Dear Watermark Church family,
You have searched me, Lord, and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.
Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me and lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:1-3, 23,24
I recently had my annual physical exam, because my doctor believes that early detection is a key to physical health and longevity. Spiritual health requires periodic “check-ups” as well. One great way to stay spiritually healthy is to practice solitude on a regular basis.
Solitude, like prayer and Bible study, is a spiritual discipline that allows us to ask the God of the universe to search our hearts and examine our lives, thoughts, actions and speech. God knows us better than we know ourselves! Nothing catches our heavenly Father off guard.
Jesus often practiced this discipline of solitude. “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.” Mark 1:35 Jesus knew it was vital to get away from the obligations and everyday demands of life and ministry to spend time alone with the One who can reveal to us the most intimate things about us, along with direction for our lives. Jesus’ daily priorities were set during His times of solitude with the Father.
During moments of solitude, we ask the Lord to search our hearts and attitudes, and then we listen to what He says to our spirit. (No need to try and search the depths of our own hearts – that is what God gave us the Holy Spirit to do.)
Our solitude helps us identify heart issues, faith issues, sin issues and trust issues with God. Is Jesus still our fist love? Are we recently just going through the motions of the Christian life? Are we flirting with temptation? Are we loving those around us like Christ would? Are we living each day with humility and a desire to obey God? Are we angry or upset with God? As we hear from God and adjust our lives accordingly, this can lead us to a renewed commitment to personal holiness, a love for others and devotion to God.
Sometime soon, plan a set date, determine a place (park, coffee shop, quiet room), and practice a time of solitude with God. Take an open Bible and a blank note pad and ask God to search your heart and attitudes. It will revitalize your relationship with God. How long has it been since your last spiritual check-up with God?
Also, join us this Sunday, 11/11 at 10:30am at Watermark Church, as I continue teaching in the Book of Philippians. This week you will see how God is at work in your life every day!
The Holiday Bazaar held last Saturday was a great success. Many vendors commented on the friendly and peaceful atmosphere they experienced while manning their vending booth in the Watermark Church worship center. Over $800 was raised for the future upgrades of our sanctuary. Thanks to Kristen Hruby, Chris Morgan and Rachael Gibson, the Kellis family and everyone else who contributed to the success of this event!
Thanksgiving Food Baskets for local needy families – This year, our goal is to assemble 15 Thanksgiving Food Baskets for local families, to be delivered on 10/18. Please bring these items on Sunday, November 11 – frozen turkeys or dinner rolls
Operation Christmas Child toys needed – Recently, we packed over 60 boxes to be sent to children around the world, telling them about the love of God. These boxes are filled with soap, toothbrushes, crayons, towels, toys and notebooks.
We still need more toys, like cars, ball, jump ropes, pens and notebooks and other small toys for younger boys and girls.
It’s not too early to begin inviting your friends and family, co-workers and neighbors to our Christmas Eve Candlelight Service at 6:00 PM on 12/24!
The 20-somethings/College and Career small group is continuing Sunday, November 4th and will be studying the book “Vertical Church.” The group will meet at JC and Saran Kellis’ home – 2081 Apple Knoll Lane, Middletown, 45044. See Isaiah and Kristen Hruby for more details.
The Men’s Fellowship Breakfast is held every Friday at 7:00 AM, and the location is at the Waffle House at the Monroe Outlets / SR 63 & I-75. Join with the men of Watermark Church for an encouraging time of fellowship!
The Prophecy and World Events class is being offered at 9:30 AM Sundays, taught by Pastor Ron.
Life Group: The Gibson’s and Settimos’ Life Group bible study meets every other Friday. Contact Paul or Nathan for more info.
Together enjoying times of solitude with God,