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Making It Plain…. Make Plain, Jesus Ministries I June 2013

MPJ Newsletter | March 2013

JESUS IN THE MOMENT

IN THIS ISSUE  Jesus In The Moment  Just Rest  Every Environment Requires Criteria  Marriage, What Really Counts  Bring the Blessing

Over the many years of ministry, I have witnessed many people who were struggling with the call of the Lord to salvation because they were afraid of losing the lives they were accustomed to living. Many of us can look at a person and see them struggling with the need to surrender their will to Jesus. Often they come to the doorstep of salvation and then turn away to say they will do it when they get their life together or when they are older, they will settle down and commit to the Lord. Does this sound familiar to you? I often look and think, "How do you know there is a tomorrow for you"? A number of months ago, many of us on the Eastern Coast of the United States dealt with a super storm named Sandy. It was an impressive set of storms that merged into one enormous storm. For a week in advance, newscasters were warning that Sandy could be a deadly storm and they were correct. Unfortunately, the precise point of landfall was not known until it struck land. Everyone watched as the skies turned dark, the winds howled and rain, along with areas of sleet, pounded houses, cars, trees and anything else in its path. I am certain that many people called on Jesus in their moment of concern and uncertainty. When you see water breaching the doors

BY PASTOR JAMES BRYAN

and windows of homes, streets turned into rivers and homes mistaken for boats, I believe many people realized it was time to stop the delay and call on the name of Jesus. Some probably said, "Lord, if you get me out of this, I will ....". Does that sound familiar? If you have had one of those situations that caused you to "bring Jesus into the moment", I have to ask whether you followed through with your commitment? Do you remember what you told Him you would do? Please take this time to commit or if you've already done it years ago, recommit your life to Jesus. It changes your eternal outlook and you can do it faster than you can sign up for auto insurance at GEICO! :-)

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Making It Plain‌. Make Plain, Jesus Ministries I March 2013 Make Plain, Jesus Ministries I June 2013 For this edition of the Make Plain, Jesus Ministries' Newsletter, we are blessed to have contributions from two wonderful servants of the Lord. Pastor Curtis Terrell, who is the Senior Pastor of Restoring the Breach Fellowship in Germantown, Maryland, contributed the article entitled, "Marriage, What Really Counts". Also, Dr. Cheryl Hill contributed the article entitled, "Every Environment Requires Criteria". It is wonderful to the see members of the Body of Christ supporting each other for the betterment of all. We hope you enjoy everything that follows!

Bible Trivia Let's test your Biblical knowledge. Choose the correct answer from each question below. 1. What was the name of the Old Testament man who asked the Lord to bless him? a) Cain b) Jonathan c) Jabez d) Joseph 2. What was the first type of bird Noah sent out to see if the flood waters had receded? a) Dove b) Sparrow c) Hawk d) Raven 3. To which island was John exiled? a) Patmos b) Crete c) Jamaica d) Rome 4. In the book of Romans, what does it say you have to do to be saved? a) Love your neighbor and be good b) Walk in faith and love God c) Confess with your mouth and believe in your heart d) Love the scripture and proclaim His goodness 5. In what city was Aquilla? a) Tarsus b) Pontus c) Nazareth d) Rome Answers are on page 4

JUST REST

BY PASTOR JAMES BRYAN

Summer is finally arriving! I am sure everyone is thinking about vacations, the end of the school year, beaches and fun! We share the same thoughts because Summer is our favorite time of year. In fact, we recently came from a vacation with the warm sun, clear water, beautiful Caribbean beaches and total relaxation! It was truly enjoyable. In the midst of the calm, I realized that God endorses vacations and times of rest. This may seem strange due to the demands of our 24/7 society but we must remember that it was God who instituted a day of rest. He spent the first six days creating and then, to lead by example, He rested on the seventh day. Times of rest and refreshing are expected no matter how packed your days may seem or how many people want your attention. You have to remember that God rested. Are we greater than Him? Some of you may say, "There is so much to do! You don't understand". I would suggest you take a moment at the beginning of each day to ask the Lord to show you what needs to be accomplished and not worry about the rest. If you are persistent in doing this and writing down what He tells you, then you will be happy at the end of each day since you will have accomplished the Lord's will for the day.

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Making It Plain‌. Make MakePlain, Plain,Jesus JesusMinistries MinistriesI IMarch June 2013

Every Environment Requires Criteria Working in the marketplace requires a unique combination of faith, excellence and compassion. Many times as a believer of Jesus Christ, we sometimes force witnessing the gospel into a "one" boxed package. When we are among our congregations, we all can generally speak the same languages of faith and understand the motives of hearts.

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When we are among people of different faiths, cultures and backgrounds, "our" beliefs are put to the test of "being in the world and not of the world". This means that you walk among many people sharing "Jesus" through means of compassion, justice, a spirit of excellence and more importantly, love. I have worked in the "mountain of government" for over 15 years. I have worked from the ranks of a clerk to the heights of Office of the White House as the liaison for my state for Faith Based Initiatives. Over the 5 years of interacting with government, grassroots and faith leaders, I have found that we all have the same common goal and that is to serve our communities. How we get there and communicate is what I call the "struggle in between". For some reason we have separated the Church from government and the government from the Church. When people would say to me that we can't work with the government, I would then say but I am the government as well. God has placed people such as me in every area of influence and we have learned to walk in both worlds without compromising our Godliness.

BY DR. CHERYL HILL

Just as our brothers in the faith such as Daniel, Moses and Joseph have shown us that we have to learn how to "enter an environment" to be seen and heard, I have learned that every environment has criteria. When we are sent into the marketplace, we have to understand that everyone is not a believer of God. This requires that we become all that God is. In doing this we witness the excellence, care and wisdom of God in practical ways. It is absurd to come into the midst of those that are Muslim and say "praise the Lord" but we can say "good morning". We should not go to a business meeting with flamboyant clothing expecting someone to take us seriously. There is a standard of dressing to enter into a business meeting and to be taken seriously. We must use practical ways to set the atmosphere to be heard. We cannot go into a government or corporate meeting and say "wait a minute let's pray first". You should have already prayed and asked God's guidance and wisdom and proceed to administer the wisdom of God through your work and expertise. If your colleagues or business partners desire prayer, God will open the door for you to do so. Once we are established as people who are wise and can "add value", we then become vessels to be used as ears to listen to our colleagues challenges. We are then free to administer words of wisdom and become known as ones with solutions. Then we become answers in a safe environment. (continued on page 4) 3


Making It Plain‌. Make Plain, Jesus Ministries I June 2013

Every Environment Requires Criteria

BY DR. CHERYL HILL

(continued from page 3) I have learned over the years that people "see" before they "hear". If you come to people with the HAMMER of the word of God, they will resist you and all that you may have to offer.

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makeplainjesus.org

If you are a Christian whose work is less than excellent, who is always preaching and not completing your work then it is hard to listen to anything you would have to say. If you are a Christian whose standards are that of lateness and your dress code is shoddy, it will be hard to listen to you as well. If you are a Christian who entertains drinking, happy hour and office gossip, you then becomes difficult to listen to you. Your standards are always measured by your daily habits. Who you are will show up in your sphere of influence at some time or another.

I have had the honor and favor of God to meet with and minister to people who I have always admired from afar and God so wonderfully led them to me to speak into their lives. Today I am a spiritual advisor to many in the government, ministry and now the arts & entertainment arena. These people were not attracted to me because they knew of my ministry, that I worked in the Executive Office of government or was a conference speaker. Each person that I advised met me through divine encounters that God set up through my extension of compassion and excellence. They later found out my background. Let us stay in the presence of worship as God places us in pivotal and strategic places of influence to show forth our God in practical ways.

Answers to Bible Trivia 1.c; 2.d; 3.a; 4.c; 5.b

Engage with our Connect Small Group ministry every 2nd and 4th Fridays. We usually meet in the community so call ahead at 410-846-0126 for more information.

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Making It Plain…. Make Plain, Jesus Ministries I June 2013

MARRIAGE, WHAT REALLY COUNTS An enjoyable marriage between a man and a woman who has Jesus Christ at the center is one of the most beautiful and rewarding experiences one can ever have. Marriage is the first institution created by God. God's ideal for marriage was to bring man and woman into a harmonious unit, where love for God and neighbor are instilled into each other. If the couple is divided; they can never have the harmony and sense of common purpose that God desires for marriage. The marriage institution is never greater than the man or woman who make up the marriage. Godly marriages are not foundational because of the institution of marriage; it is foundational because of the marriage partners. Genesis 2:23-24: "The Man said, 'Finally! Bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh! Name her Woman for she was made from Man.' 24 Therefore a man leaves his father and mother and embraces his wife. They become one flesh." (Msg Bible) In God's eyes the marriage is not first. In God's eyes, the people of the marriage are first. We have judged for so long the "marriage institution" to be greater than the couple who make up the marriage. If our search is for God’s perfect design for marriage that He has always intended for us to have, then we must first seek and pursue a personal relationship with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

BY PASTOR CURTIS B.TERRELL

John 15:5-6 "I am the Vine, you are the branches. When you're joined with me and I with you, the relation intimate and organic, the harvest is sure to be abundant. Separated, you can't produce a thing." (Msg Bible) An organization is only as good as its people. Moreover, a great marriage is great because the couple has a great relationship, and nothing less. An institution is only as great as the relationships that make up that institution. Jesus Christ must be our head; once we have established headship, we then can walk in agreement. The word of the Lord said in Amos chapter 3:3, "Do two people walk hand in hand if they aren't going to the same place?" (Msg Bible) If we put the institution first; instead of the people, we lose the vision for the institution. The vision of the people makes the institution what it is. Without a vision, failure and collapse are inevitable. Vision can be comprehensible in obedience. John 15:7 says, "But if you make yourselves at home with me and my words are at home in you, you can be sure that whatever you ask will be listened to and acted upon." (Msg Bible) God, the Creator of humanity and of marriage itself, has laid out His plan for marriage as a lifelong union. God knows His design is the best and He knows what is the best so let’s begin to take God at His word and make Jesus Christ the center cornerstone in our homes, in our lives and in this institution of marriage. 5


Making It Plain‌. Make Plain, Jesus Ministries I June 2013

BRING THE BLESSING

Our services are held every Sunday morning at 10:00am at Arundel Christian School which is located at 1321 Mercedes Drive, Hanover, MD 21076. Our sanctuary can be accessed through the back of the school but parking is in both the front and back of the school. For additional information, please call us at 410-846-0126 or email us at contactus@makeplainjesus.o rg

You may also visit us on the web at www.makeplainjesus.org.

BY PASTOR JAMES BRYAN

No matter our career, no matter what state we live, we should want to bring "The Blessing" into our lives. I'm not referring to finding a dime on the sidewalk or someone buying you a meal at Chick-fil-a (I really do love Chick-fil-a!). I'm referring to major blessings. Let's think about the story of Jesus attending the wedding as recounted in John 2. If I asked you what happened at the wedding and you said he turned water into wine, you would be correct. But there is much more to this story if we look closer. Jesus obviously knew the Bride or the Groom and He intended to just celebrate with the couple. However, as He enjoyed the celebration with His family, a problem arose. They ran out of wine. How could the wedding celebration be successful without wine? I'm sure that's what Mary thought when she urged Jesus to fix the situation. What do you think? Was it important to make sure there was enough wine?

He had to reinforce the command given in Genesis which said, "Be fruitful and multiply". Therefore, He took the fruit of the vine, and multiplied it in order to satisfy the needs of those in attendance. Fruitfulness had to manifest because Jesus was there. I would encourage you to "Bring The Blessing" into your lives today. Jesus is the Ultimate Blessing so if you have Him, you have everything. The wedding was blessed by His presence and His miracle just as you will be when you continue to allow Him to be part of every aspect of your life. Bring The Blessing into your business decisions, your planning, your relationships and your home. He is the ONLY one that can do exceedingly, abundantly, above all that you ask or think. Try Him!

The answer to that question is "yes" but not because of customs. I believe it was impossible for there to be lack at the wedding as long as the Creator of the Universe was in attendance. He could not allow those around Him to be without because this was a time of celebrating the first institution established, which is marriage. 6


Make Plain, Jesus Newsletter June 2013