Posts with the category “be-the-church”

Back to Reach • Devotion 6
by River Church on October 1st, 2022
God Save the U.S.A.Dr. Randy JohnsonA lot happened in 1892. Benjamin Harrison was president. We had the first appearance of the “Pledge of Allegiance.” There were a number of interesting products that had their start. The Coca-Cola Company was incorporated. The first escalator, clothes dryer, toothpaste tube, portable typewriter, and concrete-paved street were introduced into society.With that all...  Read More
Back to Reach • Devotion 5
by River Church on September 30th, 2022
New CreationDr. Randy JohnsonBenjamin Franklin said, “Introduce into public affairs the principles of Christianity and it will change the face of the world.” Christianity not only changes the life of an individual, but it can also change a nation. There are several verses about the affect righteousness has on a people:“Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people whom he has chosen as h...  Read More
Back to Reach • Devotion 4
by River Church on September 29th, 2022
Dinesh D’SouzaDr. Randy JohnsonDinesh D’Souza is a political commentator from India who now lives in the United States. He is a well-known debater concerning politics and Christianity. Coming to America for college, he made an interesting observation, “Christianity enhanced the notion of political and social accountability by providing a new model: that of servant leadership. In ancient Greece and...  Read More
Back to Reach • Devotion 3
by River Church on September 28th, 2022
Charles FinneyDr. Randy JohnsonCharles Finney (1792-1875) never was the president of the United States and never aspired any other political position. He was an American Presbyterian minister and leader in the Second Great Awakening in the United States. It was an amazing revival throughout the land. Finney said, “The church must take right ground in regard to politics. Politics are part of religi...  Read More
Back to Reach • Devotion 2
by River Church on September 27th, 2022
Thomas JeffersonDr. Randy JohnsonThomas Jefferson (1743-1826) served as the third president of the United States. He was also a lawyer, architect, philosopher, and had previously served as the second vice president of the United States.President Jefferson said, “Indeed, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that His justice cannot sleep forever.” Jefferson’s faith has been chal...  Read More
Back to Reach • Devotion 1
by River Church on September 26th, 2022
Benjamin FranklinDr. Randy JohnsonBenjamin Franklin (1706-1790) is a well-known writer, philosopher, politician, postmaster, scientist, inventor, humorist, statesman, and diplomat. He never ran for president as he was already 83 when George Washington was elected as the first president of the United States. He was clearly a founding father as he held many other positions in developing our country....  Read More
Grow • Devotion 6
by River Church on September 24th, 2022
John AdamsDr. Randy JohnsonEarlier I referred to John Quincy Adams (6th president). In this devotion, I want to refer to his father, John Adams ((1735-1826). John Adams has quite the resume. He was a leader of the American Revolution that achieved independence from Great Britain. He was an attorney and signer of the Declaration of Independence. He was the first vice president and the second presid...  Read More
Grow • Devotion 5
by River Church on September 23rd, 2022
James MadisonDr. Randy JohnsonJames Madison (1751-1836) served as the fourth president of the United States. He is hailed as the “Father of the Constitution” for his pivotal role in drafting and promoting the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. He is clearly one of the founding fathers of the United States.President Madison said, “We have staked the whole future of American civilization not upon ...  Read More
Grow • Devotion 4
by River Church on September 22nd, 2022
Godly RulersDr. Randy JohnsonIn 1776, our nation declared its independence. It was a nation of the original 13 states. In 1796 (just 20 years later), our country was developing and growing. Independence Day was celebrated on July 4th for the first time. Tennessee was admitted as the 16th U.S. state. The U.S. State Department issued the first U.S. passport. President George Washington issued his Fa...  Read More
Grow • Devotion 3
by River Church on September 21st, 2022
Noah WebsterDr. Randy JohnsonWhen I think of Noah Webster (1758-1843), I immediately think of the dictionary. Today, it is entitled the Merriam-Webster Dictionary. He also wrote the Blue-backed Speller books that taught five generations of children how to spell and read. Webster has even been called the “Father of American Scholarship and Education.” He did many other things while still being a me...  Read More
Grow • Devotion 2
by River Church on September 20th, 2022
Religious EducationDr. Randy Johnson The Bible was important to our founding fathers. In a ten-year study undertaken at the University of Houston, researchers examined 15,000 documents from America’s founders and determined that:• 34% of their quotations came directly from the Bible.• 94% of their quotes were based on the Bible.• 60% used the Bible to arrive at their conclusion.This is how many of...  Read More
Grow • Devotion 1
by River Church on September 19th, 2022
Blasphemy is IllegalDr. Randy JohnsonThe ruling in People vs. Ruggles (1811) declared, “Whatever strikes at the root of Christianity tends manifestly to the dissolution of civil government.” The founding fathers understood the importance of Christianity. The government was not to interfere with Christianity, but the government wanted Christianity’s presence. The government protected Christianity’s...  Read More
Gather • Devotion 6
by River Church on September 17th, 2022
RedeemerDr. Randy JohnsonI have been starting each of these devotions with a quote from one of our country’s founding fathers. In this devotion, I thought I would represent many of them by quoting the Supreme Court (1892). It said, “Our laws and our institutions must necessarily be based upon and embody the teachings of the Redeemer of mankind. It’s impossible that it should be otherwise; and to t...  Read More
Gather • Devotion 5
by River Church on September 16th, 2022
Christian PresidentsDr. Randy JohnsonAll too often we feel the phrase “Christian President” is an oxymoron. Is it possible for a Christian to be a politician? It is interesting to see how the founding fathers would answer this question.John Jay (1745-1829) was the second governor of New York, director of the United States policy, negotiator and signatory of the Treaty of Paris of 1783, and the fir...  Read More
Gather • Devotion 4
by River Church on September 15th, 2022
ImpossibleDr. Randy JohnsonGeorge Washington’s name is inseparable from America, and not only from the nation’s history. It identifies countless streets, buildings, mountains, bridges, monuments, cities, and people. Jesse Washington recorded for the Associated Press, “The 2000 U.S. Census counted 163,036 people with the surname Washington.”George Washington (1732-1799) was an American military gen...  Read More
Gather • Devotion 3
by River Church on September 14th, 2022
Pillars of ChristianityDr. Randy JohnsonJedidiah Morse (1761-1826) is known as the father of American geography. He was a Pastor, instructor at a school for young women, and rebutted views against Native American people. He stood up for all people. People may ask why he was willing to stand up for the overlooked. I think it was because of his faith.Morse said, “Whenever the pillars of Christianity...  Read More
Gather • Devotion 2
by River Church on September 13th, 2022
Self-Evident TruthsDr. Randy JohnsonJohn Quincy Adams (1767-1848) was the United States Secretary of State for nine years before becoming the sixth president of the United States. I found it interesting that he named his first son George Washington Adams before giving his own name to his second son (John Adams II). That is pretty American. I appreciate a statement he made, “The highest glory of th...  Read More
Gather • Devotion 1
by River Church on September 12th, 2022
Founded on the GospelDr. Randy JohnsonPatrick Henry (1736-1799) was an American attorney, mayor of Virginia, and well-known for his declaration, “Give me liberty, or give me death!” As one of the founding fathers, he knew the basis for our country. I am moved by another statement he made, “It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religionists, bu...  Read More
Reach • Devotion 6
by River Church on September 10th, 2022
Testimony | Joanna MontgomeryI grew up the third of seven children born to a country pastor. I was saved by Jesus when I was four years old. I do not remember the exact day or time, but I know I was standing on the front porch of our home in the Nebraska Sandhills, watching the summer sunrise with my mom and dad as I prayed for the Lord Jesus Christ to come into my little heart so I could be His f...  Read More
Reach • Devotion 5
by River Church on September 9th, 2022
Testimony | Matt MontgomeryMy mother was a church secretary and my father was an ordained minister and youth pastor who ran inner-city sports programs, a great Christian family. I remember most of my childhood at church. We attended church services on Sunday mornings and nights. Sports programs were at our church on Mondays. Tuesdays were soul-winning services. Wednesdays were Bible studies, and s...  Read More
Reach • Devotion 4
by River Church on September 8th, 2022
Testimony | Courtney SandersI come from a long line of Christians on both sides of my family and have many close family members who are pastors and who are very active in their church communities, so growing up in a Christian home was very normal and expected. I was the first kid to Sunday School every week, learned all of my “memory verses,” sung in all the church productions, and attended youth ...  Read More
Reach • Devotion 3
by River Church on September 7th, 2022
Testimony | Ferdinand SandersFor as long as I can remember, attending church on Sunday mornings was a built-in practice for me and my family. As a kid, it meant a regular flow of vanilla wafers, goldfish, and apple juice at the expense of sitting in “Big Church” for an hour doing my best to stay quiet as the man at the pulpit donning the robe and sash preached until it was time to go out to lunch....  Read More
Reach • Devotion 2
by River Church on September 6th, 2022
Testimony  | Haleigh WashburnI grew up in a Christian home with two parents who loved and supported me. I started going to church immediately after I was born and was raised going to church multiple days a week. Because of this, I accepted Christ at a very young age. However, I did not know what it meant to be a Christian until I was in seventh grade. I remember being at a youth group retreat and ...  Read More
Reach • Devotion 1
by River Church on September 5th, 2022
Testimony  | Keaton WashburnI grew up with the privilege of two loving parents who are both followers of Christ. I began going to church almost as soon as I was born and much of my life revolved around the church. My parents were very involved in the church as youth leaders, trustees, and faithful servants wherever there was a need. As I grew up, I was surrounded by Christians and loved so well by...  Read More
Audience of One • Devotion 7
by River Church on September 3rd, 2022
Serving OthersMitchell HolmesOur spiritual growth is such an interesting thing to consider. Growth is never a linear path. Every one of us needs something different, at different times, and in different moderations to achieve growth. If we make the comparison to botany and the growth of plant life, it is very similar. All plants need similar components in order to grow: nutrition, soil, water, and...  Read More
Audience of One • Devotion 6
by River Church on September 2nd, 2022
“God’s Team”Joe Wilson“And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers.” Ephesians 4:11 (KJV)Wayne Gretzky (“The Great One”) was one of the greatest hockey players of all time. He said, “I think that from the time you start playing sports as a child you see that your responsibility to your team is to play the best that you can play as an indivi...  Read More
Audience of One • Devotion 5
by River Church on September 1st, 2022
“Serve One Another”Adam Moore“As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace.” 1 Peter 4:10Did you know that the Bible mentions the words “serve” or “servant” hundreds of times? You will find the underlying theme of servanthood all throughout God’s Word. It is no wonder that the Bible mentions these words so many times when Jesus, the Son of God re...  Read More
Audience of One • Devotion 4
by River Church on August 31st, 2022
Lean On MeRich SawackiJoining a team is both exciting and intimidating.The possibility of making new friends is exciting. Your new friends will have the same goals but different skills, making it a great learning opportunity. You will celebrate wins together and be there for each other in the losses.I have played sports on lots of different teams growing up. The first time I joined a church sports...  Read More
Audience of One • Devotion 3
by River Church on August 30th, 2022
The Other SideJeremy SmithJesus handpicked out twelve people to be His disciples. This included people from all walks of life, including fishermen, a tax collector, a doctor, and one who ultimately betrayed Him. It raises some questions in my mind. For instance, why would you intentionally pick someone who you knew would betray you? Did Jesus think that it was possible through showing His love and...  Read More
Audience of One • Devotion 2
by River Church on August 29th, 2022
Victory!Gary WrightWhen I was younger I played softball quite a bit. I am very competitive and I love to win and softball was no different. One season our team started off with four wins and zero losses. The next week however we had to play the best team in the league in a doubleheader. We practiced hard that week and ended up beating the team in both games. It was quite the victory.In softball, t...  Read More
Audience of One • Devotion 1
by River Church on August 28th, 2022
We > IMark PittengerHelen Keller once said, “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” All throughout the Bible, we can see teamwork being displayed. In Genesis, we see the Trinity working together in the creation account (Genesis 1:2-3; John 1:1). Moses had Aaron to help him with speaking to and leading the Israelites (Exodus 4:10-15). In the New Testament, we see Jesus bringing twe...  Read More
Join the Team • Devotion 7
by River Church on August 27th, 2022
God is With UsJeremy SmithGod has called all believers to follow Him. One of the easiest, and likely most overlooked ways is to serve one another. Unfortunately, we start to question why do I need to greet someone, join the worship team, or teach a Growth Community? I know from my own experience that it is easy to write off or view it as something someone else is already doing. This was especially...  Read More
Join the Team • Devotion 6
by River Church on August 26th, 2022
A Servant’s HeartMitchell HolmesWhen I think of Jesus and I think of all that He did during His time on Earth, I am overwhelmed by His power, His majesty, and His divine authority. He did things that we as humans can only marvel at and dream about. Jesus walked on water, healed the blind, fed multitudes with a child’s lunch, and raised the dead back to life. Jesus did these things and leaves us in...  Read More
Join the Team • Devotion 5
by River Church on August 25th, 2022
“We Want You!”Adam MooreIf you grew up in the ‘80s at all, then chances are you remember a sign with the American figure Uncle Sam next to captions that read, “I want you.” Of course, the Uncle Sam advertisements were looking for young and willing U.S. Army recruits.One of the false narratives circulating today is that churches of sizeable attendance have all the help they need, and hence more vol...  Read More
Join the Team • Devotion 4
by River Church on August 24th, 2022
The ProgramRich SawickiAre you ready to join the team? All you have to do is receive the free gift. Romans 10:9 says, “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”There are a few things that are very important when joining a team. We will call these things the who, what, and where of being part of a team. Get out...  Read More
Join the Team • Devotion 3
by River Church on August 23rd, 2022
Teamwork Makes the Dream WorkGary Wright“Teamwork makes the dream work” is a phrase that you have probably heard. It is when a group of people who have a common goal work together to make it happen. If you have ever been on a team that works together you know how true the phrase can be.In Exodus chapter 18, Moses, the leader of the Israelite people, is doing his best to lead the people as God had ...  Read More
Join the Team • Devotion 2
by River Church on August 22nd, 2022
Serving with a PurposeJoe Wilson“As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.” 1 Peter 4:10 (KJV)I must admit, once I left the military I really struggled with finding my purpose. While I was serving in the Air Force I felt as if I had a purpose. I had a very fulfilling and honorable purpose. To be completely transpar...  Read More
Join the Team • Devotion 1
by River Church on August 21st, 2022
Put Me In, CoachMark PittengerAs I remember coaching youth travel baseball, I often think about tryouts. Tryouts can be a nerve-wracking time for both players and coaches. One thing we would do, as coaches during tryouts, is evaluating the player’s strengths. Can they throw hard? Do they run fast? Are they a power hitter or more of a singles and doubles kind of hitter? Answering these questions he...  Read More






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