Archive for November, 2010

O Come O Come Emmanuel

Happy Thanksgiving Week!

This is one of my favorite weekends of the year.  I always enjoy getting together with family and eating good food and spending some time reflecting on the year and God’s goodness and giving thanks for that as an individual and as a nation.

This past Sunday in my message I talked about three actions that are God’s will for our lives:

#1  Rejoice always

#2  Pray continually

#3  Give Thanks in all circumstances

Those were our words of encouragement from 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 this past Sunday.  I know those concepts are easy to understand and remember but hard to put into practice.  I want to encourage us this week to put these words into practice.

This coming Sunday begins the Advent season.  Advent is about celebrating the coming of Christ.  We will celebrate this coming with a series on Christmas Songs including on Christmas Eve.  This Sunday we are going to look at the song, "O Come, O Come Emmanuel."  I hope you can join us and invite someone to join us.

Also, this Saturday is the men’s prayer breakfast at 7:30 am.  Immediately following we will be doing some decorating of the church for the Christmas season.  We will need some with a decorator’s touch and some who can help carry some boxes.  If you would like to help we would love to have you this Saturday.

Saturday evening from 4-7 Jim and Shirley Bowman will be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary here at White Branch and has invited the congregation.

Sunday night at 7:00 pm at Locust Grove there will be a Love Feast and any from White Branch are welcome to attend.  If you plan to attend please let me know and I will tell them how many to expect.

Finally, Thursday December 2 we will be beginning a study on the book of Genesis at 7 pm here at the church.

May God Bless You This Thanksgiving Week,

Brian Mackie


White Branch COB

One Sentence on God’s Will For Your Life


I want to thank so many of you all for coming this past Sunday!  We had a great turnout and a great meal.  Thanks to all who participated with us. 

I could tell by the conversations that followed the message at the meal that it was a very thought provoking message this past Sunday.

The topic was judgment vs. judgmental based on Jesus’ teaching on Matthew 7:1  "Do not judge or else you too will be judged."

We put that side by side with Paul’s teaching in 1 Corinthians 5 and 6 about judging other believers.

This is a hard line to walk.  Remember to stay in the Bible, allow God to search your own heart first, be humble and recognize that only God can judge 100% correctly.

Also, remember that the judgment (or decisions of church discipline) of believers is an effort that takes place in the context of the church leadership and official channels, not based on individual judgments.

We always do our best to give the benefit of the doubt to individuals whenever possible.  Let us remember Jesus’ caution here that the way we use judgment is the way we too will be judged. 

"Do not judge, or you too will be judged.  For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.  Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?  How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye, when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?’  You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye." (Matthew 7:1-5)

Let us make judgments (make decisions about things) when needed without being judgmental (judging harshly and self-righteously).

We are all prone to judgmental attitudes and I believe that is why Jesus is giving us such a strong warning here.

This coming week’s message is:  "One Sentence on God’s Will For Your Life."

The week after that is Advent and we will look at a specific Christmas song’s lyrics each week of Advent.

Remember also that Christmas Eve is soon coming!  Let’s all be praying and inviting people to that service.  I am looking forward to a great Christmas Eve service.

Other upcoming events include:

Deacon’s Meeting tonight at 7

Leadership Team Wednesday at 7

Combined Love Feast at Locust Grove on Sunday November 28 at 7:00 pm.  Please let us know for planning purposes if you are planning to attend.

Also on Thursday December 2 at 7 pm we will kick off our Bible Study on Genesis at the church.


Have a great week and hope to see you Sunday.

God Bless,
Brian Mackie


The Most Misquoted and Misunderstood Sentence in the Bible



I hope your week is going well.

The weather is beautiful.  God’s beauty is displayed in nature.

This past Sunday’s message was about God’s comfort in our lives.  He has given us comfort in the midst of our troubles.  Jesus guaranteed us that in this world we would have troubles, but He also spoke words of comfort and victory to us in the midst of our troubles.

John 16:33 says, "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world."

In Jesus we can have peace.  He does not guarantee us peace in the world but peace in Him.  In this world He guarantees trouble, but reminds us to take heart because He has overcome the world.

It is good to know the one who has overcome the world.  Let us continue to pray and ask God to bring His kingdom and His will on earth as it is in heaven.

This week the message will be "The Most Misquoted and Misunderstood Sentence in the Bible."  We will also be having our church’s Thanksgiving pitch-in following the service.  We really have great pitch-ins and would hate for you to miss it.  I encourage you to invite your friends and family so they don’t have to miss it either.

God Bless,
Brian Mackie

White Branch Church of the Brethren