Be of Good Cheer!
When Jim and I go to our little house in Comanche, Texas, we attend the Gustine church of Christ just a few miles from town, in Gustine, TX population about 200. . . It’s the warmest congregation with about 20 members–all of who welcome us as though we are sorely missed and that they are so happy to see us–and we know they really are sincere!!
This congregation, as I mentioned, has 20+/- members who attend regularly–a number which is down substantially from 250+ just 40 years ago–like 90% down !! Most of the members are elderly or close to being so, but what attracts us to this congregation is because they define what I refer to as great examples of Christian men and women. I love them, respect them, and admire them for their continued service to Christ our Lord and Savior– and to the local community–with no complaint–and most of them have many good reasons to complain . . . but you would never know it–because they are friendly, engaging, and cheerful.
Bro. Bill Blackstone–the preacher is 80 or older–and brings the messages on Sunday, teaches Sunday School and the Wednesday classes and he puts out the Weekly Bulletin. I am sharing one of his articles about our attitude regarding our lives. He said that I could use anything that he writes and I chose this article for this week’s Words of Wisdom article. I hope you are able to use it to your benefit!
“BE OF GOOD CHEER” One thing in life is sure: we all have our share of pain and suffering. Bad things happen to good people. Age, disease and sickness can destroy our health. Family problems threaten lives and souls of those we love most dearly. Financial strain, job related stress, and everyday challenges of life seem to be like Jesus’ description of the poor – “With us always.” (Mark 14:7).
This should not surprise us. Didn’t Jesus warn us, “In the world you shall have tribulation?” (John 16:33). We can be thankful that Jesus did not stop his thought here, but continued by promising, “….be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
No problem or sorrow is larger than our God. And God, who “cannot lie” (Titus 1:2), has promised to help his own. “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” (Psalms 46:1).
The question is not “Does God care?” He does! The real problem that each one must answer is “Do I believe what God has promised?-Bill B
And, again, I am inspired to do better and to have the reputation as a cheerful Christian. I am also inspired because Jim and I have found this scripturally sound, and cheerful congregation here at Boyd Lake Rd and there are so many parallels–uplifting, kind, concerned, friendly members, excellent sermons and services . . . both “cheerful” . . . one difference to note: Gustine may be losing membership due to the small town getting smaller reality –but continues to be an inspiration to so many and Boyd Lake Rd continues to grow and add more cheerful faithful Christians to its number-I am so blessed!