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Thursday, February 12, 2015

The Curious Case of the Weather.

 Church + Weather.

When Ridgecrest services, events, Bible studies, etc. are affected by the weather, we will post information here. A good rule of thumb is that when Springfield Public Schools cancel classes, Ridgecrest is also closed.

While you wait, visit us at facebook.com/ridgecrestbaptist.org.

A message regarding the weather will also be available at 417.887.2317.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Rest. Be Still | Alisa Smith

This is Part 2 of the blog series, "3 Things To Do In The Next 3 Months."

Rest. Be Still.
by: Alisa Smith

In a world full of people with too much to do, this is a hard lesson to learn and a constant struggle for me. When I first began writing this, I thought it would be about physical rest or managing your time better in order to spend more time with Jesus. As I began to study Scripture, I found that true rest is completely different. True rest comes from the Lord in any circumstance, even when we are in a busy season. In Exodus 33:14, the Lord was talking to Moses, and He said, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest."

Back up to Exodus 32. Here, God’s people were desiring to make idols while Moses was on the mountain that led to the golden calf. In the beginning of Exodus 33, God gave the command for the people to leave Mt. Sinai and make their journey through the desert. At this point, God’s wrath was fiery against the people of Israel, and He said to Moses in Verse 3, “Go up to a land flowing with milk and honey; but I will not go up among you, lest I consume you on the way, for you are stiff-necked people.” In Verses 12-13, Moses was seeking the Lord before heading off on this journey. The Lord answered in Verse 14, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” Moses was headed to the wilderness; he had a million things to do (you know, with leading God’s people and everything). But it was the Lord’s Presence that would give him rest. An important thing for us to look at is how Moses responded to the Lord in Verses 15 and 16:

“And he said to him, “If your presence will not go with me, do not bring us up from here. For how shall it be known that I have found favor in your sight, I and your people? Is it not in your going with us, so that we are distinct, I and your people, from every other people on the face of the earth?”

Moses was one smart fella. He knew that without the Presence of God, he and the people of Israel were nothing. We have to take time and be still before the Lord to find rest and peace in His Presence. The challenge is to respond to the Lord by saying, “Jesus, I am not moving without your Presence alongside me because I know You are the giver of rest. Be with me throughout my day so that I might look differently at the people around me.” Psalm 62:1-2 says, “Truly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from him. Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken. Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from him.”

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Love Who You Love | Craig Wieneke

This begins a 3-part blog series, "3 Things To Do In The Next 3 Months."

Love Who You Love
by: Craig Wieneke

“…in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me…” (Psalm 139:16).

One afternoon, not long ago, I found myself sitting behind the soundboard during the funeral service of a very young man. This was the second time in less than one year I had attended a memorial service for someone who had, by all human standards, “gone home much too early.”

A couple of months prior, I lost my grandfather. He lived a long, incredible life full of adventures, both great and terrible. He fought in the Battle Of The Bulge in World War II. He pastored several churches over a lengthy career as a vocational minister. He spent his “retirement” in a pop-up camper traveling and building churches in 49 states.

Over the last few years of his life, however, he endured poor health. We were told several different times over several different years by several different doctors that he probably wouldn’t make it through Christmas, but he always pulled through. Until he didn’t. We were well-prepared for his passing. But that didn’t make it any easier. If it’s that hard to lose a loved one when you’re prepared to, it must be absolute hell when you aren’t.

Scripture is very clear about our time on earth. David wrote in Psalm 139 that “every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.” Before time was even created, God numbered our days and wrote them down in a book. Job 14:5 says, “You have decided the length of our lives. You know how many months we will live, and we are not given a minute longer.” Our God is sovereign, and He is never surprised by anything.

No one goes home early.

There is something that inevitably happens any time I attend funerals. I wonder if the ones in the caskets knew that they were loved while they were still alive. Love is easily recognized by looking around at all the grief-stricken faces inside the packed auditorium during a touching memorial service. But followers of Jesus are called to a much more active kind of love.

Did you know that Jesus never said, “I love you,” to anyone in Scripture? Not once is it recorded in any of the gospels. Why do you think that is? Maybe it’s because actions speak louder than words. Jesus didn’t need to say those words. His life spoke them. His death embodied them. His Word resonates with them. The Apostle John wrote, “There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” This love is much deeper, much more active and it is wildly sacrificial. This is the same kind of love that Jesus requested of Peter. Shortly after His resurrection, Jesus reunites with His closest followers on the banks of the Sea Of Galilee. After breakfast, Jesus and Peter break away from the group, and Jesus proceeds to ask Peter a very important question.

“Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” Peter’s response is exactly what you’d expect. “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” But those words don’t seem to be enough because Jesus replies, “Feed my lambs,” And a similar exchange between the two goes on twice more! Jesus wasn’t content with mere words. He was pursuing Peter’s heart, just as He does ours.

Do you love the ones you love? Do you pursue them? Do you sacrifice for them? 

Do you laugh with them? Do you hurt with them? Do you carry burdens with them? Do they know you love them? 

Did you wake up this morning? Then it isn’t too late! Life has a way of dissipating very quickly, much like a vapor on the air. Don’t just play it by ear.

Take a page from the book of John and begin to lay down your life for your friends. Love (verb) who you love; just like Jesus loves (verb) you.

Craig Wieneke leads worship in TEN31 on Sunday mornings. He is also in a band. Read more about Lionbrave

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Jesus, The Gift-Giver | Noah Admire


Although I may be young, there are still many opportunities been blessed with. I continue to be blessed everyday with things I do not deserve.

One of the first things that comes to mind whenever I think of unearned gifts is my family. God has blessed me with a wonderful family who loves and supports me. We don't have to worry if we are struggling because we know God will get us through.

Another way I am constantly blessed is that God has provided me with friends whom I can trust to be good examples and to help me stay on the right path, friends whom I can go to with my problems and will help me find solutions.

God has also blessed me with a great church I can be part of. I feel I come to Ridgecrest knowing something interesting or exciting awaits me each time I walk through those doors. God has given me a place to learn and worship but also a place where I can get together with my friends and dig deep into the word and truly share with others.

However, the very first thing that comes to my mind whenever I hear the term, "Jesus, The Gift-Giver," is that He gave everything just so we could be with Him in Heaven. He gave the one thing that cannot be replaced by any man -- His life. That just blows my mind! He gave His life for people who are born into sin and who continue to sin until the day they die. He died for the soldiers who flogged Him. He died for the people who nailed Him to that cross, mocked him, called him "King of the Jews" and then watched Him die. Isaiah 53:5 says, "But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed." There is no material thing, nothing of this world that has a greater value than this gift.

With all the gifts I have been given, I know now I have no need to fear my future. Everything will work out, and I will be put wherever God needs me to be. I used to be tormented and distracted by the thought of going to college and moving forward with my life, as if it was similar to me stepping off a cliff and hoping something would catch me on my way, but Joe Nelson taught me that worrying will bring me nothing but troubles. If I give it all to God, He would take care of me.

Noah Admire is a senior in high school who attends rbcstudents, our student ministry.