THE OZARK LETTER
A Publication of the Mid-Missouri Church of God
Lake of the Ozarks Volume IX, Issue 12 DECEMBER, 2006
Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the LORD pondereth the hearts. Proverbs 21:2
I remember, as a youngster, how time seemed to “drag by” and the adults would remind me that the day
would come when it would “fly by” – I am in that stage and have been for quite some time and the older I
get, the faster each new year approaches. Can you believe that we are about to end one year and start
another? And speaking for myself, what have I done during this year; especially, what have I done for
2006 Feast of Tabernacles is behind us and now we are preparing for the 2007 spring Holy Days. You are
saying, “they are months ahead of us” and yes, they are, but they will be here before you know it and that
is why I now include MMCG’s 2007 calendar. Where they will be held will be published in a future
2007 HOLY DAY CALENDAR:
April 2 – Passover (observed the evening before, April 1/SUN, after sundown)
April 2 (MON) – Night to Be Much Remembered
April 3/9 (TUES/MON) – Days of Unleavened Bread
May 27 – Pentecost (SUN)
Sep 13 – Feast of Trumpets (THURS)
September 22 – Day of Atonement (SABBATH)
September 27/October 3 – Feast of Tabernacles (THURS/WED)
October 4 – Eighth Day Festival (THURS)
You have probably heard that MMCG has been considering the purchase of property. A great deal of
prayer and fasting has gone into this consideration and that purchase is becoming a reality. We are in the
process of getting a loan to purchase the Odd Fellows Lodge Building located at 602 East North Street,
Eldon, MO. One of the first priorities is a good cleaning. Ultimately we would like to add two restrooms
downstairs. Handicap access and a paved parking lot are requirements of the city. We have met at
Versailles for many years, but they have been in the process of reconstruction for the past eight months,
the rent has doubled, and would, no doubt, be higher by the time we would sign a new contract in May;
therefore, it is time for us to move on. Please keep us in your prayers about this project and that it will
truly be a blessing in God’s sight. csh>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
The Annual Super Sabbath celebration will be on January 6th, 2007. Services begin at 10:00AM with
song services, special music, scripture reading, and speaker ‘Art Fulcher’ from Jefferson City, MO. Then
in the afternoon: a potluck, and continued special music, singing, games, ice skating and MORE! (Bring
your specials!) Services will be held at the Wardsville Lions Club.
Feel free to bring food and/or refreshments for potluck or just bring your appetite and be prepared to take
in the spiritual food, potluck, fellowship and fun! For more info call (573) 498-3775 or (573) 496-3203.
All I Ever Really Needed To Know I learned in Kindergarten
By Robert Fulghum
Most of what I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be, I learned in
Kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate mountain, but there in the sandbox at nursery
These are the things I learned: Share everything. Play fair. Don’t hit people. Put things back where you
found them. Clean up your own mess. Don’t take things that aren’t yours. Say you’re sorry when you hurt
somebody. Wash your hands before you eat. Flush. Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you. Live a
balanced life. Learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work
every day some.
Take a nap every afternoon. When you go out into the world, watch for traffic, hold hands and stick
together. Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the plastic cup. The roots go down and the
plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why but we are all like that.
Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the plastic cup – they all die. So do we.
And then remember the book about Dick and Jane and first word you learned, the biggest word of all:
LOOK. Everything you need to know is in there somewhere. The Golden Rule and love and basic
sanitation. Ecology and politics and sane living.
Think of what a better world it would be if we all – the whole world – had cookies and milk about 3
o’clock every afternoon and then lay down with our blankets for a nap. Or if we had a basic policy in our
nations to always put things back where we found them and cleaned up our own messes. And it is still
true, no matter how old you are, when you go out into the world, it is better to hold hands and stick
The following is taken from a CEM tape by Ron Dart, “Why I Love the Feast” taped on 10-21-06.
“Memories are often built out of hardship, out of inconvenience, out of frustration. The Feast is a
reminder of how people can join together and bond together during this temporary nature of life. The
Feast is not about the place, not about the environment — it is not about any of these things, but it is about
the people! Some are already saying ‘Wait a minute, God should be the reason.’ And that is true, but
consider the following four scriptures: Colossians 1:26-27 – Even the mystery which hath been hid from
ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: to whom God would make known
what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of
glory… Romans 8:9-10 – But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell
in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. And if Christ be in you, the body is
dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. Galatians 2:20 — I am crucified with
Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in theflesh I
live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. Galatians 4:19 — My dear
children, for whom I am again in the pains of childbirth until Christ is formed in you….. How many times
and ways do we have to be told that Christ is in us, being shaped and formed in us? Christ is in you! Jesus
Christ was present with us at the Feast; motivating us, teaching us, correcting us, leading us – because
Jesus Christ was in those who attended the Feast with us. The reason we don’t think about this is because
of the way we treat one another. We forget that the person that we are confronting, is a person in whom
Christ dwells. Jesus Christ is in that person, shaping that person and growing in that person. The way
Christ is present in us, right now, is the way we treat one another. Matthew 25:34-40 – Then shall the
King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for
you from the foundation of the world; for I was an hungered, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye
gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited
me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Then shall the righteous answer him saying, Lord, when saw
we thee an hungered, and fed thee? Or thirsty, and gave thee drink: When saw we thee a stranger, and
took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee:
And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto
one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me…. When we speak of Jesus Christ among
us or the Holy Spirit, we think of ourselves as one thing and Christ as another and we are apart from each
other, but the way Christ is with us is because he is present in each of us.” >>>>>>>>>>>>
From the Sabbath Morning Companion
Nehemiah Chapter Three
It can seem like a boring, pointless section of Scripture, this Nehemiah Chapter 3, but it’s there for a
reason. It contains name after name of those who built the walls of the city of Jerusalem, describing each
one’s section of the wall and what they did.
Reading this passage might at first seem like a treatment for insomnia, but read it closely, and it is clear
that in writing it, Nehemiah had a purpose. Evidently, he wanted to record for posterity the names of
those who sacrificed for the good of the city. Saying thank you is always in order, and especially so when
an important undertaking is accomplished. And make no mistake. Building the walls of a city was
incredibly important. In those days the walls provided protection from attack, and the strength of those
walls could be the difference between life and death, freedom and slavery.
Ezekiel, in the 22nd chapter of his book, laments that in his day God was looking for a man to build a
wall and stand in the gap before him on behalf of the land, but he could find no one (verse 30). The
nation needed a Nehemiah, someone who knew how to build a wall. But just as important, the nation
needed an army of Eliashibs and Zaccurs and Hananels. They needed some Meremoths and Zadoks and
Jehoiadas. They needed some Meshullams and Melatiahs. It’s no different today. Each of us has our
own small place on the wall where we can each make a difference.
No work is too small, no effort too meager for God to use. When the young lad brought five loaves and
two fish to Jesus, the offering was sufficient to be a blessing for the multitude.
So if you ever get discouraged by how little you have to offer, remember Nehemiah 3. Your part of the
wall is just as important as any other, and God will honor the work you do to build it.>>>>
The Conclusion of the Whole Matter!
By Rory Ries
“Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s
all.” These are famous words that conclude a well known book. This book we know as Ecclesiastes was
written by one of the wisest men that ever lived. Solomon was that man and his fall is living proof of our
weakness as human beings.
Solomon had it all. He was wise, which was a gift from God (1 Kings 3:12-13): he was also given riches
and honor. Royal majesty had been bestowed upon Solomon (1 Chron. 29:25) and he was also granted
great peace in the land because God had made a promise and God always keeps His promises.
Unfortunately the tragedy is that Solomon sought after things that were not good for him. The world has a
way of attracting us to things that are not good for us. John wrote about it in 1 John 2: 16, “For all that is
in the world-the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life-is not of the Father but is of the
world.” The bright lights and the excitement the world has to offer can be very appealing to the eyes, but
in the end it only brings pain and misery.
Solomon learned a valuable lesson the hard way. God had instructed Solomon to walk in His ways and to
keep His statutes and commandments. Obeying God brings love, joy, and peace (Gal. 5:22). David,
Solomon’s father, wrote how nothing shall offend those who keep the law (Ps. 119:165). He also said,
“Great peace have those who love your law.” Solomon did come to repentance, however, he suffered
greatly which could have been avoided had he listened to God and obeyed Him.
What was Solomon’s sin? He loved many foreign women (1 Kings 11:1-2). Solomon ignored God’s
instructions by marrying women from other nations. When we seek after women who follow a false god
or who are involved in worldly practices we can become caught up in the world and our hearts will seek
after their gods. The problem we may run into when we seek our own desires and lusts is separation from
God (Isa. 59:2). On the other hand, when we allow God to guide us and we lean on Him it will work out
every time and the blessings are without end (Prov. 3:5-6).
Solomon ended up with 700 wives, and 300 concubines. We are told his wives turned his heart away
from God (1 Kings 11:3). The tragedy behind all of this is his kingdom was torn away from him and
given to his servant (1 Kings 11:11). Thankfully, Solomon did repent and as you read the last chapter in
Ecclesiastes you can see a major change in this man’s attitude.
What about you? Does the world look appealing to you? Is there something out there that you feel like
you will do anything to get it? These are questions you have to ask yourself. Is there something out there
that you are willing to give up everything no matter what it costs? Sometimes there are things out there in
the world that entice us and we feel like we can’t live without it, yet in all honesty it is God we cannot
God says He will provide us with everything we need (Phillip. 4:19). We are told, “He who finds a wife
finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord (Prov 18:22).” When we are looking for a mate we
need to look to our Father to bring that person into our lives. If we try to do it on our own without His
help we can find ourselves in a complete mess. “For the Lord gives wisdom; From His mouth comes
knowledge and understanding (Prov. 2:6).”
Every time we rely on God to provide for us it will always turn out to be something of great value.
Solomon did do some marvelous works and those works were very pleasing in God’s eyes. He had the
temple built and the people were blessed because of his obedience to God (1 Kings 8:55). He also wrote
some inspiring messages that can help us with the struggles we may face. The one thing he had to still
deal with, just like us, is the human nature that is in us. That human nature may cause us to struggle with
doing things our way or totally submitting to doing things God’s way (Rom. 7:23).
We fight against the fleshly lusts (Gal. 5:17). The challenge we have, is to overcome the fleshly lusts
because those lusts will keep us out of the kingdom of God (Gal. 5:21). It is a lifelong battle, but the
rewards that are waiting for us are far greater than the losses we may have to suffer in this physical life
(Phillip. 3:8-9). There is nothing this world has to offer that compares to the inheritance that is locked up
and sealed waiting for you to claim (1 Pet. 1:4).
“Therefore, we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every
weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before
us (Heb. 12:1).” Solomon had his race to run and so do we. The story of Solomon’s life has been given to
us as a gift so we may learn from the good things he did and from the mistakes he made. We don’t have to
learn the hard way. If we apply our heart to understanding and seek Godly counsel there is nothing we
cannot accomplish and overcome in this life (Prov. 2:1-5).>>>>>>>
Walk With God
Your comments are welcome
Churches of God, UK
PO Box 2525
LINCOLN LN5 7PF
Because of the time you are due to be teachers, yet you need to have someone to teach you again the
rudiments of the beginning of the Words of God, and you came to be having need of milk, and not of
solid food; for everyone partaking of milk is without experience in the Word of Righteousness, for he is
an infant. But solid food is for those full grown, having exercised the faculties through habit, for
distinction of both good and bad (Hebrews 5:12-14).
Exercise yourself to godliness (I Timothy 4:7).
Babies don’t walk. So how do they learn? The first stumbling steps usually end in a fall – but they don’t
give up, nor do the parents. Eventually, by reason of habit the complex skill of walking is mastered. It’s
the same with learning to drive. The first moment behind the wheel is scary, but by persistence the
complexities become habitual. So, too, with dressing or dental hygiene – we know how to unthinkingly
put on our clothes, clean our teeth. They become habitual.
As the children of God we are to ‘become perfect, as our Father in heaven is perfect’ (Matthew 6:33).
Jesus is the perfect example, and a Christian should emulate him. But we have not yet reached that lofty
goal, even though we are, now, God’s children (I John 3:2).
All humans develop what can be considered ‘bad habits’. What are yours? How about anger? Or lying,
pride, lust, vanity, selfishness, greed, laziness, an over fondness for strong drink? Are you struggling with
such? If so, there’s a way to learn to safely and successfully walk a godly path.
Habits (good or bad) develop in the same way. In every human there’s a God-given inborn facility – habit
formation – that enables us to by-pass unnecessary laborious effort. We don’t have to daily figure out how
to put on our shoes, tie our laces, and clean our teeth. Godliness, too, can – must – become habitual.
Every habit (behavior pattern) develops by practice. We lie because we learned to get out of a hole by
lying. We deal with our emotional turmoil by anger because we learned to deal that way, perhaps
followed dad’s example. The apostle Peter writes of those who are ‘trained in greed’ (II Peter 2:14). And
he urges Timothy (I Timothy 4:7) to ‘exercise yourself to godliness’.
In the Scriptures God provides a two-pronged principle for habit-forming success: put off and put on. We
could ask: Not because he has stopped stealing, for who knows what he would do under economic
pressure. Rather, Paul emphasizes, it is when ‘The one stealing, let him steal no more, but rather let him
labor, working what is good with the hands, that he may have something to give to the one that has need’
(Ephesians 4: 28). The apostle gives seven examples – read vv.25-32. Other Biblical examples may be
found in I Peter 3:9, III John 11, Matthew 16:24 – an example from the words of Jesus, I Thessalonians
1:29, Isaiah 55: 7.
But change becomes permanent only by our persistent and enduring diligent effort to ‘put off’ a wrong
habit and to ‘put on’ the desirable habit. We need to determine what are the ‘good habits’.
Recall Paul’s admonition: ‘exercise yourself to godliness’. (I Timothy 4:7). Godliness – how God wants us
to live, how Jesus behaved – is our goal. It is explained in the Scriptures: ‘Wherewithal shall a young man
keep his way pure? By taking heed thereto according to your word’ (Psalm 119:9). In the Scriptures is all
we need to know about what behavior is godly – and what is not (vv.19-21).
By diligent effort some, unaided or with the help of wise counsel, may change an undesirable habit. But
that’s a serious but achievable challenge (of the number who want to stop smoking etc): ‘Can the
Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard his spots? Then you also may do good who are accustomed to
doing evil’ (Jeremiah 13:23). It is possible to change our habitual pattern of behavior!
In-depth change, however, is a ‘fruit of the Spirit’ (Galatians 5:22f). The character of God – perfectly
reflected in Jesus – is summed up in those fruits. Only the indwelling Spirit can transform hatred to godly
love (as described in I Corinthians 13), or impart divine peace (Philippians 4:6-7). ‘And likewise the
Spirit also joins in to help our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray as we ought, but the
Spirit himself intercedes on our behalf with groanings that cannot be uttered’ (Romans 8:26). Through
confident prayer we find ‘grace to help’ (Hebrews 4:16).
‘Cultivate your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who is working in you both to will and to
work for the sake of His good pleasure’ (Philippians 2:12). That is, He works for our perfection.
“The loudest sound in the universe is that of a person abandoning old behavior patterns and putting
constructive ones in their place. >>>>>>>
MID-MISSOURI CHURCH OF GOD
Lake of the Ozarks, PO Box 92, Eldon, MO 65026. Phone: 573-392-6677 or 573-392-1232; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Website: www.mmcg.org The Mid-Missouri Church of God (MMCG) holds Christian Sabbath services each Saturday at 1:30
p.m. at 308 Fairground Road in Versailles, Missouri. This location is at the Village Park Senior Apartments building, two
blocks south of McDonald’s Restaurant. Please park in the northeast parking lot. Our green and gold signs indicate the
entrance. Coffee is always served for one half hour before and after services. A Bible Study is scheduled at 12:15pm before
services on the third Sabbath of each month. Potluck meals after services are planned for the fourth Sabbath of each month. It
is best to call ahead and confirm times and locations if you are traveling any distance to visit us (see phone numbers above).
Occasionally we will cancel local services to attend en masse elsewhere. Come and enjoy the fellowship!