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  • In What Do You Believe?

    So, here are two questions to contemplate; what do you believe in and what symbol represents it? You may question what this illustration has to do with anything but stay with me until the end. The bow tie on a vehicle years ago meant you identified with a particular family, the Chevrolet family. This was a large family that had/has a very large impact on our nation and, yes, they had their opponents. The Ford family was/is also a very large family, and they rally around the big blue oval. Both families, both communities, were and still are very brand loyal and have a very distinct culture within the domestic scene. This is but one example of symbolism in our society and I am sure you can come up with literally thousands of other examples because we all rally behind a symbol as a part of our need to belong to a specific community. These symbols can change over time such as the Canadian flag and it does take time to get used to the change but once we accept the symbol as part of the ethos, it becomes the image of the culture. Consider this, when Michael Jackson hit it big, the Jackson nation started wearing one white glove, when the Beatles were all the rage, Beatlemaniacs started wearing their hair just like them. The world today knows the swastika as a symbol of death and war when at one time is was actually a symbol of spiritual well-being for the Hindus, Buddhists and Jains for millennia. So let us think about the cross for a moment. Before the death of Christ on the cross, it symbolized a cruel and painful death. There were many crosses, the “X” cross, the pole, the “T” cross but I can guarantee that not a single follower of Christ wore the symbol of death around their necks as jewelry. They followed the Way, identified as His family through word and deed. They led with their hearts, not with spears and swords. Scholars feel that it was not until the 4th century that the Christian nation actually adopted the cross as the symbol of the faith family. So, here is the question; why does the Christian nation wear the symbol of death, method of death for their Saviour, around their neck? Why is it a symbol on their churches and in their sanctuaries? The cross is a symbol of hope, the sign of a promise fulfilled. By His death and resurrection, we have a hope of life eternal through His sacrifice. The empty cross is a symbol of His promise fulfilled, death has no hold over Him and through Him we are saved. But it was the Lord’s good plan to crush him and cause him grief. Yet when his life is made an offering for sin, he will have many descendants. He will enjoy a long life, and the Lord’s good plan will prosper in his hands. When he sees all that is accomplished by his anguish, he will be satisfied. And because of his experience, my righteous servant will make it possible for many to be counted righteous, for he will bear all their sins. I will give him the honors of a victorious soldier because he exposed himself to death. He was counted among the rebels. He bore the sins of many and interceded for rebels. Isa 53:10-12 NLT This Sunday, we take a look at the symbolism found during this season of forgiveness and celebrate His love for us all in the lead up to Palm Sunday. We would love for you to join us either in person or online Sunday at 10:30 AM MST. Facebook Live - Main Ave Fellowship YouTube Live – You Tube Our Mission “To live the love of Christ”

  • Peter's Picks

    The Perfect 7-day Diet – Peter’s Picks ‘Real Strength’ Day 1: Psalm 46:1 – “God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble.” Day 2: Isaiah 40:10 – ”Yes, the Sovereign Lord is coming in power. He will rule with a powerful arm. See, he brings his reward with him as he comes.” Day 3: Joshua 1:9 – “This is my command - be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Day 4: Isaiah 40:29 – “He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless.” Day 5: 1 Peter 5:10 – “In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.” Day 6: 2 Thessalonians 3:3 – “But the Lord is faithful; he will strengthen you and guard you from the evil one.” Day 7: Psalm 29:11 – “The Lord gives his people strength. The Lord blesses them with peace.” ** Verses taken from the New Living Translation

  • It Could Be Worse

    So, after a very mild January and February, we start off March with copious amounts of snow, minus thirty temps and a snow blower that decides it no longer identifies as a mover of snow. We went from hoping to have a nice mild end to winter to asking the weather broadcaster “what did we do to deserve this?” You know, the cold temperatures are not forever and it truly could be worse. I think of those who are suffering through the cold but they are living in a war zone and have lost all they own, their homes are gone, friends have been killed and there is no end in sight with regards to the hostility around them. The warming trend that signals the start of spring only makes conditions slightly better. Here in Sundre, we are making plans for a yard cleaning once the snow clears, clean the windows of the winter filth and put away the winter clothes. In war torn countries, they are looking to start rebuilding their homes and their lives while still dodging bullets and bombs. I was chatting with a friend who still has family in the Ukraine and he was telling me that the one thing they are clinging to is the fact God is still with them even in the crisis. Some in this country ask “where is your God in all the chaos” while his family is thankful that God has not left them. They are relying on a compassionate Lord to see them through this crisis and He is their only hope in a time of darkness. When I think of this, I look back to the scripture where David and his cohorts are fleeing the king and are doing everything they can to stay hidden in the very back of the cave (see 1 Samuel 24). God was with them all that day and, when David could have taken the life of his adversary, the wisdom of God prevailed and then He softened Saul’s heart. But the Lord watches over those who fear him, those who rely on his unfailing love. He rescues them from death and keeps them alive in times of famine. We put our hope in the Lord. He is our help and our shield. In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name. Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord, for our hope is in you alone. Ps 33:18-22 NLT When all things look bleak, consider this message from David and hold it to your heart, write it on your heart. When the darkness creeps into life, call on the Light, lean on the wisdom, strength and compassion of Adonai. Think about it; things could be worse. We could be wondering through life with no Heavenly Father to watch over us, with no Saviour to advocate for us, with no Holy Spirit to bless us every moment of the day to see us through. When we walk in the Light as He is in the Light, we never walk alone for He will be with us at all times and for all time. This Sunday, we welcome Rev Glenn Reeder as Pastor Todd is away for the weekend. We would love for you to join us either in person or online Sunday at 10:30 AM MST. Facebook Live - Main Ave Fellowship YouTube Live – You Tube Our Mission “To live the love of Christ”

  • Peter's Picks

    The Perfect 7-day Diet – Peter’s Picks ‘Favor of God’ Day 1: Proverbs 8:35 – “For whoever finds me finds life and receives favor from the Lord.” Day 2: Proverbs 12:2 – ”The Lord approves of those who are good, but he condemns those who plan wickedness.” Day 3: Psalm 119:135 – “Look upon me with love; teach me your decrees.” Day 4: Proverbs 16:7 – “When people’s lives please the Lord, even their enemies are at peace with them.” Day 5: Proverbs 11:27 – “If you search for good, you will find favor; but if you search for evil, it will find you!” Day 6: Proverbs 5:12 – “You will say, ‘How I hated discipline! If only I had not ignored all the warnings!’” Day 7: Proverbs 3:3, 4 – “Never let loyalty and kindness leave you! Tie them around your neck as a reminder. Write them deep within your heart. Then you will find favor with both God and people, and you will earn a good reputation.” ** Verses taken from the New Living Translation

  • Peter's Picks

    The Perfect 7-day Diet – Peter’s Picks ‘Set a Watch’ Day 1: Proverbs 15:1,2 – “A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare. The tongue of the wise makes knowledge appealing, but the mouth of a fool belches out foolishness.” Day 2: Proverbs 12:18, 19 – ”Some people make cutting remarks, but the words of the wise bring healing. Truthful words stand the test of time, but lies are soon exposed.” Day 3: Psalm 34:13 – “Then keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies!” Day 4: Proverbs 21:23 – “Watch your tongue and keep your mouth shut, and you will stay out of trouble.” Day 5: Proverbs 15:4 – “Gentle words are a tree of life; a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit.” Day 6: Colossians 4:6 – “Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.” Day 7: 1 Peter 3:10 – “For the Scriptures say, ‘If you want to enjoy life and see many happy days, keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies.’” ** Verses taken from the New Living Translation

  • He Will Never Leave Us Nor Will He Forsake Us!

    I heard a story the other day. There was a preacher who walked into a barbershop for a trim and, after a few minutes, the conversation turned to occupations. The preacher told him a bit about his responsibilities at the church and as the conversation went along the barber confessed that he did not believe in an all powerful God. He said that God was a good resource when people were not well informed about the ways of the world, science and such and that now a days no one really needed to believe in something they have never seen. Ancient people believed in many gods such as the Greeks and their belief in the gods of Olympus but since there was absolutely no proof of their existence, they did not exist. He ended the debate with this; “if God exists, why are there so many sick people? Why are there abandoned children in the world or so much suffering and pain. I can't imagine a loving God who would allow all of these things." The preacher quite enjoyed the debate and, when it was all over, he paid for the trim and left behind a very nice tip. The preacher walked out the door and noticed a homeless man who was in dire need of a haircut so he brought him into the barber. The preacher then said to the barber “there are no such things as barbers otherwise there would be no one unshaved or improperly quaffed”. "Ah, but barbers do exist! " answered the barber. "What happens, is, people do not come to me." "Exactly!"- affirmed the customer. "That's the point! God, too, does exist! What happens is people don't go to Him and do not look for Him. That's why there's so much pain and suffering in the world." There is strength when we come together in His name and work together to not only alleviate suffering and pain but to also help the world to understand He cares much more than we realize. I believe Paul addresses this in his letter to the Church in Corinth: All praise to the God and Father of our Master, Jesus the Messiah! Father of all mercy! God of all healing counsel! He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, he brings us alongside someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us. We have plenty of hard times that come from following the Messiah, but no more so than the good times of his healing comfort—we get a full measure of that, too. 2 Cor 1:3-8 MSG This Sunday, we will look at strength through Christ and discover that God is there with us celebrating in the good times and lifting us up in the bad times. Though many question how a loving God can let bad things happen, we will delve into how He never leaves us alone in the tough times. We would love for you to join us either in person or online Sunday at 10:30 AM MST. Facebook Live - Main Ave Fellowship YouTube Live – You Tube Our Mission “To live the love of Christ”

  • Peter's Picks

    The Perfect 7-day Diet – Peter’s Picks ‘Repentance - A Must’ Day 1: 1 John 1:9 – “But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.” Day 2: Matthew 9:13 – ”Then he added, ‘Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: “I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.” For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.’” Day 3: James 5:16 – “Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.” Day 4: Psalm 32:5 – “Finally, I confessed all my sins to you and stopped trying to hide my guilt. I said to myself, ‘I will confess my rebellion to the Lord.’ And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone. Interlude” Day 5: Proverbs 28:13 – “People who conceal their sins will not prosper, but if they confess and turn from them, they will receive mercy.” Day 6: Acts 3:19 – “Now repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away.” Day 7: 2 Chronicles 7:14 – “Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.” ** Verses taken from the New Living Translation

  • Diversity Is Strength

    When it comes to the issues of our day, it seems like there is more focus on the things that separate us then there is on those things that can bring us together. For example, a friend of mine is a huge fan of Levi jeans. He has numerous pairs of Levi jeans, many are purposely purchased for a variety of occasions such as going to a concert or for business meetings. He even has a pair specifically for funerals. Now, another mutual friend of ours is a Wrangler guy and very devout at that. They would argue and kibitz about which company has the best jean, finding fault in everything they could to get the other to make the change. They tried to draw me into the argument once but it was short-lived. You see, my brand, WIOS, Whatever Is On Sale, could be Wrangler, Levi, Costco stretch jeans or thrift store whatever jeans. For the casual observer, it could seem that these two would soon come to blows and I have even witnessed some pipe up and get involved in the discussion. As a counsellor, I sit back and watch the dynamics and, for the most part, the debate degrades into a head butting contest and so many are left with feelings of anger. Differing opinions, preferences, ideals and beliefs can be very divisive, especially when the people involved are only interested in telling you why they are right and you are wrong or they are not willing to really communicate, that is to both listen & speak. It is when we recognize the value of another’s opinion that we truly grow and the fullness of a relationship strengthens the whole. Here is another example. My friend had some leftover scrap wood hanging about in his garage. There were several types of wood, a variety of colours and grains. It represents two things in this illustration; diversity and worth. There are those out there who will only use cherry and others who vehemently defend the use of maple for projects. When someone who is looking for beauty and strength in diversity, the thought of combining materials is intriguing, the idea of making something wonderful out of what others would consider scrap is a talent. When people devote time and effort into celebrating diversity rather than putting time and effort into not only seeking out the negatives but also propagating divisiveness, we can revel in the beauty of a united community. My friend took what others saw as scrap, a collection of garbage leftovers, cleaned them up, trimmed them and glued them together making a beautiful cutting board. Had there been an argument as to which wood should have been used or how it should have been put together, I dare say we would not have been privileged to share in the beauty of a one-of-a-kind cutting board made with love and care. Apart, we are nowhere near as resilient as we are bound together in community, strong and beautiful. This Sunday, we will look at strength in diversity and unity. We would love for you to join us either in person or online Sunday at 10:30 AM MST. Facebook Live - Main Ave Fellowship YouTube Live – You Tube Our Mission “To live the love of Christ”

  • Restoration

    My wife and I are fans of restoration shows on television. From, old vehicles, to century homes, to family heirlooms, the variety of good quality programming is endless. One of our favorites is called The Repair Shop, from England. The show features about a dozen restoration specialists that are masters in carpentry, metal work, clock repair, upholstery, jewelry, and fabric and furniture. The premise of the show follows customers who bring family pieces that have incredible back stories and history, yet are connected to the emotions of family. Pieces that come in broken, worn, damaged, neglected and forgotten are then mended to evoke precious memories for the clients. Some are made to look new, but most are restored, yet maintaining the historical scars and bumps so their life history is not erased. These past few weeks and months for myself and my family have allowed me to listen for God’s voice. Lately, circumstances have drowned Him out, which threw a blanket of writers’ block over me. The more I tried to listen for Him, the more the world seemed to drown Him out. A couple of weeks ago an event in our family shook my wife and I to the core. The end result was a miracle for us and immediately, God’s voice was as clear as the water in the lake near our cottage. All of a sudden, the word restoration came to mind and has kept itself in my soul. It’s like God was telling me to share how He restores things in our lives every day. I have been given an opportunity to really look inside myself for what is the most important to me and my family. God restored a number of things in me in just one forty eight hour period. He restored my sense of worth. He restored my faith in His power of healing a broken spirit. He restored my view of what is really important in my life. He showed me the true value of being faithful and leaning on Him in crisis. To be clear, I had not lost my way, but was shaken enough to recoil into myself because as a human, I took my eyes off Him for a moment. Fear has a way of doing that to all of us. If you are reading this and you feel somewhat lost from Him, it’s okay. He knows your circumstance and He will place Himself in your soul to carry you, even if you don’t realize it. Like the master restorers of family heirlooms, God will take all of us who have been broken, scarred, scratched, worn down, faded, and yes, forgotten about, and pull all of that out. Then He will impart Himself in us and gently peel back the hurt, the damaged and the ugly, and discard it. He will then gently restore us. He won’t make us younger , but He will give us a faith-lift that will allow us to stand a little taller. We’ll walk a little straighter, we’ll think a little clearer, we’ll listen and hear more acutely, and we will talk with more conviction. He and only He has the divine power to do this. We are not equipped with divination. We are not God, and we are not robots. We are humans, made in His image, yet frail enough to always have the need to lean on Him for everything. We will stumble, and He will lift us. We will have failures, yet He will forgive us. We will stray from Him, yet He will wait and welcome us back at a moments notice. I encourage everyone to embrace God’s ability to bring restoration into your life. Allow Him to permeate every cell in your body and every part of your soul and spirit. His restoration of you and me will be as individual as our fingerprints. No two will be identical and some will take longer than others. Yet, like a vintage car or favorite armchair, we will have enough of us in there to recognize ourselves, and more than enough of Him in us to always be shiny and comfortable. We will have our laugh lines, some hairlines, and yes, some waistlines. We will be our age, but young in the spirit. So let’s not miss the opportunity to be God’s feet on the ground to show Him to as many people as we can. That in itself, may just be the invitation someone needs to accept their turn for restoration in the repair shop. Mike Shindruk Master’s Hand Ministry

  • Where Does My Hope Lie?

    I, for one, am so glad I do not have to count on the judgement of mankind for my future. There are those out there who would have me put into therapy for my faith in a ghost, in a mythical being who has never before been seen. There are some who would take me off to the side and suggest I keep the whole faith thing under wraps so that I do not bring attention to my beliefs as it could hamper my career. How many times has someone come up to you and suggested that if you would put career ahead of faith, you could be making big money. “You’re a born leader, why are you wasting your time working part time in a church?” This was once asked of me. There was a time that honesty and integrity were more important than getting something at any cost. A friend was once told by his boss to get the contract no matter what. “Do whatever it takes to get that contract.” He did not get that contract, the owner of the company was not happy and a few days later, my friend was let go. Think about this for a moment. If you placed all your hope in an individual, your future is only as good as your last result. If the head of the denomination was in charge of the Book of Life, how solid is your hope of an eternal life with the Saviour? “You mess up one more time and I can assure you the gate to Glory will be closed to you.” Where does my hope lie? Where does our hope lie? Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Oh, give me back my joy again; you have broken me— now let me rejoice. Don’t keep looking at my sins. Remove the stain of my guilt. Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me. Ps 51:7-11 Jesus came to save us, not condemn. He brought with Him a hope that no man or woman could offer. By His sacrifice on the cross, He purified us from our sins, He washed us clean. In Him we have a perfect joy because He has healed us. Our sins are forgiven, our hearts are cleaned and, just as He promised, Holy Spirit walks with us every moment of our lives. Our hope is in His promise and not in the temporary promises of mankind. Our hope is in the Lord, and we can truly count on Him forever. This Sunday, Pastor Todd is on holidays and we are truly blessed to have Pastor Glenn bring us a message. We would love for you to join us either in person or online Sunday at 10:30 AM MST. Facebook Live - Main Ave Fellowship YouTube Live – You Tube Our Mission “To live the love of Christ”

  • Peter's Picks

    The Perfect 7-day Diet – Peter’s Picks ‘Freedom - Walk in it’ Day 1: John 8:31, 32 – “Jesus said to the people who believed in him, ‘You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings. And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’” Day 2: 1 Peter 2:16, 17 – ”For you are free, yet you are God’s slaves, so don’t use your freedom as an excuse to do evil. Respect everyone, and love the family of believers. Fear God, and respect the king.” Day 3: Romans 6:16-18 – “Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living. Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching we have given you. Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous living.” Day 4: Acts 13:38, 39 – “Brothers, listen! We are here to proclaim that through this man Jesus there is forgiveness for your sins. Everyone who believes in him is made right in God’s sight - something the law of Moses could never do.” Day 5: Galatians 5:13, 14 – “For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” Day 6: Romans 8:1, 2 – “So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.” Day 7: Ephesians 1:7 – “He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins.” ** Verses taken from the New Living Translation

  • Peter's Picks

    The Perfect 7-day Diet – Peter’s Picks ‘Walking in God’s Blessings’ Day 1: Micah 6:8 – “No, O people, the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.” Day 2: Colossians 1:10-12 – ”Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and your lives will produce every kind of good fruit. All the while, you will grow as you learn to know God better and better. We also pray that you will be strengthened with all his glorious power so you will have all the endurance and patience you need. May you be filled with joy, always thanking the Father…” Day 3: Deuteronomy 8:6 – “So obey the commands of the Lord your God by walking in his ways and fearing him.” Day 4: Ephesians 2:10 – “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” Day 5: 1 John 1:6, 7 – “So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but go on living in spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the truth. But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.” Day 6: John 8:12 – “Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, ‘I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.’” Day 7: 1 Thessalonians 4:12 – “Then people who are not believers will respect the way you live, and you will not need to depend on others.” ** Verses taken from the New Living Translation

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