|Mar. 18, 2004|
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PRAYER REQUEST: I have not been letting too many people know about the situation with my mother, but she has terminal bone cancer, and about six months to live. I know that there are many of you who have similar prayer requests, and I feel somewhat guilty for asking about my own mother when so many of you have legitimate needs yourselves that go unrequested. Nevertheless, please remember my mother in prayer. I do not know if she is saved, but I do hope, by God's grace, to present the gospel to her soon. Please pray that she is receptive.
JOB: When it rains it pours. It looks like I will be out of work in two weeks. At my job there are many changes occurring and a reduction in the workforce is at hand. My position is being eliminated. There is a possible opportunity of a lateral move, but it is a 50-50 possibility. I am, therefore, putting out my resume, making calls, etc., and seeing what I can find. The Lord will provide as He always does.
FULL TIME: The situation with my job has prompted my wife and I to discuss the issue of me possibly going full-time in this internet missionary endeavor known as CARM. She has a peace about me going full-time and politely has been urging me to take a step of faith. She is a wonderful, supportive woman. But, perhaps her faith is greater than mine, for I am worried that if I were to take such a step, that we would falter financially and my family would suffer. CARM only brings in about one third of what is needed to live adequately here in Southern California and I do not know if the difference would somehow be made up. CARM's income has been increasing steadily as donors, contributors, and sales of the notebooks are steadily increasing. I would love to do this full-time. As my wife says, "Matt, you are made for this." So, please pray that the Lord's will would be done and pray that I can go full-time. Also, if you feel so lead to support this ministry financially, please prayerfully consider it. If you do want to help out, please see the bottom of this newsletter.
There is almost 25,000 people on this email newsletter list. It would take just a little from you to make it happen.
MOVING: I am still receiving e-mails from people with suggestions on where to move to. I want to thank you so much for all the hundreds and hundreds of suggestions. They were very helpful. As I had stated before my wife and I had planned to drive-through Oregon, Washington, and Idaho, looking for a place to move to that would enable us to buy a house as well as go full-time and CARM by finding a cheaper place to live. However, due to the pending job loss, we have had to cancel our plans to up north. Oh well.
ONLINE SCHOOL: The online school for CARM is almost ready. I am hoping to have it released in one week. If you want to see a demo, please go to www.carm.org/demo/equip.htm." It will be tuition based. $50." The goal is to both educate the body of Christ as well as help provide funding for CARM going full time. At the time of its release, if you want to go through it and cannot afford it, then email me requesting a free signup and I will set you up for free, no questions asked. Remember, everything on CARM is free. Eight years of writing and 24 years of research have gone into it. So, I am hoping that people will not be upset with an online, tuition based, endeavor are Christians can go systematically through Christian teaching.
CARM CONVENTION:" The Next CARM convention is planned for May 22, in Redlands California at The River Christian Reformed Church." We hope to arrange a debate for Friday night and then follow up on Saturday with a full day of speakers." For more information on the conference please see, CARM Conference 2004. Pre-registration is available.
Disciple: A pupil or follower of a religion, a person, or a movement. As Christians we are to be disciples of Jesus (Luke 14:26,27). We follow in the teaching and example of what He said and did. A disciple is a convert but not all converts are disciples. As disciples we are to bear our cross daily (Matt. 16:24). This means to live and die for Him if necessary (Matt. 16:25).
Sometimes in our Christian lives we sin. Such acts of rebellion against God brings us to the place of conviction in our hearts were the Holy Spirit sometimes gently, sometimes with strength, prods our hearts, pricks at our innermost being, nudges at our soul, and brings us to the place of confession and repentance. This persistent and sometimes gnawing conviction of the Holy Spirit is a wonderful thing, no matter how unpleasant it is at the time. But that is the nature of many good things; they sometimes are best gained through discomfort.
God loves us enough not to leave us alone. He has our best interest at heart. He does not want to us to participate in that which grieves Him and harms us. This is why Jesus said that He would not leave us alone but that He would send the Comforter who would help us and guide us (John 14:26; Acts 9:31). This Comforter is the one who grants us the assurance of our salvation so that we might know we possess eternal life (1 John 5:13). He also anoints us and teaches us (1 John 2:19). And, He also consistently and lovingly convicts us of our sins. Why does he do this? Again, to bring us to confession and repentance.
How are you with God? Do your sins result in conviction in your soul? Is your relationship with the Lord such that even your minor sins brings an uncomfortable awareness of conviction? If you do not experience this, then you are either not saved, hardened of heart, or are in need of repentance. If you do not experience a conviction of due to your sins perhaps you are perfect. Or, perhaps you are so sanctified in your walk with the Lord that you rarely sin. Perhaps, it is possible. But in my life, I have yet to arrive at such a place. In my life the Holy Spirit is active in a wide variety of ways. Conviction is simply one of them by which He ministers holiness to me, and I'm thankful. Are you thankful? Does your conviction bring you to repentance and confession?
"Lord, thank you for forgiving me of my sins and thank you for continuing to work in my heart to make me more like you. Please convict me of my sins so that I might know from what I need to turn so that I might not grieve you, and so that I might bring glory to your name. Do with me as you wish Lord."
"If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him, and make Our abode with him," (NASB).
Rev. Matt Slick, your missionary to the Internet. Equipping the church to defend the faith in a secular society.
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