Today was the first “Church Journey” I made solo. The worship leader of Salem Community Fellowship, Michelle Wilson, invited me.  I had never met her or anyone at the church in person before, but I felt the Lord was prompting me to go.  As I made the scenic drive through the farms and rolling hills I felt at peace knowing that I was about to have a very special, God appointed time.

The church space was small, but filled with love. Michelle greeted me with a few others, including Pastor Herb Arnold, all with big smiles and a warm welcome.   We chatted a bit and then made our way into the sanctuary for pre-service prayer.  Their sincere passion for the Lord was apparent and God’s presence was in our midst.  The service started with a time to share testimonies.  Then a woman, Sandra, shared about worship bringing us closer to God.   She read Psalm 145 with the piano playing softly behind her.  It was a wonderful way to lead us into the worship.  Michelle played the piano and sang beautifully, and her husband Will accompanied her on drums and harmony vocals.  I loved the selection of songs, and especially loved hearing the great hymn, “How Great Thou Art”.  The worship was anointed as I sang, clapped and lifted my hands to the Lord with my newly met “family”.

Several people shared words and testimonies. I loved seeing the congregation so involved.  Then Pastor Herb gave a powerful message entitled “From the Pit to the Palace, from Dream to Destiny”.  He spoke about how we endure falls in life, but we can’t put ourselves together again on our own…we need Jesus!  He related it to the childhood nursery rhyme, Humpty Dumpty.

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall. Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men couldn’t put Humpty together again.”

In the book of Genesis, Joseph fell, but all the King’s horses and all the King’s men couldn’t put him together again. Joseph had a great fall, but he trusted the Lord.  He never had a “victim mentality”.  Joseph didn’t become bitter…he became better.  From the Pit to the Palace, God turned all of Joseph’s suffering around for good.  Like Joseph, we need to trust in the Lord to put us together again!   (Genesis 45:5-8).  Then he shared how Joseph’s father, Jacob, had a “victim mentality”.  Jacob didn’t want to let go of his son Benjamin (Genesis 42:4, 36).  He was holding onto the hurt of losing his other sons.

Some statements that really spoke to me included:
“You must take your thoughts captive or they will take you captive.”
“We look for God in the brokenness of our lives.”
“To see change in our lives, we must look to God and stop bunkering ourselves in.”
“Iniquity is wicked and a twisted way of thinking.  We need to be honest before God.”

As we prayed, I asked God to remove any bitterness I was harboring in my own heart, and to help me trust in Him through every circumstance. The message really spoke to me and I felt a tear stream down my cheek as we closed with this powerful song…

“You unravel me with a melody
You surround me with a song
Of deliverance from my enemies
’til all my fears are gone
I’m no longer a slave to fear, I am a child of God
I’m no longer a slave to fear, I am a child of God”

I had such a wonderful time of fellowship and sharing with several people before leaving to have lunch with Michelle and her family at Sandra’s house. We enjoyed our afternoon together and it felt as though I knew them all my life.  I was blessed today with the gift of new friends!

Salem Community Fellowship was such a special “Church Journey”. I arrived a stranger, but left a friend.  I arrived with an ear to hear God, and I heard Him speak to me throughout the entire service.   I enjoyed everything about this church….the worship music, the message, the people and the presence of God!  I encourage everyone to pray about making a visit to this church….your sisters and brothers are waiting to meet you!

Church Page – www.facebook.com/salemcommunityfellowship

By Donna Hansen Munafo