Partnership Joy

Worship Service for September 20, 2020

WELCOME

Good morning. Welcome to CrossPointe Community Church’s online video presentation. I thank my wife, Gail, for being behind the camera as we speak and Lindsay Brandenburg for receiving and posting these files to YouTube so that you can participate.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Since we changed our worship time to 9:30 am, I will remain after worship until 12 noon for those of you who wish to drop off your offering. You may place it in the box that is located in the lobby.

If you prefer to send your offering in the mail, the address is

CrossPointe Community Church
P. O. Box 126
Chippewa Lake, OH 44215-0126

Our leaders met last Sunday and decided that until further notice we would continue to meet at 9:30am. And we invited you to make your voice heard in this regard. Please email me and let me know what you would prefer; 9:30 am or 10:30 am.

This Friday is the last Sunday of the month and therefore is our Free Community Meal. John and Amy are preparing pork chops, rice pilaf and a vegetable; yum! If you like to volunteer to help serve the meal drive-in style, let me or Gail know.

On Sunday, October 4th right after worship Captain Noftz of the Chippewa Lafayette Fire Department is arranging for whoever wishes to be trained on how to use the AED heartbeat restorer that is mounted in our sanctuary. Please consider taking this training. Who knows, it might save someone’s life.

Once again, let us open our hearts to praising and hearing the Word of the Lord by reading through the worship service. Please take advantage of the opportunity to read, pause, reflect and pray when you feel led. I hope you also noticed that most of this service is also available in video format on the same page where you accessed this.

CALL TO WORSHIP

But let all who take refuge in You rejoice;
let them sing joyful praises forever.
Spread Your protection over them,
that all who love Your name may be filled with joy.
For You bless the godly, O Lord;
You surround them with Your shield of love.

Psalm 5:11-12

HYMNS OF PRAISE

Beautiful One

Hughes, Tim

Wonderful, so wonderful is Your unfailing love,
Your cross has spoken mercy over me.
No eye has seen, no ear has heard,
No heart could fully know.
How glorious, how beautiful You are.

Beautiful One I love,
Beautiful One I a-dore
Beautiful One my soul must sing.

Powerful, so powerful
Your glory fills the skies,
Your mighty works dis-played for all to see.
The beauty of Your majesty awakes my heart to sing
How marvelous, how wonderful You are.

Beautiful One I love,
Beautiful One I a-dore
Beautiful One my soul must sing.

Beautiful One I love,
Beautiful One I a-dore
Beautiful One my soul must sing.

You’ve opened my eyes to Your wonders anew.
You’ve captured my heart with this love,
‘Cause nothing on earth is as beautiful as You.

You’ve opened my eyes to Your wonders anew.
You’ve captured my heart with this love,
‘Cause nothing on earth is as beautiful as You.

Beautiful One I love,
Beautiful One I a-dore
Beautiful One my soul must sing.

My soul, my soul must sing,
My soul, my soul must sing,
My soul, my soul must sing, Beautiful One.

My soul, my soul must sing,
My soul, my soul must sing,
My soul, my soul must sing, Beautiful One.

Beautiful One I love,
Beautiful One I a-dore
Beautiful One my soul must sing.

© 2002 Thankyou Music
CCLI License No. 1843349

Awesome In Power

Founds, Rick

Oh God, awesome in power.
Oh God, gentle in love.
Oh God, You are my God
And I love You.

Oh God, full of compassion
Oh God, faithful and true.
Oh God, You are my God
And I love You.

Oh God, You are my God.
And I love You.

©1990 Maranatha Praise, Inc.
CCLI License No. 1843349

OPENING PRAYER

O Lord our God, with David, we take refuge in You and You alone. Your Cross has spoken mercy over us. And we; therefore; rejoice and sing of Your power, Your compassion and Your faithfulness. We love you Lord. Help us to love You more as we worship You today, in the name of Christ, our Lord. Amen.

THE GIVING OF THE LORD’S OFFERING

(see announcement above)

But people who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.

I Timothy 6:9-10

PRAYER SONG

As the Deer

Nystrom, Martin J.

As the deer panteth for the water,
So my soul longeth after Thee.
You alone are my heart’s desire,
And I long to worship Thee.

You alone are my strength, my shield;
To You alone, may my spirit yield.
You alone are my heart’s desire,
And I long to worship Thee.

You’re my friend
And You are my brother
Even though You are a king.
I love You more than any other
So much more than anything.

You alone are my strength, my shield;
To You alone, may my spirit yield.
You alone are my heart’s desire,
And I long to worship Thee.

I want You more than gold or silver,
Only You can satisfy.
You alone are the real joy-giver
And the apple of my eye.

You alone are my strength, my shield;
To You alone, may my spirit yield.
You alone are my heart’s desire,
And I long to worship Thee.

©1984 Maranatha Praise, Inc.
CCLI License No. 1843349

MORNING PRAYER

Brad Winter

Dear Heavenly Father

Thank you for this beautiful morning and blessing us with the courage to gather together as a family to fellowship with each other, and most importantly, hear your word.

We thank you for our pastor and his wife, the church leadership team, the amazing musicians and singers and all those who work so hard each week, especially during these challenging times, to ensure your word and the joy of our church is available for everyone whether in person or broadcast through advanced technology.

We learned last week that true joy does not come from circumstances, people or things. True joy only comes from you. True joy in you gives us strength. Strength given by you will help us power through struggling times and in this season of uncertainty that we all share.

As the sun rises on each day please guide us, through your almighty power to begin by choosing true joy, only offered by you, that will give us strength and spiritual nourishment to make it through each day. When we are nourished with true joy we cannot be taken down by fear, anxiety and worry.

Lord, may the joy we find in you help us walk with confidence and strength so that we can be a shining beacon to lead others to find joy in you!

In Jesus name…… Amen

SCRIPTURE

That night Paul had a vision: A man from Macedonia in northern Greece was standing there, pleading with him, ‘Come over to Macedonia and help us!’ So we decided to leave for Macedonia at once, having concluded that God was calling us to preach the Good News there.

We boarded a boat at Troas and sailed straight across to the island of Samothrace, and the next day we landed at Neapolis. From there we reached Philippi, a major city of that district of Macedonia and a Roman colony. And we stayed there several days.

On the Sabbath we went a little way outside the city to a riverbank, where we thought people would be meeting for prayer, and we sat down to speak with some women who had gathered there. One of them was Lydia from Thyatira, a merchant of expensive purple cloth, who worshiped God. As she listened to us, the Lord opened her heart, and she accepted what Paul was saying. She and her household were baptized, and she asked us to be her guests. ‘If you agree that I am a true believer in the Lord,’ she said, ‘come and stay at my home.’ And she urged us until we agreed.

One day as we were going down to the place of prayer, we met a slave girl who had a spirit that enabled her to tell the future. She earned a lot of money for her masters by telling fortunes. She followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, ‘These men are servants of the Most High God, and they have come to tell you how to be saved.’ This went on day after day until Paul got so exasperated that he turned and said to the demon within her, ‘I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.’ And instantly it left her. Her masters’ hopes of wealth were now shattered, so they grabbed Paul and Silas and dragged them before the authorities at the marketplace. ‘The whole city is in an uproar because of these Jews!’ they shouted to the city officials. ‘They are teaching customs that are illegal for us Romans to practice.’ A mob quickly formed against Paul and Silas, and the city officials ordered them stripped and beaten with wooden rods. They were severely beaten, and then they were thrown into prison. The jailer was ordered to make sure they didn’t escape. So the jailer put them into the inner dungeon and clamped their feet in the stocks. Around midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening. Suddenly, there was a massive earthquake, and the prison was shaken to its foundations. All the doors immediately flew open, and the chains of every prisoner fell off! The jailer woke up to see the prison doors wide open. He assumed the prisoners had escaped, so he drew his sword to kill himself. But Paul shouted to him, ‘Stop! Don’t kill yourself! We are all here!’ The jailer called for lights and ran to the dungeon and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them out and asked, ‘Sirs, what must I do to be saved?’ They replied, ‘Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved, along with everyone in your household.’ And they shared the word of the Lord with him and with all who lived in his household. Even at that hour of the night, the jailer cared for them and washed their wounds. Then he and everyone in his household were immediately baptized. He brought them into his house and set a meal before them, and he and his entire household rejoiced because they all believed in God.

The next morning the city officials sent the police to tell the jailer, ‘Let those men go!’ So the jailer told Paul, ‘The city officials have said you and Silas are free to leave. Go in peace.’ But Paul replied, ‘They have publicly beaten us without a trial and put us in prison—and we are Roman citizens. So now they want us to leave secretly? Certainly not! Let them come themselves to release us!’ When the police reported this, the city officials were alarmed to learn that Paul and Silas were Roman citizens. So they came to the jail and apologized to them. Then they brought them out and begged them to leave the city. When Paul and Silas left the prison, they returned to the home of Lydia. There they met with the believers and encouraged them once more. Then they left town.

Acts 16:9-40

On his second missionary journey, Paul founded the church at Philippi and after a relatively brief time, Luke says, “a few days,” moved on and spent some time, perhaps a few weeks each, in Thessalonica, Berea and Athens before moving further south into the city of Corinth, located on the narrow isthmus that connects northern Greece to the Peloponnese. After an 18-month sojourn in Corinth, he made the long journey back to his home base at Antioch in Syria. While on his third swing through that part of the Mediterranean world, he visited the church in Philippi twice more.

Bible scholars guesstimate that perhaps 10 years had elapsed between the time Paul founded the church at Philippi and the time they received this letter. We can only imagine the excitement that stirred in the hearts of the people as word spread that they had received a letter from their founding pastor, Paul.
‘Did you hear the news? a letter came from Paul.’
‘Yea, I heard they’re going to read this Sunday.’
‘I can’t wait to hear it.’

Although Philippians contains only 104 verses, we can be sure this delightful little joy-filled letter brought smiles to the faces of all who heard it read.

And after his initial greeting wishing them grace and peace, where does the apostle begin?

Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God. Whenever I pray, I make my requests for all of you with joy, for you have been my partners in spreading the Good News about Christ from the time you first heard it until now. And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.

So it is right that I should feel as I do about all of you, for you have a special place in my heart. You share with me the special favor of God, both in my imprisonment and in defending and confirming the truth of the Good News. God knows how much I love you and long for you with the tender compassion of Christ Jesus.

I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return. May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation—the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ—for this will bring much glory and praise to God.

Philippians 1:3-11

THE MESSAGE

Randy K’Meyer

Partnership Joy

“Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God. Whenever I pray, I make my request for all of you with joy” (Philippians 1:3-4)

‘Joy;’ there’s our key word. The theme of this letter; in which uses the word ‘joy’ seven times and ‘rejoice’ nine times in four short chapters.

The NASB translates the first phrase of verse three “every time I think of you” as “all my remembrance of you” and it means “my total recollection of you.” 1

In other words, either just before or as Paul writes this letter he is reminiscing.

He may have been thinking of his vision that God used to call Paul to the Philippians. For sure, he is thinking fondly about that first Sabbath, when down by the river he met the dynamic business woman, Thyatira, and how “the Lord opened her heart” to respond to Paul’s preaching. He is probably recalling wading into that river to baptize her and how she was so grateful she gave lodging to Paul’s entourage. Paul is perhaps chuckling to himself as he remembers the incident in which he expels a demon from a fortune telling woman, ticking off her owners. But wait a minute, that’s what got he and Silas a real whooping and then tossed into the local hoosegow. But praise the Lord, God came to their rescue in an amazing way; an earthquake, of all things, shook both the ground and the jailer’s heart and he too became a believer and was baptized.

I’m sure Paul’s ‘total recollection’ of them includes memories of organizing those brand new believers into a Christian Church taking note of giftedness and assigning roles of leadership that is the “deacons and overseers” (1:2) he mentions in his salutation.

As he thought about all this, one thing seemed to captivate his mind: the joy in knowing that God had been at work in those days in Philippi. God had been at work in the good times down by the river at Lydia’s conversion and in the not so pleasant for Paul times in the prison at the jailer’s.

As I take a stroll down CrossPointe’s memory lane, I thank God for all of you, and not only for you but for all the people who have passed through our doors.

For sure, a lot of people have come and gone over the years. Some have entered through the front door and for one reason or another have quietly (for the most part) gone out the back. And some have entered through our front door and have taken their exit from this world and been ushered into God’s kingdom on a permanent basis.

Like Paul, we have struggled through some tough times. And like Paul, we give God thanks for those times, the good as well the bad, for all those experiences have helped us grow to be more like Christ. And similarly, we have also experienced many times of refreshment down by the river.

As I thought about the Apostle Paul traveling from place to place preaching the good news, I was thinking about how we have sojourned to three different locations before we came to Chippewa Lake. And at each one I can recall people and experiences that bring me great joy.

Back in 2002, when we met in the Cloverleaf High School cafeteria, CrossPointe people began to partner together to raise funds for a future home. The decision they made back then enabled us to purchase this property eight years later.

The first Christmas after we moved to the Grace Drake building in Medina, Chuck and Sue Lemmon attended A Christmas Tale play. And it wasn’t too long after that Chuck came to us with the idea to do a study of Rick Warren’s The Purpose Filled Life. It ended up being a whole church study. People met in small groups in their homes and over a period of 10 or 12 weeks made well-intentioned decisions to reflect God’s will for their lives.

Then we moved to Vandemark and Spencer Lake Road in Chatham Township.

Every time I recall the story of how God brought us to Chippewa Lake, I do so with thanksgiving and joy! Believe it or not that story began on February 3, 1970 when I had a flat tire on the way to my first day of work for the B & O Railroad and I didn’t have a jack in my car, but a kind man name Dick Kies came to my rescue and got me going again. 48 years later Dick Kies’ son, Tom, walked into our worship on Vandemark Road. And when a short time later, Tom’s father passed away and I was invited to participate in his funeral, it was there I met Father Ron, who was the Catholic Priest assigned here and who told me the property was for sale.

Since landing here I believe the most significant thing we accomplished in ministry was to embrace our purpose of ‘sharing God’s grace with our community’ and all the ministries that flowed out of that.

As Paul remembered all those events that took place in the church in Philippi he had no regrets, but was filled with joy. So are we.

Paul gave God joyful thanks for two reasons.

The first is reason is given in verse 5: “for you have been my partners in spreading the good news about Christ from the time you first heard it until now” (Philippians 1:5).

And I can just see the members of the church standing up and amen-ing and high-fiving one another for they too are jubilant about their own faithfulness in being partners with Paul in the grand adventure of spreading the good news about Christ.

In what ways did they partner with Paul?

First, Paul is referring to the financial support he has been receiving from them. This becomes clear in chapter 4, verses 15-17:

As you know, you Philippians were the only ones who gave me financial help when I first brought you the Good News and then traveled on from Macedonia. No other church did this. Even when I was in Thessalonica you sent help more than once. I don’t say this because I want a gift from you. Rather, I want you to receive a reward for your kindness.

Frank Thielman, in his commentary on Philippians, writes: “The partnership of the Philippians for which Paul thanks God in verse five, therefore, is their practical assistance of his efforts to proclaim the gospel. The apostle is particularly thankful, moreover, for the consistency of this support. The Philippians have given it ‘from the first day until now,’ even when no other church did so and even though the church itself was not wealthy.” 2

But beyond their financial support for the gospel, these folks were glad to join Paul in verbally spreading the good news about Christ. Lydia was the first to receive it, quickly followed by the jailer and his family. But we can be sure that there were others, who through the testimony of these new Christians had also received the forgiveness of sins and were baptized into Christ through the ministry of that church in Philippi.

This reaching people for Christ calls for great rejoicing!

In verse 18 of this chapter Paul says, “the message about Christ is being preached so I rejoice. And I will continue to rejoice” (1:18).

In Luke 15, Jesus is telling the parable of the lost sheep and after the shepherd finds the lost one he says, “Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep.” Then Jesus adds, “In the same way, there is more joy in heaven over one lost sinner who repents and returns to God than over ninety-nine others who are righteous and haven’t strayed away!” (Luke 15:18).

I give God joyful thanks for the partnership we share in reaching people for Christ! Both with our financial gifts and with our participating in various ministries, hoping and praying that all our combined efforts are making a Kingdom impact by drawing others to Christ.

For there is nothing more needed and nothing more important, and nothing more joyful than affecting someone else’s eternity. What mattered most to Paul and what mattered most to the Philippians and what matters most to us is that people be reached with the good news of the gospel of Christ.

There’s no more important ministry than the ministry of sharing the good news with others in hopes that they too will become partakers of the grace of the Lord Jesus.

I am grateful to God for every soul that has come to Christ and grown in Christ through the ministry of this church. I could call out a dozen names who have come to us in the last couple of years and who have made commitments to Christ and are growing in the Lord!

My friends at CrossPointe who are struggling the best we can through this pandemic and who are in need of experiencing a little joy, I don’t know of another place on planet earth better than a church, this church, to discover great joy in knowing that through our combined efforts a person’s eternity has been changed!

Hudson Taylor, the great 19th century missionary to China, once said, “Surely there can be no deeper joy than that of saving souls.” 3

It is so joyful for me to be PARTNERS with you in this grandest of all adventures of reaching people for Christ through the combined ministries of Crosspointe Church.

And the second reason for Paul’s joyful thanks is given in verse 6: “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns” (Philippians 1:6).

Paul is sure, they’re not going to fold, they’re not going to throw in the towel. Sometimes the work is hard, and sometimes it seems you don’t have anything to show for your efforts, but they are going to stick to the task because they know it’s WORTH IT!

And so do you, and that’s why I have faith that you too are going to stick with it!

With that in mind, it is true that I, like Paul, will be moving on someday. I have told the members of our Pastoral Succession Team that in light of the way things have gone with this coronavirus I am going to delay my transition into retiring. Whereas, I was planning on doing that starting in January of 2021, I plan on staying at least until March of 2022, if that’s what the Team thinks best for the church.

The point being, someday I am not going to be standing here. And although that may be a sad time for some of you, as it will be for me, it will also be a time to rejoice that this ministry will continue and even flourish with someone new at the helm.

We must remember that the focus should not be on any one pastor, the focus should be on the overall ministry that is reaching people for Christ; with your faithfulness, your coming to worship, your prayers, your participation in our various ministries, and yes, with your giving. The overall ministry that all of you are partnering in here at CrossPointe IN ORDER TO REACH PEOPLE FOR CHRIST!

That’s where true joy comes from; knowing that our combined efforts are reaching people for the Lord!

Acts 15 tells about Paul and Barnabas visiting the mother church in Jerusalem “describing in detail the conversion of the Gentiles, and brought great joy to all the brothers” (Acts 15:3).

“There is more joy in heaven over one lost sinner who repents and returns to God than over ninety-nine others who are righteous and haven’t strayed away!” (Luke 15:18).

God began a good work at CrossPointe, and as Paul was, so am I convinced that “God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.”

Miracle on Ice tells the great story of the 1980 US Olympic Hockey Team taking on the feared Russian team. Everyone expected the Russians to plow the field right to the winners stand. They had not only won, they had dominated game after game after game against some of the finest professional teams in the world. No one, not even the American Team dared to think they would even have a chance to compete for the gold. No one in the sports world gave them a chance. The only thing uncertain was how big the Russian margin of victory would be.

No one, that is, except for Coach Herb Brooks, who did everything in his power to drill into his players that one key concept to being winners. And what was that one key concept? It was the joy of playing as a team, of realizing the high calling and privilege of sharing individual gifts so that the team would have their best shot at prevailing and bringing home the gold. That US victory is still celebrated as the most exciting in American sports history.

Just before his team took the ice, Coach Brooks who had given his all to encourage them to play together simply said, “Gentlemen, you were born to play this game!”

Ladies and gentlemen of Crosspointe Community Church, you were born to play this game!

Another great coach once said: “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns” (Philippians 1:6). So “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4).

PRAYER

(I encourage all of you to pray as you feel led).

CLOSING SONG

Let It Be Said of Us

Fry, Steve

Let it be said of us that the Lord was our passion,
That with gladness we bore
Every cross we were given.
That we fought the good fight, that we finished the course.
Knowing within us the power of the risen Lord.

Let the cross be our glory and the Lord be our song,
By mercy made holy, by the Spirit made strong.
Let the cross be our glory and the Lord be our song,
‘Til the likeness of Jesus be through us made known.
Let the cross be our glory and the Lord be our song.

Let it be said of us: we were marked by forgiveness,
We were known by our love, and delighted in meekness.
We were ruled by His peace heeding unity’s call;
Joined as one body that Christ would be seen by all.

Let the cross be our glory and the Lord be our song,
By mercy made holy, by the Spirit made strong.
Let the cross be our glory and the Lord be our song,
‘Til the likeness of Jesus be through us made known.
Let the cross be our glory and the Lord be our song.

Let the cross be our glory and the Lord be our song,
By mercy made holy, by the Spirit made strong.
Let the cross be our glory and the Lord be our song,
‘Til the likeness of Jesus be through us made known.
Let the cross be our glory and the Lord be our song.
Let the cross be our glory and the Lord be our song.

©1994 and this arr. ©1997 Maranatha! Music and Word Music (a div. of Word Music)
CCLI License No. 1843349

SCRIPTURAL BENEDICTION

Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

Ephesians 3:20-21

1 Stuart Briscoe, Bound for Joy, [Glendale, California: G L Publications, © 1975]. Page 3.

2 Frank Thielman, The NIV Application Commentary; Philippians, [Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan Publishing House, © 1995]. Page 38.

3 Hudson Taylor and Missions to China, Christian History, no. 52.
https://www.preachingtoday.com/search/?query=joy&sourcename=Illustrations&order=newest&type=

4 Richard Hasler, God’s Game Plan, [Lima, OH: C. S. S. Publishing,
© 1990]. Page 11.

Randy K'Meyer

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