I happened to be looking at an old church photo directory (perhaps from five years ago) and there on page three is a note from Pastor Sam Crabtree. I don’t think I’ve read it before. I liked it. So I’m typing it up here.

Dear Bethlehem Family,

For more than one reason I rejoice that your name is in this book. Yet infinitely more important than having your name written in this book is having your name written in heaven. Having your name written there is better than having power to rule over demons.

Luke 10:20 Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.

If you’re holding this book in your hands, you’re not in heaven yet. But holding this book in your hands might be a means that God uses to ensure that your name is written in heaven. How so? Answer: by knowing and being known by other believers in this book and by encouraging one another to joyfully persevere in faith and confident hope in the promises of God that are yours in Christ Jesus.

This book is not a directory of angels or demons, but of people. But my hope is that the people named in this book (including you, if your name is listed) will bolster each other’s faith in the strength God supplies so that all of us do in fact gain mastery over evil spirits and besetting sins and various trials, bearing one another’s burdens as together we press toward the mark of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Knowing one another is step toward loving one another, and a photo directory can be a very practical tool for getting to know one another, Keep it handy for ready reference, Refer to it. Pray for the people in it.

If you go to a Bible-believing,  God-seeking church, this is true about that Photo Directory that your family is in, as well.