Greetings from the Oakland Community! The weather is warmer and everything seems to be in bloom. It’s a comforting sight after the long year we’ve had. At Oakland Baptist Church, we look forward to renewing not only our environment, but also renewing our commitment to God and our community.
The April 25 song service selection reminded me of the needs in our community, state, and country. “People Need The Lord” and “On The Cross” reminded us that we need him and where to go to renew our spirits. The selection of the Mathis family from “In His Time” and “Send the Light” reminded us to be patient and trust that God hears us and reflects God’s light for others every day. Brothers. Don’s message began with a verse from John 15 and then moved on to Deuteronomy 8.
“This glorifies my father that you bear much fruit; So you will be my disciples, ”John 15: 8.
“In every command I command you today, you must carefully see that you live and multiply and go in and own the land the Lord swore your fathers by. And you will remember that the Lord your God led you all these forty years in the wilderness to humble and examine yourself, to know what was in your heart, to keep his commandments would or not. So he humiliated you, allowed you to starve and fed you manna that you did not know, and your fathers did not know that man should not live on bread only; but man lives by every word that comes out of the mouth of the Lord. Your clothes have not worn out or your foot swollen in these forty years. Know in your heart that as a man chastises his son, the Lord your God chastises you. ”- Deuteronomy 8: 1-5.
Student and discipline are very closely related in spelling. However, they do not share a root word. They are inherently similar. The definition of the student is a follower; one who takes someone other than his teacher. Discipline means training that brings order, obedience and self-control. The purpose of discipline is to teach right from wrong.
God disciples us through the discipline of humbling and testing. He disciples us to do us good. We are arrogant. Arrogance leads to stubbornness and rebellion. When we think we know better than God what to do; We are in a dangerous area and we are open to God’s discipline.
“Who fed you manna in the desert that your fathers did not know, so that he might humiliate you and test you so that you might end up doing good?” Deuteronomy 8:16.
The purpose of God’s discipline (humiliation and testing) is always to do us good. We never see the end (the good) while we are being humiliated and tested. We can do it with God’s help and guidance, we can understand why it had to be that way. We have to learn to accept the discipline without worrying about the end. Just trust and know that God is doing good in our lives. Once we have this understanding, we have become a disciple. A disciple who has gone through the humiliation and trial and still remains faithful to God is a true disciple.
“And you have forgotten the admonition that said to you regarding the sons: ‘My son, do not despise the chastisement of the Lord (Job 5:17) and do not be discouraged when you are rebuked by him; For whom the Lord loves, he chastises (Ps 94.12; 119.75; Prov 3.12) and scourges every son he receives.
“If you endure chastisement, God treats you as he treats sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chastise? But if you are without the chastisement that everyone has participated in, then you are out of wedlock and not sons. We also had human fathers who corrected us and we showed them respect. Shall we not submit to the Father of Spirits and live much more easily? For they actually chastised us for a few days as they seemed best, but he did it for our benefit, so that we might partake of his holiness. Now no chastisement seems joyful but painful for the present; Yet afterwards it brings the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it, ”Hebrews 12: 5-11.
Our earthly fathers did their best to teach us right and chastened us to teach us. But they didn’t always know the result. God does it. Knowing this, we should accept God’s humiliation and testing even more. God does this to make us “partakers of his holiness”. No chastisement is fun. It is painful. Discipline disciples and bring us to God’s righteousness. I can’t think of a better place than God’s righteousness.
The Christmas shoe box collections in April are for cuddly toys. In May we will be collecting personal hygiene items.
May 9th is Mother’s Day. We will collect an offer for the Baptist Children’s Village.
We currently hold church services at 11 a.m. on Sundays at the Family Life Center. The Ladies Sunday School Class takes place in the Sanctuary and the Men’s Sunday School Class in the Family Life Center. The children meet for Sunday School in the Fellowship Hall. Sunday school takes place on Wednesday evening at 10 a.m. The adult Bible study takes place in the shrine and the children meet at 7 p.m. at the Family Life Center
Our services are still broadcast over the radio for those who are more convenient to hear from their vehicles in the parking lot. Recordings of the service, Wednesday night Bible study and Sunday school class are still available on our Facebook page
If you are looking for a meeting house, we would be delighted if you visit us. We are here to serve our community and we would consider it a privilege to help in any way we can.
There are still many in need of prayer for grief or illness. Let us lift her up every time we pray for comfort and a return to good health. Our country and our elected officials must also be prayed to to make good decisions that please God and bring glory to God.
I wish you a wonderful week and God bless you all!