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THE NECESSITY OF A NEW HEART

    Many people trust in Jesus as Saviour who never truly learn to WALK BY FAITH. They seem to think it essential to produce some righteousness of their own rather than wholly entrust themselves unto Him "who, of God, is made unto us righteousness", (I Cor. 1:30).
    To truly BE Christ's, there must be a sanctification of heart and life; a renewing of the whole man in righteousness, knowledge and holiness through Jesus Christ.
    To ancient Israel, a people that God called His own; a highly favored people, the command was given "Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit; for why will ye die, 0 house of Israel! (Ezekiel 18:31).
    Our daily requirement of spiritual nourishment, and strength of soul, is fully as great as theirs -- requiring day-by-day leaning upon the everlasting arm with a loving and trusting heart.

"0h! for a heart of love my God;
   A heart from sin set free;
A heart that always feels the blood
   So freely shed for me.

A heart resigned, submissive, meek,
   My dear Redeemer's throne;
Where only Christ is heard to speak,     Where Jesus reigns alone.

A lowly and believing heart,
   Abhorring self and sin;
A constant heart, which naught can
      part
   From Christ, who dwells within.

A child-like heart, that cries for
      food,
   And pines for love Divine;
An upright heart, by grace renewed,
   A copy, Lord, of Thine!
-- Author Unknown

MT. IDA FELLOWSHIP -- APRIL 12-13

    Pastor Mike Little; and the Washita MBC, of Mt. Ida, Arkansas, extend a hearty, Christian welcome for all to their Fellowship Meeting on April 12 and 13. They would appreciate your consideration in letting them know of your plans to attend -- that they way adequately prepare for your comfort. If you plan to attend, write:

      Pastor Mike Little
      Star Route, Box 104
      Story, AR 71970
or call: 501-867-2389.



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The Clarion Herald The Clarion Herald

A PARABLE OF LIFE

    One day, when the birds had sung themselves quite 1fmary, a long pause ensued, broken at last by a philosophical chaff-finch, in these words: "What is Life"?
    They were all rather startled at the interruption, but a little warbler answered at once, "Life is a song".
    "No, it is a struggle in darkness", said the mole, who had just succeeded in getting his head above the ground.
    "I think it is a development", said a wild rosebud, as she unfolded her petals one by one to the delight of a butterfly, who came to kiss her, and exclaimed, "Life is all ENJOYMENT!"
    "Call, it, rather, a short Summer's day", hummed a little fly as it passed by".
    "I can not see anything but hard work", was the lamentation of a small ant as she struggled on with

a straw ever so much too big for her.
    The magpie only laughed to cover his own poverty of thought. The general indignation at such levity might easily have produced a quarrel had not the rain begun to fall, at that very moment, whispering sadly, "Life is made up of-tears".
    "You are all mistaken", called out the eagle as he sailed through the air on his majestic wings; "Life is freedom and strength".
    Meanwhile it had grown dark, and a practical-minded bullfinch proposed that they should all go to rest. The night wind rustled softly through the branches, "Life is but a dream".
    Silence layover town and country, and dawn was near, when the scholar, in his lonely room; extinguished "is lamp and sighed, "Life is but a school.
    And the youth returning night of revelry moaned in his heart, "Life is one long desire ever unfulfilled".
    "It is an eternal mystery", whispered fitfully the newborn morning breeze. Then suddenly a rosy light spread over the horizon and tinged with its glow the tops of the forest trees as it rose in the sky. And as the morning kissed the awakening earth, a mighty harmony rang through the world, Life is JUST A BEGINNING"!
-- Author Unknown
    Jesus declared that life is something of eternal significance: "And THIS IS LIFE ETERNAL, that they might know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent", (John 17:3).



MISTERING TO YOUR PASTOR

    To the church at Rome Paul wrote: "I certainly thank my God for you all through Jesus Christ, because your faith is being mentioned all over the world. For God, whom I serve with my spiritual self in the Gospel of His Son, bears me witness how constantly I mention you whenever I am at my prayers, pleading that if there be place for it in the will of God, I may some day be sped on my way to visit you. For I am yearning to see you, so that I may bestow on you some spiritual gift for your confirmation; I mean that we may be MUTUALLY STRENGTHENED by your faith and mine", (Romans 1:8-12, Berkeley).
    According to Ephesians 4:12, ALL Christians are "ministers". There is a pressing need for every member of the body to remember every other body-member in prayer -- encouraging each other in the faith. But, do we not too often forget that our pastor is ONE OF US? Let me, therefore, suggest WHY we need to minister to our pastor; HOW we might do it more effectively; and WHAT we may hope for as a result.
    Like ourselves, our pastor is a human being -- a fellow-believer like ourselves. As a man, he is as susceptible to temptations as any of us. Faith isn't automatic for him JUST BECAUSE HE IS A PASTOR! It is no easier for him to be loving, hopeful and kind than it is for us. His resources, in the fight of faith, are no greater than ours; he is ONE OF US!
    Furthermore, the unique burdens of his calling demand our faithful

ministry to him; for example, the administrative burden of seeing that a hundred details are taken care of. Most of these we are never even aware of. Then, there is the burden of hearing and delivering messages from God week after week. These messages do NOT come easily "just because he is the pastor". If consistently biblical, they require considerable effort. Many tears are shed in his study over messages that "just won't seem to come". If WE feel spiritually dry, we might skip church, or come for renewal; but WHERE CAN THE PASTOR GO?
    Then, there is the burden of desiring to see his people act more like Jesus, and truly BE the "light of the world". To the Galatians Paul wrote: "I am like a mother in labor UNTIL CHRIST BE FORMED IN YOU!" Nothing weighs heavier on a true pastor's heart than when his people fail to grow in faith, love and righteousness.
    But how may we SHARE the pastor's burden? The best way is to simply BE Christians. As Paul wrote to the Philippians: "Make my joy complete by your mutual identity of purpose, your common object of love, your fellowship of feeling and your harmonious thinking. You will not act from factional motives or out of vanity, but with humble-mindedness each will regard the other superior to himself", (Phil. 2:2-3, Berkeley). And, as he wrote to the Romans: "I long to see you ... that we may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith". A believing people is a source of great encouragement to any pastor.



    In addition to this, I submit three specific ways wherein we may encourage our pastor and increase the fruitfulness of his ministry.
    1) PRAY FOR HIM DAILY. Be specific, his health, his messages, his family, his visiting, his flaws and weaknesses. Put yourself in his place and try to feel with him as you pray.
    2) Make a special effort to SPEAK SOME WORD OF ENCOURAGEMENT. Write him a letter; call him on the phone; but, in some way, express your appreciation for his Work and assure him that you will pray for him EVERY DAY. Don't be satisfied with mere platitudes at the door after the Sunday services.
    3) If you are conscious of some error in his life, pray for him. Then, in love, ADMONISH HIM IN A SPIRIT OF LOVE. All men are sinners. But some folk never learn this. Thus, they hop from church to church in search of the flawless pastor. It is far better to find a church where the word of God is preached, without fear or favor, and consider it your life-long responsibility to HELP your pastor develop into what God wants him to be.
    And, what may we hope for as a result of such ministering to our pastor? We may reasonably expect a refreshed, encouraged, hopeful and invigorated pastor. Like a boomerang, our ministry Will come back to us -- creating a refreshed, encouraged, hopeful and invigorated people. And the world will, know that Christ is REAL, as they observe His work within us.
Revised, from a tract by John Piper

MT. IDA FELLOWSHIP -- APRIL 12-13

    Pastor Mike Little; and the Washita MBC, of Mt. Ida, Arkansas, extend a hearty, Christian welcome for all to their Fellowship Meeting on April 12 and 13. They would appreciate your consideration in letting them know of your plans to attend -- that they way adequately prepare for your comfort. If you plan to attend, write:
      Pastor Mike Little
      Star Route, Box 104
      Story, AR 71970
or call: 501-867-2389.