CHN is a network of volunteers from churches throughout the United States of America and throughout the nations. Our mission and passion is to carry on the Great Commission given by our Lord Jesus Christ.

January 2007

 “And let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us, And establish the work of our hands for us; Yes, establish the work of our hands.” (Psalm 90:17)

Dear Friend,

Happy New Year!  Trusting that all is well with you and your loved ones.  We are fine, and looking forward to all that God will do in this new year! We are excited! Isn’t it just so wonderful, that each new year, we can take stock of our life, where it is going, and put behind the things of the past, and begin brand new again? Those of us who have accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior, have the joy of becoming born again, brand new, putting the past behind us, and pressing on to our future. Our sins are forgiven, and we have a bight future to look forward to! When I think of a brand new year, this is what comes to my mind. I think of the past year, the things of the past, and press in to the future with new hope and joy!

Where will this new year lead us to? I am sitting in my home office right now, gazing at the winter sky, and just pondering upon what God has in store for His church this year. I believe this is the time for reflection; it is the time to learn to redeem our time. We are to seek order in our lives by taking time out from usual activities such as watching TV, and taking that time to seek God and what His plans are for us. The Lord has placed me on a TV fast since June 24, 2006. I do not miss it at all! I love the quiet times I am spending with God, reading my Bible, and praying. I love the long evenings where I do not feel pressured to be doing something every minute! I love my commune with my Lord, talking to Him, and then waiting to hear from Him. This time has become precious to me and I am not willing to give it up!

This year, I believe God is calling us out to redeem our time, take back what the enemy has stolen, and spend time with Him. I believe that He is calling us to do as Paul did; live our lives for Jesus and not be concerned about the things of this world. The world will try to entice, with constant visions of “buy this, buy that, see this movie, watch that program, you must have this, or you will not be satisfied!” The world talks of glamour, and riches, and owning the best of everything. But tell me my friend, do the people who tell us these things have true peace and happiness? Look at their lives, and how messed up they are! This is not what satisfies! Only God can satisfy! Only His love, and His provision can satisfy. Yes, He wants us to work hard, and He wants to bless the work of our hands. Absolutely! But what He is concerned about, is the attitude of the heart! Does our work glorify Him? Does our home life glorify Him? What are the motives of our heart? What is most important to us? Is Jesus the center of our time, and our thoughts? Is He the Lord of our time?

I am not saying that we have to be super spiritual, and live in a cocoon. God’s will for us is to live, to be happy, to have good times, and to enjoy all that He has given us! What I am saying, is this.. God blesses us with life, and He leaves it up to us as to how we will spend it. We are not puppets on a string. We have free will. The question I have is this, where to we exercise that free will? It is to minister to others, to help the poor, to take care of the widows and orphans? Is it to offer encouragement to those who are down trodden? Is it to pray for our pastor, to encourage him or her? Is it to teach Sunday school at church, or work in one of the ministries?

Paul says that he worked harder than anyone, that he worked for his keep, so that he could minister without asking for money. He was willing to be put in prison, to be beaten, to be shipwrecked, and die for Christ! How willing are we to step out to win the lost or to suffer for His sake? How willing are we to redeem our time so that we can yield it to Christ and His purposes? Are we ready to sacrifice all for Him?

How many of us are willing to volunteer our time in church, or at a soup kitchen, or shelter, or any place that needs help?  All of us at Christian Hope Network are volunteers, and if you are an intercessor, that means you! And I am sure you will agree with me, that it is a blessing! We receive much more than we could ever imagine as God blesses our lives and our families. To do this, we have to redeem our time. It all goes back to that. We have to make the best use of the time that God gives us each day. We have to press in, and follow Him! In this New Year, ask Him where He would have you minister! It will mean taking out your Watchmen Battalion prayer list, and praying these people through. It will be at work, at church, in your neighborhood, with your family, with your friends, in the grocery store, or even in a hospital or doctors office! If we are truly serious about using our time to serve the Lord, He will make a way!

This is a New Year! This is the time for new things! Let us put the past behind us, and press on to the future! Let us redeem our time so that it glorifies God! As we redeem our time, we will find time for rest, we will find time for prayer, for study, for intimacy with God! We will find time for family, for fun, for work, for ministry, for volunteering! Our lives will have meaning, we will look forward to every day, and we will find joy in the simple things of life. We will understand that possessions and things are not what make us happy! We will form a closer relationship with Jesus, and find time to sit by His side, and feel His heartbeat! We will wake up each morning with a smile on our face, and look forward to what God is going to do in that day! This is exciting! This is what brings fulfillment! This is what gives us purpose in life, the very thing that we are created for. To love God with all our heart, with all  our soul, and with all  our strength!

May God bless you abundantly as you begin your new journey in 2007!

God bless you,

Rev. Barbara A. Yovino, Ph.D.