The Fellowship - Articles

Jan
2011
Bernie Powell
  Something new is stirring in The Fellowship in response to the challenge of orphan care on National Adoption Sunday.   God’s Word makes clear that “religion that God our Father accepts as pure and blameless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. In addition the recurrent phrase “widows, orphans and aliens” is used across the Old Testament in expressions of compassion that... + read more
Dec
2010
Bernie Powell
  At Christmas we celebrate the virgin birth of Jesus Christ. Of all our beloved Christmas carols, few capture the gospel meaning of the virgin birth as profoundly as Philip Brooks’ fourth verse of O Little Town of Bethlehem:   O holy child of Bethlehem, descend to us we pray, Cast out our sin and enter in, be born in us today.   Across nearly forty years of Christmas ministry, I still thrill on the Sunday when our journey through the carols... + read more
Nov
2010
Bernie Powell
  O God our Father, as we join hands in this living room, we pray that each member of this household will be living for Christ1 and living with Christ2, as a living sacrifice3. This living room is a special room for entertaining guests. May many visitors encounter the love of Jesus in this home4.   This dining room is a place of eating and conversation together as a family. Jesus said “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes form the mouth of... + read more
Oct
2010
Bernie Powell
  Mission trips have become a great fad. Last year over one million Americans took part in some kind of “mission trip.” The quotes are necessary because many are only mission-trip-lite, a kind of religio-tourism designed merely to provide an “experience” without demanding too much. Word is out: a mission trip can “change your life.” Bored Americans will try anything once, any novelty that might insert some meaning into an over-indulged, under-... + read more
Jun
2010
Bernie Powell
  June is the month of weddings. So for many readers, it’s also a month of anniversaries. All this reminds me of my 40th wedding anniversary that comes up somewhat later this summer. Hallelujah! Forty down and forty to go!   Then suddenly it dawns on me: I am in a whole decade of major anniversaries. Last year, the fortieth anniversary of entering full-time ministry, as well as the fortieth for our first date. In the next few years there will be my fiftieth spiritual... + read more
May
2010
Bernie Powell
  Yellow ones. Blue ones. Purple ones. Little flowers come peeping out of the ground to greet the spring. And to greet me on a spring day.   Where do they come from? Are they just hiding beneath the soil, waiting to kick the blankets off when the weather warms? No, for they are made out of that soil. And air, and water, and sunshine. But how does soil make itself into a flower? Or a tree? Or a carrot? Does the soil direct this process? No, but it is indispensable. Same for... + read more
Apr
2010
Bernie Powell
  Sometimes I feel tempted to give up. Do you? When troubles and trials and worries and griefs pile on, how can we make sense of it all? Do you ever feel like saying “What’s the use?”   The Bible is realistic about life. It doesn’t sugarcoat what seems like senseless suffering. That’s where we live. Pretending won’t make it go away. But the Bible shows us how to make good use of trials. Two examples of this are found in the opening... + read more
Feb
2010
Bernie Powell
  The sign in front of our building reads: “The Fellowship: A Community Church with a World Vision.” Our networking worldwide brings us into many intersections with Haiti, and the horrendous nightmare that has unfolded there.   The day after the quake, Hans Wolf and Jeremiah Howdy bought their tickets to go down to help. That Sunday before they took off, the church prayed for God’s blessing on their efforts. I admire these young men of faith and courage.... + read more
Jan
2010
Bernie Powell
  America’s great gift-giving season: we just survived it one more time. That wall plaque from Aunt Delores – if only we can remember to get it back on the wall every time she comes over! That new necktie from the kids will be great at holiday time. Halloween, that is, not Christmas.   How long will the gifts last? Some of the toys won’t make it until January 15. The blender and the DVD player have a one year warranty. It’s 6 years or 60,000 miles... + read more
Dec
2009
Steve Cox
  Some of you reading this article are probably old enough to relate to the statement I make below. (If you’re not old enough to relate to this statement, don’t worry, you’ll be with the rest of us before you know it.) The statement: the older I get, and the more I learn, the more I realize that I don’t know anywhere near as much about anything as I thought I did.    The Apostle Paul draws a very similar conclusion for us in I Corinthians 8:2... + read more

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