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The church in Philadelphia probably thought they were the worst, the most foolish, and the most faithless of all the seven churches that Jesus wrote. And yet, they couldn’t be more wrong! Why? Because they were using worldly ways of determining success or failure.

It’s so important to see yourself as God sees you—not as others see you, not even as you see you! The Lord will bring into the light of day all that is presently hidden in darkness, exposing the secret motives of people’s hearts. Then God will give each person a share of His praise (see 1 Corinthians 4:3-5).

This church probably didn’t even think that Jesus would write to them. But He did—and they were the only church that Jesus didn’t correct. Though they were feeble, they were faithful. And so Jesus encouraged them through His letter. 

We found encouragement in this letter too as we studied it this past Sunday. Listen to our study of Revelation 3:7-13 and learn how only God opens doors that no one can shut.

Read ahead for next Sunday! We’ll be looking at the letter to the church of Laodicea in Revelation 3:14-22.

Consider sharing your Thanksgiving holiday traditions with SCSU international students this year! More than 1,200 international students come to St. Cloud State from nearly 90 countries. Only 25% of these students will ever be in an American home during their time of study in the US.

Whether your Thanksgiving tradition includes a feast with extended family and friends or you celebrate it as a quiet day at home, sharing this day with international students shows them how Americans give thanks and gives you the opportunity to meet new people from around the world.

No special arrangements are required—just set a few extra places at your table for students. If you are interested, please contact the church office (320-259-7720) by November 17th and we'll get you more details.

41st Annual Mayors Prayer Breakfast

Thursday, November 21st, 6:30am-9:00am
River's Edge Convention Center

Gather together with others from our community to lift local mayors up in prayer and enjoy a delicious breakfast. This year's speaker is Lee Strobel. Lee is the former award-winning legal editor of the Chicago Tribune and bestselling author of more than 20 books. For the last 25 years, he has shared the evidence that supports the truth and claims of Christianity, equipping believers to share their faith with the people they know and love. His story was recently made into the motion picture The Case for Christ.

Hey Children's Ministry Volunteers! We'll be getting together in December for a time of fellowship, refreshment, and review of the vision for Children's Ministry in our fellowship. Volunteers for each class will be meeting on different Sundays so we can discuss topics specific to each class:
  • December 1st: Nursery Servants
  • December 8th: Pre-K Servants
  • December 15th: K-5th Servants
We'll gather in the Children's Ministry rooms in the lower level following service and meet for an hour. If you are serving or want to serve, please come for a time of refreshment & review of our vision for Children’s Ministry. Please contact Pastor Nate if you have any questions or for more information.

Be Encouraged

The church in Philadelphia didn’t hold an honest assessment of who they really were. As they compared themselves with other churches, their strength seemed small and their faith seemed weak. In their flawed self-assessment, they probably felt like failures. And yet, from Jesus’ letter to this church, we see that they did not realize just how successful they truly were—from God’s perspective. 

Maybe you can relate to the church of Philadelphia. Maybe you feel too weak or too flawed as you compare yourself to others. But there is a danger in using worldly ways to determine success or failure in your own self-assessment. God’s word tells us that with a little strength, a little faithfulness, and an open door from the Lord, you can be unstoppable!

No matter how weak and silly and feeble you may feel, stay faithful to Jesus. As you walk though the open doors He places before you, trust that He equips those He calls. He is not looking for your ability, but your availability. Remember that He uses those who feel unqualified and overwhelmed…and won’t give up.

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