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Lessons in Covenant | Pastor Josiah & Ashley Elias


Sunday August 20, 2023 was Pastor Josiah’s first official day as head pastor of Faith Chapel,

and it was Pastor Josiah’s and Ashley’s thirteenth wedding anniversary. What a day of

celebration! Pastor Josiah and Ashley shared their journey as a couple and showed us

“Lessons in Covenant.”

Ashley explained how she met the LORD at San Diego State. For a while she was a fan of

Jesus but then desired to be a follower of Jesus which included her break up with her boyfriend.

Ashley met Pastor Josiah at a conference in North County, but she was not ready for a

relationship. Her desire was to be fully submitted to the LORD. However, the LORD told Pastor

Josiah to speak a word to Ashley who was prostrate on the floor crying to the LORD. He did not

know her and argued with the LORD. As Ashley was leaving, Pastor Josiah decided to obey the

LORD.


He said to her,”The LORD gave me a word about you. Would you like to hear

it?”

Ashley said,”Sure”

The message included information about her identity and about the season in

which she was.


From their situation, we see that the LORD “loves to speak to the attentive heart.” Though

Pastor Josiah struggled with doing what the LORD asked him to do, he did it.

Another time that Pastor Josiah and Ashley were seeking the LORD’s voice was concerning

their relationship. Ashley decided to pray and fast, and Pastor Josiah decided he would also.

They fasted and made sure they did not communicate, for they knew that the LORD spoke to

the “attentive heart.” (“An attentive heart is laced with faith.”) A week later, they sent

concurrently the verse the LORD gave each one from Proverbs 16:9. “A man’s heart plans his

way, but the LORD directs his steps.”(NKJV) Their hearts matched their Abba Father’s heart.

The LORD loves to confirm His Word. Are we listening?

When the LORD speaks to us, we need to “hear and obey.” Pastor Josiah warned us not to sit

contentedly where we are. For contentment can lead to complacency, which is dangerous. He

also stated,


”You won’t obey if you’re not hearing.

You won’t hear if you have no intention of obeying.”


The heart of the issue is what is our intent or motive. To hear and obey Him, we need to

desperately lean into Him. “Obedience is better than sacrifice.” I Samuel 15:22 (NET) Their

desire as individuals and as a couple is to obey Him. Ashley shared her insight and she said,

”God, do unto me what seems good to you.” She referenced the prophet Eli who 1) was

concerned for God’s glory and 2) recognized God’s sovereign goodness. Thus Eli submitted

himself to the LORD.

In obeying the LORD, there needs to be a “Yes, LORD” in your heart before you know what He

is asking you to do. In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus asked the LORD if the cup of suffering

could be taken from Him. Jesus gave up His will, to obey His heavenly Father’s. That was a yes


before the ask. When Peter was in the storm with the other disciples and they saw Jesus

walking on the water, Peter wanted to walk on the water also. Jesus invited him,“Come.”

Though the storm had been raging for several hours and the men were desperate, Peter had a

yes before Jesus’ ask. In what area do you need a yes before Jesus gives you a task.

Amazingly over and over again, He has shown me that when He has a job for me to do, He

has/will provide. With such a history with Jesus, why do I falter, fume, or fear? I need to

remember I am the daughter of the King who will never “leave me nor forsake me.” Hebrews

13:5 He has the best in mind for you and me. We just need to “Trust and Obey.”

The final point was your “God is a living guide.” Psalm 48:14

“For this is God, Our God forever and ever;

He will be our guide even to death.” (NKJV)


We need to stay close to our God, our living guide. For His “Word is a lamp to my feet and a

light to my path.” (NLV) He will light our feet not the whole street. He gives us opportunities to

trust Him one step at a time. That is what we get to do now as the FC family-take it one step at

a time. Isaiah 43:18-19 states


“Do not remember the former things,

Nor consider the things of old.

Behold, I will do a new thing,

Now it shall spring forth;

Shall you not know it?

I will make a road in the wilderness.

And rivers in the desert.” (NKJV)


In these verses the LORD is reminding us not to stay stuck in the past like Lot’s wife who after

looking back at Nineveh turned into a pillar of salt. Also as Pastor Kip advised me not to “camp

in the land of sorrow,” we should not camp in land of the past. We get to follow where He leads

us and take one step at a time.

The LORD has a future and a hope for us as He stated in Jeremiah 29:11. May we “Trust and

Obey” Him so we can be salt and light in this troubled world.


Calendar:

8/25-Men’s Core Ministry at 6:00

8/26-Christian Car Show 9:00-2:00

8/27-Love and Passion Worship Night at 6:00

9/10-Volunteer Appreciation dinner 6:00

9/22-LBs-Meet to Swap 6:00



Submitted by

Larry and Annette Linthicum

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