Pastoral eNews, August 2011

Welcome: Illinois’ record-breaking heat seems to have passed, and our thermometers are no longer registering 100+ degrees.

Although we thought we had it tough for a while, we are most grateful that we have had plenty of rain. In contrast, the state of Texas (where my brother lives) has been suffering through a severe drought this year. My brother and I talk frequently and it’s sad to hear the reports of their miserable conditions. A few days ago, he  attempted to sow winter wheat. The ground was so hard from lack of moisture that he couldn’t break it. He had to pull the equipment back to the barn. Seems all Texans are becoming earnest in their prayer for rain. As Christians, we should be praying for rain, too. I don’t mean only the H20 relief for drought-stricken areas. I’m speaking of earnestly praying for the latter rain of the Holy Spirit — that time of refreshing and empowerment from God that fits us to stand in the day of the Lord and to live in His sight.

Behind the Scenes: Three Angels Broadcasting Network has been an active member of ASI (Adventist-laymen’s Services and Industries) since the 1980’s. During the first week of August each year, ASI holds their international convention. This year it was located in the Convention Center at Sacramento, California. This annual event features wonderful speakers who feed us spiritually, great planning sessions, and an exhibit area featuring ministries from around the world. It is always an inspiring event to attend. We also enjoy the opportunity to fellowship with like-minded brothers and sisters in Christ, catching up with familiar friends and making new ones. The photo shows our 3ABN booth and gatherings.

God’s Daily Blessing: “For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you” (Luke 6:38). Jesus here makes a promise about the spiritual reciprocity of giving and receiving. I think of it as spiritual harvesting. Talk to any farmer and he will tell you that the more seed you plant, the greater the potential of the grain harvest becomes. The amazing principle of sowing and reaping is that the result is disproportionate to the original measure put into the ground. Likewise, in God’s kingdom economy, no matter how much you give, you will always receive more in return. Jesus said, “Give and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom.” Giving and receiving go together like a hand and glove. As we give we place ourselves in a position to receive a harvest. The harvest may come to us as an idea, an opportunity, an invitation, or something that will aid in our behalf. Our duty is to continually sow good seed in our giving and allow the Lord to multiply it.

Behind the Scenes: We are truly blessed to have a group of young people at 3ABN who have dedicated themselves to the work of the Lord. Kyle and Nicole Warren are two of our group of young professionals. Kyle and his precious wife, Nicole, work in the Art Services Department. He serves as the lead artist, while Nicole works as a graphic designer/staff photographer. The Lord has gifted them with many talents, which they use for His glory. They were married June 13, 2010.

Answers to Difficult Questions: “And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them our of My hand.” John 8:28 NKJV

Answer: Two wonderful assurances are given in this text. God’s faithful obedient children have eternal life as a qualitative factor even while waiting for Jesus to come. Secondly, no man is able to take that “eternal life” quality away from them and separate them from the Father. Let’s look at these statements carefully. How can it be said that we have eternal life before Jesus comes to bestow immortality upon us? In John 5:24, Jesus said, “…he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.” The born-again Christian immediately begins to partake of the divine nature of Jesus. Peter describes the faith process as claiming the promises of salvation that “you may be partakers of the divine nature” (2 Peter 1:4). As long as this faith relationship continues and God’s sheep hear His voice and follow Him, there is a sharing of the very life of Christ. Although no human being can deprive the Christian of that shared eternal life, the Christian can always choose to take himself away from Christ by severing the relationship which provides the divine nature (eternal life). In that case, he removes himself from the Father’s hand and severs himself also from the source of everlasting life. (Answers to Difficult Bible Texts by Joe Crews)

Behind the Scenes: 3ABN loves our volunteers and counts on their services. It is a win-win relationship. While 3ABN is blessed by volunteers who fill in our staffing gaps and help us get the gospel out to the world, our volunteers are equally blessed in serving the Lord and following His lead. This month we introduce you to Lewis Carson from Inverness, Florida. He wears two hats here at 3ABN, volunteering in both our accounting office and the pastoral department. Lewis taught for 11 years, and then worked in the Adventist health care industry, finally serving as an internal auditor in our hospital system. He was married for 59 years to the love of his life, Della Mae, with whom he worked in ministry before and during their entire marriage, until he laid her to rest a couple of years ago. His son, David, works in the 3ABN accounting department and plans to be married on September 3; his daughter, Vivian Mae, lives in Fairbanks, Alaska; he also claims Bobbie Larson and her son, Matthew, as his “adopted” daughter and grandson. Lewis has offered his volunteer services to 3ABN twice a year since 2009. God bless him!

Seventh-day Adventist Fundamental Beliefs: Seventh-day Adventists accept the Bible as their only creed and hold certain fundamental beliefs to be the teaching of the Holy Scriptures. These 28 fundamental beliefs constitute the Church’s understanding and expression of the teaching of the Scripture. Today’s belief number 27 is “The Millennium and the End of Sin” The millennium is the thousand-year reign of Christ with his saints in heaven between the first and second resurrections. During this time the wicked dead will be judged; the earth will be utterly desolate, without living human inhabitants, but occupied by Satan and his angels. At its close Christ with His saints and the Holy City will descend from heaven to earth. The unrighteous dead will then be resurrected, and with Satan and his angels will surround the city; but fire from God will consume them and cleanse the earth. The universe will thus be freed of sin and sinners forever. (Revelation 20; 1 Corinthians 6:2, 3; Jeremiah 4:23-26; Revelation 21:1-5; Malachi 4:1; Ezekiel 28:18, 19.)

Behind the Scenes: Elder Joe O’Brien has been an asset to the Pastoral Department since 2000, assisting many hurting souls over the years. Joe’s wife Nancy is principle and teacher of our local Adventist school. We are blessed to have them as friends and neighbors in Christ. Kalie is their only child. She attends Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska, majoring in International Rescue and Relief. Kalie goes places and does things that most adventurous people just dream of. She is very determined to be the best she can be in the Lord and serve Him well. She is currently certified in EMT with advanced skills: dive rescue; rope rescue technician and instructor provisional; swift water rescue; and advanced-provisional instructor for rescue III International. Kalie ministered in Haiti after the earthquake and served for a year in Honduras.

Affirmation: “I do not fear, for He is with me. I am not discouraged, for His is my God. He strengthens me, helps me, and upholds me in His everlasting arms. He calls me by my name-I am His, and He is mine! The Lord is my strength and my shield. He protects me, and He is mighty to save. Holy and righteous Lord, thank You for quieting my fears with Your love. When I sought You, You answered and delivered me from all my fears.” (Isaiah 41:10; Deuteronomy 33:27; Isaiah 43:1-3; Psalm 28:7; Zephaniah 3:16,17; Psalm 57:1; Psalm 34:4) Life Affirmations From Scripture, p. 68, by Shelley Quinn.

Behind the Scenes: On August 14, with the first chord of the bridal march, a large attendance at the Thompsonville Seventh-day Adventist Church riveted their attention on Sarah Lyons (3ABN Accounting Department staff) as she walked down the aisle in her beautiful white gown to join her groom, Michael Prewitt (manager of 3ABN’s Publishing Department, who — by the way — was decked out handsomely in a white tux). Pastor John Lomacang officiated. As the couple joined hands and exchanged personally written marriage vows, many in the congregation were moved to tears. The beautiful service was followed by a lovely luncheon reception. We are so happy for Mr. and Mrs. Prewitt and pray their union will last throughout eternity.

Great Quote: A person may not be able to tell the exact time or place, or to trace all the chain of circumstances in the process of conversion; but this does not prove him to be unconverted. Christ said to Nicodemus, “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit” John 3:8 NKJV. Like the wind, which is invisible, yet the effects of which are plainly seen and felt, is the Spirit of God in its work upon the human heart. That regenerating power, which no human eye can see, begets a new life in the soul; it creates a new being in the image of God. While the work of the Spirit is silent and imperceptible, its effects are manifest. If the heart has been renewed by the Spirit of God, the life will bear witness to the fact. While we cannot do anything to change our hearts, or to bring ourselves into harmony with God; while we must not trust at all to ourselves or our good works, our lives will reveal whether the grace of God is dwelling within us. A change will be seen in the character, the habits and the pursuits. The contrast will be clear and decided between what they have been and what they are. The character is revealed, not by occasional good deeds and occasional misdeeds, but by the tendency of the habitual words and acts. Steps to Christ by Ellen G. White

Behind the Scenes: Helen Eager of Asian Aid recently visited and shared a ministry report. Through an NGO called Three Angels Nepal (operated by ten former Asian Aid young people), they now air 3ABN programming 24/7 on five cable stations in Pokhara, a large tourist area. Two hours of programming produced in the Nepali language are aired Friday nights. Many letters testify to lives being changed. Their goal is to put 3ABN on seven more cable stations.

With an FM radio license for 24/7 broadcast coverage of all of Nepal, they plan to launch Three Angels Community Radio. Currently, they run a few radio programs that reach remote villages. This new station will air the Gospel and produce more Nepali-language programs addressing the serious needs of health/hygiene and the dangers of body parts (for transplants) and sex trafficking. Station installation costs are significant, and a monthly operating fee will be required. But the potential to introduce Christ to the 30 million people of Nepal is priceless.

With a thriving ministry in seven prisons, Three Angels Nepal has a good reputation among prison officials. The gr0oup distributes personal hygiene products, Bibles and Christian literature, and runs a jailhouse medical clinic (with plans for others). They rescue and care for the children of prisoners as well.

Asian Aid operates seven orphanages and rescues young girls from sex slavery. Many coming from Bombay brothels are HIV positive, requiring special medical treatment. The orphans are taught marketable skills and learn about Christ. Many aspire to become teachers, doctors, or pilots. Asian Aid recently started the Three Angels International Mission School, featuring all Adventist teachers-most of whom were previously sponsored in Asian Aid programs. Enrollment is at 143, with hopes of 200 paying students next year to help w0ith operational costs.

Their Bible school distributes lessons by mail to be filled out and returned for marking. They have no church buildings for members and need funds for church planting. Another desperate need is for Bible workers and motorcycles for the workers. Please join us in praying for Asian Aid.

Become a 3ABN Prayer Warrior: If the Holy Spirit convicts you that this may be your calling, please visit our website and follow directions, submitting the necessary information. Being a Prayer Warrior is one of the most rewarding ministries there is. When we walk the streets of gold, only then will we know the extent of our cooperative efforts with the Lord. We continually receive input from our Prayer Warriors stating how satisfying it is to work in the Lord’s vineyard. What we intend to be a blessing for others is a greater blessing for us. God gets all the glory.

Behind the Scenes: Recently, the pastoral department held a special luncheon to say our goodbyes to Pastor Richard Pinero. He and his family have accepted a pastoral position in the Southern New England Conference and are in the process of relocating. Pastor Richard will be sorely missed. Being proficient in both English and Spanish languages, he helped us with 3ABN English and 3ABN Latino programming and helped meet the bilingual needs of our callers. I know God is leading in this young man’s life and our sincere prayers go with him, his wife, Annette, and their two children, Mileidys and Jonathan.

Need special prayer?

Your 3ABN Pastoral staff is here to assist you. Every member of our team is sensitive to those in pain. I believe, over the years, we have encountered callers in just about every topic or situation one could imagine. It is only by the aid and power of the Holy Spirit that we are able to successfully do that which He has called us to do. We are eager to share words of hope and encouragement. To God be the glory!

Behind the Scenes: “Every once in awhile you have a special day, a day that you will remember for a long time,” stated Jim Gilley, President of 3ABN, after we completed our tour of Elmshaven — home of Author Ellen G. White. We visited this historic site located on the outskirts of St. Helena, California, on August 2, while 3ABN chronicled an account of this church treasure. Mollie Steenson, VP and General Manager of 3ABN, hosted the tour; Jim Nix, Director of The Ellen G. White Estate, narrated the rich history of Mrs. White’s life in this residence. The taping of this wonderful visit to the past will soon air on 3ABN.

New Book: “How to Receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirit”

Have you had questions about the Holy Spirit and His role in your life today? Have you wondered why we do not see the powerful manifestations of the Spirit working in the church today as described in the early church?

In this little booklet, Pastor Hal Steenson has made simple the answers to these and other oft-asked questions about the work of the Holy Spirit. He reminds us of the promise of the mighty power of the Spirit that prepares the final harvest of Planet Earth-and invites us to share in that experience. After all, seeing the world around us, we know that the time is here and fast passing. Won’t you, too, dear reader, join with your fellow believers and experience in full measure the rich blessings of the latter rain work of the Holy Spirit? —Dr. Walt Thompson

Contact 3ABN Resource Center to get this “must” read.

Our sincere prayer is that God will richly bless you in all areas of your life. You are precious to us and we love you as our brothers and sisters in Christ.

Your loving Pastoral Staff: Grace Yost, Colleen Hauser, Larry Welch, Joe O’Brien, Kevin Hart, Hal Steenson and JD Quinn.

JDQuinn J.D. Quinn
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