Our medical professionals are on the front line of this epidemic and we want to show them love and support. In the next week or two, we want to send a prayer caravan to drive around the hospital. We'll let them know ahead of time that we'll be praying—and perhaps honking our horns—at a designated time. To get more information and to register, please click below and select the prayer caravan option. We'll see you soon!
"Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat:"
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SpeakerDwight K. Nelson
Since 1983, Dwight Nelson has served as lead pastor of the Pioneer Memorial Church on the campus of Andrews University. He preaches on the “New Perceptions” telecast, teaches at the theological seminary and has written some books, including The Chosen. He and his wife, Karen, are blessed with two married children and 2 granddaughters.
More In This Series
“Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat: Sweet Revenge”
- Genesis 40-45
- Dick Tibbits: Anger—“a strong emotion of displeasure brought on by feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. . . . A very fine line separates from anger. Most people do not consider hurt and anger as even related, but they are, in fact, two different words describing the same thing. Hurt and anger are simply two sides of the same coin.” (Forgive to Live: How Forgiveness Can Save Your Life 42-43)
- “The seven deadly strategies of anger”:
- #1—Overlooking the by pretending it didn’t happen or by discounting its impact
- #2—Focusing on the unfair behavior of the .
- #3—Displacing anger on a .
- Tibbits: “Some hurt and angry people who can’t deal directly with the one who offended them—maybe that person has died, moved away, or is too intimidating—instead focus their anger on a substitute. This substitute is often weaker and therefore more likely to accept the displaced anger without expressing much (if any) objection.” (49)
- #4— the anger
- #5—Developing a mental picture of
- #6—Using drugs, alcohol, or food to the pain
- #7—Becoming about life.
- Tibbits: “Some of the worst cynics you’ll ever meet are angry people who have never effectively dealt with a deep and perhaps long-held hurt. They have become experts in scorn, ridicule, and derision. . . . They get whatever joy they can from skewering the naïve hopes of the gullible.” (51)
- Based on the science of research done at Duke University, the American Heart Association now declares a risk factor alongside other markers like cholesterol, exercise and nutrition. (Tibbits 63)
- The journal Circulation warns: “A person who is most prone to anger is times more likely to have a heart attack than someone who is least prone to anger.” (Tibbits 63)
- Patriarchs and Prophets: “They humbly confessed their sin and entreated his forgiveness. They had long suffered anxiety and remorse, and now they rejoiced that he was still alive.” (231)
- Samantha Boardman MD: “Forgiveness is linked with lower mortality rates, lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure, lower cortisol (the stress chemical in our brains) and a lower likelihood of developing cardiovascular disease. Forgiveness may even support a healthier immune system. In addition to physical benefits, forgiveness is associated with psychological benefits as well. Overall well-being is linked with forgiveness, as are higher quality marriages and committed romantic relationships. Forgiveness is even related to better sleep.” (http://www.everydayhealth.com/emotional-health/the-healing-power-of-forgiveness.aspx)
- If anger can kill you, clearly can heal you.
- Joseph had one choice: bitter or
- “When you refuse to forgive, you are in effect handcuffing yourself to the person who offended you, to a person you don’t even like. And you know the worst thing about that? While you wait for that person to unlock the cuffs, you are holding the key in your own hands.” (74-75)
- Anne Lamott: It’s like drinking rat poison and then waiting for the rat to die.
- Jesus: “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:34)
- Desire of Ages: “That prayer of Christ for His enemies embraced the world. It took in every sinner that had lived or should live, from the beginning of the world to the end of time. Upon rests the guilt of crucifying the Son of God. To forgiveness is freely offered.” (745)
The gift of forgiveness is the sweetest revenge of all.
This week I learned of our world church headquarters appeal for prayer throughout the global Seventh-day Adventist family. Originally timed to end during the recently-postponed General Conference session in Indianapolis, our church leaders are calling us to now focus 100 days of praying (March 27-July 4) on behalf of the global coronavirus pandemic. There could hardly be a more urgent need for earnest praying!
A pastor friend of mine, Jim Moon, pointed out a two-verse juxtaposition I'd not noticed before: "When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a pestilence among My people, if My people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land" (2 Chronicles 7:13-14). While everyone knows the beloved prayer call in v 14, few of us connect it with the preceding divine action in v 13. "A pestilence among My people" certainly could represent a global pandemic like the coronavirus COVID-19. While Satan is the originator of destructive calamities, what more faith-appropriate response is our collective prayers to the One who can deliver this nation, this world, these people, from the grips of pestilence.
So let's join together in humbling ourselves before God and praying and seeking His face—that our world might be saved and our faith community might yet be mobilized to share the glad tidings of Jesus' soon return.
- Pastor Dwight
Since October 2018, our Pioneer congregation and the Andrews campus have joined together in setting aside the first Tuesday of every month as a Day of Fasting and Prayer. Since most of us this coming Tuesday will be safely ensconced in our homes, it will be a fitting opportunity to band together to seek God's face on behalf of our nation, our world, our church. The economic collapse on multiple fronts as a result of this pandemic has seriously affected the Adventist church and schools globally and locally. Let's unite our petitions to appeal to Christ to minister to the members, the leaders, the students, the teachers and all who serve our faith and academic community in this time of financial duress for many. "And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of glory in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:19).
Neighbor To Neighbor is hosting a food giveaway on April 6, 2020, sponsored by Feeding America. It will begin at 11:00 AM.
Due to the COVID-19 stay at home mandate, Pioneer is unable to provide physical copies of the Adult Sabbath School Lesson at this time. Both teacher's edition and standard edition are available online for free.
The Board of Elders, under the leadership of Bryan and Becky von Dorpowski, has responded to the immediate spiritual and emotional needs of our oldest Pioneer members. Recognizing many of them will chose to protect themselves from the coronavirus by limiting their time in the wider community and thus missing the weekly fellowship that worship and Sabbath School provided, the elders will be focusing on those Pioneer members in their 70s, 80s, 90s and 100s—and will be reaching out by phone to visit with them. (In order to protect the health of our members our elders will not be making home visits at this time.)
If you know of an at-risk member who needs personal attention, please call Claudia Sowler 269.471.3134. The elders are praying these targeted phone calls will bring the ministry of our Good Shepherd Savior to these who have faithfully walked with Him throughout their lives.
During this time of potential boredom and cabin fever, enjoy these fun ideas for spending quality time together as a family.
After the long winter of gray and brown, get outside and look for all the buds, sprouts, and new leaves you can find. Try to identify what each one is. You can use your phone to look on the Internet or use an app like Pl@ntNet to identify leaves. Currently, you can see things like crocuses, daffodils, tulips, hyacinths, lilies, snowdrops, moss, ferns, ramps, and wild chives. It is so nice to be reminded that even when things look bleak, God is still there and recreating!
You can also "adopt a friend" each day or week! Send several encouraging and kind notes to a friend via text, email, Messenger, etc. Let them know you are thinking about them and even praying for them.
Sponsored by the Family Life Committee
We are looking for teams of volunteers that can help people who are more vulnerable in our community to run errands such as picking up groceries and medicine. We're also asking for volunteers to make calls and pray for our members and community.
Community and gathering in some form remains vital. We have asked Grow Groups of more than ten people to start meeting online. For Grow Groups of less than ten people, we're asking them to practice safe social distancing of at least six feet—as per the CDC.