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August 2023


A preacher friend of mine shared an experience he had when one of his daughters was playing on a metal jungle gym in a school playground, fell, and cracked her head against one of the bars.  Her head was bleeding, so they put a towel on her head and whisked her off to the emergency room where a doctor was able to stitch up her head. 


A few days later, as he was reading, he came across this passage in 1 Peter (1:18), “you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver and gold, but by the precious blood of Jesus Christ.” He said, “I remember thinking there were four people in the world I thought I would die for (my wife and three girls), but there was not one person I would let me daughter die for.”


In Revelation 1:5 we read, “To Him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his own blood….” The verb “loves,” is clearly present tense—ongoing action. This verb, “freed,” carries the idea of a completed action, a point in time when we were moved from slavery to freedom, death to life.


It is the nature of Jesus to want to redeem those He loves. It may be the most tangible evidence of His love. But the intriguing words in this text are little words, “our” and “his.” Justice plays out when a person pays for their crime. So, it seems the text should read “our sins, our blood.” But it doesn’t. It reads, “our sins, His blood.” What an incredible picture of the love of God. Romans 5:8 says, “…God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us….”


Discouragement tugs at our hearts when life is not going as we’d hoped or expected. We can resist that constant pull by taking a long look at Jesus, the One who loves us in our circumstances, and who demonstrated that love by shedding His blood for our sins. When you wake up heading toward discouragement, remember to focus on the “One who loves us and freed us from our sins by His own blood.” Whatever your circumstances may be, they pale in comparison to God’s ultimate act of grace.



Let’s Focus on Our Savior,

Jim Poll, Minister

July 2023

Last week we had quite a storm here in the Midwest.  It was called a “derecho” which means at least 400 miles of straight-line winds that blew power lines down in many, many places.  The power went out in my house, as it did in many places in Springfield and other surrounding areas.  It is never fun to be without power, because suddenly everything gets quiet in the house.  The TV goes off, all the lights go out, the refrigerator stops running, the air conditioning stops cooling, and your house starts to assume the outside temperature.  Normally it comes back on after an hour or two or so, but this time, it did not come back on at my house for three and a half days, which created new difficulties.  It’s hard enough to not be able to watch TV or listen to the radio, but you can’t even do a load of laundry, microwave a TV dinner, charge your cell phone, or work on your computer once the battery gets low. 


I learned that it is possible to survive without all the conveniences we are used to, but it means making some changes.  I was able to finish reading a book I had started some time ago and make progress in another one that I had started.  I found it easier to pray without the distractions of television or radio; and I was able to spend more time in the Bible, which is always a good thing to do. 


It also reminded me of my youth when we had no air conditioning in our house, and we got along fine.  The one thing I was reminded of, though, is that when we are in Christ, we are never without power, because the Holy Spirit lives within us and provides us with all the power we need!


Have a wonderful summer, and let’s rejoice in the presence of Almighty God, who is “A very present help in time of trouble.” (Psalm 46:1)

Jim Poll, Minister

June 2023


Trials and difficulties that come into our lives usually bring us deep concern and some discouragement because it seems that everything is going wrong.  It can be in the area of finances, or health, or relationships. None of us are thrilled when we have problems.  They seem to drag us down.  We tend to get worried or concerned because these problems may cost us time or money to fix. 


But God’s Word gives us a teaching that seems strange in James 1:2- “Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.  And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”


So, instead of being filled with worry and fear, God’s Word tells us to respond with joy in the midst of these hard times.  And James calls it “testing of our faith.”  So, the next time you face a difficulty when some hard times are coming your way, try being cheerful and giving thanks to God, and you will find that as you give thanks, God will fill your heart with peace, and you will begin to look at these trials from His perspective, which is far different from our perspective.  To God, these things we worry about are minor, and we need to take a look at them from His perspective. 


Here is a challenge for all of us- when you face a difficult trial, try to give thanks to God for this problem and be joyful.  Let His joy fill your heart and mind.  That is His promise.  And God will bring His perfect result in your heart and mind. 


 Living in Trust,

Jim Poll, Minister

May 2023

Have you ever had a difficult situation in your life when it seems like God is far away or is not listening to your prayers?  That was what John the Baptist experienced when he told King Herod that taking his brother’s wife for his own was immoral and wrong.  Herod then had John thrown in the dungeon because he dared to speak against this immorality.


We don’t know how long John was imprisoned, but it was long enough that he began to question whether Jesus was the “Expected One” (the Messiah) or if he should look for someone else.  He must have felt like his life was being wasted in that prison where God seemed silent, so he sent his followers to find out.


Jesus sent this answer: “Go tell John what you see and hear: the blind receive sight, lepers are cleansed, deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them.” Jesus told John that He was indeed “Messiah,” and He was accomplishing what He came here to do.


If you ever feel like God has abandoned you (as John seemed to feel), remember what Jesus said about John – “Truly I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist!  Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” Matt. 11:11. Take heart!! The lowliest one in God’s kingdom is far greater than that powerful preacher!  Those who will be rejoicing in heaven with Jesus will know immeasurable joy!!


May God Bless You Richly,

Jim Poll, Minister

April 2023


The Joy of Spring!!

I love this time of the year, when the days are warmer, robins have returned, the grass is getting tall and needs to be cut.  I am thankful for the warmth of Spring, and I am even more thankful that Easter will be here on Sunday!  Easter is the ultimate event to remind us of the tremendous gift that God has given us in his son, Jesus.  He was the only begotten Son of God, who came here to earth to live a sinless life. Because He was sinless, He was the only one who could be the perfect sacrificial gift to take away our sins.

Please read through the book of Hebrews in the New Testament to get an idea of how important Jesus is to each one of us.  In the Old Testament, the priests offered blood sacrifices of bulls and goats to push back sins for a time.  But Hebrews 10:4 says, “For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.” So, Jesus came to earth as God’s Son to become the perfect sacrifice for our sins.  He committed no sin while He lived here on earth, and He became the sacrifice on the cross to take all of our sins away.  So, if we choose to accept Him as our Lord and Savior, and obey Him in baptism by immersion, His promise is that our sins will be washed away, and we will have the promise of life eternal in heaven with Him.  What a wonderful gift, freely given, and available to anyone, no matter how great their sins.  Jesus basically opened the door to heaven for anyone who chooses to follow Him!

Here we are in the Spring of the year, when signs of new life are all around us.  Don’t wait any longer if you have never yielded your heart and mind to Jesus Christ.  He is the giver of eternal life and eternal joy.  What a wonderful gift! What a joy to anticipate living with Him in heaven.  

Have a wonderful Spring, and may God fill your heart with joy and wonder as you seek to follow Him.  God Bless You!!

Your Minister and Friend,

Jim Poll, Minister

March 2023


I have been reading a book by Max Lucado, The Applause of Heaven, who challenges us to learn to forgive each other instead of holding a grudge or trying to get even when someone hurts us. Not easy but consider the danger of trying to “get even”. He received a letter from a woman who had been badly hurt, and she described her situation:


“I caught my husband making love to another woman. He swore it would never happen again. He begged me to forgive him, but I could not – would not. I was so bitter and so incapable of swallowing my pride that I could think of nothing but revenge. I was going to make him pay and pay dearly. I’d have my pound of flesh.


I filed for divorce, even though my children begged me not to. Even after the divorce, my husband tried for two years to win me back. I refused to have anything to do with him. He had struck first; now I was striking back. All I wanted was to make him pay.


Finally, he gave up and married a lovely young widow with a couple of small children. He began rebuilding his life – without me.

I see them occasionally, and he looks so happy. They all do. And here I am – a lonely, old, miserable woman who allowed her selfish pride and foolish stubbornness to ruin her life.”


Lucado says, “Unfaithfulness is wrong. Revenge is bad. But the worst part of all is that, without forgiveness, bitterness is all that is left.”


May we always try our best to be forgiving of anyone who has hurt us. Jesus wants to forgive us for all of our wrongs, and we should do our best to forgive others as well.  Have a wonderful March, dear ones!


Your Brother in Christ,

Jim Poll, Minister

February 2023


Sunday I spoke about five men who loved God deeply, and because of that love went to Wheaton College to prepare themselves to serve as missionaries and to win those who had never heard of Jesus Christ. They all prayed fervently about what God was calling them to do. They had heard about the Auca Indians in Ecuador who were known as being a fierce primitive tribe who speared to death any who came in contact with them.


Jim Elliott was one of those men. He had a fervent desire to be a missionary, and to take the Gospel to this tribe of Indians. He had become friends with these men in college, and they caught his vision to reach this tribe for Christ. And they finished their college studies, sailed to Ecuador, and each studied Spanish to be able to reach out to the people in Ecuador.


One of the statements of Jim Elliott was, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep, to gain what he cannot lose.” Pete Fleming, one of the other men wrote in his diary, “I am longing to reach the AUCAS if God gives me the honor of proclaiming the Name among them…I would gladly give my life for that tribe if only to see an assembly of those proud, clever, smart people gathering around a table to honor the Son ---gladly, gladly, gladly! What more could be given to a life?”


These men unselfishly worked for months to reach this tribe, and they were making contact with them, but suddenly were speared to death one day. But their lives were not given in vain. Within two years, Jim Elliott’s wife and the sister of Nate Saint (the pilot) were invited to go live with the Auca Indians, and eventually the tribe was won to Christ. What rejoicing there is in heaven over this amazing victory!


Please pray with me for the lost in our community, and ask God to use us to reach them with the gospel of Jesus Christ so they can rejoice with us in heaven for eternity! Nothing is more important!!


For the Sake of Christ,

Jim Poll, Minister

January 2023



Here we are just beginning the New Year of 2023. There is something special about a new year. We sometimes set goals that we want to accomplish. Some of these include losing weight, getting more fit, reading more books, saving more money, or being a better person.

On the night of the last supper, Jesus gave his disciples some instructions that they did not understand, when he said he was only going to be with them a little while longer, and he gave them a new commandment which is recorded in John 13:34,35: “A new commandment I give you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”


The disciples did not understand at that time what Jesus meant, because they did not yet understand that he would that very night be taken into custody and would die the following day on the cross for the sins of his disciples and to take the sins from every person who would confess Him as Lord and Savior, and free them from the consequences of their sins.


I believe Jesus was teaching his disciples to love others with the same love he had for the entire world. A self-denying love, which would require many sacrifices from them, and would ultimately end in their death for the sake of the Kingdom of Christ.


I wonder how many of us are taking to heart this new commandment of Jesus, that we love one another? Our next-door neighbor, the family down the street, the children playing in the yard, the grouch on the next block. Do we love them in the same way Jesus loved us? This would be a good challenge for each of us in this new year: Love One Another, including those who are unlovely and unloved, just as Jesus did!



Have a Wonderful New Year,

Jim Poll, Minister

December 2022


Here we are, in the month of December. It seems like just a short while ago I was writing an article for April. Time sure seems to fly by at a faster pace than ever. We are just three weeks from Christmas, which is usually a time of joy and celebration, as we give gifts of love to our loved ones, and prepare for some warm fellowship with family.


This year, we approach Christmas with a mixture of emotions. We rejoice at the marriage of Morgan and Miranda, and the growth of S.J. Smythe, who just turned 1 year old last month. We love the newlyweds and rejoice in the presence of young Mr. Smythe. Everyone loves seeing him and making over him. But at the same time, we grieve at the loss in April of Mike Hance, who fought a two year battle with a deadly illness. He was dearly loved and is greatly missed, although we know he is now in the presence of Jesus and in no more pain. And just recently two of our dearly loved members have started chemo treatments to prevent any future problems. We love them and are praying for them regularly.


The question comes to mind, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” I don’t suppose any of us know the answer to that, but we do know one thing, that God is Love, and that He will comfort us through our brothers and sisters in Christ. And we have an eternal Hope in Jesus.


I know how it feels to face Christmas in a time of loss. My mother died on December 7, 1975, when I was 25 years old. It was a Sunday morning when I got the call from my Dad in Ohio. I was in deep grief because she was my closest friend, and it took quite a while to work through that loss. I am so thankful that she belonged to Jesus, and that one day I will see her again, even though that first year was very difficult.


Remember, that with Christ in our lives, we can live with Hope, and Joy, and that is why we Celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, our Savior, and our Hope for eternal Joy!



Have a Wonderful Christmas!

Jim Poll, Minister

November 2022


November quietly made its appearance this week after showing us some bright yellow leaves on trees, with splashes of red to give us a wonderful display of beauty all around us, and now the leaves are quickly gathering in bunches in the grass below. The farmers have been gathering their crops and are thankful for the abundant yields. My heart rejoices with them.


The best thing about November is Thanksgiving Day. It is a time when families gather for a delicious meal and our hearts are turned toward God to give Him thanks for all His gifts: a loving family, good health, the ability to enjoy life, and forgiveness of sins.


I love to read Psalm 103 (verses 1-5) at this time of the year:

“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name.

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget none of His benefits;

Who pardons all your iniquities,

Who heals all your diseases;

Who redeems your life from the pit,

Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion;

Who satisfies your years with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle.”


In verses 10-14, David reminds us that God has not dealt with us according to our sins, but His lovingkindness is so great that “As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.”


Think about this and join me in giving Thanks to God for Jesus, His indescribable Gift!!


Happy Thanksgiving!

Jim Poll, Minister

October 2022


Autumn is here! Farmers are working hard to harvest their crops. This will keep them very busy for the next few weeks. Cleaning and lubricating their machinery, running combines, loading farm wagons and semi-trucks with corn and beans and hauling that grain to bins or the grain elevator to store or sell. It is the time when they see the results of months of preparing the fields, planting in the spring, fertilizing, keeping the weeds to a minimum, and rejoicing when the rain comes to bring life-giving moisture. Finally, they see the plants coming to maturity and producing a good yield.


We have a lot to be thankful for when we see how God blesses these efforts! There must be a great deal of satisfaction for these farmers to see the results of their investment of time, money, and hard work. We pray for safety as they work, and that they will enjoy an abundant harvest.


We can celebrate a little bit early here at Tallula Christian Church on Sunday, October 16th at 10:30 a.m. The senior adult choir from West Side Christian Church in Springfield will be coming that morning to bring us a musical concert of praise to our God. The message will be brought to us in the songs they will share with us. They have 15-20 seniors who have been working on this music for a couple of months. It will be an enjoyable morning, so plan to come and enjoy the fellowship with our brothers and sisters in Christ. This would be a great morning to bring family and friends to enjoy a wonderful musical program that will challenge us to follow Jesus Christ.


During autumn, the days of sunlight are getting shorter, but the light of the world, Jesus Christ, will never lose any of His power or His ability to bring His healing light into the darkest crevices of our lives. His love will cleanse all the wounds that we have suffered over the years. Please seek Jesus earnestly to find the joy that never ends!


Hope to See You in Church Sunday!

Jim Poll, Minister

September 2022


Here we are, heading into the fall season. The green corn stalks are turning brown as the corn matures and starts to dry out. The bean stalks will soon start shedding their leaves as the grain matures and gets ready for the harvest. It will still be a while before the crops are ready for harvest, but as it approaches, I’m sure the farmers are checking their equipment to make sure that it will be ready to bring in these crops as flawlessly as possible. They don’t want any of the crop to be wasted due to breakdowns or any kind of mechanical problems, and they know when it is time to harvest, the work won’t wait. It needs to be harvested as quickly as possible.


That reminds me of the story of Jesus in Matthew 9:18 and following. Jesus had raised a dead girl back to life, restored sight to two blind men, cast a demon from a mute man and he spoke, and as he went through the villages and cities, preaching the good news about God’s kingdom, and healing every kind of disease, he saw these people and felt compassion for them, “because they were distressed and thrown down, like sheep without a shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.’” (Matthew 9:37,38 NASB)


To lose part of a harvest of corn or beans would be costly, but it would be nothing compared to losing souls to eternal suffering when they could have enjoyed the presence of God’s love and comfort in heaven. God still needs his disciples to be soul winners, and to bring in the harvest that will last for eternity. Simply prepare your testimony…what your life was like before Christ, …what led you to take Him as Lord and Savior, and …how your life has changed since you began following Him. Simple to prepare, simple to share. And God promises to give you what to say when you need to speak up for Him. Never forget the Harvest of souls that is waiting for us to speak up.


Praying for Souls to be Harvested, 

Jim Poll, Minister

August 2022


The story of the Prodigal Son in Luke 15 is one we are all familiar with, but I heard a Bible Scholar describe the three characters as a foolish father and two lost sons. He said the father was foolish for giving his younger son the portion of the estate when he asked for it instead of making him wait until the father had died, which was the normal custom. This scholar said that the men of that day would have considered the father foolish for yielding to the will of the younger brother.


He also said there were two lost sons, because when the younger brother realized his error and came home, the older brother was angry and very upset with the father. He felt that he had been loyal to the father, and did all that was expected, but he never got a big party like his younger brother was receiving when he returned home. So, he didn’t want to go in to the festivities, so the father had to go out to him and explain to him that his brother had been dead and was now alive, had been lost but was now found.


It may have been foolish in the eyes of the men of that time for the father to yield to the will of his younger son, but in this story, we see the depth of the love this man had for both of his sons. He had been watching the road every day, hoping for his lost son’s return. And when he finally saw his son returning, he did something that mature men in those days did not do. He ran!! He ran to his son, hugged him tightly, and kissed him. The son only wanted to be a servant. He did not feel worthy to be a son. But the father ordered his servants to bring the finest robe, the ring of authority, and sandals, all signs of restoring his son to a privileged position in the family.


The father in this story represents God, who has a deep love for all His children who have gone astray, and He keeps watching for them to come home. And when they find the emptiness of the desires of the flesh, He is waiting for them to return home so He can pour his richest blessings on all.


Praying for God to Touch Hearts,

Jim Poll, Minister

July 2022


As I am sitting in my office writing these thoughts, it is raining, which is very welcome since it had been kind of dry outside. I’m sure the farmers are thankful for this refreshing rain. And their crops will benefit greatly from these showers of blessing. Seeds which have been planted will sprout and grow, and plants which have been growing will soak up the nourishment and grow even taller, and they will produce fruit which will later be harvested.



These showers remind me of the scripture in Isaiah 55:10,11 which remind us, “For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return there without watering the earth and making it bear and sprout, and furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater; so will my word be which goes forth from my mouth; It will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.”



So, we can have confidence that whenever we share God’s word with our friends and others that we meet in our daily course of activities, that it will never return to God without accomplishing His purpose in our lives and in the lives of our friends. That is a tremendous promise and motivating to me that we can play a vital part in spreading the gospel to others. Whenever we share little drops of God’s Word with others, those words will always be productive. Let’s be bold in our sharing!


May God Bless You Richly!

Jim Poll, Minister


P.S.- It just occurred to me that every time we receive rain showers, it always comes in the same form…small drops of water. These are tiny, and would seem to be very unimportant and insignificant, but when they come in a thunderstorm, those tiny drops come so fast and in such quantities that the earth cannot hold it all, and then the result is a flood. Fortunately, those are not very common. 

June 2022


We have had some beautiful weather here this spring, but my thoughts have been deeply troubled in the past two weeks due to the heart-breaking news of nineteen grade-school children being murdered in their classroom along with two teachers. It is hard for me to imagine anyone who could be hard-hearted enough to watch the damage to these children by those bullets and continue to do more.


I was reminded of a scripture in Romans 1:28,29, 31, “And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do things which are not proper, being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice;…without understanding, untrustworthy, unmerciful.”


Our nation is increasingly turning away from God, and unfortunately, we will all suffer from the consequences of more and more people that will not honor God and their depraved minds will continue to do horrible things to innocent people.


Please pray with me for a return to God and His goodness in our nation, and that people will fall on their knees in worship to him as we have in past times of sorrow and repentance.


May God Be with You,

Jim Poll, Minister

May 2022


This is an old poem that I have always loved, and thought it well worth sharing again, to give hope to all who need the touch of the Master’s Hand in their lives:


'Twas battered and scarred, and the auctioneer Thought it scarcely worth his while

To waste much time on the old violin, But held it up with a smile.

"What am I bidden, good folks," he cried, "Who'll start the bidding for me?"

"A dollar, a dollar. Then two! Only two? Two dollars, and who'll make it three?"

"Three dollars, once; three dollars, twice; Going for three…" But no,

From the room, far back, a grey-haired man Came forward and picked up the bow;

Then wiping the dust from the old violin, And tightening the loosened strings,

He played a melody pure and sweet, As a caroling angel sings.

The music ceased, and the auctioneer, With a voice that was quiet and low,

Said: "What am I bid for the old violin? "And he held it up with the bow.

"A thousand dollars, and who'll make it two? Two thousand! And who'll make it three?

Three thousand, once; three thousand, twice, And going and gone," said he.

The people cheered, but some of them cried, "We do not quite understand.

What changed its worth?" Swift came the reply: "The touch of the Master's hand."

And many a man with life out of tune, And battered and scarred with sin,

Is auctioned cheap to the thoughtless crowd Much like the old violin.

A "mess of pottage," a glass of wine, A game — and he travels on.

He is "going" once, and "going" twice, He's "going" and almost "gone."

But the Master comes, and the foolish crowd Never can quite understand

The worth of a soul and the change that is wrought By the touch of the Master's hand.

-Myra Brooks Welch


Have a Wonderful Month of May,

Jim Poll, Minister

April 2022


Happy Resurrection Day! This month we celebrate Easter, the most amazing Holy Day ever seen since the beginning of time! Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten son had met an ugly and horrible death on a rugged cross after living a sinless life. He was God in the flesh, and when he died on that cross, he paid the price for the sins of all mankind. He was the perfect lamb of God. Animal sacrifices used in the Old Testament could never take away man’s guilt, but only the perfect man, Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, could cover our sins. He who knew no sin took on the sins of the world and died as the perfect sacrifice. His blood washes the most horrible sinner completely clean, if that person decides to repent of his old life, confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, and be immersed to wash away his sins and to receive the indwelling gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38).


But the most amazing event of all time is that Jesus Christ rose from the dead! Nothing like this has ever transpired in history. His resurrection is what gave his disciples the motivation to stop hiding in a locked room, and instead proclaim the good news that there is new life for those who follow Jesus Christ, and we who have named Jesus Lord and Savior will also one day live again for eternity in the presence of God. We will enjoy heaven with all those who have chosen to repent and follow our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We no longer need to fear death. We will live with Him in perfect peace where there will be no sin, no sorrow, no crying, no pain or anything negative. What an amazing transformation for any of us to enjoy. The vilest offender who truly believes will find everlasting joy if he turns to God. What an amazing event.


Have a wonderful Easter season! Be sure to worship our Lord and Savior on that day and every Lord’s Day!


May God Richly Bless You!!

Jim Poll, Minister

March 2022


Last Sunday I was invited by some friends to go out to eat after Church. That seemed like a great idea to me, so I went, had a nice meal, and got better acquainted with these very nice folks. We enjoyed a delicious meal, had some good fellowship, and were headed to our vehicles, when I made a mistake. I stepped toward the curb with my left foot but did not notice that there was a small 2” difference in the height of the concrete just before the curb. I was thrown off balance, and suddenly was falling. I was able to get my right foot on the pavement in front of my car, but the momentum was too great, and I fell in front of my car. I was embarrassed, but basically uninjured. I had a little bit of road rash on my left knee, but no harm to my slacks or my body. It is embarrassing to fall down when friends are near.


A passage of scripture came to mind: “Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall” (1 Cor. 10:12). Falling happens unexpectedly and can cause quite a bit of damage to those of us who are older. We need to be a bit more careful as we age. A bigger problem than physical injury would be spiritual injuries to our soul.


In 1 Corinthians 10: 1-11, there are warnings about taking care of our spiritual lives, so we don’t make the mistakes the Israelites made when on their way to the promised land. Several times they stumbled causing the destruction of many. Let’s take care of our spiritual lives as carefully as we take care of our bodies as they age. Be careful of careless thoughts that may cause you to stumble.


May God Bless You on Your Journey!

Jim Poll, Minister

February 2022


Happy Valentine’s Day!!! A few years ago, I was invited by a friend to help deliver flowers to people on this special day. It took a few hours, but it was enjoyable to see the delight on the faces of the recipients as well as their co-workers (when delivered at the workplace). We delivered a wide variety of flowers and plants that were all lovely. It seemed that these gifts were unexpected but greatly enjoyed, because they were gifts of love.


Another unexpected gift of love was given many years ago by our Father in heaven – “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” (John 3:16) Not only was it unexpected, but it has been greatly enjoyed by those who received that gift. Jesus brings hope, joy, and abundant life to all those who receive this amazing gift. He brings us from darkness into light, from despair to rejoicing, from death to life.


Flowers are a bit costly, but the gift that God gave us is beyond measure. It cost Him his only begotten son, and cost Jesus horrible suffering and death on a cross, the sinless Son of God who took on himself all our wicked sins. He became the perfect sacrifice to give us the unexpected and priceless gift of life everlasting! May we resolve to show our gratitude by obeying Him and putting His will first in our lives. See you Sunday.

Don’t forget Sunday School at 9:30. Chapter 14 in Core 52.



May God Richly Bless You,

Jim Poll, Minister

January 2022


Happy New Year!! Here we are at the beginning of a new year, when we can make new starts in various areas. I am not good at making New Year’s Resolutions, but I do want to make better efforts in some areas in my life.


I want to start walking a mile or two every day, to become more physically fit, and to help burn off those extra calories that are just piling up in various places on my body. These places are difficult to hide and are not very attractive. Those places are called fat. They are not helpful, and they do not make me feel good about myself.


In I Corinthians 9:27, Paul tells us, “I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.” The word discipline can also be translated “bruise”, which means that Paul was willing to work much harder than he already had to make certain he would not fail to reach his goal of living a life worthy of his high calling. May we make that extra effort every day to be faithful examples of committed Disciples of Christ.



May God Bless You Richly,

Jim Poll, Minister

December 2021


December is the time our thoughts turn toward Christmas, and we celebrate the birth of Christ, our Savior. This one event is the most significant event in the history of the world. Many other religions have been started by individuals who claim to be “prophets” of God, but only Jesus claimed to be God Himself. He lived a sinless life, which no other person of sound mind has claimed. Jesus said, “I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of my hand.” (John 10:28) And in verse 30, he said, “I and the Father are one.”


So Jesus himself was claiming to give eternal life to his followers, and shortly after that he claimed that he and the Father were one, the same essence, or God himself. I once gave a ride to a hitchhiker when I had a youth ministry in Erie, IL, who claimed to be the exiled prince of Norway, but it was obvious he was not. He was deluded and probably mentally ill.


But Jesus gave many evidences that he had the power of God within him. He gave a blind man sight, raised a widow’s son from the dead back to life, as well as his own friend Lazarus, who had been dead for four days. With a word or touch, he healed men and women who had been crippled or ill for many years. Demon-possessed individuals who could break chains with superhuman strength were delivered from Satan’s power by a simple command of Jesus.


Christmas is a fresh reminder to us of the amazing love of God for all of mankind. Jesus came to earth to live a sinless human life, and gave us the most wonderful gift of all time, the gift of eternal life in His presence, to experience greater joy than we have ever known for an eternity. Please join me in celebrating joyously this wondrous gift that we have been invited to be an active part of!


Have a Joyous Christmas!

Jim Poll, Minister

November 2021


What a beautiful time of year, as our eyes are drawn to the beauty of the leaves as they change colors and to the progress of the farmers as they finish harvesting their crops. Just a glance around reminds us of the bountiful blessings of God. Yes, some of us have experienced various losses, which are always painful, but God stands near us at those times, and comforts us, and we have seen many more gifts of love and joy from His hand on a never-ending basis.


Every day we can observe the wonderful presence and comfort of God. We know that God is good, and we recognize His precious gifts such as a bountiful harvest, reasonably good health, loving families, faithful friends, plenty of food to eat, comfortable homes to enjoy, and churches in which we can honor Him for his generosity to us.



“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget none of His benefits; who pardons all your iniquities, who heals all your diseases; who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion; who satisfies your years with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle.” Psalm 103:2-5. Let’s remember where all these good gifts come from… our Father in heaven who loves us, cares for us, and showers us with all these amazing gifts!!


Have a wonderful month as we give thanks to our Loving Father in Heaven!


Thankful for You,

Jim Poll, Minister

October 2021


Hello, friends! I hope you are in good health and are enjoying the fall weather. There are a lot of fields that have been harvested so far, but the rain has slowed things a bit this past week. Hoping for good yields for the farmers and that they will be able to finish soon!


The farmers coffee at Church on Friday mornings is going well. Coffee is available from 8:00-10:00 a.m. and there is usually a good turnout. I have enjoyed my visits with the men who attend, and doughnuts or other treats occasionally appear, which are enjoyed by all. Come by and enjoy the fellowship!


We started an adult Sunday School class in September at 9:30 on Sunday mornings. We are using a book, Core 52, which helps us gain a basic knowledge of the Bible. Each chapter takes only 15 minutes to read, and we are having good participation with plenty of discussion each week. This is going well, and if you would like to join us, you would be most welcome!


Recently I heard a friend at a funeral say, “I haven’t gone back to church yet,” and another person said, “I haven’t either”. Fear of Covid is the reason many stopped attending last year, and it certainly is easier to watch church online. Church online is good, but the fellowship with believers is better, and following Jesus’ example is best. “And as was his custom, he went to the Synagogue on the Sabbath day.” (Luke 4:16) If you have serious health issues, church online is the solution, but if you are healthy, please come join us!


Your Brother in Christ,

Jim Poll, Minister

September 2021


Hello friends! Here we are in September, and already some combines are harvesting corn. Isn’t it wonderful to see the work that was done several months ago come to fruition as the grain is harvested and will be used in various ways to provide food for animals, people, and in so doing provide income to provide for the men and women who have diligently worked for this yield?


In the same way, we need to invest in the planting of the seed of the Gospel in the hearts and minds of people in our community so that it can grow and produce a harvest of eternal life in the lives of all who allow it to grow in them and produce much fruit. Those who have fertile soil in their hearts will see God’s love grow and bring healing to damaged relationships and broken hearts and quench bitterness towards others who have been unkind and hateful.


We serve the God of Love who has demonstrated the ultimate gift to each of us through His Son, Jesus Christ. As we observe the bountiful harvest of grain, may we pray for the bountiful harvest of souls and consider what an amazing difference that would make in every life and in every community.


May God Bless You richly this fall!

Jim Poll, Your Minister

August 2021


What? Another onslaught of Covid? Just when we thought things were getting better and masks were no longer required, a variant has come around to cause more problems. What can we do to help lift our spirits and find inner strength?


I always find help in God’s Word. Paul, when he was in prison, wrote some encouraging words in his most difficult time. In Philippians 4:4, we read, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again, I will say, rejoice!”


That seems an odd thing for a man in prison to say, especially when he was isolated from his friends, but this entire letter of Philippians has a theme of thankfulness and rejoicing. I find it uplifting and encouraging to read, and it has some excellent advice about how to find peace in the most difficult times. “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 4:6,7)


This seems strange, but we can put our anxiety aside if we will remember to give thanks for even our most difficult circumstances. Giving thanks reminds us that God is in charge, and that He will bring good from this event. And His peace will guard our hearts and our minds during this impossible situation.


Paul also in the next verse tells us to focus our attention on the positive. “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.” (Phil. 4:8) Focusing on the best things will bring God’s joy and peace into our hearts.


Thanking God for You,

Jim Poll, Minister

July 2021


Unanswered questions. No doubt many of us have dealt with these. We seek God in fervent prayer for those who have been afflicted with physical ailments that seem to last forever. We pray for these dear friends, asking for healing and health, but the illness lingers on, and problems continue. And so, we wonder, “Why?” But no easy answer comes, and the pain and illness continue.


I just finished reading through the book of Job and was reminded how much this righteous man lost in one horrific day. His huge herds of livestock were stolen by enemies or died in fires, his servants killed, and all ten of his children died in a tragic tornado when they were eating a meal together. Financially and emotionally, he had unimaginable losses.


But Job was a man whose trust in God was so complete, his response to these devastating losses was, “The Lord has given and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.” He chose to honor God with thanksgiving rather than blame. And when he was stricken with painful boils all over his body, he did not blame God, even when his wife urged him to “Curse God and die!” Job’s response was, “Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?”.


Job was an amazing man with a grateful heart. May we learn from this example to give thanks to God for all things He allows to come our way.


May God Bless You Abundantly!

Jim Poll, Minister

June 2021


Hello! Hope you all are doing well and enjoying the warm weather! Time keeps flying by. The good news is that the Covid restrictions are basically done now. If you have been keeping yourself home for all this time, I hope that you will consider coming back to worship with us at Tallula Christian Church. If you have had your vaccination shots for the Covid virus, you should be okay. If you are unsure about it, you can still wear a mask when you come. We are trying to be very careful as we worship to make you as safe as possible.


I’m sure you will want to see how our kitchen renovation is looking. Hopefully we will be able to use it soon and it will be a really nice improvement for the church as we move into the future. Come enjoy the fellowship together. There is no substitute for gathering together as a body of Christ to encourage one another and to work together as the body of Christ. We need you, and you need us.


May God Bless you this month. We hope to see you this month as we gather together. Please keep praying for God to lead us in powerful ways to reach out to those in our community who may be unchurched. Hope to see you Sunday! You are dearly loved!


Your Brother in Christ,

Jim Poll, Minister

May 2021


I love the month of May. This is the month of new beginnings. It is wonderful to enjoy the delightful signs of new life around us as the grass turns green and lush, tulips and daffodils add brilliant reds and yellows, dogwood and red bud trees present their beautiful pinks and whites, and farmers begin planting their crops. The outside temperature is warmer and we love getting out to enjoy that sunshine.


The second Sunday in May brings Mother’s Day, when we honor the women who suffered intense pain to give each one of us our new beginning in life, and who taught us strong values as they loved us, washed us, fed us, disciplined us, and gave unselfishly of themselves so that we might become men and women of integrity. They gave a huge amount of time and effort to give us all a wonderful opportunity to build lives of integrity, opportunity, and joy. I’m so glad we take a special day to honor our wonderful mothers who gave us our very first start in life, and especially for those who taught us to honor and serve our God.


May is the month when many High School seniors receive their graduation diplomas after completing their 12 years of public education. This ceremony is called a “Commencement”, which is the beginning of their adult lives. They will face multitudes of decisions regarding their behavior as adults. Let’s pray for them to choose wisely. May God give them His direction and purpose!


In this month of May, please join me in remembering that Jesus Christ is the reason for new life spiritually. He gave His life on the cross to grant us new life for eternity. Honor Him at Worship on Sundays.



Your Brother in Christ,

Jim Poll, Minister

April 2021


I hope this finds you all well and enjoying our spring weather. Easter Sunday was very nice. We rejoiced to have several guests attending, and we remembered loved ones who have already entered into eternity by reading their names and ringing the church bell for each family. It was a very nice way to honor them and what they have meant to all of us.

We also are making good progress on remodeling the kitchen. New paint on the walls, new flooring, a new stove to install, and new cabinets that have been ordered and should be arriving at any time. There is now a pass-through from the fellowship area into the kitchen where items can be set on the counter and reached from inside or outside the kitchen. Many thanks to Lynn Sill for helping plan these improvements and overseeing the job. It will be a fine tool in serving our Lord!..

We were delighted to have Lynn and Kay Sill come forward Sunday to make Tallula Christian Church their Church home. We are thankful for their love for the Lord and for their willingness to join us as we serve Jesus Christ. I am looking forward to meeting others who would like to join us as we serve God in this area.

May God Richly Bless You during April!!

Your Brother in Christ,

Jim Poll, Minister

March 2021


I am writing to you today from Hemet, California, where the temperature has been in the 70’s and the sun has been shining brightly most days. It has been wonderful to visit friends here that I have known since college, and another friend that I have known for over 20 years. The bond that ties us together is our faith in Jesus Christ, and that is very precious to all of us. In fact, that is the one thing that ties us together as nothing else could. We all know that we will one day enjoy a rich fellowship in the presence of Jesus Christ, as we gather around His throne to praise Him for satisfying the deepest needs of our hearts and souls.


“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.” John 3:16 (NASB)


But since we are not yet in heaven, we still have a lot of work that needs to be done. We need to let the love of Christ shine through us as we deal with friends and neighbors who may not yet know the joy of a relationship with Jesus, and we definitely need to let our political leaders know when they propose legislation that is in opposition to God’s clear teaching.


Have a great month this March. Praying for God to be honored in all our lives!


May God Bless You Richly,

Jim Poll, Minister

February 2021


“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him.” (I John 4:7-10)


As we enter the month of February, it seems normal to look towards Valentine’s Day and think of love. I’m sure many wives will receive a bouquet of beautiful flowers, or a box of delicious chocolates, a lovely card, or a special evening out for supper. Those events will be a reminder of how much love couples have for each other, and those thoughts need to be shared with one another from time to time, as a reminder of how much we love those dearest to us. Genuine love is best when expressed freely and openly to those who are loved. That is how God taught us to love one another.


His love was the greatest gift any of us could ever hope for and brings with it an eternal home in heaven, living for eternity with our loving Creator. May we do our best to reflect that amazing and perfect love to every person we come in contact with, and by doing so, we will reflect the amazing love of God to all those around us.


For those of us who are single, may we find joy in sharing God’s love with others who may be lonely, discouraged, or fearful. A kind greeting, a word of encouragement, a silent prayer offered on their behalf will never return void! You may make another’s day wonderful with a small expression of kindness!


May God Bless You Richly!!

Jim Poll, Minister

January 2021


Greetings in this new year of 2021. All of us are a bit weary of the trials of 2020, with the frustrating inconveniences of social distancing, isolation of folks, including those in hospitals and nursing homes. It has been difficult for all of us. It is tough when families have a loved one in the hospital and are not allowed to be with them to comfort them and assist them. It is hard for those who are in nursing facilities who are not allowed to have visitors from church or family. I don’t particularly like wearing a mask into stores, gas stations, or businesses. My glasses always steam up!


One good thing is that there is now a vaccination to help prevent Covid. Let’s hope and pray that this will signal the ending of this pandemic.

The best news, though, is that God is still on His throne, and He will give us strength to endure through every trial. We have learned how important being together as a body of believers really is. I miss seeing friends from Church, and I’m sure everyone feels the same. But we can still find encouragement from God by reading His Word on a regular basis. It always gives me a sense of peace when I do so. I will start through the Bible again this week and read through it again this year. I hope you will join me in doing so. Please also join me in praying for our family in Christ locally and throughout the world! Thank you!


May God Bless You Richly in 2021,

Jim Poll, Minister

December 2020


“For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; and the government will rest on His shoulders; and His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace..” Isaiah 9:6, 7 (NASB)

This passage was written about 750 years before the Birth of Jesus Christ, so God’s plan of salvation for those who would accept it was in effect hundreds of years before Jesus appeared in Bethlehem. In fact, it was in effect in the garden of Eden when Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit. So, this awesome gift of God’s Son, Jesus, was planned for mankind since the beginning of time.


What a privilege for us to celebrate the birth of Christ this month and to consider the awesome love of our Almighty God for this priceless gift that allows us to be in fellowship with God Himself.


May we give God the Glory this month for his indescribable and priceless gift of his only begotten son, Jesus Christ!


May God grant you love and peace as you honor Him this month!

Jim Poll, Minister

November 2020


Here it is November already. The year 2020 has been a difficult one in many ways. We ushered the new year in with news of a deadly pandemic which has changed the lives of everyone to some degree. Churches, schools, sports, businesses, and life as we knew it were closed down for several weeks. We were told to stay home except to go out for necessities. We were not allowed to visit friends who were hospitalized, nursing homes were closed to visitors, and still are. I remember going to a Walmart nearby to buy some groceries and was surprised to see the frozen foods section with empty shelves. The first time in my life I had ever gone to a store to see that many food items were completely sold out.


We have been through a lot this year, and nothing seems to be normal. People still are staying home a lot, and when we go out, masks are the norm. We have had a presidential election where results are still not known several days after we voted. There is much uncertainty in every area of life.

But this is the month we celebrate Thanksgiving, and I have noticed when reading the scripture, that Thanksgiving is always appropriate, because God is still on His throne, and He is still in charge. I would like you to think about these words from Philippians, written by the apostle Paul while he was a prisoner, facing death.


“Therefore, my beloved brethren whom I long to see, my joy and crown, so stand firm in the Lord, my beloved. Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! Let your forbearing spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:1, 4-7 (NASB)


Let’s remember to give Thanks to God in every circumstance, and His peace will guard our hearts and minds.


May God bless you,

Jim Poll, Minister

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