Pastor’s Blog

His Ultimate Creation

12-1-2021
C. Hayden
 
All of God’s creation is an absolute wonder to behold. Just think of the beauty of the changing leaves we see as we traverse a country road. Or the majesty found overlooking an endless sand-lined ocean view. Or stop by the Indianapolis Zoo’s butterfly arboretum sometime. Take a look at the overwhelming beauty of the Monarchs or the Blue Morpho butterfly among countless others. God is truly the greatest of all artists. Yet in God’s economy, He loves and cherishes one creation above all the others. Though the earth houses an innumerable collection of marvelous treasures, mankind is the one who holds the heart of our Father God the very most. For it is you and me that He came to this planet to redeem. 
 
In Psalms 139, Kind David weaves striking poetry in the 13th and 14th verse. “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Marvelous are you works; my soul knows it very well.” David ponders his own beginnings in God’s world of wonder. Within those musings, David recognizes the premium that is put on the conception of each and every soul. We are “fearfully and wonderfully” made. That word fearfully is derived from the Hebrew word “Yare” which means AWE! In other words, when we see mankind in the process of a baby’s conception, the response God should receive from those in attendance should be nothing less than AWE! How we demean and defame God when we say a preborn baby is nothing but a collection of cells! God help us!
When we see a baby in the womb of his or her mother (yes, I was gender specific and used the term “mother”), we should respond in no less than absolute awe of our wonderful, mighty to behold Creator! That is who God is, and that is what God thinks of us. Yes, our God is the Master, and we are His masterpiece! We are priceless to Him! To redeem our Lord’s highest order of creation, us, it would be extremely costly. The ultimate creation’s price for our Lord’s ultimate creation is the blood of Jesus, God the Son. And Jesus paid it willingly. That is how much you are worth to God!
 
Be blessed even more!
Pastor Chris

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In All Things, Give Thanks

11-15-2021
J. Fields
 
Where has this year gone? I cannot believe we are only a couple of weeks away from Thanksgiving! The smell of fresh-baked pies, deep-fried turkey, sweet potatoes, and oh, did I mention fresh-baked pies, oh how I love this time of the year.
 
While Thanksgiving gives us a time to come together with friends and family and have a wonderful meal it is also a great times to just reflect. Personally, I get so wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of the world that I sometimes forget to just stop, contemplate, and let God know just how thankful I am for all of His blessings.
Let me ask you when you think of Thanksgiving what are some of the thoughts that come to your mind? Do you think about family? Do you stop and consider just how blessed you really are? Do you think about all the Black-Friday sales? What is it that you enjoy about this Season?
Being thankful isn’t just for this time of year, yes it is a great reminder but scripture tells us to always be thankful. You may be thinking, “You expect me to be thankful when everything around me seems to be falling apart” — My answer is honestly pretty simple, Yes, while you may not want to hear it, I believe it is something we all must be reminded of.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus”. It’s easy to be thankful when everything is going great in life but the real testing of your faith is how thankful you are during the low times. What if I told you that your breakthrough or miracle was on the other side of your thankfulness, would you then praise Him in the valley? I believe that is exactly what God wants to see from us, He wants us to showcase our faith through the thick and thin.
This November I give you a challenge — Get up every morning and start thanking Jesus for all of His goodness. Turn your complaining into praise. When you go through your day just give Him the honor. When something challenging happens, just thank Him. In everything you do give God all your praise, honor, and thanksgiving. I guarantee you one thing, when you start declaring the goodness of God in everything you do, God will, in return bless and shine upon you. 
 
Psalm 118
 
“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever. Let Israel say: “His love endures forever”. Let the house of Aaron say: “His love endures forever”. Let those who fear the Lord say: “His love endures forever”. When hard pressed, I cried to the Lord; he brought me into a spacious place. The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me? The Lord is with me; he is my helper. I look in triumph on my enemies. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in humans. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes. All the nations surrounded me, but in the name of the Lord I cut them down. They swarmed around me like bees, but they were consumed as quickly as burning thorns; in the name of the Lord I cut them down. I was pushed back and about to fall, but the Lord helped me. The Lord is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation. Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: “The Lord’s right hand is lifted high; the Lord’s right hand is lifted high; the Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!” I will not die but live, and will proclaim what the Lord has done. The Lord has chastened me.”
 
Blessings,
Pastor Jason

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The Greater One In You

11-1-2021
C. Hayden
 
Let’s start off this blog with scripture. The Apostle John says these words, “…every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world. You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:3-4). In this passage, God warns us not only of the coming Antichrist, but that his spirit is already existing in the world in John’s day that rejected Christ. We see that foul spirit in our own time as well, distorting, deceiving, and destroying lives. The good news is that we have not been left alone to our own devices. Jesus, the Lord of hosts, is in us and with us always. As the scripture above states, greater is He (Jesus) who is in us, than he (the devil) who is in the world.
 
Because Christ lives in us, we have access to His power to overcome what the devil may put in our path. In Ephesians 6 we are told to put on God’s armor so that we can withstand the enemy’s schemes. With God in us, there is no attack Satan can bring our way that we cannot overcome. 1 John 5:4-5 says this, “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world — our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” The Scriptures are referring to us! We believe in Jesus the Christ, the Son of God. Simply put, our faith in Him makes us overcomers of this world, allies of the One True God and an enemy of an already defeated foe, the devil. So who are you really? You are a child of the King, a family member of the One True Lord of Hosts, who also lives inside of you. Trust in the Lord and let the overcomer come out in you!
 
Be Blessed Even More!
 
Pastor Chris

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Decisions…Decisions…Decisions

10-15-2021
J. Fields
 
Have you ever heard someone joke around about them spending their life in hell after they die? How about this, have you ever heard someone  tell someone else to go to that place? Or how about someone just teasing around saying that it is hotter than hell? Whatever the circumstance may be, hell is truly no laughing matter. We should never want to see anyone, even our worst enemy to spend the rest of their life in total destruction.
 
Throughout Scripture, there are many mentions about the horrible place known as hell. The bottomless pit known as hell was never created for you or me to spend eternity in rather it was specifically created for Satan, and all that worship and follow his ways. Even though we weren’t created for hell, God does allow us to have free will in the choices that we make in life. SCripture states that the wicked will go down to the realm of the dead (Psalm 9:17) while the righteous will spend eternity in Glory (Matthew 25:46). 
 
There is a generational belief that someone can get into heaven by being a good person in life, while being a good person is important it will not lead you into the glorious life of heaven. Scripture explains that the road to heaven is narrow while the way to hell is much wider (Matthew 7:13-14). The first step in your walk with Christ is to live out His goodness in all the days of your life (Philippians 2:12-16).
 
Ponder these questions for a moment. Are you doing everything in your power to live a life that mirrors that of Jesus? Are you just trying to go through life as you do at work (punching your ticket)? When someone sees you do they see the love of Christ? Have you talked with anyone recently about God? Do you try and make church about you or do you go to glorify Him? These may be some tough questions to swallow but what would Jesus say about your answers?
 
We are living in a world that is looking for something. The way we have been doing church, and I use church as a broad term, it isn’t working (remember some of my statistics). I believe that we are getting closer and closer to the last days. Jesus is knocking, He is looking for the church who will rise up and preach the truth, speak the truth, and go out into all the world to save the sinners for His glory. Central Christian has done an incredible job of building up the congregations, you have “it” inside of you, the Holy Spirit is in charge but are you willing to step out of your comfort  zone and snatch someone out of hell and into heaven?
 
Yes, this is a subject that I am passionate about because as a lover of Jesus I am called to also love and pour into others. Take the time and pray to God about how you can be used for His glory. There are many ways we can be the light of the world, stretch your thinking and seek Him. Now let’s put our faith into action and reach the world for Jesus!
 
Blessings,
 
Pastor Jason

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What Should I Say Today?

10-1-2021
C. Hayden
 
Hello everyone. It is blog time again and I have been asked to produce another episode of Biblical wisdom to salve and edify the weary soul. So, the question I pose to my readers is this, “What should I say today?”. I do not want to simply dazzle with big words that amaze the masses or try to reveal some deep hidden mystery to those who care more about some newfangled doctrine than any actual truth. Yes, there is something called truth. But are we really interested in hearing it?
 
The Apostle Paul warns Timothy, a young Pastor, that there is coming a day when most people would not be interested in what is or is not true. They are far more interested in what pleases their interests, not God’s. The Bible, the source of all real truth, says this in 2 Timothy 4:2-4, (2) “Preach the Word! Be ready in seasons and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. (3) For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap for themselves teachers; (4) And they will turn their ears away from the truth and be turned aside to fables.” They would applaud the orator who declares the things that please them, that tickle their ears, but despise the sermon that speaks of holiness and righteousness. Central Christian left its denomination because we refused to accept doctrine that would please the world. Maybe we should only hear things that pleases everyone?! I think we should just preach about doctrine that people like?! Maybe we should just do that so people will be pleased with us.
 
We hear many sermons on how we are loved by God, how God wants to bless his people, how Jesus died for us, how He will provide for us, and the heavenly real estate reserved for us in the glorious new Jerusalem. All good messages. All appropriate. All needed. But do not shun the tough teachings. Those that call us to a closer walk with Him requiring commitment, dedication, exhortation, holiness, and life change. As scripture tells us, “For whom the Lord loves He chastens…If you endure chastening, God deals with you as sons…” (Hebrews 12:6-7). Maybe we should just stick with the truth, all of it.
 
Be Blessed Even More!
 
Pastor Chris

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Judge Ye Not

9-15-2021
J. Fields
 
Have you ever come to a stop sign in a busy intersection of town and saw a homeless person holding a sign that expressed that they were in need of money? Have you ever been walking down a sidewalk and witnessed someone sleeping right along the edge of the walk? The other day I was in Nashville, Tennessee for a work trip and witnessed many homeless people holding signs, playing music, and sleeping along the sidewalk, my heart was aching. I have no idea about each of their stories, I’m sure that some have made bad decisions throughout life while others may have just had a bad upbringing but regardless who am I to judge their story.
 
The things I saw in Nashville made me think about how many times I have walked past a homeless person and quickly turned the other cheek so I wouldn’t “lock eyes” with them. If I spoke with them what would happen if someone else saw me talking with them? I can’t imagine how bad they may smell, I’m sure they haven’t showered for days. If I give them money will they actually buy something nutritious or will they spend it on something bad? I know I’m probably the only one with these concerns but at the end of the day, who am I to think I am better than anyone else regardless if they are homeless or not?
 
God doesn’t call us to judge others. Rather, He calls us to love others. Love comes only through a relationship with Christ. How can you say that you love God but then you judge others? Love doesn’t say “I love you but…or I love you if…” 1 John 4:7 “Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.” Don’t get me wrong, sometimes you have to show “tough love”, but you can show it in a Godly way.
 
Life is sometimes crazy, just because I’m a pastor doesn’t mean I don’t face the same troubles like everyone else. It is refreshing to know that God is full of grace, mercy, and love. Even when I fail, He’s there. Even when I have questions, He’s there. When I need that pick me up, He’s there to say I love you. We all leak, we all make mistakes, and we all make decisions we wish we could take back. Instead of being like the world, let’s choose to be like Jesus. John 13:34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”
 
Blessings,
 
Pastor Jason

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A Dignified Transfer

C.Hayden
9-1-2021
 
As I begin writing the first few words of this blog, I hold back tears as I watch the return home of the 11 of the 13 U.S. service members who gave their lives in service to a mostly grateful nation. I am in such awe as fellow brothers and sisters in arms, march in total lock step carrying our fallen heroes respectfully and honorably from the Dover bound military aircraft to the ongoing transport in what is called a “dignified transfer” of fallen soldiers. As I gaze on this ceremony, honoring our fallen men and women, several emotions begin to overwhelm me. The first couple of emotions include anger and sadness as I contemplate the unnecessary loss of our brave men and women and the heartache of families. They must be feeling a pain unimaginable to most of us. We all lose loved ones that we must say goodbye to but most of us do not suffer the loss or sacrifice of those so young who give so much for our freedom, especially when a few common-sense measures could have kept them safe. 
 
Yet, there are emotions that rise above the others. That is those feelings of extreme pride and gratitude. I feel so blessed to be a part of a nation filled with so many courageous individuals who are willing to give so much for the cause of bringing freedom and protection to the world. It reminds me of the great sacrifice our Lord made for us. He was not given such a “dignified transfer” as He left this world, but Jesus’ entrance when joining the right hand of the Father as He took occupation of His throne must have been one glorious ceremony. Hebrews 10:12 says, “But this Man (Jesus), after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sad down at the right hand of God.” Jesus had His dignified transfer after on the 3rd day, rising from the grave. Someday we will receive our dignified transfer. He offers it to all who would put their trust in Him. One day, when our Savior appears in the clouds and He calls us home, we will leave this planet in a great celebratory transfer to the Kingdom of our God.
 
And it will be glorious. 1 Corinthians 15:54-57 says, “So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory.’ O Death, where is you sting? O Hades, where is your victory? The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
 
Be Blessed Even More!
 
Pastor Chris

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God’s Grace / Human Grace

J. Fields
8/15/2021
 
As humans, life will many times throw us for a loop. Have you ever had someone say or do something to you that really hurt? Have you ever felt betrayed or just “stabbed in the back”? Have you ever just felt so angry for what someone did to you that you can’t seem to forgive them? If you have felt any of these things then you are human. However, we are called to be Christ-like which means we must learn how to forgive.
 
Recently I ran into a situation where I had someone get incredibly upset at me, this person got upset with me more out of their own personal frustration and not something that was wrong with me. I was called names that would be very disrespectful for me to relay in this letter. In my past, I would have “pushed back” however, by the grace of God, I am learning how to turn the other cheek, forgive, and move on. As I stopped and reflected, I felt God telling me to forgive, forget and move forward. While I was highly disappointed in this guy, we did end up talking, he apologized and was embarrassed for his actions. I graciously accepted his apology and we have both moved forward.
 
I would be lying if I said there weren’t times throughout my life when I held onto a hurt or grudge much longer than I should have. Holding onto a grudge or hurt will hold you back from what God wants to do in your life. Scripture tells us that we are to forgive, enven when someone may hurt you hundreds of times, you must learn to dig deep within your heart and forgive them (Matthew 18:22). Unforgiveness will put a grip on you that will squeeze the life out of your soul. Matthew 6:14-15 states that if you can’t forgive someone for what they’ve done, how can your Heavenly Father forgive you? True forgiveness will set you free, it will release the yoke that is holding you back.
 
Don’t allow the enemy to have victory over you today. Don’t fall into the trap and voices that may be speaking lies into you. Ife there is someone who you need to forgive, whatever that hurt or pain is when you forgive you will be set free. If there’s something that’s holding you back from forgiveness, pray for God to help you release the grudge. Just think about the difference we as Christians could make if we just follow the life of Jesus and forgive those who have done wrong to us. Forgiveness = True Godly Love. The world is watching us as believers very closely, allow the love of Jesus to flow out of you and into them by the way we live. 
 
Blessings,
Pastor Jason

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Revival, Yes or No?

C. Hayden
8-1-2021
 
The last couple of Sunday messages, and the next couple of Sunday messages, have and will touch on this idea of revival. Pastor Jason Fields has shared the historical context of the revivals of the Reformation period and those of the 20th century where God transformed and changed the landscape of several ecumenical Church movements in Europe and the United States. He also laid the foundation for our need for revival even at this very hour of our nation’s history in light of the trials and troubles we are living through today. My 8 year old grandson was even listening to Pastor Jason as Reid actually made me a paper airplane with the phrase “A Vision for Revival” written on both sides. If revival is such a good thing, and surely God desires revival in His Church and the world, why are we not seeing it in mass as we have in the past? Here are some thoughts. 
 
In the 2nd chapter of the book of Acts, the Scriptures state, “When the Day of Pentecost had finally come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a sound of rushing mighty wind, and if filled the whole house where they were sitting.” It was the first recorded revival that took place after Jesus went to heaven after the crucifixion. The revival continued for in the next chapter of Acts we see the Apostle Peter preach one sermon and over 3,000 people get saved and brought into the Church. Now that was revival! Why is that such a rarity today?
 
For one reason, at that time, the whole Church was in unity. They all wanted God’s presence. They all wanted God to change and transform them, they wanted to know God intensely, and there was nothing in their personal lives they were not willing to relinquish. Unfortunately, I believe that most of the Church, or at least a good portion, does not desire revival. We get comfortable in our lives, we get comfortable in our faith, we get comfortable with our things, and the last thing we want is for someone to disrupt our peaceful existence. Revival is messy!
 
When the Spirit of God brings revival, things get shaken up and “business as usual” is no longer satisfactory. My hypothesis, often we do not want revival and we do not hunger for revival, so we do not see revival except in individual hearts were being a “Christian as usual” is no longer enough. We need to pray for a hunger for the Holy Spirit to bring us a Holy dissatisfaction for comfortable, and a Holy hunger for more of God in our midst. Psalm 81:10 — “I am the Lord thy God, which brought thee out of Egypt: often thy mouth wide, and I will fill it.”
 
Be blessed and pray for a Spiritual hunger for more,
 
Pastor Chris

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Yes Lord, Yes!

J. Fields
7-15-2021
 
In just a few short weeks the Third Anniversary of my father’s death will be upon us, wow where does the time go! There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about the memories of my dad. While I absolutely love Summer, when I think about life a few years ago with the illness of my dad it brings back some crazy rollercoaster days. Let me explain a little about the hard days but also the joy that came from this adventure.
 
Life can sometimes throw us a curveball, that’s exactly what happened a few years ago when my dad lost his battle with Leukemia. There are many days that I’m out on a run and go through the cemetery where my dad’s body is and wonder why things turned out the way they did especially with how much faith my dad had. I’ll never forget when my dad was in the hospital and he was having a really rough night, I just asked him if he was scared of what could happen, I’ll never forget when he said “no, I am not scared when it’s my time I will be in glory”, wow what a powerful statement!
 
Let me ask you this question. Do you know someone who needs to say “Yes” to Jesus? None of us are guaranteed tomorrow. Is there someone who you would love to see in the church? In the blink of an eye, our life could be done, we will spend eternity in one of two places, don’t you or someone who you care about want to see them spend that “forever” in the glory of Jesus?
 
You may ask why I am so passionate about preaching about salvation, it’s because I want to see everyone spend eternity with Jesus. John 14:6 says “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'” Today is the perfect day to say Yes Lord, Yes. None of us are guaranteed another breath.
 
Blessings,
 
Pastor Jason

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