Winter 2014 Newsletter
"Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth" (III John 1:2).
As we rapidly come to the end of yet another year, I just wanted to take a few moments to send greetings to you, our supporting churches and friends. "I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy" (Philippians 1:3-4). We have you all on our hearts, in our thoughts, and in our prayers often, thanking and praising God for you. We are grateful for your friendship and fellowship in the once-delivered faith, and we are grateful for your faithful support of our ministry. Most important of all, we are thankful for your prayers, prayers which are sensed and so greatly appreciated. We love you and thank God for you.
This past year has been a busy and fruitful year with God blessing in so many ways. We truly enjoyed the sweet time of fellowship we had with the various churches where we had the joy of ministering over the past 12 months, and look forward to the upcoming year and all that God has for us as we continue to serve Him in the work and ministry of revival and evangelism. How we praise God for the souls saved and the spirit of revival we were witness to in the revival meetings. To God be the glory for His wonderful and mighty works!
God has continued to enlarge our coasts. This year we traveled greater distances, both by air and road, than we have in recent years. In 2015 we have scheduled revival meetings in areas of the country where we have never had opportunity to serve before. For the first time, we will be in the great State of Texas in 2015, and will return to the east coast for meetings again for the second year in a row. We will be ministering in Canada, the Pacific Northwest, and throughout California again this next year. We have gotten more requests for family conferences again after a few years where we scheduled none. I am glad for this resurgence of interest in strengthening marriages and our Christian homes in a day when they are under attack of the devil as never before.
We are enjoying being at home for a few weeks after a busy year. We are now settled into, and enjoying our little cottage in Vista, and have counted it a blessing that God has so graciously provided for us such a restful place where we can come in off the road and relax. I am still busy as our pastor has me in the pulpit in our home church often when we are here, and I had the privilege of preaching for the new church plant established by MMBBC this past year. We truly love and appreciate our pastor and church family, and thank God for them. They are a blessing to us.
We just learned that great-grandbaby number seven is on the way. This will be the first child for our youngest grandson and his wife. Our youngest granddaughter is also expecting in the spring. She will be having a little girl, the first great-granddaughter for us. We have five great-grandsons, so we are looking forward to the feminine balance.
Linda and I trust that you will all have a blessed Christmas. How we thank God for His unspeakable gift. With this in mind, I close with the following quote from an article entitled, “The Gift of God,” by H.A. Ironside
"Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable Gift." (2 Cor. 9:15)
Many of us have thought a great deal about gifts during the last few weeks. Some of us have experienced much joy in giving, others have found a measure of delight, but not nearly so much as we possibly expected, through receiving gifts. It is still true that "It is more blessed to give than to receive," and I dare say the happiest people are not those who have received the most, but those who have given the most. Particularly is this true if your gifts have been largely to those in less comfortable circumstances than yourself, and if you have sought to minister to the needs, to brighten the homes of those in poverty, to bring a happy smile to the children's faces, and to cheer weary and distressed mothers and fathers. It is a very blessed and beautiful thing to make gifts in this way.
This is one of the by-products of Christianity. It is because our Lord Jesus Christ has Himself taught us the lesson that "It is more blessed to give than to receive," that we delight to make gifts in His name . . . And so as we think of gifts, our minds naturally go to the Supreme Gift which God in His marvellous grace has lavished upon a guilty world. "Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable gift."
The Lord Jesus Himself is the Gift of God. "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life" (John 3. 16). "In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins" (1 John 4:9, 10).
The Lord Jesus Himself is the Gift of God, and let me say it worshipfully, He in all His beauty and glory has never been fully expounded. Millions of sermons have been preached about Him; hundreds of thousands of hymns have been written to celebrate His blessedness and preciousness, but no one yet has told the story in full. "No man knoweth the Son, but the Father, neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal Him" (Matt. 11:27). We talk about the incarnation, the union of God and man in one person, that glorious event which took place so long ago at Bethlehem, but how little we understand about it. It is God's unspeakable gift.
As we reflect upon this precious “unspeakable gift,” it would be good to remember that WE are the reason for the season as He came into the world to die upon Calvary for sinners like you and like me. “This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners . . .” (1 Timothy 1:15a). Praise His holy Name that He did!
Born to die upon Calv’ry
Jesus suffered my sin to forgive;
Born to die upon Calv’ry
He was wounded that I might live.
(Chorus from “Born to Die,” by Ron Hamilton)
Paul and Linda Mershon