This past Sunday, at the church, I am blessed to pastor; there was a very interesting question in our church bulletin. We are blessed as a church to have a lady from our congregation do them. She does an amazing job, putting such time, effort, and care into them. Each week she puts something in them that we can all take home, learn from, and think on.
The question was asked, "Who is God to you?" After this question, there were examples of who God is in many different facets, with the scripture references included for each one, from The Word of God. As I read , there were examples such as, God is my Healer, my Redeemer, my Deliverer, my Strength, Friend, Father, Strong Tower, Resting Place, and so many others.
I thought to myself that yes He is all of these and yet He is so much more. He is there for me when no one else can be or wants to be. He is always willing to listen to me, when everyone else doesn't seem to care or is too busy. When I am in pain, He brings me comfort and ease. When the storms of life rage, He speaks peace be still, and the waters calm. If I am thirsty, He gives me living water to drink, and if I am hungry, He feeds me with the bread of life.
As the song writer wrote, there is not enough ink nor paper to tell the story of this amazing God whom we serve. He is everything to me, more than just some story. He is my everything and my all in all.
I wonder if Christians were asked, "Who is God to you?", if they would be able to respond or even know how to respond. Knowing who God is to us, is very important. Why is this something that is important? It's about a relationship with a Good, Good Father. For years and decades the church has preached religion. I do not preach or teach religion. I preach and proclaim relationship with a God that Loves us more than anyone can ever imagine. The pharisees and the sadducess were religious, they never searched after a true relationship with God. They were so wrapped up in their traditions and ritualistic notions, that they missed out on the Savior entirely. In this day and time we don't need anymore modern day pharisees and sudducees but true disciples of Jesus Christ. It is time that we are seeking after a relationship with the creator of the universe because we are His creation. We have been created in His image. How special of a creation we must have to be, that the creator would want to form us in own His image. (Genesis 1:27) We have a truly unique and special relationship with God. There is no other creation, that can have or will ever have the type of relationship with God, that we have been gifted.
So let me ask you the question, Who is God to you? I pray that this is something that you can answer with the understanding of where your relationship is with God. I want you to look at Him as a personal God, who you can know; not just someone you know of that seems so far away. I hope you find a deep, intimate, personal relationship with a God who loves you like no one else.
May the Lord Bless you,
Pastor Ted Stepp
The "Be Still" part of this verse seems to be the hardest thing for us to do. We live in a continually moving society where everything and everyone seems to be in such a rush anymore. We are in a fastfood like community, everyone wanting what they want when they want it. People are always rushing to school, to work, and even to church. Trying our very best to fit it all in our crazy schedules we call life.
Because of this fast paced mentality, so many things in our lives are suffering. Marriages are failing because husbands and wives are too busy to work on it. Children are suffering because parents are too busy to raise there kids and spend time with them. Young boys and young girls don't have role models worth following after because we are too busy to be a good role model and set the example. Homes are falling apart because we are too busy to keep them together. Neighbors don't check on each other and no one checks on their friends, due to us being busy with our own lives.
This same mentality that has infected homes and families has leaked into the church world. Church is something that people are too busy for today. There is always something else to do or not enough time. I wish I could say that this is just the worlds mentality when it comes to church, but sadly it is not. The professing christians are the same and feel they don't really have the time to attend church. It seems as if us professing christians (yes i said us, lets be real with this) get too busy for God altogether. We get so busy with what we call living, that God is put on the back burner. Sometimes we are even too busy to pray or even spend time in His Word.
I want to encourage you this coming week to evaluate how busy you actually are. Have you become to busy to pray? Too busy to spend time with God? Too busy for church? Maybe even too busy to tell someone about Jesus? God is begging us to "Be Still". It is in those still moments that we truly know that He is God and we are able to hear that small still voice speaking to us. When we slow down and allow ourselves to be still, that is when we can truly know and experience the personal God that loves us so. We become so busy that all we experience is Religion, but He wants us to "Be Still" so we can experience Relationship.
Yours in Christ Jesus,
Pastor Ted Stepp
I know that it has been a little bit since I have posted on this blog and it was never my intention to go this long without posting. So those of you who are supporters and like to read this blog site, I ask that you forgive me for my tardiness. These past couple of months have been a very difficult time. There has been loss in my family and with my church family. My wife's grandfather, as well as my mentor in the ministry, Rev. Bobby Lee Taylor made his crossing to be with the Lord on February 26th, 2018. He ran his race and finally crossed the finish line to receive his forever reward with Jesus. One of my board members and very good friend, Ronnie Riddle, went home on February 24th, 2018. Ronnie was only 55 years old and I know He loved the Lord. So in one week, I lost two very important people in my life. I had the honor to preach Ronnie's funeral and be a pall barer at Bob's funeral. It was a great privilege to take part in both of these men of God's celebration. As a pastor and minister it is your honor to be there with families during very difficult times but it can also be a lonely time for you when you are grieving as well. The enemy found ways of hurting me and attacking me while both ministering to people during this time of loss and the days to come afterwards. I did my best to keep myself as busy as I could. Going through the grief process is something that is very difficult and be hard to know how to handle. During this time the enemy also brought to my mind, my brother. I lost my brother in December of 2017. He was murdered. I loved him so very much and I regret that we were not closer then we were. Three deaths in a three month period is very hard and has weighed on my mind so very much. I went thru times of depression and anger, even times of fear as well as doubt. It got to the point that all I could do was to sit on my bedside and cry out to the Lord. Telling Him that I am not able to handle any of this on my own, and I don't know what to do. I am a blessed man to have my wife that has been right there with me and put up with me during this time. I am blessed with an amazing helpmate and best friend. I could not ask for a better wife then Emily. Something has come to mind of late. A wonderful man of God and a minister that I look up to, Rev. Paul Hagen (General Superintendent of the Christian Baptist Assoc.) has a saying, "When you don't know what to do, do what ya know that you ought to do". So that is what I did, I gave it all to the Lord and leaned on His understand, because my understand was getting me no where. I took off the heavy load that I was carrying and asked the Lord to help me get through this. I know that God will not bring us to anything that He is not willing to take us through. Are there days that are still rough? Yes, 100%, but I know that God is always there with me. Even as pastor's there are times we don't trust as much as we should or we forgot how human we really are sometimes. Times like these reminds me that I am nothing without HIM. I know this is not the regular blog that you might except to read but it is my heart today and what I felt led to write. I pray that it blesses you or helps you in some way today. May the Lord Bless you and keep you, as you keep on keeping on for Him.
Rev. Ted Stepp, Pastor
"37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."
The Love is God is not something that you can earn or buy. The Love of God is something that is freely given to us. He loves us so much that He sent His only begotten son to Calvary so that we can have life and have it more abundantly. I Praise God for His amazing Love and for the Blood that was shed on Calvary for us.
The most amazing part about being Loved by God is that nothing is able to separate us from His Love. No matter what happens in life we can always know that the Love of God is there to comfort and surround us. When we were out in sin, the Love of God was there reaching out with mercy and grace. That same mercy and grace that was given while out in sin, leading us toward making the decision of Jesus as our Lord and deliverer, is still there today guiding and directing us through the Love of God.
There are going to be times in our lives that we feel completely alone and unloved. There are days that we feel as if we are the most unlovable person in the world. I want you to be encouraged today, because there is one that Loves you more then any one or thing is able to love you in this world or life. He cares about every minor and major part of your life. If it is important to you it is important to God.
I know that sometimes it seems that everything in our lives are falling apart. Situations and circumstances seem to be overwhelming and unsolvable. Remember that the Word tells us that we are more then conquerors through Him that loves us. It is because of the Love of God that those overwhelming and unsolvable times are turned into victories. There is victory is the Lord I know, victory in His Holy Name!
The Word tells us that there is no angels or powers, anything past or present or future, nothing big enough or small enough, nothing of this earth (Created), and not even death itself is able to separate us from the Love of God. Why is that? Because the Love of God spans from everlasting to everlasting, from this life out into eternity. God Loves us and there is nothing that can take that away. So the next time that you feel unloved or all alone. Know this, God loves you and He is always with.
My Pray for you:
Heavenly Father, Bless my brothers and sisters in Christ today. Let your love surround them and speak to their hearts. May your love manifest itself in there lives in such a way that everyone around them is able to experience your LOVE as it truly is. In Jesus Name, Amen
Yours in Christ,
Pastor Ted Stepp
We know that the Word tells us that all have sinned. There is nothing that we can do to deny that we have all have sinned at some point in our lives. What can we do about this though? What are we able to do about the sin nature that is in us and is influencing everything that we do? When God created man, we were capable of reflecting that good and perfect image of God. When sin entered the world, through man’s mis use of free will, that changed. We are no longer able to reflect the goodness of God on our own. So, what do we do to change this?
Pastor Ted Stepp has been in the ministry around 13 years and is 32 years old. God has Blessed him with a wonderful family. A wife of 10 years Emily and 3 boys (Elisha, Jeremiah, and Isaiah). He was a youth pastor for 5 1/2 years of his ministry and served on different boards for both churches and youth. Pastor Ted was in the ministry of evangelism preaching where ever the Lord opened doors for over 5 years. Pastor Ted is currently serving a Senior Pastor at Monterey Wesleyan in Monterey, TN. He has been the Pastor there since January of 2016. He is also serving at the Vice-president of the Monterey Ministerial Association. God has blessed in a mighty way and he has had the pleasure to see both young and old won for the cause of Jesus Christ. He is an Ordained Minister in The Ohio Valley Association Christian Baptist Church of God. He has a Heart for the Lord and helping people grow in the Lord Jesus Christ.