book and the movie has now written a new book to explain his personal beliefs of theology, “Lies We Believe About God”. We can now quit speculating about what the writer “really means” or is “trying to portray” in this movie, which has created some strong debate in the Christian community. Every writer has a world view and therefore a view of theology and will essentially write from that perspective. Here is a sampling of Young’s theology in his own words by certain chapter headings from his new book – Chapter 2: “God is Good. I am not.” Chapter 3: “God is in control.” Chapter 13: “You need to get saved.” Remember these are ‘lies’ according to Young. It should serve as a warning to every discerning Christian that the underlying narrative of the “The Shack” is theologically questionable at best and heretical at worst. Young has done the church a favor in writing this book, as A. Lincoln said “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and to remove all doubt.” See Challies review of Young’s new book here. soli deo gloria!