Covenant Protestant Reformed Church
Bookmark and Share

Covenant Protestant Reformed Church

83 Clarence Street, Ballymena BT43 5DR
Rev. Angus Stewart
Lord’s Day, 16 July, 2017

“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed
by the renewing of your mind ...” (Rom. 12:2)

Morning Service - 11:00 AM

Why Must We Still Do Good Works?  [download]  [youtube]
Scripture Reading: II Corinthians 3:1-4:7
Text: Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 32

I. Two Blessings That Are Inseparable
II. Two Callings That Necessarily Follow
III. Two Parties That Greatly Benefit
Psalms: 107:1-9; 44:9-15; 1:1-6; 19:9-14

Evening Service - 6:00 PM

Mortification
Scripture Reading: Colossians 3
Text: Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 33

I. The Meaning
II. The Calling
Psalms: 34:1-10; 44:16-26; 51:4-10; 119:169-176

For CDs of the sermons and DVDs of the worship services, contact Stephen Murray
If you desire a pastoral visit, please contact Rev. Stewart or the elders

CPRC Website: www.cprc.co.uk • Live Webcast: www.cprf.co.uk/live.html
CPRC YouTube: www.youtube.com/cprcni
CPRC Facebook: www.facebook.com/CovenantPRC

Quotes to Consider

John Calvin: “Hence, whenever our salvation is treated of, let these two things be remembered, that we cannot be reckoned God’s sons unless he freely expiate our sins, and thus reconcile himself to us [i.e., justification]: and then not unless he also rule us by his Spirit [i.e., sanctification]. Now we must hold, that what God hath joined man ought not to separate. Those, therefore, who through relying on the indulgence of God permit themselves to give way to sin, rend his covenant and impiously sever it. Why so? because God has joined these two things together, viz., that he will be propitious to his sons [i.e., justification], and will also renew their hearts [i.e., sanctification]. Hence those who lay hold of only one member of the sentence, namely, the pardon [i.e., justification], because God bears with them, and omit the other [i.e., sanctification], are as false and sacrilegious as if they abolished half of God’s covenant” (Comm. on Eze. 11:19-20).

Announcements (subject to God’s will)

The new British Reformed Journal is available on the back table for subscribers.

The Stewarts leave tomorrow for the US. May the “Lord watch between [us], when we are absent one from another” (Gen. 31:49).

The Reformed Witness Hour broadcast next Lord’s Day (Gospel 846 MW at 8:30 AM) by Rev. Haak is “To Provide and Protect” (Eph. 5:23).

The Council’s next meeting is Monday, 21 August, at 7:30 PM.

The Tuesday Bible Study will resume on 22 August.

Family visitation: to be arranged - Jennifer Hanko (Reid/Rev. Stewart)

Offerings: General Fund: £663.80. Donations: £200 (England), £200 (England).

Website translations additions: 1 Bengali (Heidelberg Catechism from Rev. Emmanuel Singh), 1 Tagalog (3 CR News articles on “Our Identity in Christ”).

PRC News: Zion PRC will call from a trio of Revs. A. Laning, B. Huizinga and Cand. J. Holstege. The new trio for a third missionary to the Philippines is Revs. Brummel, Smit and Spronk.


The Stewarts will be in N. America from 17 July to 14 August. The Lord’s Day schedule in the CPRC while Rev. Stewart is away is as follows:
23 July - services led by the elders with DVDs (Pastor preaches in Spokane, WA)
30 July - Rev. McGeown preaches while Rev. Bleyenberg takes services in the LRF (Pastor preaches in Edmonton and Lacombe, Alberta, Canada)
6 August - Rev. Bleyenberg preaches (Pastor preaches in Lynden, Washington)
13 August - Rev. Bleyenberg preaches, with tea after the evening service—Group A on the tea rota (Pastor preaches in Providence and Hudsonville in Michigan)
20 August - Rev. McGeown preaches (Pastor preaches in the LRF)


Sitting on the Sidelines

Brian D. Dykstra

 

About a year ago, an unknown junior high student athlete left this message on the small white board by the office door, “Don’t come to our games. We always lose.” I had a little inward chuckle over that because I could relate on a couple of levels.

I’ve had a little experience in interscholastic sports. In terms of wins and losses, most of it was unsuccessful. In grade school, the teams on which I participated had a record of zero in four years. High school was not much better. After our first junior varsity basketball victory, I remember thinking that some unwritten rule had been violated. I was certain there was a rule which stated that the number on our side of the scoreboard had to be the smaller one.

Now as a parent I’ve had the opportunity to drive around West Michigan to various athletic events. As of yet, none of my children has played indoor sports, so I have soaked up both some heat and plenty of cold spring rain. My father, however, says he will not feel any sympathy for me until I have to drive to Hopkins in near blizzard conditions. Just as my father did, I have seen more losses than wins. Despite the plea on the white board, I am sure parents and friends will continue to attend the games of our various teams.

For those of us who will attend sporting events, The Grand Rapids Press published an article by Bill Reynolds of The Providence Journal on 3 September, 2005. The article was titled, “Parents, There’s Much to Learn.” There were five points which Reynolds wants parents to remember.

First, says Reynolds, “Stay home sometimes.” After stating that it is a good thing for parents to be involved in their children’s lives, he writes, “The more I’m around youth sports, the more I’ve come to believe that everyone would be better off if parents stayed home once in a while. If nothing else, it would be a message that sports are just something kids do, important certainly, but not life and death.”

In his second point, “Coaches aren’t all idiots,” Reynolds writes,

And even if a particular coach is an idiot? So be it. Dealing with idiots is a fact of life, a lesson everyone should learn, kids included.

Coaches are in charge, pure and simple. They determine who plays. They determine how the team plays. They determine all of it. And sometimes it’s not always fair.

Then again, life is not always fair, another lesson kids should learn.

Reynolds’ third point was, “Get real.” Here he addresses unrealistic goals. “If you’re trying to get a college scholarship, you probably have a better chance buying lottery tickets. Truth be told, not too many kids get athletic scholarships, regardless of the sport.”

Reynolds states in his fourth point, “Failure is OK.” He points out that whenever someone wins, someone else loses. Reynolds says, “The great lesson is we often learn more from failure than from success. At their best, sports teach kids to come back from adversity, to come back from losing, no small thing in a society that’s become all about instant gratification and a sense of entitlement.”

The final item in Reynolds’ list is, “Lighten up.” He says,

It’s impossible to be around youth sports and not see too many parents who are not having a whole lot of fun. Complaining about the coach. Yelling at the referees. Putting pressure on their kids, whether they mean to or not. Draining all the joy out of everything.

To what end? The great truth about sports is that whether you won or lost ultimately doesn’t matter. What matters is the relationships you had with the people you played with, the things you shared, the experience.

Reynolds is correct. When parents help their children to keep sports in proper perspective, and maintain the proper perspective themselves, sports can be a positive experience.

There is one more thing we must keep in mind, both for the participants and spectators. Respect for the coach and referees is part of our obligation under the fifth commandment. Lord’s Day 39 reminds us that in dealing with those in authority we must “patiently bear with their weaknesses and infirmities.” Bad calls are going to be made. It is part of the game. What is important is how we react to them. It is hard to react properly because it is part of wrestling with the old man of sin.

So, despite the plea on the white board, I will continue to attend some of Hope’s athletic events. I really do not care about wins and losses although, of course, it is enjoyable to see our kids win. I just hope that if they win, they can do so without boasting. If they lose, I hope there are no complaints about teammates or referees.

Who knows? Maybe we will see each other at a game!