How to Get to Heaven

I am posting today’s video not to impress anyone with my teaching at the nursing home but to impress on anyone willing to go; how simple it is to share the hope of Christ in a few minutes. Jesus gave us a great commission but at nursing home it needs to be short and to the point! Please be patient with the quality of the recording as it was done by one of our recreational aides who volunteered at the last minute to run the camera.

This is a ministry that anyone who is willing can do. Your willingness to press on through difficulties, sometimes frustrating slowness in seeing responses and the sorrow of unexpected farewells can lead to a rich harvest for Jesus Christ. We are now approaching our 24th year in ministry at Allied Skilled nursing home. There are three services each week in the various wards reaching between 70 -80 residents each week. It is all volunteer. I am deeply grateful to the staff who willingly and eagerly encourage people to come each week. I am also thankful for our dedicated group of youth volunteers who help put together a special program at Easter, Christmas and during their Summer Vacation. May God inspire you to realize that you can do this too. The harvest really is ripe and God is calling each of us to labor in the vineyard where He has called us. For more detailed questions please feel free to contact me at revpete51@gmail.com or browse our Youtube archives. You will find help in putting together holiday programs, encouraging singing and serving communion among many other short videos. God bless as you do you best for Him!  If you say yes to God’s call to nursing home ministry then I  ask you what Jesus once asked me, “Would you do it for one?”

 

Words of Faith

Sing to the Lord a new song, And His praise in the assembly of saints. Let Israel rejoice in their Maker; Let the children of Zion be joyful in their King.  Psalm 149:1-2

 

Singing is in fact an act of faith. When we open our mouth to sing we both connect back to our first childlike step of faith and strain forward towards our heavenly goal. We cannot see yet what heaven will be but the accompaniment of heaven’s songs can draw us forward. I am reminded of one dear elderly saint who was found passed out on the floor by her sister. The ambulance was called and Florence was taken to the hospital where after several days she regained her strength and returned home. Florence told us that while she was unconscious she began to hear the angels singing and felt them coming closer. She said that the song grew louder and louder but then suddenly it faded and then she opened her eyes and woke up. Since she had grown up in the Polish church I was interested to know if God would have His angels singing in her childhood language or in English. But Florence said it was in neither language rather in some heavenly tongue which was completely different from anything she knew! KIMG1887

I have never forgotten Florence’s angels and their heavenly song. As you lead worship whether in your nursing home ministry or church remember that you are giving people an opportunity to put words to their faith.  God has given us songs for an encouragement and a help to our faith. Just as faith without works is dead, faith without words is unborn. What greater catalyst to our confession of faith is there than the words of our worship?

Hope of Pardon

We were driving through Brooklyn looking for the way over to Manhattan. My step father hated asking for directions so with my mother’s help he headed towards the Empire state building which we could see clearly above the small buildings around us. The only problem was that we finally ran out of roads at the East river because he had not counted on having to cross the bridge! We shouldn’t laugh too much at him though because in the same way we are all trying to get to heaven but forget that there is a bridge to carry us over and only one: our Lord Jesus Christ!

All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned—every one—to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all Isaiah 53:6 ESV

Watch “Joni’s Corner: Memories” on YouTube

God has given us memories so like everything else he does there is a good purpose to them. Let Him do for you today the good things that He has in mind for your past your present and your future.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord , plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11 ESV