Praying for Obedience

By Gai Gai Anderson

Pastor woke up from a restless night of sleep and looked at the clock. 4:00 a.m. Wow. Another night of waking, praying, and wondering what God is doing in his family’s life. His ministry is going well, God is touching lives, and his wife and children are happy; but God seems to be nudging his heart to be ready for something new.

Later in the morning, as he sits at his desk pondering the last few days, the phone rings. Someone from Albuquerque’s First Baptist Church is on the other end. “Hello, Pastor, this is a member of the pastor search committee at Albuquerque’s First Baptist Church in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Our search committee has been praying for the man God wants to lead us into the next season of our life here at our church. We think you could be that man…”

Later on in the evening, Pastor talks to his wife about the phone call, and they begin to pray earnestly about what God is leading them to do. Should they pursue this opportunity for service at Albuquerque’s First Baptist Church?

When Abraham was called to go to a place God would show him, he had to make a decision whether he would follow God’s leading or stay in the place where he was already. He listened to God’s voice, gathered his family together, and set out on a journey that would take him into the future God had for him. This journey would touch generations to come.

We want God to give us the pastor He has already been preparing for the ministry here at our church that will touch generations to come. Obedience is the key. Our prayers have taken many different routes in the last several weeks. As we end our focused prayer time led by the pastor search committee, we feel it is time to pray for the pastor God has for us to be obedient to his calling. Let’s be unified in our prayers this week as we pray for God’s working on the other end of this scenario—God’s man to be obedient to his call to be the pastor of Albuquerque’s First Baptist Church.

Let’s pray he will trust God with his whole heart and not rely on his own understanding in this time of searching for God’s will in his life (Proverbs 3:5-6).

Let’s pray that God will give him a vision for what He is about to do in his life, and he would heed God’s wisdom and instruction (Proverbs 29:18).

Let’s pray that he will follow Jesus’s example and spend necessary time alone with God seeking His will (Mark 1:35).

Let’s pray that he will go to God for the true wisdom that he needs to take the next step in God’s plan (James 1:5).

Let’s pray that he will be obedient to God’s call (just as Abraham was), and that he would have the faith to take the first step on the journey (Hebrews 11:8).


Hide and Seek

By Karen Polich

Are you a seeker or a hider? Jesus’ teaching, using parables, will help us understand where we are and how to make a choice about our obedience.

Parables are meant to point us in one direction, towards God. Dr. Trey Sullins continued, The Parables of Jesus, with Hide and Seek. Stories of the lost sheep and the lost coin take us to the core of what Jesus is asking us to decide. (Luke 15:1-10, Matthew 18:12-16) Listen to the podcast here. Will we hide, not choosing to follow Jesus? When we know Him, will we seek Him and the lost?

Jesus has a heart for the outcast. He calls the righteous to go out and find the lost. When they are found – rejoice! Just as He teaches in the parables, the love of God is huge. He will always seek us out when we are lost. When we know Him, He equips us to seek after the lost for His name’s sake.

Who are the lost? The lost are those who are without a relationship with Christ, a follower who has wandered off or a follower hiding from God. The righteous know God but aren’t doing anything about it or are doing good deeds but missing something related to doing the right things.

“You are either lost and need to be found or found and need to go find the lost.” – Dr. Trey Sullins

God’s Word tells us to go and do, so we need to get up and get going. We can choose to be found; we can choose to seek the lost. Anything less is disobedience. Seek God’s will in your life.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.” Proverbs 3:5-6

We don’t have to rest on our understanding. When we seek God’s will in our lives, He will direct us. Trust Him. Today, make a choice. Make the decision to follow Christ and to do what He has called you to do.



Why Evangelism Matters

By Karen Polich

Evangelism is the fabric of followers of Christ.                    – Kevin Linthicum

The idea of evangelism causes most of us to stop dead in our tracks. Me, share the Gospel? The thought can paralyze us and drive terror through our minds, but it shouldn’t. The enemy would have us remain silent. He smiles as we sit in silence. Breaking our silence means communicating the life changing power of Christ.

On Sunday, Pastor Kevin Linthicum shared 12 Reasons to Share the Gospel. Listen to the podcast here.
1. Jesus commanded it. “But what about you?” He asked. “Who do you say I am?” Matthew 16:15. Enough said, but here’s more.
2. The Apostles commanded it. (2 Timothy 4:2-5) Keep your head in all situations.
3. Many people will be encouraged because of the truth of God’s Word.
4. It creates opportunity to work with and for God. (Luke 10:2) Not only are we called into the fields, but there is nowhere we can go outside of the fields. We should be seeking to do what God is asking of us.
5. It precedes baptism and salvation. (Mark 16:16)
6. It proves our love for Jesus Christ. My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. John 15:12-14.
7. Evangelism opens the door for healing to take place. (Luke 10:9)
8. It is the gateway of repentance and remission of sins. (Luke 24:47) God IS the authority, not majority opinion.
9. It brings understanding of scripture to humanity. (Acts 8:30) Our evangelism efforts may bring new understanding to someone’s life.
10. It causes the Holy Spirit to move. (Acts 10:44)
11. It is the fruit of righteousness. (Proverbs 11:30) It should break our hearts when someone we care about doesn’t know Christ.
12. Evangelism unites nations, races and cultures by reconciling humanity to God through Christ. There are NO boundaries.

What do we need to share the Gospel? We need obedience. That’s it! Everything else God will give us. He will give opportunities, words and His presence. We are called to reach out.

Jesus has commanded us to be a light in this dark world. How can we choose to be anything less?

Learn more about Time for One here.

We Are… Depth and Obedience in God’s Word

By Karen Polich

Every one of us has an authority that speaks to our hearts. Who you value as an authority is essential. It is who you allow to shape and mold your life.

Pastor Michael Cook’s sermon series, We Are… continues to examine the core values of Albuquerque’s First Baptist Church. In our fellowship at AFBC, God’s Word is the authority and our foundation.

In our own lives, we need to look at who or what is going to be the authority. What is influencing you? Is it culture, friends, feelings, tradition, your up-bringing, reason and rationale? Where is your focus? If we are seeking to please anyone, it should be God. Our obedience to His Word establishes the foundation of our lives. Obedience is key. (Psalm 119)

Focused on two power-packed truths, Pastor Michael Cook asked, “Who or what will we choose to be the authority in our lives?”

Hearing the Word of God is not enough. The Word should transform us.

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good, pleasing and perfect will. – Romans 12:2

Knowing the Word of God is not enough. At the heart of obedience is worship. At the heart of disobedience is rebellion. Partial obedience is still disobedience. We have a choice to make.

Could it be that God has something bigger in this world for us than ourselves?

Focused on doing our best to fulfill what we are called to do is at the core of who we are. For all, struggles will come but choosing God as the authority will create a heart of depth and obedience.

Is God the foundation of your life today?

Listen to the podcast here. Visit our website, fbcabq.com, for more information about the core values and who we are.