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Wednesday, January 27 2016

Beyond  by Colin Campbell

“Each man was assigned his task and told what to carry, just as the Lord had commanded through Moses.” (Numbers 4:49 NLT)

As disciples of Christ, we have a crucial assignment—to carry our cross. Authentic Christianity requires ego crucifixion. To follow Jesus, we must sacrifice selfish desires.

As messengers of God, we have a noble task—to carry Christ’s name to society. God is our Employer and Supervisor; therefore we should work conscientiously. Scripture is a toolbox filled with all we need—instructing us in truth, shocking us into seeing repressed sin, straightening us our morally, and teaching us the right highway to travel.    

As followers of the Lord, we have a unique responsibility—to carry a changed heart into relationships. Our highest challenge is to die to sin and live like Christ. When our restless spirit is intent on holiness, we will not be passively shaped by a materialistic, carnal age. Depending on grace, we can endure tough times. Yielding to the Holy Spirit within, we live a celebrative life of pure joy—transformed and transforming.

As servants of the Master, we have a lifelong ministry—to carry compassion to people. Christian ministry pivots on the heart of Christ within us—faith works, love labors, and hope endures. We are called to live a caring life, sharing God’s love as we interact with our world.

As soldiers of the Commander of heaven’s armies, we have a special duty assignment—to carry out his orders decisively. When our work on earth is finished, and we have completed all tasks given us, we will have simply done our duty. Jesus will repay our faithful service with his smile of approval.

For heaven’s sake, let’s carry on.


Johnny R. Almond

Interim Pastor, Hull’s Memorial Baptist Church; Fredericksburg, Virginia


This devotion based on Day 77 of Gentle Whispers from Eternity

Posted by: Pastor Almond AT 11:57 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, January 20 2016

"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.

Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."

(Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.)

If we sincerely desire to know the Lord, pressing on to know him (Hosea 6:3), we will learn that God is love (1 John  4:16). When the Holy Spirit controls our heart, love will be evident in our attitudes and actions.

Galatians 5:19-21 lists demons Jesus orders to flee--including hostility, quarreling, outbursts of anger, dissension, and division--all manifestations of hatred. Verses 22 and 23 list the heavenly habits of the heart--the first one being sacrificial love, and inclding peace, patience, kindness, and gentleness--characterizing people who live in Grace Highlands.

The great love chapter of the Bible (1 Corinthians 13) prescribes love as the antidote to the poisons of pride, irritation, rudeness, jealousy, arrogance, selfishness, resentment, doubt, despair, disenchantment, discouragement, disillusionment, and childishness.

Hate breeds hate. Violence fuels violence. Revenge perpetuates revenge. Anger intensifies anger. Dr. King was right--only light can drive out darkness; only love can drive out hate.

"God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God." (Matthew 5:9 NLT)

Read other devotional thoughts by Pastor Almond on his blog at

Posted by: Pastor Almond AT 11:20 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, January 18 2016

“Take a census of the whole Israelite community by their clans and families, listing every man by name, one by one.” (Numbers 1:2 NIV)

Before making a move, it is wise to inventory our resources—taking stock of contacts, health, possessions, time, and goals. A census makes sense. 

The number of people around us is vitally important. Community counts. It would not be good for us to be alone, so God gives us a complementary companion and places us in a loving family. We limp along independently; we do well interdependently.

We have no idea of the total number of the blood-washed international multitude. God’s “two or three” are a minority in this anti-God world; but his universal church has an incalculable membership.

None of us is a Christian alone—believing friends encourage us to persevere in the journey of faith. Relating to them, we are blessed—communing around Christ’s table, comparing notes, flocking together, warning each other to resist sin, inspiring one another to look forward to heaven’s golden future.

Our Heavenly Father names stars and counts them to make sure none are out of orbit. He also shepherds saints. Jesus has millions of sheep, yet he knows everything about each one. He x-rays our heart—resting, rising, racing. He understands our anxieties and dreams. He is aware of our geographical and spiritual coordinates, struggles, and wordless prayers.

God is counting on us—so we can move out to battle the dark side, confident of conquest (Psalm 27; Isaiah 9:6, 7).

We can count on other believers—so we can move through life as citizens of heaven, confident of community (Psalm 100; Isaiah 65:17-19).

We can count on God—so we can move ahead in faith, confident he will calm us in chaos (Psalm 46; Isaiah 26:3).


Johnny R. Almond

Interim Pastor, Hull’s Memorial Baptist Church; Fredericksburg, Virginia


This devotion based on Day 76 of Gentle Whispers from Eternity

Posted by: Pastor Almond AT 10:16 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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    Hull's Memorial Baptist Church
    420 Enon Road | Fredericksburg, VA 22406 | PH: 540.371.4124