The Annual Brown County National Day of Prayer Observance has been set for Noon-1 p.m. Thursday, May 5, at the Margaret and Stuart Coleman Plaza at the Depot Center, 600 E. Depot Street in Brownwood, TX. The event will feature a meet-and-greet from Noon-12:15, a community prayer service from 12:15-12:45, and individual prayer groups from 12:45 until finished. The community prayer service will feature prayers for rain, our local community, our state and our nation led by local community leaders. For more information, contact Leland Acker at (325) 200-8531.
The annual Community Easter Sunrise Service will be held at 7 am Easter Sunday, April 17, at the Early Visitors and Events Center at 419 Garmon Drive in Early. The event will feature congregational hymns, special musical presentations, scripture reading and a special message from Leland Acker, pastor of Life Point Baptist Church of Early, TX.
The Community Easter Sunrise Service has been a staple in Brown County since it was first held in 2012. It provides an opportunity for local residents to experience the hope of a new day, celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ, as the sun rises over the outdoor pavilion.
Everyone is invited to attend. For more information, call Leland Acker at (325) 200-8531, check out the event on Facebook at https://fb.me/e/2WMmJ2fZf, or contact Life Point online at www.PointToLife.net.
Life Point will break tradition this year when we hold VBS for six consecutive Wednesday nights, as opposed to holding it every night for one week. The plan is to foster Spiritual growth as a family by giving parents and children a week to consider the lessons learned and by providing resources to help.
This year’s theme verse is Jeremiah 29:13, which says “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”
That verse falls right behind the often quoted Jeremiah 29:11, which says “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
These two verses coupled together remind us that God is continually working in our lives to bring us into His presence. Everything that happens in our lives happens for that purpose.
With that in mind, let’s remember the following:
1. God is real. It might seem overly basic to make such a declaration on a church’s blog, but the simple truth is that God exists beyond our understanding and imaginations. Our belief does not define Him, rather He defines our belief. True science, research and archaeology proves His existence and truth. Scripture reveals it.
2. God loves. Not only does God exist, but He gave His only Begotten Son to redeem us from sin and death. Not only did God give His Son for our Salvation, but He made sure we knew about it by revealing it in the Bible. Not only did He reveal it in the Bible, but He uses the events of our lives to reveal His presence and draw us into His truth.
3. The Bible builds faith. The search for truth, and the desire for understanding doesn’t end when you come to know the Lord as your Savior. There are still tough questions to be answered.
Questions such as why God permitted the existence of evil, why a certain tragedy happened in our life, what our purpose is. While a pastor or mentor may be able to give you an academic answer to these questions, the truth is that you will not find peace until you understand how it all fits into God’s nature.
That’s where routine Bible study really helps. As Job said, “I have heard of you, but now my eyes have seen you.” Job didn’t say he saw God because God showed up and spoke to him. He said he saw God because of the experience he had with God. Our experience with God comes through reading the Bible.
We are going to have fun this summer, and we are going to grow in our faith. Come see us. VBS, Wednesday nights at 6 p.m. at Life Point Baptist Church.
What is the purpose of going to church?
In today’s time, the importance of church participation has been diminished. Some have quit going because they’ve had bad experiences. Others, quote such sayings as “Standing in a garage doesn’t make you a car, going to church doesn’t make you a Christian.”
Yet, the church continues to move forward, and people remain involved in church. Why? What is the point? And should I be involved in my local church?
First, we must remember that the church is not the building, but rather the people who join together in the building. The church is not about going to a place and participating in a weekly ritual. The church is about what happens when the people gather together.
When the church gathers, things happen. The Word of God is preached, the people pray, lives are changed, and the members come away with a deeper understanding of the Lord and His Word.
If you need prayer, the church is there. If you need comfort, the church is there. If you need to connect with others, the church is there. And most importantly, if you need to connect with God, the church is there.
In Mark 11:17, Jesus said, “My house shall be called of all nations a house of prayer.” In referring to the Temple, Jesus noted that His house should be the place where people go to connect with God, whether that is repenting of sin and expressing faith through the sacrifices, or whether that means lifting up requests to God, the way Hannah did in 1 Samuel 1. In Jesus’ day, to connect with God, you went to the Temple.
Today, the church serves that role. The church has been commanded to help people connect with God, to pray with people, to minister to and teach people, and to bring people into God’s presence.
If you are a Christian, God wants you to participate in this process. If you are not a Christian, but want to know God, then you should gather with the church.
It is difficult to connect with God while remaining isolated. Being connected with God’s people and His church is a prime way to be connected with God Himself.
So, if you are without a church home, begin visiting churches in your area. If you live near Brownwood or Early, Texas, we’d love to have you visit with us.
Life Point Baptist Church, 599 Sunrise, Early, TX. Sunday School 10 a.m., Sunday Worship 11 a.m.
For more on the concept of the church being the house of prayer, check out Pastor Leland Acker’s sermon below.
Have you ever noticed the passion local civic organizations have toward their causes? One organization raises funds to purchase dictionaries for every local third-grader. Another raises funds to purchase eye glasses for local school children. Yet, another raises funds to help children in various ways, from funding youth sports to providing scholarships for graduating seniors.
Other civic organizations raise funds for education, poverty relief, medical care, prescription medications, and one well-known organization actually raises money to operate its own hospital for children.
These are all wonderful causes, very worthy, and highly noble, and we support these organizations passionately pursuing their purposes. It’s worth noting that when you ask the members of these organizations what their purpose is, most of the time, they’ll tell you.
With that in mind, what is the purpose of the local church? Do people even know?
The church’s mission was plainly spoken by our Lord Jesus Christ in Matthew 28:19-20, when He said “Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, teaching them to observe whatsoever things I have commanded you.”
The mission of the church is to teach others about salvation, and in so doing, lead others to salvation in Jesus Christ. All other activities of the local church, benevolence, poverty relief, fellowship, among others, are secondary.
The question then becomes, “How committed is the church to its mission?” To determine that, we must ask ourselves, “How committed are the members of the church to its mission?”
In civic organizations, the members pay dues, but also dig into their own pockets to donate to their causes. More than a financial commitment, they also donate their time, volunteering many hours to club activities designed to fulfill their missions.
In looking at the local church, how much of themselves do members give toward the church fulfilling its mission?
It is our prayer that in 2020, the members of all churches rededicate themselves to this cause, to reach and disciple the lost and to lead others to Christ. There is no greater cause.
If you would like to play an active role in the Great Commission, we’d love to have you join us at Life Point Baptist Church. Contact us on the contact page to see what opportunities await you. Be prepared. Giving yourself to the mission of Christ will require sacrifice, which is what Pastor Leland Acker discussed in his message this week, which is posted below:
Adon had been a faithful member of the church for years. He had trusted the Lord as his savior as a young man, had tithed regularly, donated to the church’s missions program, and had even accompanied a group on a mission trip to Central America. If more of God’s people were like Adon, greater things would be happening for the cause of Christ.
Adon had served God faithfully, asking nothing in return. Adon never prayed that God would reward him with a better job, nicer car or bigger house. Yet, when Adon’s mother was diagnosed with cancer, that changed. Adon prayed earnestly to God, begging God to cure his mother’s cancer, to heal her, and to restore her life. He prayed that her pain would subside, that the doctors would be guided to the proper treatment, and that a cure would be found.
For six agonizing months, Adon pleaded with God for this one miracle, the healing of his mother. Other folks had cancer, and other folks saw their cancer go into remission. But Adon’s mother continued to struggle with the disease.
Adon was told that the prayer of faith would save the sick. He was told that if he prayed in faith, God would answer. All Adon had to do was pray in faith, and claim the victory. Adon continued in prayer. He stayed faithful to the church. And he never doubted God’s love and power.
That is, until the doctor declared his mother to be dead, at 2:23 p.m. on a sunny Tuesday in October.
Why didn’t God hear Adon’s prayers? Was his faith incomplete? Did he falter? When did he doubt? Was his prayer not fervent enough?
If all the prayer he had poured out would not save his mother, what was the point? Why didn’t the scriptures that were shared with him work? Was his Bible broken? Is this all a lie? Is faith only good as long as he is serving and donating to the church?
Adon became disillusioned. And who could blame him? The person who was most precious to him in the world had just been ripped away.
If we are honest, I think most of us can relate to Adon.
But there is one man in the Bible that we can look to in order to learn how to handle these times of tragedy. Like Adon, Job was also a faithful servant of God. He was just and upright, one who feared God and turned away from evil. He gave generously, and prayed on behalf of all those he loved. Yet, in a matter of a few days, Job lost everything… his wealth, health, and kids.
The whole world collapsed on Job. Even his wife told him to curse God and die. And when his friends came, they said it must be karma… that Job must have done something horrible to deserve this misfortune.
Much theological truth is poured out during the debates between Job and his friends. Job’s faith remained in tact, and by the end of the book, he had received a revelation that few have ever seen. Job got to know God in a way you and I cam barely imagine.
In Job 42:5, Job says to God, “I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth thee.”
Up until now, Job had believed in a God whom he had learned about by the teaching of the word. But now, Job believed in a God he had seen with his own eyes. While God’s presence in the book of Job is clearly felt, Job gained such an understanding of the Lord through his struggle.
The book of Job offers us comfort by giving us that deeper understanding of the Lord. And if you are enduring a time of trauma, grief or bereavement right now, you are about to experience God in a way you never before imagined.
Join us on Sunday mornings in October to obtain a deeper understanding of God through our struggles. Morning worship begins at 11 a.m.
The biggest mistake we make in life is taking one another for granted.
Every day brings the same routine. Wake, work, eat, play, sleep. We tend to do so with the same people in our lives every day, from the family that lives beneath the roof of our house, to the friends we work with at the office.
We build relationships, bonds, and share common backgrounds which build our acquaintances into lifelong friendships. Again, we wake, work, eat, play, sleep. This process continues indefinitely, to the point that our ongoing assumption is that tomorrow we will once again wake, work, eat, and play with those we love most.
If we have something that needs to be done, or that needs to be said, we often think that we can say or do what needs to be done tomorrow. Then, our lives are interrupted. The Lord suddenly calls one of our loved ones home, and suddenly we are reminded of all the things we wish we had said, we wish we had done, and though we know that our loved one is in the presence of Christ, and we will soon be reunited with them, we still have that void left in our lives by their absence. Such is Godly sorrow.
It’s that experience that Heather Smith taps into in her song, “Until I See You Again.” The song begins by reaching out to her friend, whom she dearly misses, then progresses through a series of memories with that friend, before offering a ray of hope at the end of the chorus, saying, “Now the hardest part’s not saying, ‘goodbye.’ It’s how long until I see you again.” Indeed the separation hurts, but the hope is in the reunion at the end.
Anyone who has experienced a loss like this will be able to connect with the song, and also draw comfort, knowing that we will be reunited with those we love someday.
If you live close to Early, TX, you can hear Heather sing in person at 6 p.m. Saturday, May 11, 2019, at our worship center at 599 Sunrise Dr. Admission is free.
Life Point Baptist Church is excited to welcome ICMA Artist Heather Smith, in concert at 6 p.m. Saturday, May 11, at 599 Sunrise Drive in Early. Smith’s breakout single, “Lion of Judah” rocketed up the Christian Country charts in 2018, and her latest single, “This is My Prayer, Lord” has cracked the Top-100 at #65.
Expect a night of blessings and encouragement as Heather sings her hits, songs written from her own personal experiences, and as she shares her experiences with the Lord. Her husband Russell will also share his incredible testimony.
Admission is free, and we won’t even collect an offering. This night is purely for your encouragement, enjoyment, and blessing. Come and be inspired.
The Early Visitors and Event Center will be the site of the 8th Annual Community Sunrise Service on Easter Sunday, Pastor Leland Acker announced Monday via Facebook. Life Point Baptist Church first sponsored the Community Sunrise Service in 2011. The service, which features Gospel singing, and preaching, will begin at 7 a.m. Sunday, April 21, at the newly built Early Visitors and Event Center. The entire Early and Brownwood communities are invited.
The Early Visitors and Event Center is located on Garmon Drive (Hwy 84/183 East), at the corner of Live Oak Rd., in Early. The Sunrise Service will be held in the courtyard in the back of the facility (pictured above). The sun will rise to the left of the pavilion, allowing those in attendance to experience the sunrise on the Lord’s day. The event center building will also be open that day, allowing access to restroom facility, and shelter from inclement weather.
Come join us for a moving worship experience, celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ on Easter Sunday. Enjoy good Gospel singing, and a Gospel message from Pastor Acker.
For a map to the Early Visitors and Event Center, click here.
Contact us for more information:
If I were to invite you to go fishing with me, what would you expect?
You would probably expect a relaxing afternoon on the local lake in a small boat, holding a fishing pole, and making casual conversation while waiting for the fish to bite. And why wouldn’t you? Living in America, all we’ve seen of fishing is canes, poles, lines, tackle and bait. Fishing in America is recreation. (Unless, of course, you work on a shrimp boat on the Gulf Coast.)
So, when we read that Jesus told His disciples that He would make them “fishers of men,” we tend to envision fishing poles, spoon lures and minnows.
In the Bible, Peter was a fisherman. Popular tradition holds that he was an expert fisherman, and had honed his craft well, building a great fishing business that he walked away from upon becoming a disciple of Jesus. However, if you were to travel back in time, and hand Peter a rod and reel, he would look at you like you were crazy. Peter had never seen such.
Fishing for Peter, and the other disciples so employed before following Jesus, involved the casting of nets in order to draw in as many fish as possible. This was not recreation to them, this was survival. It was how they gathered food, not only for their families, but also to sell for necessary provisions. Fishing was work. Fishing was business. Fishing was absolutely necessary for survival.
The casting of nets not only enabled Peter and his colleagues the ability to draw out as many fish as possible, but it also required a team effort. You never see the disciples fishing alone. In fact, in many cases, it took two boats to cast and draw a net. There are fish in that sea. We need the food. Therefore, we are going to draw out as many as we can.
With the modern American approach to fishing involving a rod and reel, many get the wrong idea when Jesus said, “Come, and I will make you fishers of men.” Some church leaders have taught that this means that the church should use bait to lure unsuspecting sinners in the door, then hit them with the surprise Gospel. Others have advocated that this means “finding the right fishing hole.” As a result, Christianity’s evangelistic efforts have suffered. As a whole, Christianity is not reaching as many as it has in the past, and new converts are not being properly discipled.
However, if we apply the imagery of casting a net, and drawing it back out of the water, we get a more beautiful picture of what Christ was referring to when He called His disciples to be “fishers of men.” Instead of targeting outreach to certain “fishing holes,” or trying to find the right “bait,” we should instead cast a wide “net,” reaching as many people as possible, regardless of location, demographic, or socioeconomic status.
In essence, our evangelistic efforts should be an all-out effort to reach every individual in our communities. This is accomplished when the membership of the church takes on the responsibility of personal evangelism, and when the church openly promotes, propagates and teaches the Gospel. When the church commits itself to its message, the Gospel, and relentlessly communicates that message, people will be reached and lives will be changed.
The mission of Life Point Baptist Church is to cast as wide of a net as possible, reaching as many as possible with the Gospel. This we will do, if we follow the example of the disciples, and follow Jesus as we continue to learn from Him.