September 27, 2015

Greetings from HOT Tucson!

It is 101 here today.  I know that some of you have a cooling trend, but it has not got down here in the desert to us yet.  Do you mind sharing?  🙂  As you Yankees are relived when spring time comes after a long hard winter, that is how we feel after a long hot summer!  But now comes the good time of year for us.. YES!  🙂

OK, enough of weather stuff.  You really want to know about last Sunday at Bethel, don’t you?  Our numbers were not the greatest, but they were a good improvement over the previous two Sundays!  We had 82 in the Am & 45 in the PM.  I will be glad when our traveling folks are here to stay.  BTW, Mrs. Debbie Gross moved back to Tucson from Colorado & joined the church on Sunday.  Her excitement & enthusiasm to “be back home” was contagious!  It is so refreshing to her with us again.  PTL for this blessing. 

The choir sang, “Where He Leads Me I Will Follow” & the men sounded particularly good to me.  But they were not the only good music in that service.  Mrs. Autumn Clark played an offertory trumpet solo of “Faith Is the Victory” that was also very good.  The strong brass sound was joyous & encouraging.  Her husband accompanied her on the piano which also added to the pleasure.  I then preached a hard-hitting message from Psalm 102 with a strong segment on one of the scourges of our society, pornography.  The statistics alone are worth your time in listening to that message.

Then in the evening service we had truly great congregational singing!  The choir sang beautifully.  Our choir had four teens, 3 young marrieds, 2 senior citizens, & the rest were middle agers.  That is quite a good balance.  Most church choirs are 90% or more of silver heads.  The offertory was a piano solo by teenager, Johnathan Burt.  His serious demeanor set the stage for a good performance.  He is maturing as a musician & his strong male fingers commanded the keyboard.  He played, “Crown Him with Many Crowns.”  And having the words on the video screen only enhanced the spiritual experience for everyone.  PTL.  I then preached on LSD from James 1 … lust, sin, death.  The testimony time was vibrant & encouraging to all in attendance.  One special feature at Bethel is the testimony times each week.  I do not prime the pump or beg.  They are spontaneous, exciting stories from personal lives that are fresh off the press!  That is what makes them so beneficial.  PTL for every one of them & all that God is doing in our midst.

So there you have it for this past Sunday.  We were joyous & refreshed by God’s blessing & presence.  Would we have liked to have another 100 people there?  Well, yes, but we had the Lord’s presence & for that we are exceptionally grateful!  PTL from Whom all blessings flow!

Pastor Stertzbach