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Pastor Cox Preaches on "The Power of Love"


The Laurelbrook Seventh-day Adventist Church service on June 30, 2018 began with Rodney Herra making the announcements (only those in the bulletin).  The nominating committee to nominate the nominating committee to select the 2018 / 2019 church officers – Sebastian Roy-Lavallee, Clayton Brandt, Rich Sutton, Dena Marlowe, Ginny Arce (Juanita Smith, alternate) - was then selected. The committee will be allowed to select its own chairman [Note: the three ladies on the committee were not present. They may agree to serve or not]. The deadline for the new officers was July, but this will not be possible.

Jacqueline Miller played an introit. The congregation had a silent invocation and then sang “My Hope Is Built on Nothing Less”.  Rodney Herra had the main prayer; the congregation responded with “Hear Our Prayer, O Lord”.


Jefferson (junior) then called for the offering.  Clayton Brandt and John Ellis then collected the morning offerings; the loose offering went to the world budget.  The congregation sang the doxology, and Haydee (junior) prayed for the offering. 


Itzel (junior) told the children a story.  Rodney Herra then read 1 Corinthians 13 “1 ¶ Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become [as] sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. 2 And though I have [the gift of] prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed [the poor], and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing. 4 ¶ Charity suffereth long, [and] is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, 5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; 6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; 7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. 8 ¶ Charity never faileth: but whether [there be] prophecies, they shall fail; whether [there be] tongues, they shall cease; whether [there be] knowledge, it shall vanish away. 9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. 10 But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. 11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. 13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these [is] charity.”  

Yzzynne (9th grader) and Leilani (junior) sang “How Great Thou Art” for special music. Pastor Mark Cox discussed the topic “The Power of Love”. The congregation sang “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing”.   Pastor Cox had the closing prayer.

Personnel Other Than Students:

Clayton Brandt – works with Laurelbrook’s heavy equipment

Jacqueline Miller – semi-retired nurse living on Laurelbrook’s campus

John Ellis – retired mechanic living near Laurelbrook / local church deacon

Rodney Herra – Laurelbrook church treasurer / former Laurelbrook staff member currently tearing down the old girls’ dorm

Pastor Mark Cox – Laurelbrook’s church pastor


Following are some notes on the sermon by Pastor Cox:


  1. Mark Cox was like a missionary in the military.
  2. God’s love is the power that overcomes evil wherever it is.
  3. 1 Corinthians 13 describes the principle of love so we can contrast love with Satan’s evil.
  4. Love produces good without ulterior motives.
  5. 2011 Pastor Cox was sent to Afghanistan. After this he was transferred to a military intelligence unit operating across all the U.S. military services. He had to walk about half a mile through tunnels and underground to get to his office from the parking lot.
  6. He would make his rounds of the various offices. His job involved holding services and debriefing operatives from the various military initiatives.
  7. He started thinking of himself as important and “chasing the carrot and avoiding the stick”.
  8. Emotional intelligence deals with emotional maternity.  When you compromise, it starts to wear away your emotional maternity. Conflict often comes with a “me” environment. But if you highly value yourself, it means low emotional quotient.
  9. Fear and self-importance lead to believing a lie.
  10. High emotional quotient comes from unselfishness and trust (faith). God’s government is based on truth and love. This leads to trust.
  11. The environment Pastor Cox was in, however, dealt with secrets and selfishness.
  12. People can have, in this environment, low self-esteem because they don’t think they are important enough.
  13. Self-importance can also led to the idea that you are God.
  14. People who worry about self-esteem can be manipulated by Satan.
  15. In politics, the divisions are based on fear and self-importance.
  16. In Pastor Cox’s job, he could not say what he hears from those he counsels. This keeps them from feeling threatened when they confide in a chaplain.
  17. Edward Snowden took off with military secrets from the unit Pastor Cox was serving. So the commander was changed.  The new commander used intimidation and threats.
  18. After this, everyone seems to come to Pastor Cox for counseling because the commander was trying to control everyone. This really upset the commander.
  19. So Pastor Cox went to talk to the commander, preparing himself with prayer and organization. The commander was using compelling power to put fear into his subordinates. Pastor Cox went to the commander’s office with fear and trembling.
  20. He told the commander why the command climate was so negative.
  21. Eventually he went over with the commander the laws of life, love, and liberty, reminding the commander that forced actions do not fulfill these laws. Pastor Cox read 1 Corinthians 13 to him.
  22. Eventually the commander was investigated and was retired. He told Pastor Cox that he had done a good job.
  23. For our good, Satan is allowed to live until the Great Controversy is played out so the two separate principles of government is clearly understood.
  24. God’s way is not to force the supremacy of good over evil.
  25. Ecclesiastes 7:15-18 “15 All [things] have I seen in the days of my vanity: there is a just [man] that perisheth in his righteousness, and there is a wicked [man] that prolongeth [his life] in his wickedness. 16 Be not righteous over much; neither make thyself over wise: why shouldest thou destroy thyself? 17 Be not over much wicked, neither be thou foolish: why shouldest thou die before thy time? 18 [It is] good that thou shouldest take hold of this; yea, also from this withdraw not thine hand: for he that feareth God shall come forth of them all.”
  26. We are not conservatives, not liberals, but children of God.

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