Prayer Concerns
• Pat Terrell Family – in his death last week, funeral was Monday.
• Keith & Pam Blore – COVID 19, Keith still weak, Pam is doing okay.
• Mark Freeze and Family – death of his mother in NC last week.
• Adam Taylor and Family – death of his older brother David last week.
• Louise Barton – dealing with COVID 19.
• Debbie Campbell – rehab in Greenville.
• Earl Martin – continuing to deal with an infection.
• Polly Lineberger – Unit II at Martha Franks, recovering from a fall.
• Ray Patterson – Unit II at Martha Franks, recovering from a hospital stay.
• Don Franks – home recovering after recent surgery.
• Mike & Susan Little – Mike: chemotherapy, Susan: speech/memory issues.
• Phyllis Metz – NHC, rehab after broken hip.
• Francis Feighner – now home, advanced stages of cancer.
• Jim & Elaine Sumeral – homebound, ongoing health issues.
• Carolyn Madden – cognitive/physical issues.
• Jane Ivey – recent surgery, hopeful to begin to feel better.
• Bill Ramey – continuing to take treatments.

Outside In Person Worship: we are offering two weekly services at 8am and 9:30am. Both last 30 minutes and take place at Thomason Shelter. Dress casually. Please contact the church office by noon Friday if you plan to attend.

Remote Worship Options: We will continue to post a worship service every Sunday on our website and via the FBC Laurens App. You may also listen to our service on WLBG at 11:00 each Sunday morning.

Senior Adult Sunday School on the Radio: Join us at 3pm each Tuesday afternoon on WLBG. The 30 minute lessons will be offered by a FBC Sunday School teacher.

FBC Diverge Youth Gathering, Devotional and Ultimate Frisbee at Laurens Middle School, 7pm, tonight.

August FBC Golf Outings, Tuesday, August 25, 5:30pm, Lakeside CC.

Reflecting Together

Read: Matthew 10:8

The Masters Golf Tournament is held annually at the Augusta National Golf Course in Augusta, Ga. As a golf enthusiast, I have always considered it a great blessing to be able to attend one of the practice or tournament rounds during the week.

One particular year, however, I received a blessing beyond my wildest dreams. A church member, who received week-long passes to the tournament each year, contacted me and said that he wanted to give me all of his passes for The Masters that year. To explain, this meant that I would be able to attend a full week as a spectator. There are no words to describe the excitement that I felt on that day. However, I found that excitement to be short-lived.

Upon receiving the tournament passes, I opened the envelope and found a note from the giver. It included a list of people, along with the instruction for me to give a day’s pass to each person on the list. Looking at the list, I realized that my week at The Master’s had been reduced to only one day. Selfishly, I grumbled to myself that I was now just a middle-man, a tournament cruise director, a golf-pass Santa.

But that evening, as I began to contact the people on the list, something changed in me. I began to realize that the list of people included those who otherwise would have never seen the tournament in person. I enjoyed hearing the excitement in their voices so much that I almost gave away my own pass. It was one of the greatest blessings I have ever received.

I had been given an extravagant gift with the expectation that I would give in the same way to others.

As Christians, we are often experts at receiving. We have gladly received God’s love, forgiveness, mercy, and healing. We’ve eagerly accepted eternal life. Through Christ, we have been adopted into God’s family and we gladly claim the innumerable promises the Bible says are just for us. We don’t pretend to have earned any of these things because we know that these are free gifts from God.

God doesn’t ask us for a payback, but, there is one thing God asks of us. God wants us to become experts at giving as well as receiving. Receiving without giving leads us into a trouble area known as selfishness.

Selfishness is a sign that we have forgotten who we are. If we give only to people who we consider worthy of our gift, we have missed the whole point. In fact, whether the person in need deserves our help is irrelevant. The evidence of genuine Christianity is the willingness to give whatever it takes to whoever needs it.

God has given to us extravagantly with the expectation that we will give in the same way to others. Be on the lookout today for a way to share with someone else something God has given you.

Consider this:
• Why do you think God wants us to be generous givers?
• In addition to giving our tithes and offerings, what are some other ways that we can give?
• Read the following passages: Proverbs 28:27, Proverbs 11:25-26, 2 Corinthians 9:6, 2 Corinthians 9:8-11, and Galatians 6:2.
• According to each of these passages, what blessings do we receive when we give?

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for the many wonderful gifts and blessings that you have given me. Forgive me when I act selfish and don’t want to give to others. Teach me to be a cheerful giver and let me be a blessing to others. Amen.